My therapist had a suggestion for what I could do with some of these feelings that seem to threaten to drown me at times. She suggested I write Mr. X two letters (not to send, of course)—one to tell him about the things that I missed about him, and one to tell him about how angry I am.
The angry letter is still waiting to be written. I think I need to get a strong visual of Mr. X in a powerless state (maybe bound and gagged?) before I can write it. I even have a hard time telling him off in my mind. His voice is still so strong in me, that I know what his responses would be, and well, I never was able to win an argument with him. Apparently I can’t even win one in my imagination.
So the angry letter will have to come another day. It will come, though, as I have not been able to forget about it. It won’t leave me alone. It’s been quite persistent, so I may need to write it just to get it off my back.
The “miss you” letter, though, I was able to write. I wrote about two pages of “I miss this that and the other.” I noticed that before I had written a full page, the things I was missing seemed to be tainted. Mixed up in the memories was a sour taste. Sure, I miss going on walks with X, but I remember quite a few walks where he took the opportunity to tear me down, one city block at a time. Sure, I miss remembering things with him, but I do not miss the subjects he would throw back in my face, sometimes “joking,” sometimes not. I wrote that I miss hearing him tell me I’m beautiful, I’m sexy, but I can’t think about that without remembering the time he told me he wasn’t attracted to me. When we were in bed, naked. And then he held it over my head that I couldn’t just forgive and forget. There are very few pure memories, if any.
I ended up with two pages of “I miss” and six pages of “I do not miss.”
I don’t miss the belittling.
I don’t miss the discounting of my feelings.
I don’t miss how selfish a lover he was.
I don’t miss his moods and unpredictability.
I don’t miss the constant worrying about his precious feelings, about his fragile state of mind.
I don’t miss his neediness.
I don’t miss how I always seemed to be to blame for his unhappiness.
I don’t miss being afraid of his anger.
I don’t miss hiding from everyone what an asshole he could be to me.
The things I miss come in bits and pieces. They are the little things, the details.
The things I don’t miss are made of wholecloth. They are the foundation, the walls, the roof.