Dear Beyonce Knowles,

I have never written anyone a fan letter before. I guess I wrote Carrottop a fan letter sometime around 1997, but that was just to keep him out of the Celebrity Death Pool I was betting in. And that doesn’t really count, does it?

Anyway, I am writing to say thank you for your good works. I have been following your career since you were with Destiny’s Child. I have always enjoyed your music, but what really sparked me to write was this…I was sitting in my car the other day feeling terrible, really miserable. I was thinking about totally changing my life somehow, which I haven’t done for a long time. And then the single off your new solo album, “Me, Myself, and I” came on the radio.

For years, Beyonce, I felt like I had no control over my life. I knew something was missing, but I wasn’t sure how to fill the holes. I know you are only twenty-two, but I feel like you have seen a lot as you have traveled around the world on tour. I mean, your mother, who has to be one of the most passive-aggressive control freaks I’ve ever seen, is your stylist. The fact that you can prosper despite her insistence on tearing the ostrich feathers off your Manolos for one lousy performance at the VMAs…well, you must have the patience of a saint.

So maybe you can understand my side of the story. My husband is like your mother in some ways, except without a flair for sequins. He wanted me to stay home and to stay with him, but he didn’t want to pay attention to me while I was around. In November I was considering faking my own death to get out of Christmas with his family, and all he could say was that he would be “embarrassed” if I didn’t show up.

I kept trying to make myself smarter, and prettier, and thinner, in the hopes that he would really notice me, and love me the way I needed to be loved. Have you ever been that stupid, Beyonce? I might as well have given my love to a philodendron. Actually, I probably would have gotten more of a response from a plant. When I came into this eight years ago, I had some inkling of how cool I was. I really lost that after being ignored for so long. I found out I can’t compete with things that loom that much larger that I do, like depression, a sense of failure, and a saxophone that pulls him away for eight hours at a time.

This is where you come in, Beyonce. I was sitting in the car, waiting to get on the freeway. I was so dead that I couldn’t even cry. I had a real wake-up call on Thanksgiving, because I realized that night what a dead person, a sleepwalker, I’d been for so long. I felt all empty and dried up and really fucking old. I felt much older than twenty-six. Right there, at the freeway entrance, I realized I needed to leave my husband, for reals. Then I heard your song.

“I can’t believe I believed/
Everything we had would last/
So young and naive for me to think that/
She was from your past/
Silly of me to dream of/
One day having your kids/
Love is so blind/
It feels right when it’s wrong.”

Okay, so there was no other woman, only his saxophone and a strong tendency to be self-absorbed, but it struck a cord with me anyway. It was a Pop Music Epiphany. Then I heard the chorus:

“Cause I realized I got/
Me, myself, and I/
That’s all I got in the end/
That’s what I found out/
And there ain’t no need to cry/
I took a vow that from now on/
Ima be my own best friend”

I decided to take your advice, Beyonce, and to become my own best friend, indeed. I cut my losses; I worked out a plan with him for splitting custody with Frannie, our little girl. I signed a lease and am moving in on New Year’s Day. I am typing you this letter on the morning of my last day in this house, as my friend has offered to let me housesit for most of the rest of the month.

He said he didn’t want me to go, but so much damage had been done that I didn’t believe him. He said he still feels passion for me. I listened on the night I told him I was leaving as he wrecked shop in the backyard. It’s all right, though, because my new apartment doesn’t have a patio on which to put all the pots he smashed anyhow.

He kept me up until two last night, on my last night, telling me how unfair it was and how angry he was, and how he felt that I was doing this to spite him. I am so beyond spite and malice I can’t even tell you. I had my heart broken so long ago that it’s healed up by now. I am ready for something new. “Where have you been?” he said. “Who have you been fucking?” No one will ever talk to me like this again without getting fucking shivved.

I am so relieved that I can take Frannie and get out of here, and I won’t have to look at the giant dent he made in the wall when he hit it last night. I told him not to hit me, because I would fucking take him down. I think you would say the same thing.

Anyway, Beyonce, I have probably taken up enough of your time. I need to start packing the clothes I am going to take with me to my friend’s house, as well as the bottle of champagne my thesis advisor gave me for Christmas. Frannie is up, and I need to get her some breakfast. Good luck with your fiance, Jay-Z. I hope he is making time for you as he is planning his retirement and working on his novel.


