I texted her with a simple question about which parent had claimed which child as a dependent on our 2011 return. In return, I was blasted with several pages-long texts, spewing out anger and bitterness.
I pointed out that most of her points were incorrect and were in fact, items which I had already finished. I hand-delivered copies of my 2011 return to her just two days ago. Had she lost them already? I re-forwarded to her several texts from earlier in the week which she apparently had forgotten about.
I spent much of Sunday in a state of high stress, searching for receipts, copies of tax returns and divorce agreements to submit to Revenue Canada and writing a pages-long letter answering their questions. I delivered all this to my wife late in the day and she will review it for accuracy, add her own information and then review it all again with her accountant sister-in-law in Toronto.
So.... I'm sure we will get through this, but my resolve is strengthened that I need to completely cut off communication with my wife for my own well-being. Frankly, I'm starting to think that her emotional and mental health issues have gotten worse, not better, since our divorce.
Going into school last week, I noticed the poster (shown at right) posted in the grade 7 - 8 area. My school is has middle school and high school operating in the same building; I teach grades 9- 12.
I thought: "Oh, no! Not again!* Fuck!"
Although I was very late and had much work to do to, I send a quick e-mail to our vice-principal. I wrote:
I noticed this poster in the 7/ 8 area coming into work this morning. "Vote for Ben and Nik. If we become president, we'll wear dresses the next day."
Clearly, this won't be happening. It is offensive on so many levels: to transgendered people, cross-dressers and all LGBTQ people. This sort of thinking should become offensive, in time, to straight people as well.
Cross-dressing is far more common in our community that most people could possibly imagine. An event like this would only increase the self-loathing and shame already experienced by many cross-dressers, present or future. It would also signal to everyone that it is acceptable to laugh at those people who are different. Frankly, this is not a message that we should be sending to our school community and to a wider online audience.
I was rather proud at how well-written this was because I only a couple of minutes before the period one bell. But I wanted to write it before I had a chance to cool down and I wanted to have the poster dealt with as soon as possible. The posters disappeared immediately, of course, and to her credit, the vice-principal thanked me in person for pointing out "this learning opportunity" for the students and teachers involved.
Our VP is a fantastic lady who is highly supportive of me. She was the first administrator I told about my coming-out and divorce drama.
As I was typing the original e-mail, I told a close colleague, Mike, about how upset I was with the poster. He was highly supportive of me during my coming-out and divorce but remains quite uncomfortable when I gossip with other teachers about the gay happenings in my life.
To my great surprise, I found out later that Mike went directly to our principal and told him how inappropriate the cross-dressing poster was. Mike did it just to be supportive of me. He didn't want me to be the only person complaining to the administrators. I was quite touched by his gesture ..... and from him of all people!
* Two years ago, some other teachers and I put a stop to a contest which would have seen our former principal (who was an old-school asshole) parade around the school in a dress if the student body raised a certain amount of money for charity. What is this, 1972?