FUCK YOU: A Letter

I am having a bad day. Repeating emotions coming through to show me something that I hadn’t been able to see yet. Self-blame patterns, shame, guilt, and buried hurts.

 
I googled “why victims protect their abusers” I’ve already read about trauma bonding. I am just trying, desperately, to understand my own patterns so I don’t do this shot to myself again. 
She sent me a message once saying that it hurt that we couldn’t talk. 
You know what else hurts? Realizing that I gave eight years of my life to a relationship that was built entirely on lies and satisfying the needs and wants of one person whose behavior continually proves that they are self-seeking and that it will never change. 

It hurts to hate myself for having a kind heart.

 It hurts to have to remind myself over and over and over again that loving someone who mistreats me does not make me a flawed human, or weak, or bad.

It hurts to come to terms with and accept that no matter what I did or could have done what I truly needed didn’t exist in that space and any time I thought I had it was an illusion, a metaphorical band-aid plastered over my wound to just get me to shut up.

It hurts to realize that the only time my partner really ever gave me affection was around their friends to build some illusion of a loving relationship and that it made me uncomfortable and I didn’t know why.

 It hurts to realize that every time the person I chose to be my partner had an opportunity to actually be a partner they chose to walk away, and abandon me emotionally, but play the victim when I scraped up what was left of my dignity and strength to walk away and try and find clarity. 

It hurts that when I did find clarity, my clarity was undermined and replaced with another lie intended only for that person to numb out their own shame. 

It hurts to have spent so much time questioning my own worth and sanity only to finally realize that there had never been anything wrong with me except my core belief that I didn’t deserve better, and that I could help her. 

It hurts to realize that my idea of love was toxic, and that receiving love is just as important, and that the lack of love I received wasn’t because I was blocked from accepting it, but that my partner was blocked from giving it in a way that I needed. 

It hurts that she admitted that she knew what I needed, but she withheld it to “see what I would do.” 

Shut down, assfuck. That’s what I would do. Find a way to protect my vulnerability from being manipulated against me. 

It hurts to know that the person I chose would have done anything they could to not choose me. 

It hurts to come to terms with the fact that the person I chose to love really only ever wanted me to hate them, and made choices to make that happen, and admitted to it-more than once. 

 And that I blamed myself for it. 

I guess it’s true. The truth hurts. It’s all I ever really wanted. It’s also true that the truth will set you free. That’s what I wanted most. 

I don’t expect her to care. She clearly never really has. I don’t expect that to change now. I just know better than to expect that of her. Not of other people though. Because it isn’t “expecting too much” to expect the people who say “I love you” to actually LOVE YOU. and expectations aren’t wrong, or setting oneself up for failure and disappointment. As long as they’re realistic. 

She expected me to be perfect, self-sufficient and subservient to her every demand. 

I just expected her to actually care about me. And she couldn’t. Because she lacks that capability. That’s sad. 

I feel bad for her. But I don’t feel bad I left. I feel bad I stayed for so long

 
And underneath all that hurt is the truth that I can be happy. Truly happy. And I do deserve love. Real love. Not whatever she fucking had to offer me.

 
I’m praying for her new girlfriend. That she wises up on a timeline more congruent with the last girlfriend than with mine. What I mean is, that she can see through your bullshit quickly.  And not just ask you for another heaping pile of it to pick through, and keep herself occupied for a few months at a time. 

Because she has kids to take care of, and we both already know that you’re just like the asshole that abused me when I was a kid. That you never really thought his behavior was wrong. And you are the asshole that abused me as an adult. And I’m the asshole who thought that was fucking normal. It wasn’t. 
You told me that you learned there were two kinds of people in the world. People like your mom and people like your dad. 

You became him. Abusive and predatory. Self seeking and narcissistic. And I thought if I could get someone like you to love me then I would be worthy of love. 

I handed my power over to you daily. And I didn’t get it. You were right. I was weak. Or, I let you have the power. 

I let you beat me down for years, and play the victim whenever I could finally stand up for myself. 
I still pray for you to get the help you need. Although I’m sure it’s a waste of my time. I still pray for myself. That at some point this will stop hurting. That the memory of you won’t sting so bad. That the eight years I spent with you were actually worth the wisdom I gained. To love myself first. Which is why I won’t grant you any more access into my life. At least I’ve got that down. But it still fucking hurts. 

