Before going to therapy, I was involved with someone who hurt me deeply.
He violated my boundary and intensified my anxiety to the max. I did many things I’d never have imagined doing because I no longer felt like myself with him.
We went back and forth for several months after the break-up because I was too anxious to let go while feeling desperate for closure. But even when he said sorry or agreed to meet up to talk in person, it didn’t feel like closure.
In fact, our last meeting a few years ago ended up with him calling himself a psychopath and leaving me on the verge of tears on the street. Everything seemed like one power move after another for him instead of genuine, meaningful human interaction.
I never had the closure I needed from him because he never validated my experiences.
He said sorry but he didn’t know what he did wrong.
He agreed to meet up because he wanted me to stop being a problem, not because he had compassion for me.
He wasn’t capable of understanding the magnitude of the pain he caused me. Or perhaps he understood it alright, but he just didn’t care.
It messed me up for a long time because I couldn’t believe the person he turned out to be.
To the world, he seemed like such a friendly, interesting, successful guy. I thought how could he possibly be so emotionally stunted and cruel? I mean he had so many friends! Or were those relationships all superficial and fucked up behind closed doors? I couldn’t answer.
Therapy saved me. But it did take me a lot of effort to remind myself of the real him—someone who will never give me the closure I need.
See, before this guy, I had gone through shitty relationships.
I’d had my heart broken even worse by someone else, but I got a clear sense of closure and was able to move on peacefully then because that ex validated my experiences. He apologised to me as he understood the impact of his actions on me. He was kind and respectful towards me. We were on the same page.
Well, I’ve learned that closure isn’t about saying sorry.
It’s about the intent and meaning behind it.
Don’t get me wrong — I love my life and I have no interest in interacting with any of my exes, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t fantasize about that “psychopath” guy reaching out to say sorry to me (or that karma would one day bite him in the ass, sorry!)
In an ideal world, he would acknowledge every single hurtful thing he did and feel bad for having done it all. He would tell me he understands why I did what I did — or at least shows a genuine interest in understanding why — and ask for my forgiveness. He would give me the power to say yes or no to him.
In reality? I have no idea what he’s doing now, and I’m sure as hell he doesn’t think about me and what he did to me for one second. He probably thinks he did everything right and reflects nothing on it. While it has weighed me down over the years and throughout therapy, it’s likely just a bad dating anecdote to him.
What a fucker.
Honestly, it’s hard for an empathetic INFJ like me to fathom that this kind of person exists and he might be living a successful life (based on society’s standards) right now. But I have to accept it anyway.
I have to keep validating my experiences and grieving my old self in my own time, no matter how lonely it feels.
You would think I must have stopped caring about all this, now that I’m happily engaged, but actually being in a committed relationship means I have less time for myself to work through past traumas outside of therapy and I currently don’t have any therapy time yet (I’m trying to book a session again.)
My present and future are my Happyland but my past still haunts me sometimes, especially in my sleep. And guess what — it’s okay.
Not all traumas are resolved completely, but it doesn’t mean we can’t move on and live a happy life. We just have to be aware of what still needs to be healed within us and make space for it, so it can’t have any more power over us.
On the other hand, if we try to suppress it, it’ll find its ways to hurt us, and the consequences might be worse.
When we were still involved and I was in the deepest of pain, he accused me of causing drama on purpose to get writing materials. I was speechless. What a joke because I wrote not a single thing about him during that time; I just wanted to forget about him.
I’m writing about him now. And maybe I’m finally ready to let go of that traumatic experience.
It was real.
In fact, it was my turning point, my defining moment.
I acknowledge it: the relationship with that stranger meant a great deal to me even if it was nothing to him because it led me to be the person I am and I love today.
It isn’t my shame to bear that he learned nothing and all the wrong things from our interactions — it’s his.
I’m writing about him, but this isn’t about him. It’s about me. I don’t care if he will ever give it to me or not, I’m generating my own power.
I’m letting my traumas out in the open. When they find their space, his sorry won’t mean shit anymore.