It is the New Year. The year of the end. The year of great change. The year of panic among the believers. The year of fear.
I didn’t make any resolutions. What would be the point? My life is on hold. At least I found a measuring stick to know if he is still in active abuse, or real recovery. I have looked for a year and a half for something, anything, and there was nothing to be had. Except, for a site about physical abuse.
That says a lot. I am beginning to think there is no difference between the types of abuse. Physical, sexual, emotional, chemical. The symptoms all seem to be the same, only the way they are enacted is of different flavors. Outright, passive aggressive, internalized, manipulative. Abuse of others, abuse of self, abuse of the internal and external world.
Abusers feel they have the right to abuse. Abusers decide consciously how they will abuse. The abuse feels good and justified and they need that abuse to feel whole and alive. Abuse is a choice, because when an abuser finally hits ‘bottom’, they can decide to never be that abusive again, to rewrite their internal scripts which they use to justify abusing. When they want to not abuse more than they want to make excuses for their abuse, they are able to stop.
Maybe not all of them. Maybe there is a critical period of self development which, if missed, means that person will never be able to think rationally about their behavior. Perhaps their internal filter is so permanently flawed that they will forever be trapped in that house of funny mirrors. Using language appears to have that sort of critical period. Or compassion and empathy. Yet, we are so malleable, and we can be rewritten, rescripted, restarted, rebooted. Our entire value system is capable of being remade. Cults know this. The military knows this.
Abusers know this.
Thus I, too, can rewrite my internal script. I must really, truly, with all my being, want it.
Hasn’t that always been the issue here? Haven’t I always known that? I just don’t know what I really, truly want. And through this indecision, he manipulates and controls and abuses me. Why? Because he can.
I need to be new. I feel the goddess inside, and she guides me. I feel the universe gently pulling and pushing me to stay, for now, to truly work on being a loving, kind, devoted, vulnerable partner. It is terrifying. I also hope the universe is helping me be cautious, awake, aware, and safe. I don’t feel safe. I feel ashamed, awed that he is capable of doing these things to another person, stupid to think that way because I see his father and his mother and should have known better, that of course he would be fully willing to beat up on someone else, especially a woman who really loved him. Sometimes I look at him and still cannot wrap my mind around the depths of contempt he behaves towards me with. Sometimes I hear him speak and blame me and manipulate with this sorrow and use me as the reason he mistreats me, and I know the truth. I keep waiting to hear something, something I know is different.
And by that, he manipulates me.
I guess I have to quit thinking he will learn to treat me with real respect. I guess I have to quit hoping he will learn how to own his own feelings. I guess I will have to accept that he is so conditioned to his contempt and entitlement and manipulation that he doesn’t even know what mindfulness feels like. I have to learn to accept him, just as he really, truly is.
And what, then he will be able to change? That if I remove the shame from my words that he will magically find the tools to get himself fixed? That I can ignore he carries a shitload of shame around inside to feed his self hate whenever he needs, and if it isn’t enough, he will find my buttons to push until I become upset and fuel his shame all over again? I hate being tricked. I hate being used to hate himself. I hate being hated as part of his shaming script. I hate being set up so he can knock me down just so he can play addict games with himself.
I guess I have to find my safety in myself, like always. I guess I have to accept feeling alone and lonely. I guess I have to find a way to live with the deep sorrow and loss and get up every day and do it again. I guess I have to forgive myself for feeling sorry for myself, and find the strength to live by my own values, and do something about it. I need to find the tools to use the ashes and manure of this disaster as fertilizer to grow through, from, above.
I can do this. I can do this. I can do this. (Please, please don’t make me do this! I want to go home. Please, can I go home now? Please don’t make me! I don’t want to do this! I’ll be good, I promise! I won’t say anything! Please, don’t make me do this!)
No shame. No shame. A little boy caught eating all the cookies and yelled at in the corner. (But he is a man) A little boy told he is bad until he believes it, until he lives for it because it is at least attention. (But he has choices.) A little boy throwing a tantrum in the store until he is red faced and tear streaked and incoherent. And I am supposed to be all grown up and patient. All alone. If I remove the shame, at least I am accountable for my small piece. At least I can be in my adult, safe space. At least I can feel I am being responsible, even if I don’t think he deserves it, even if I don’t think I deserve to be treated like this.
Some days I don’t give a damn about being the ‘bigger’ person. If he wants to rot, let him rot. I don’t have to watch.
I choose not to let anger and hate rule the rest of my life.
I can do this.