Untitled

She put the house up
For sale

I saw my past life
Flashing before my eyes

The kitchen
Where I made dinner
And that day I made more naan
Than we could eat, but I did it
Without my shirt on

The kitchen
Where she left me notes by the coffee pot
The coffee pot that kept me going on the hardest days

The kitchen
Where I hung that ee cummings poem somewhere I have never travelled gladly beyond

But she replaced it

Twice

The kitchen
Where she screamed at me
That time I had an accident
And melted

The kitchen
where I finally yelled
“I deserve to be with someone who wants to support me emotionally”

The living room
Where she threw that candle at me
And broke my foot

The living room
Where the television
Still holds my face print from when we hung it, and I almost dropped it

The living room
Where I spent days painting
But on the last day made her help
And I didn’t wear any pants

The living room
Where the couch we bought is 
falling apart from the time she fucked that other girl there and the lotion
The lotion ate away the faux leather

The dining room
With the chairs I hand sanded and painted
It took me a week
And cost me a pair of shoes

The dining room
Where I painted the built in cabinets with the wrong color because she didn’t help me that time

The dining room
Where we hardly ever ate

The spare bedroom
She told her parents was my room

And when I made it my office
She complained at the mess I work through

The spare bedroom
Where I painted alone
Again because she refused to help

The spare bedroom

The spare bedroom

And her bedroom
She painted again
The second time I left

She painted again on the day she demanded I come get my stuff

And her bedroom
Where she called the other side of the bed the pssenger side

And her bedroom
That she shared with me
And her and her and her and her

And her bedroom
Where she choked me in the closet

And her bedroom

And the front porch
Where I watched the rain
And read my books

The front porch
Smoking cigarettes

The back yard
Where I read books to her

The back yard
That she refused to fence in

The back yard

That caved in

The back yard
And the driveway
We resealed together
Pulling weeds and filling cracks

She put the house up
For sale
I walked through it one more time

And cried

And closed the door

Without slamming it

Without leaving a key
this time

I guess it’s haunted

I guess it’s time

Lost and Found

The pit catches
Your heart when it falls
To your stomach
Despair

Desperation
I can feel her
Looking at me
Discomfort

I look back
What else am I supposed to do?

I wish I could write about anything else
I wish the hook would come loose
I wish I could see the perfect life we live

When she tried to catch me
She only saw half of who I am. 

The scales of my lower half
Only for refracting light
Holding in my shiny. 

I glide through the water
Not swimming, rather
Being In between
here and there
Then and now
Her and I

Stopped

Azure. 

I wonder sometimes if it was her fault 

I know how much she hated children
I wish I could have known how

It would all work out
I don’t know 

Why we had to go
There just wasn’t enough space
In her house
Or heart for you
Or my love

Azure. 
Eyes telling stories 
Of time before we knew it

Love Poem •may 2014•

I always knew. You knew. 

A thousand thank 

yous drowned

in my thoughts. Shoved under

 my pillow 

many sleepless nights. 

I have held fuck yous tight 

between my teeth. Fearing 

always of saying too much 

too soon. 
I have never been one 

to hold in my words, and lately 

I’ve been having trouble 

getting them out. 
I am Finding them, hidden 

beneath two years of guilt and confusion. 
you were the one 

who knew the whole time. 
My pieces were scattered. 

In every palm I traced. 

I collected pieces of you left behind. Wondering always if you held 

the secret that I 

couldn’t grasp. 
Two years and I 

understand. It was never a secret. 

We wear our traumas 

like victories. 
Behind each set

 of eyes we can find 

something new 

about ourselves.

 
You were the bent corner in a book I have been writing. Holding my place. So that I could return to this story, somewhere near the middle and remember how it ends. 

I’m thinking of the line from “Big Fish” when he says, “this isn’t how I go.” 

I’m thinking of the cliché, ” if it’s not okay in the end, then it’s not the end.”

 I have sat wedged in between those two sentiments for over two years. 

The anniversary of 

our breakup is this Sunday. 
I hadn’t thought about that until just now. It doesn’t hurt like it used to. Nothing hurts like it used to. 
I used to stare at her and agony would fill my empty spaces. I lost her long before I left her. That is why I had to go. Does any one understand what it feels like to love someone so deeply, but they are so far from themselves it has become increasingly difficult to even recognize them? That is heart break.

 
Today, I look into her big green eyes with a new lens. It reflects the light through both her and I. That is why we keep our curtains drawn.
I’m sorry you knew before I did. But I am glad, too. Because without your knowing, I most certainly would have never learned.
  So, thank you. For keeping her safe. For letting her grow. For changing our lives for the better. 
Go back. 

go back to December2012, in the garage. After that bottle of Jameson hit her demons. 

Rewind to October 2012. When you were discarded. September 2012, when you Thought she was someone special for you. 

Keep going back. 

August 2012, when she met you. 

July 2012, when we cried together on the couch as I left my key on the coffee table. 

June 2012, when I stayed in our house and she left for a while. That’s how I know what empty means. 

May 2012, when enough had been enough but it still wasn’t enough. 
Go back to December 2013 when fate finally caught up. November 2013, when you thought you might actually have her. October 2013 when being the friend wasn’t as easy as you were trying to make it seem. September 2013, when she finally stood up to me. August 2013 when your broken heart got lost in hers. 

