When I think over the past year, I see how far I have come. A new person and new life, no longer under your control, and no longer having to put up with your manipulative behavior. No longer an enabler, and now I can see you for who you truly are. And it is not a pretty picture.
More pieces of the puzzle are forming a picture of you that at first I did not want to see and you still don’t want to. At first the pieces formed fragments, coming together slowly, but over time more of the pieces formed to create an ugly reality. Seeing the growing picture I was forced to face the truth in order to save myself and the children from continuing the cycle that is maintained by your dysfunctional family. I found an inner strength I didn’t know I had, but ever so grateful that I found. I thank God for that everyday for a chance at a new life without the difficulties we faced with you day to day.
More of the pieces form every day, making the picture every clearer, and I don’t like what I see. Re-examining past events where I excused your behavior, supported you, protected – all in the hope that I would get some small crumb of affection in between the anger, hurt and false accusations. The affection used to come as flowers or occasionally a card - you have difficulty in giving and showing affection - it is all about things and symbols but the true words from the heart are missing. After yelling and abusing me apologies used to come on occasion, but of recent times they did not exist and it took me a while to wake up to that fact and really see how you acted towards us.
I was in denial about the real you – the thing is I have woken up not only to you but myself. I can look at my past actions, some of which I am not proud of, particularly when it came to protecting the children from yours and your families cruel words. You didn’t defend us and I didn’t defend them –but I am now and there is no going back.
But you are in denial about yourself. You may be the product of the dysfunctional actions of your family, but you lack the inner strength and judgment to see how bad their behavior is and yours is the same. For you it is all about impressions, material things and what other people think and you learned that from your family. It didn’t matter that it ruined us financially – you wanted to live a life you felt you deserved, not what you could afford. You could never make do, never be practical. You are a rusty shell, and when you crack through the surface it is hollow underneath.
I now realize that I lived our married life in fear and anxiety – I cannot remember a time that I was truly happy without a care – there were some good times but they were always tempered with my concerns about how you were feeling, and being told I was not doing enough to make you happy. The sad truth with you is that nothing was ever ever good enough. I ran myself ragged in the futile quest of trying to make you happy. And you milked it for all it was worth.
You write that you love me – they are words, words not backed up by actions. If you truly loved me you would give me the space I need, and offer apologies for your behavior. But you do not. Your words during our marriage were barrages of criticisms and blame all directed at me, and at times the kids. You talk about a life you deserve – we didn’t deserve to live with the abuse. Your recent email is more of the same. And guess what - it doesn't bother me and it won't be responded to - how long will it take for you to ask me have I received it. You put a trace on it to tell when I read things but I delete the trace and ignore the correspondence. Why? Again it is all about control. Well I am not responding - there is no reason to engage in conversation with you and if you don't like that tough. I don't do what you want me to anymore.
You write phrases expecting them to be parroted in return – so your needs can continued to be satisfied. I have learned that lesson, and now say what I feel to protect myself and be true to my thoughts and feelings, but have now even gotten beyond that. You never did listen or understand me and what I said. I have to look after my own thoughts and feelings, as you were never capable of understanding me, and it is sad to realize that you never will, nor will I or the children get the long overdue apologies we deserve.
Yet despite all you have done, and now living apart you still think we will reconcile because that is what you want. What in earth makes you believe that will happen? Because I miss you? – definitely not. Because I can’t live without you? – proven I can do more than OK by myself, and be much happier with it. I have told you to your face and in front of counsellors that I do not love you anymore. Your words and actions squashed the love and almost the life out of me. I cannot trust you anymore. I do not want to be anywhere near you, see you or be with you. It makes me uncomfortable to even think of seeing you - so why should I put myself through that?
I am free of your cage, no longer trapped, and I am happy – truly happy. No longer living in fear, and my only anxiety is responding to your emails - but today I have hit a landmark day - that doesn't bother me anymore either. While what you have written is not true, and your latest email which is still full of criticism about my behavior and how I and the kids are not being polite to you I am not taking the bait to defend myself. I dont have to justify why your thoughts are wrong, and even if I did you wouldn't accept it so why bother? It is another example of the way you have always spoken to us.
Nothing was ever good enough.
We did not pay you enough attention or give you enough praise.
We did not rid you of your depression.
We did not let you live the lifestyle you felt you deserved.
I am strong enough to resist the need to defend myself to you. God knows the truth and that is enough for me. I have my friends and family back, and no longer have to suffer through your agonizing family events which were criticism fests always directed to me and the kids – did you defend us? Once only in my memory and even that was rescinded when you were confronted by your family. Your parents impressions were always more important than our feelings - but at that time you were controlling us. Funny they haven't been in touch with us - because they cannot face the truth about you either and speaking with us would only confirm the truth about you - so they would rather live in denial and blame me. So what. Their impressions about me no longer matter. The only ones that do matter are God's, the children, my family and friends - who really love me for who I really am and show that love through their thoughts and actions - something you are incapable of doing.
You would get angry – very angry and I had to learn not to react. And I was scared - that is no way to live in your home that is supposed to be a sanctuary and safe place - I got to the stage I didn't want to go home. So sad. You intimidated me into defending your inappropriate and misguided thoughts, blaming me for everything that was wrong in your eyes. And you got physical and I lived in fear that it would be repeated. On very rare occasions I would get an apology – and even that stopped when you were so far gone.
You couldn’t and still can’t see when I am hurt, in pain or suffering. It was and still is all about you.
I prayed for you to get better, to not yell anymore, and God answered my prayers in a way I didn’t expect. I prayed for you to get better – He gave me a path out. A rough one and not easy, but it was a path to freedom – away from your controlling manipulative existence. I now have a life and so do our children and it is wonderful and getting better every day.
I am sad that it happened, but I am a better person for experiencing what I did. You on the other hand are still the same self-centred person who only cares about himself. Your latest email just proves it.
Over a year has passed and you still don't get it, and I doubt you ever will.
edited for typo