I’ve written endless letters to you and never sent them. I’ve burnt the ones on paper and deleted the ones on the computer. I’ve tried to understand why you did what you did and I’ve failed in coming up with one reason as to why either of us deserved it. And it’s taken love from an unlikely source to help me see we didn’t do anything to warrant your behaviour. The fault was not in us but in you.
I won’t focus much on what you did to Mum, except to say my teenage self begged you to leave rather than continue to cheat on her. You didn’t. You were too selfish to see it would have made her final years less fraught with unhappiness. She hid it as best she could from us, but I saw it in her eyes when she thought we weren’t looking.Your snide comments and your constant emotional abuse have left me with deep scars. And for a long time those scars were filled with anger and hate. They still sting and haven’t fully healed over, but the anger and hate for the emotional abuse has subsided. I still find it hard to trust new people but I’m working on that and I think it’s helped me better judge who I want in my life and who I don’t.
You gave me a distinct distrust of men and yet I work with them all day, I have male friends in my life whom I have learnt to trust, and I’m seeing that you aren’t around every corner.
You chose to see me the way you do. You chose to focus on my sex and the fact you think women should serve men. You chose to publicly act like a decent man and privately become the monster who caused part of my self harm and PTSD. I chose to never go back after you kicked me out and I choose to look for the good in my life. I choose to embrace those who see me for me and not for what I can give them. I choose to smile when someone takes the time out of their day to contact me.
I’ve spent too long fighting demons you helped to create. Too long dealing with nightmares and doubts. You made me question the motives of everyone around me. But no more. I’ve still got a way to go before I can truly say I’m free of those demons but I’m getting there. One day I’ll forgive you, I’ll never forget but I will forgive. And it won’t be for your sake but mine. Until then, I have arms to hold me when I shake, shoulders to cry on, and more love in my life than I ever realised was possible. In the words of Sarah from The Labyrinth – YOU HAVE NO POWER OVER ME!