I can remember when it all started, the moment I realized our relationship would never be the same. You walked into the room as if I had never existed. No warning signs, no red flags, you just walked right past me and without saying a single word told me everything you wanted me to know. I was hurt, confused, angry. Where did that come from? When did these feelings of bitterness and hatred toward me start? What had I done? It was in that moment that I felt the first stab of the knife. Someone who was supposed to love me did not, or at least didn’t act like it.
Over the years it would happen again at gatherings, parties and weddings. And I never really knew when it would strike. Sometimes, when it was just us, you were yourself. But when a group was together, that’s when I would feel it. Just my presence, the sound of my voice, seemed like fingernails being dragged down a chalkboard, to you. You ignored me, that was your passive-aggressive way of letting me know I meant nothing to you. There were always whispers and secrets. Oh, the secrets! The thought of me having a relationship with anyone else drove you insane. So, you would leave me out of everything. Three is a crowd, I guess. The more people liked me, the more you hated it. I started to distance myself when I knew you would be somewhere, I would make excuses to not go. I couldn’t stand it. I didn’t deserve it.
When I confronted you, you would admit it was jealousy, envy, you were tired of hearing people say nice things about me. You were beautiful on the outside but your insecurities were ugly. You wanted to take everything away from me, or at least that’s how it felt. You wedged yourself in between every relationship I had, kept me from certain people that you could control and to everyone else pretended to be sweet and innocent. But, I knew. I knew the motives. I knew you loved seeing me fail, it made you feel better about yourself. I knew how you compared and contrasted yourself to me. I knew how you judged me. I knew how you counted and tracked my sins. I knew you had your magnifying glass over me just waiting for the next wrong move. And the talking behind my back, the way you would justify it, the way you turned everything around to make it sound like everyone was out to get you. The manipulations were sickening. I couldn’t feel sorry for you because I knew you had created these things all by yourself. You could have just been happy for me. You could have supported me and cheered me on, like you should have. When I fell or failed-you should have been there to tell me it was going to be okay, to tell me to keep my chin up, to tell me we all fall short.
And now I hear you say you want to be close. But, I just don’t know if I can trust you, if I can believe you or believe things have changed. Words don’t carry any weight. Actions, my dear, are all I am interested in. I have not been a perfect person but I have never turned on you the way you have turned on me. Ever. In fact, I have given way too many chances for you to hurt me. So, now, you need to understand that if I hold you at a distance it’s because you have not earned your way back into my life, at least not the parts of me that I keep for the people whom I trust. I will still love you and wish you well but somethings are written on my heart forever.
I hope that someday you will be happy for me. I hope that, if you hear someone speak kindly about me, it will make you smile instead of feel disgusted. I hope that you can respect my relationships instead of trying to come between them. I hope that you can let go of the need to control everyone and everything. I hope, for your sake, that you can stop comparing and competing with others. Make peace with the parts of yourself that you have been at war with, causing your insecurities to manifest and these feelings toward me to surface. The real struggle has not been with me, but with yourself. So, before you ask me to put myself on the line again, please be certain that you are prepared to hold up your end of the relationship.