July 2013 when my heart turned to dust and it settled under the love seat where I plead, on my knees, for her to just let me stay. 

 Come here, May 2014. Where all those dust particles have come back together into a cohesive whole.

In japan, they mend broken things with melted gold. 
For the past two years we have been making Japanese art of our hearts. In the last five months we have really figured out the trade. And today, we have mastered the peace. And that is love. 

The End

Poem

I’m losing water

I’m losing heat

Creating steam

Changing states 
The sea dried up

Waves no longer crashing

Below, but shifting 

Up reaching the cosmos
The sea crawled up 

And caught herself steady

Magnamonious

As a mountain stable

And sure 
In the spring there will be 

New life in these branches
Elemental transformation

Liquid, solid

            Aghast. 

No longer daring people into my depths

No more diving into the wreck
This earth supports

Rooted in truth

Saved only for those 

Determined to climb. 

Backward Feeling

My therapist had told me for years-you can’t feel for other people. But I can. And I do. Saying that I can’t had sent the message to my subconscious that this was a challenge. I love a good challenge. I started to take on her emotions, and I had no idea I was doing it. I accepted her pain. But in my willful unknowing-I thought it must certainly be me. So, when the projections started flying around I had already begun to believe that there was something wrong with me. 

The earliest one I can remember was right before I went into therapy. It wasn’t my first rodeo in therapy. My first time was when I was 8. My mom says, “you were always a happy kid, and then one day you weren’t anymore.” Right-so, toss me to the school counselor because that doesn’t alienate anyone in their third grade class. She gets out of class because she can’t adjust like the rest of us. Thanks mom. 

This time, life was happening. It’s cool. Shit happens. I lost my job. Got fired. I had a guest complaint which I still maintain was the biggest bullshit claim I have ever heard. I am no stranger to guest complaints throughout the ten years I spent in the restaraunt industry. I always owned it. This one, though, was an all out lie. But, you know, whatever. I’m sure I needed out of there for a reason. In hindsight…it was bringing me even more truth that I still wasn’t willing to recognize. 

So, I lost my job. With that loss came a whole heaping weight of, “what the fuck do I do now?” Overwhelm. Sadness. Fear. Things I now understand to be totally normal in that situation. Totally valid. Totally acceptable. 

Yet, this is how it went down.  

The next day, I was laying in bed. Throwing myself a pity party, otherwise known as trying to figure out what my next steps should be. The bottom dropped out. What the hell do I do? I tried talking to my partner about it. But, you know, things just work out, everything is fine. Let’s just have sex. I, obviously, couldn’t go there. I wish I could have, it just wasn’t what I needed. There’s a pretty strong chance it COULD have been exactly what I needed, but in that moment-it wasn’t right. I said no, not now. I can’t. 

She flew out of the bed in a huffy puffy mess of her own perceived rejection. I laid there alone in my own perceived rejection. We were young. We were stupid. I don’t know whose perceived rejection was more or less valid, but nobody felt loved that Sunday morning. 

As I laid alone and cried, she went to take a shower. As I laid alone and cried, I could hear her masturbating in the shower. My hurt and shame and fear and rejection compounded exponentially. I felt useless and used. She didn’t want to have sex with me to connect and help bring me out of my funkiness. She didn’t want to have sex with me because she loved me and knew the healing power of human connection. If she did, I very likely would have completely surrendered to her proposition and her touch. I guess my soul knew things I hadn’t figured out. 

As I laid there, vulnerable, alone, and deeply hurt a surge of anger built up in me. Who was this person that I shard my life with? What kind of a person acts like this in these situations? She’s a monster. Why would she hurt me like that? What did I do to deserve this? 

The shower turned off. I was up and pacing. I didn’t know what to do or say. I don’t even remember what I did say. But I definitely didn’t shy away from expressing how incredible shitty that behavior was. 

She smirked at me, “I don’t even know how you heard that. I was trying really hard to be quiet.”

Fucking asshole. 

I hadn’t learned yet how to say, “I’m hurting.” But something tells me it wouldn’t have mattered. 

“It’s not about the fact that I heard it, it’s the fact that you DID IT!”

“I have needs.”

That was her answer. That was her sole means of justification. 

“I have needs.”

Selfish fucking asshole. 

I was speechless. 

But let’s break down this monstrosity of an interaction. Her needs for sexual gratification with or without my presence trumped my need for human contact and a genuine need for my difficult emotions to be soothed and processed. 

She left. She went to go watch football, and drink beer with her friends. She didn’t invite me. 

Instead, she looked at me and said, “You’re a lonely person. You need to go talk to someone.”

She was right. I had never felt more lonely than I did that afternoon. And I did make an appointment with a therapist shortly thereafter. But my loneliness in that moment was not wrong, chronic, unfounded, or even a ME problem. I felt her loneliness so deeply it became my own. I went to therapy to try and fix it. 

That never truly worked itself out. Only now can I see why.