I, Asshole

“Independent Woman, Part 2” excerpt by Destiny’s Child:

“How you feel about a girl like this?
Try to control me, boy you’ll get dismissed
Do what I want, live how I wanna live
Buy my own diamonds, and pay my own bills

“How did you feel about this groove I wrote?
Hope you got the message ladies take control
Don’t depend on no man to give you what you want
Keep that in mind next time you hear this song”

40 thoughts on “Dear Beyonce Knowles,

  1. I heart you, too. Thank you for your openness, your honesty. I wish you strength in the path that I know from experience is going to be challeging but oh-so-worth-it. Luck and power to you.

  2. good luck SJ. you’re not on your own -you got Frencie and your sis, friends and family and all us clowns on the internet that believe it or not care about you even if we don’t truly know you. A lot of us have been were you are now and made it through it and like Lorena said, it’s oh-so-worth it.

  3. If the past years aren’t enough to motivate your leaving, then him smashing flower pots and putting dents in walls sure is. No matter how angry you get, you don’t treat someone that way.

    And as for you being cool, I never had my doubts. And nobody should ever make you have doubts. You are the best. And I have a pretty good feeling that one little Frenchie and a few troops of freinds and fans agree.

    You go girl. Cause you tha bomb.

  4. wow. girl. we should talk.

    leaving is hard, but if you are ever to get what you deserve out of relationships and out of life, it was necessary. good luck.

  5. Is this even for real?

    I don’t know if now is the right time to step in and say what I’m thinking because I want you to be a happy and fulfilled Asshole, but some of these posters are coming over all daytime TV. This ‘strong independent woman’ thing gets on my fucking nerves when it’s applied to being “strong enough to quit”.

    I know close to zero about you and your situation, so here is some general stuff about marriage in general.
    1. “Til death do us part” means “until one of us is dead”.
    2. Food, water and shelter are needs. Love and great sex are not. I am living testament to this fact.
    3. Sometimes married people are unhappy. Suck it up.
    4. See stuff in the context of your whole lives – maybe fifty years – together.

    Christmas sucks, but this is over-overreacting. If you want to stay home for Christmas just organize a three way with MrHusband and as hot a hooker as you can afford. Tell him you’ll wear turkey-flavored edible panties and you’ll do stuff under the misteltoe you wouldn’t normally do under an anaesthetic.

    But don’t leave your man. Where’s he gonna find another Asshole like you?

  6. Relationship turmoil sucks a fat one no matter when it happens, and it’s harder around the holidays even if you’re not a holiday-loving person–I hope things start looking up for you, and I wish you the best. You’re going to be just fine.

  7. Marriage is a commitment but should not be a death sentence where one person has to give up who s/he is to make the waters calm.

    I left my husband just this April; our son was only two months old. He was a manipulative, controling alcoholic. I stayed for three years trying to ‘suck it up’, and after promise after promise of change – I had to leave. And I got the crying, then the violence when I wouldn’t agree to change your mind. The passive-agressives are good actors.

    It will be hard, SJ, but know that you are doing the right thing. You will be a better person and a better mother (not that you’re a bad one now). I completely understand what you mean by feeling dead inside. I remember those nights, crying, thinking how much I hated my life. I remember doubting myself – was I good enough – what could I change to make the marriage work? It’s all crap – no one should be made to feel like that.

    You don’t know me from Adam – but if you want to talk to someone that has been through it, feel free.

  8. SJ,

    You don’t know me but I am a good friend of daymented’s and a fellow MLIS student. Just a note to say even people you don’t know are thinking about you and your darling little girl. Take good care. Feel free to write if you need anything.


  9. I responded the the wrong entry (story of my life) but here’s what I wrote: I’ve been reading your blogs for some time now, and I can’t believe what you’ve just written.
    All I can say is that you’re very courageous.
    I wish I’d had as much courage at 26 to start again. Please keep writing.
    And good luck!

  10. You’re the bravest motherfucker I know, Miss SJ. You’ll get through this. Hell, with such a loyal and mildly rabid support group such as we, how could you not?

  11. Donal: Having psychology and marriage and family statistics to back me up, I can definitely say that sucking it up for as many years as our beloved SJ did and loving her husband, only to be taken for granted in return is one of the worst forms of hell. Love IS a need. If Mr. H. vowed to love SJ until death and then didn’t love her, he has definitely let his vow to her die. That she can still feel enough of a spark of life inside her to leave him then by all means, she should. People should only stay in a marriage if both parties are willing to work on the marriage so that it doesn’t get to this state of crisis. The horn is Mr.H’s true love. Now SJ needs to cut the ball and chain and feel alive again.
    SJ, we love you and send you good wishes. Being the single mom is hard, but you’ll do it with a flair, I know.

