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  • Writer's picturecocodensmore

I wish for you peace of heart and mind. And that is also what I wish very most for myself.

Dear Don,

I'd really like you to read this piece. It's snarky as hell, and full of anger and frustration, but it is a bare-naked look at how I believe people in relationships should behave towards one another.

I seek to create safe haven for my friends, a place in my life where they are free to be who they are, right now at this exact moment in all of time. I told you that yesterday, and you acknowledged I had an interesting perspective and I might be right. I reassured you that you are exactly on track with your process. And that's because it's your process.

I will always treat you well, because you're one of the men I'm talking about when I say:

"When you are lucky enough to find a man that is a good man, a good husband and a good father, why would you not bust your ass every which way you could to make him happy?"

Do you realize you NEVER again have to be in a relationship with a woman like your ex, who treated you so disrespectfully and disdainfully? You never have to submit to a woman so invested in destroying you for some inexplicable reason she isn't even able to put it to words in her own diary.

It infuriates me she went after you like she did, deliberately and systematically deconstructing your self-esteem. You know why it makes me so angry? Because it's exactly what my father did to me.

She's stuck in a victim mentality. I fall into it, too. I'm in it right now with my mom and my brother. Poor me. Ya? Pfft. I'm a fighter, I'm a survivor, I know the truth of who I am.

I sound like quite the victor, don't I? Well, you know the reality. I'm lonely and I spend a fair bit of time hating on myself. I've just trained myself to recognize my slips sooner and I've developed the tools to manage it more effectively.

I've much work to do in releasing my need for approval and validation from others. It's nice to have it, I thrive on it when I do, but I don't need it to be successful. Spirit lives inside me and she loves the bejesus out of me. She MADE me. She is enough. I am enough. Together, we are as big as the Universe enough.

Please don't think I'm being dismissive of your pain when I share ways in which I've managed to release hating people who have done me wrong. I don't ever want to come across like a know it all who has some secret formula you must follow to let go and get to forgiveness. You are exactly on track with your process. And that's because it's your process.

I'm not "there". I haven't a right to present as if I am. I still hate a lot of people a lot. But I don't like how it makes me feel. I want better for me. I'm doing the work to get better for me.

I don't hate my father anymore. I doubt I'll ever get to a place of complete forgiveness. For a long time, now, I've recognized there's context. He was abused by his mother. She made him her "little man". He, in turn, made me his "little woman". It's so sick it's beyond comprehension.

And yet, I say again, there's context. Perversion and abuse are traceable generations back, and often carry generations forward. Nonetheless, he did have control of his choices and his behavior. He is accountable.

What works to my benefit in all this, which I recognize may appear dismissive of your anger and hurt, is the fact it's exceptionally easy not to hate my father now that he's been dead for 39 years.

Your ex-wife is accountable for her choices and her behaviors. She's hanging onto hate for no obvious redeeming reason. There's context, there's always context. But you haven't been able to connect her victim mentality back to any obvious trauma. It's baffling. But there's always something. People don't just hate for the sake of hating. It sprouts from pain inflicted upon them.

I myself am an accomplished victim. That's why I see it in others. The most painful lesson, and what finally got me refusing to remain in a victim mindset for long, is the fact when I do succumb, it is me that suffers most.

I wish for you peace of heart and mind. And that is also what I wish very most for myself.



P.S. You don't even have to read this! Just click on "Listen" at the top of the page. Easy peasy!




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