A Lesson Well Learned

It hit me today.

Had I never experienced the emotional abuse or carried the guilt that my last relationship gave me – I never would have become the person I am today.

Am I thankful for the experience? No.

Did it teach me some valuable lessons. Yes.

So I suppose I sit somewhere in between – “If I were to do this all over again, I wouldn’t.” and ” I’m making the best of an awful situation”

What I wanted to address mainly is that trauma, especially this kind, can be lifelong. Though that sounds discouraging, it doesn’t have to be. There are small fragments of that relationship that still linger within me. Things that trigger a fear response, a flight response…. Small things that I hoped one day would vanish and I could go back to the way I was. But today… I realized, if all went back to the way things were – I would be able to manipulated, abused and used the way I was – and I will never let that happen again.

This man opened my eyes to the realities of the world. He, unintentionally, gave me insights to the manipulators mind. He gave me the gift of seeing bright red flags and point them out to my friends. Without even knowing it, he armed me with the fiercest weapon anyone could.

THE ABILITY TO SEE PEOPLE’S TRUE COLOURS.

To give myself credit, I have done a lot of the work to be able to reveal all these gifts, and additionally to be able hold the weapon and not yield it. Like the Ring of Mordor, it’s actually quite hard to resist.

Let me explain this in more detail – the weapons he unintentionally showed me were as follows:

  1. He taught me how to manipulate people to get what I want.
  2. How to make unreasonable things seem reasonable.
  3. How to gaslight someone
  4. How to seem the victim, when in reality you are the oppressor. (This one takes talent when you are berating someone)
  5. How to convince someone that cheating is not wrong
  6. How to coddle someone to make them feel in need of you.
  7. How to be perceived as the best thing that walked the earth.
  8. How to win an argument without saying anything at all.

You can see how all these things hurt, deceive and get you exactly what you want – and how tempting it could be to want to use it for my own benefit….

OKAY HOLD ON – ATHENA WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU GOING WITH THIS?!!

Had I never learned these lessons, I never would have been able to see those who use them. It’s like when Frodo puts on the ring and can see the Nagzul (or the Ringwraithes). In being able to see these tactics people use on others, I am able to see why it is so important to educate others, and return the ring to Mordor…. to conclude the metaphor.

The tribulations that Sam and Frodo are put through, changes them, it haunts them. But it makes them appreciate the Shire so much more. If you aren’t a Lord of the Rings fan, and I have completely lost you on these metaphors… my point is this:

If you have been through the ringer, with mentally or physically abusive partners or people in your life. Appreciate the lesson they brought to you – YOU KNOW OF THE BAD IN THE WORLD – AND YOU CHOOSE THE GOOD… and not only that – you can avoid the bad, because you can see them for what they really are.

I will never thank my abuser, nor will I forgive him. But I can thank myself for putting the work in to heal, and putting the work in to become a better person, a happier person, a person unwilling to use the weapons I was taught – and I was only able to do that, because of the shit he put me through.

Happy Easter.

~Athena and Hermes ~

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