Realisation: A lesson.
I have denied myself feeling for so long. Beaten myself up for feeling things when the toxic voice in my head told me I should feel guilty or ashamed. That I should run from the feelings, bury them or apologise.
I’m done apologising or denying myself emotion, and I feel angry. Furious actually. Humiliated. Betrayed. Hurt. A bouquet of emotion.
I have been through a lot this year. And this should be the least of it. But the resentment is so hard to let go of. The part of me screaming “It’s not fair, why fucking do this to me, you didn’t need to because I would have been fucking fine without you if you’d let me. If you’d let me be like I asked you to.”
And it’s so much worse because I would have loved to be your friend.
Yet here we are.
Earlier this year, I met a man. Unfortunately I met him after just coming out of an abusive relationship. There is a lesson here. And the lesson is not mine to learn. Because he is the reason I am so angry.
(Maybe mine a little too for ‘don’t date abusive men’ but problem is, they seem okay at the start.)
Coming out of something so crippling to my self image and worth, I just wanted to feel pretty again. I didn’t want to be told I was pretty, I just wanted someone to make me feel desired.
This man didn’t listen. He showered me in compliments to a point where I would be in tears. Even though I’d asked him to limit, reduce, stop… because he thought he was helping me feel beautiful again when actually he was reminding me of the pain those words cause. Compliments terrify me. It feels like a lie. A manipulation. False kindness to gain something from me. It hurts. Compliments like that have a negative association for me because they usually come from people who intend me harm.
I’d given fair warning that I didn’t want depth, I didn’t want something to explore because I had just come from something so painful. But he insisted and pushed and stayed just like the last fucker who came to me after an abusive ex and wanted me to believe in fairytales again.
We spoke every day. But I pulled away because I was being eaten by such painful, confusing, conflicted emotions. And it’s so hard to deal with that when someone’s kindness is making you feel sick with anxiety because of the pure fear of everything it could mean.
I did not NEED my expectations building up again. I did not WANT to be praised. I did not ASK to be made to feel special - in fact the opposite. I begged not to cross the line because I knew the only heart being torn out would be mine. And that wasnt fair. I had to take time away to heal and recover, to find my feet and be able to breathe again before I could identify my emotions to address them.
The girl weak from tears, vulnerable beyond compare for everything she’s endured who let you into her world and shared herself with you because she desperately needed a friend - don’t scoop her up and pretend to be her saviour. If your word means nothing, don’t say it. Or if you decide she’s too fragile, walk away. You don’t need to tap the glass first. I’m already broken.
If you were done, you should have been gone. Did you stay just for the ego boost? Good job man.
I think I told myself I couldn’t be angry that you’d hurt me because you were only trying to be kind or you just wanted me to feel special again. That you were nice to me so that made it okay that you were gone, because it must be my fault for not being able to give more of myself. No. That’s wrong. That was selfish as fuck on your part. You couldn’t give the wounded girl some space to heal? You had to emotionally cripple her by getting in her head when she already told you she only wanted someone to bed?
I denied myself feelings because I was still so fucked up emotionally from my previous relationship that my brain shut off. I shut down and I shut everyone out. You’re not allowed to feel angry or sad. Only anxiety, guilt and fear because you’re not allowed to have feelings.
You wanted me to believe in something again, and for a moment I did. But actually, all you did was reinforce the reality that people only care about their own agenda and give no fucks about the impact they may have on someone else.
I don’t want to believe in fairytales again. Because fairytales do not exist. And you make your own damn happy ending.
I will not let this cripple me or weaken me. I am not vulnerable or less because of this experience. I am stronger. I have learnt to embrace my emotions. I have goals, drive, dreams. Watch me achieve them. And it will be without the help of
Any. Fucking. Man.