I am not guilty of ever lying or exaggerating this whole experience, or the repercussions that it has had on me. It hurts me, deeply, that I was naive enough to ever put that ‘person’ first. To put their mental health before my own, to keep them safe.
I thought I was doing the right thing, stand by your man and all that shite.. now I can just clearly see that I was being incredibly weak, nothing more.
I can see now that my positive actions towards him have been seriously detrimental to me, hugely so, and it’s funny because I honestly never ever thought I would come to that realisation. Never did I think that I would ever value myself more than I valued him, yes, even after what he did to me, silly cow, eh.
But I have successfully reached that point now, chances after chances were dished out for him to apologise for doing it, but he has shown time and time again that he doesn’t care or have any remorse over his actions. I sat down and thought two things to myself:
‘keeping quiet Catherine, means you’re still protecting him’
‘doing things detrimental to yourself because of this means he’s winning’
He told me that it was not a premeditated act. That it wasn’t planned or meant. Well, I hardly think that even matters, does it? The damage and ongoing carnage it causes is 100% the same, in either case. It’s incredibly naive to think otherwise.
But, yes, here I am in complete unfamiliar territory, looking after myself, putting myself first (with my daughter, of course) for the first time in so long and it just feels so alien, I couldn’t look in the mirror afterwards. I couldn’t sit in the lounge where it happened, so I would retreat upstairs. I would silently scream if a man brushed up close to me on a packed train.
It’s amazing the reactions you develop to things as soon as you confront what happened head on. It took me ages to do that, to lose the love for him/the need to keep him safe.
So, yes, no idea how to even start this next road, although this I did find a once cherished picture of us and burnt the shit out of it; so that was definitely a good starting point.