  12. Girl, lemme tell ya sumpin right hurr, that Beyonce KNOWS how it is. Mmhm. And between her layin’ it down for you, and us fuckers, and that darling Frenchinator, and your actual friends who you actually see for actual real in life, you gon’ be fine. Go on now witcha bad self. We LOVES us some SJ!!! I’ll cut anyone who hates, now… :) xoxo Sulky

  13. I think we were all gritting our teeth fearing this was the unbloggable problem.

    It sucks to leave but sounds like it will be for the best.

  14. SJ,

    i stared at my computer a long time wondering what i could say that might be consoling and then i realized there was nothing i could say other than i am thinking warm thoughts for you and i hope everything will work out.


  15. Intense stuff. The letter to Beyonce was pure brilliance by the way as perhaps inappropriate it is to even say that. Regardless, best of luck to you and Frenchie. Life is about living and not wanting to live so props to you.

  16. No asshole ever makes the [holy fucking shit] decisions lightly. We supress in our own special retarded way. Therefore I wish you the best possible outcome to a horrible situation. And wish you the ultimate 2 oh oh 4

  17. SJ –
    We’ve only met in face-to-face life1 or 2 times, but I saw you & Frenchie walking down Pike street on Saturday & smiled big smiles at you. Now I feel like I should have stopped & talked to offer condolences and congratulations in person….
    If you want to go get a ginger ale & talk non-confrontationally, I’m yr girl.

  18. Three Short Stories About Relationships
    by Joshua Norton

    I used to have this friend. Jon. I knew him since we were in elementary school together and when he was about 25 he married this woman who was ten years older than us. And she had this story about this guy she used to live with who was strung out on heroin and how one night they got in this huge fight and she screams, “I’m leaving!” and he screams, “If you leave, I’ll kill myself!” and she thinks he’s full of shit so she goes ahead and leaves.
    And there wouldn’t be much of a story there if she didn’t come back 45 minutes later, and there were cops and a fire truck in front of her apartment because sure enough the dumb son of a bitch blew his brains out in the bathroom.
    I laughed my ass off when she told that story. And Jon, he was giving me this look like I’d grown another head. But his wife got the joke, sure as fuck. She was grinning at me like a gargoyle.

    I used to know this woman named Christy, in Eugene. She was a friend of my dad’s, more than she was a friend of mine. And she had this son, Fletcher, who was my age. And she was hooked up with this guy Luke, who was pretty cool. Luke drove logging trucks for a living. He was a good looking guy with a steady job but for some reason Christy kept cheating on him. Nobody could figure it, least of all Luke. But he was pretty into Christy, so he put up with it.
    Then one day when me and Fletcher were about four, Luke’s truck rolled on a logging road and he was killed instantly.
    Christy was fucking around on Luke when it happened and, by weird coincidence, she got pregnant. She named her son Uriah, which was its own fucked-up kind of in joke. She refused to ever see or speak to Uriah’s father again.
    She used to say Uriah was Luke, reincarnated.
    I didn’t buy it. Luke was a pretty nice guy. That kid Uriah was a fucking demon seed.

    My older sister’s mom, Olive, used to date this fisherman we all called Crazy Mike and the thing about Crazy Mike was that sometimes he’d beat Olive up and do severe violence to the house; knock holes in the walls with an ax, or chase them around and blow windows out with a shotgun. So after a couple of years of this shit, Olive followed me and my dad up to Seattle to get away from the fucker.
    Then one day about four years later he just shows up out of nowhere. Knocks on Olive’s door and starts the conversation by punching her in the nose. Then he drags her upstairs and just beats the shit out of her. My sister was on vacation with her boyfriend in Central America at the time. One of the many things she didn’t get from Olive was her taste in men.
    Anyway, Crazy Mike spent an hour or so beating on Olive, then went in the kitchen to get something eat. And while he was looking through the fridge, Olive hit him in the head with an iron, which apparently caused blood to shoot out of the top of his head and splash on the ceiling because when I came by a week later to help clean up there were little squirts all over the white popcorn ceiling, like somebody’d been shooting blood out of a squirt gun.
    Anyway, that pissed him off pretty good and he started beating on her again and that’s when Dave happened to drop by. He went to work on Crazy Mike with an ivory handled straight razor and Mike ran away.
    Olive spent a few weeks in the hospital. Her jaw never did work right after that.
    A year or so later, Dave traded the razor to my dad for some pot.
    I still have it on my mantle. Thing’s almost 100 years old, and sharp as a the day it was made.

