Content note: domestic violence, physical & emotional abuse
It is hard to put into words all that you put me through. This letter is, I know, another vain attempt to master the chaos within me. But trying is always a better option than quitting, I suppose.
Sometimes I wish you could go through the pain and struggle you put me through, but really I know there’s no way I’d want another soul to go through it.
I’ve held onto this pain for so many years because I genuinely believed that some day it would stop. I always believed you were something more than you appear to be. But you continued taking advantage of my innocence until eventually, you destroyed it completely.
You thought you were powerful because you played an attacker? You thought I was weak because I played a victim? The truth is, your victim is always superior to you in every way.
I would be lying if I told you I never thought about revenge. My mind wandered but my demons never got the better of me. Maybe I was simply too young to retaliate, or maybe I was too wise. I knew that if I were to sink to your level, you and I would be no different. One thing I’ve known for sure for all these years is that I never want to become a reflection of you.
I’ve wondered to myself, “do people always do these things to the ones they love?” I’ve thought that maybe I just don’t know enough about love.
“If you hadn’t made me so angry, I wouldn’t have hit you or said those things,” you’d say. You would always make an excuse. Over time, I started to believe the fault was in me.
But today, I choose to stop blaming myself. It was never my fault to begin with. There is nothing I said or did that made it okay for you to hurt me with your words or your fists.
I am not an excuse for your incapability to control your emotions. I am not the cause of your outbursts. I am not your rage or your hate. I am not your false pride or fragile ego. I am not the weakness you always claimed to see in me. I am not the names you called me.
You don’t define me. I define myself. I am much more than the marks you’ve left on my body. I am innocence. I am dreams. I am hope. I am forgiveness. I am the person others always want to have around because I am laughter and I am love.
I hope the scars on my heart heal faster than the ones on my body. But the wounds within you? Whatever caused them, I hope they heal even faster than mine. And when that day comes, I will be long-gone from your life and it will be too late to reach out to me to tell me that you’re sorry.
But today I forgive you, because today I want to be free.
The Young Woman Whose Life You Changed Forever
*Author’s note: any resemblance to specific individuals or actual events is purely coincidental. Here’s to the survivors of all sorts of abuse and those who are still struggling, I hope you find peace.*