Sunday, November 10, 2013

Guilt Isn't Always Rational

A song that makes you feel guilty...

This post is going to be hard to write.  I already know it.  I've been amping up for this one for days.  This is going to be more about not feeling guilty anymore than about the song that makes me feel guilty.  

The song that makes me feel guilty is Eminem - Love the Way You Lie.  I have a hard time even listening to this song in most cases.  The Skylar Grey version doesn't bother me.  Neither does the Part 2 version that Rhianna sings.  

I used this Eminem song to justify an unhealthy relationship and romanticize it for a really long time. Years. I'm not sure why.  I guess I figured if someone could sing about my relationship it made it all be okay.  The line "Maybe our relationship isn't as crazy as it seems.  Maybe that's what happens when a tornado meets a volcano" makes a fucked up relationship seem justified.  

Anyway, the point is I'm really tired about feeling guilty about it.  I carry around a lot of guilt for a lot of things.  It's really easy for people to make me feel guilty for something.  And it was even easier for X2 (that's what I'm going to start calling ex-husband #2. We all know who he is but it seems wrong to use his name) to make me feel guilty.  It's a bad habit I'm trying to break.  Seriously you would think I was Catholic.

I feel guilty for staying in an unhealthy relationship.

I feel guilty for allowing myself to be in an unhealthy relationship in the first place.  

I feel guilty for letting someone else have enough control over me and my emotions that I justified this unhealthy relationship. 

I need to forgive myself and move on. 

This seems really weird and out of the blue.  I have spent so much time being angry at X2 that I didn't realize that I was mad at myself.  Earlier this week I had to see X2.  I had some stuff of his and he had some stuff of mine and we needed to trade.  We met at Dutch Bros., they know me there. It was actually good, we talked about the kids and about work for a little bit and then we went our separate ways.

I realized while I was there that I wasn't mad at him anymore.  That I had grown enough as a person that he didn't have any power or control over me.  Something I'm not sure I would have realized if we hadn't met face to face.  I've forgiven him for all of the shit.  I have to forgive him for my own well being.  There is no point in hanging on to the animosity and anger that I have had toward him, not just since I left 6 months ago, but for the past few years.  It isn't healthy. 

What I need to work on is forgiving myself. The guilt that I carry around for allowing all of that shit to happen in the first place is something that I need to let go of.  If I can forgive him and let all that anger go, I should be able to forgive myself.

Forgiving yourself is harder though. It all comes back to expectations and disappointments.  When you think you are a strong independent person and then you look back on the last six years of your life and realize you were deluding yourself you can't help but be disappointed.  You can't help but be angry.  And that anger is directed inward.  Not just that, but you start to question and second guess every decision you make.  How do you get to the point that you can trust your decision making skills ever again?

It's a process.  And it's long and hard.  You just have to make sure that you learned from your mistakes.  And you have to make sure that you don't make the same mistakes again.  It's a process.  One that I feel confident I am working through.  I'm not there yet.  Trust takes years to gain and seconds to lose, especially when it comes to trusting yourself.  But I'm working on it.  I think the next step is probably listening to that stupid song without feeling guilty.

I'm working on it. 

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