    And there’s all kinds of morals and shit in there. But I’ll just quote the Pogues instead:

    “Remember this place
    It is damp and it’s cold
    The best place on earth
    But it’s dark and it’s old
    So lie near the wall
    And cover your head
    Good night and God bless,
    Now fuck off to bed.”

    -The Pogues, “Sit Down By the Fire”

  19. Sweet God. I knew you were contemplating a change, but Jesus (the Reason for the Season)!

    I hope you and Frenchie are well. Reading your post makes me think about changes I need to make with Mrs. Kamikaze, as I have feared that, one day, I’d end up like Mr. Husband. I mean, I didn’t put the whole Mr. Husband part in until just a few minutes ago, but you get it.

    Best of luck on the single parent thing. I’m sorry your need for a change provoked such a hostile response. Hopefully Mr. Husband won’t break the mix CD I sent last week.

  20. SJ–Wow…that is true upheaval and it sounds traumatic. Broken pots, broken hearts. So hard.

    You are a wise woman. You are smart enough to do what’s right for you and Frenchie. Anyone who reads your stuff here knows that. I’ll be thinking of you.

    You are cool. You need to keep knowing how cool you are. I believe you will soon.

  21. holy shit. i read your blog all of the time. i have commented once or twice. i am fascinated by you, your life, your sister, your kid, your husband, your studies… i guess that is the purpose of reading someone’s blog. this is the only blog i read. i can’t even stomache the other shit out there, yet somehow I, ASSHOLE fascinates me.

    it always seemed to me that something was wrong. i looked at pictures of him setting up the basketball hoop on the blog-a-thon and could tell something was up. i don’t know…


    i’m not a stalker, SJ, just an invisible friend. you made the right decision. keep us posted. we love you.

  22. We’re all invisible friends here. I made the big break in August and it’s the best thing I could have ever done, though it hurt like hell and I’m still dealing with the financial and legal repurcussions. It broke his heart, it broke mine – but it was the right thing in the end. Only YOU can know what’s right for you and your life and your Frenchie – and ultimately, only you are responsible for making those things happening. We’re all here if you need anything.

  23. Hi,

    All the good bits from what everyone said above. The bad bits make good kitty litter.

    Please look after yourself.

    You have a bucket load of squeeky humans out there who really give big cahoonies about how you are feeling. We can be a blankie! aaaahhhh.

    Anyway, you can hide, run, throw-up, smile whatever – the world is yours. :)

    Love Kelly xxxx

    PS Your’s is also the only blog i read. once you’ve had the good stuff…..

  24. Let this be a lesson to all you fuckers that don’t take care of your business. I spent so much time with my horn I forgot to pay attention to what actually inspired me to make music in the first place. And now she’s gone, she says it’s too late, I had my chance. She’s right…eight years is a long string of chances. I took for granted what was so perfect and right in front of me and I hate myself for it. I would do anything to have her back. I love her so much. All the things I do have no meaning anymore. The horn, the house, the school, sometimes even the fatherhood. Loving her was the reason for all of those things, for life. Somewhere along the line I forgot that. To wake up and see your soul in someone else’s eyes every morning is a blessing, and to forget to also see their soul is a curse to live with. Only now I realize this, only now I am awake. Now I am alone, as she was alone with me for so long. The broken pots, the broken wall, I wasn’t angry at her. I am angry at myself for messing this all up.

    Take care of your people!

    Mr. Husband

  25. Perseverence is heroic.

    Your readers are moonlighting at Jane Austen’s blog.

    Have to be.

    The fuckers.

    Happy Christmas SJ

  26. Jane Austen can kiss my ass. We’re moonlighting over at Laurie Notaro’s blog.

    Perseverance is the bomb, yeah.

    So is waking up and deciding not to waste your life.

    I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive.

  27. Re: Mr. Husband

    Yeah. Bad enough to have something like that happen. Then to read the comments of 30-or-so drooling netgeeks, judging you for the outcome of the biggest fuck-up of your young life without ever having met you…
    That sucks.
    I basically back SJ– when it’s time to go, it’s time to go, and Mr. Husband definitely seems to have cooked his goose here. But I gotta say, I feel for the guy. I have nightmares about something like that happening to me.
    So yeah.
    Mr. Husband; sorry dude. Keep it together. Stay clear of the bottle and the bong. The shape you’re probably in right now, it’d be easy to get strung out and god knows we’ve all seen it happen. Better luck next time.
    SJ; gotcher back. Good luck.

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