I learned from a young age to be assertive and not aggressive (most times, no matter how assertive I am, people refused to listen and take heed. So, I went aggressive a couple of times).
I was born a really sensitive person and I didn’t really like to disappoint people, so I said yes a lot and did stuff for people when they asked. Later on though, I learned to say no to some requests and put some boundaries till the trauma happened.
One of the distinct thing I was told was, “I was bad and I deserved it.” All my life I’ve walked in that and it has influenced everything I’ve done up to this point. I didn’t want to be bad or have anything like that happen to me again. So I did everything good and made it to perfection. The more good I was, the less the tendency of being abused again. I stopped getting good grades because I really enjoyed studying but instead to be the best and make everyone like me and happy. It’s why I always lay anguished when I missed scores even though I passed and was the best (happened to me in the university, I couldn’t shake it off. My friends were happy for me but I wasn’t. It was not what I wanted).
I remember the first time I didn’t do what you expected or wanted, you just said, “good night!!”. I felt so bad because it was over something so trivial. I wished now that I had a little respect for myself and didn’t defend my actions or words. You would play this sick game of payback with silence. I couldn’t take it and I wished I had known then that it had nothing to do with me. I would plead with you, you’d talk and you would make a remark that implies I deserved it then say you loved me.
It went on for a while, your passive aggressive attitude and I didn’t want any trouble or fight or misunderstandings, so I took the pains and swallowed without a word but still, it wasn’t enough for you. You still had a way of making it my fault. It was so hard and more so, cause I couldn’t understand why you would do this. It was like walking on egg shells near a cliff. Any slight move not going your way led to days of silence and abandonment and if not, so much contempt.
You only showed me love when you were happy with me, when I had done what you wanted. And it wasn’t love cause it hurt me so much. When I said no for something or agreed on another thing, you made it look like treason and you would talk like we were two separate people and I was plotting to have you dead. You’d payback in more folds and when I’d talk, you’d deny ever doing that or meaning to with, “I’m sorry you felt like I was ignoring you” or “that’s what you think”. Then you would punish me for what you weren’t happy for that I didn’t do. It was like you tried to unleash your anger and spite on me and every time I would refuse to be disrespected like that but it just made it worse. Till one day, I decided to just take it and say I love you, you love me and you didn’t really mean it. You’d make promises and break them, go silent, invalidate me, ignore things that were important to me, break boundaries and made me suffer for your pain and a lot of things. I’d complain and you’d find a way to make it my fault. And still you wouldn’t let go when I followed my own and not yours. It never changed.
Now, when I think of those times, I feel like I deserved it and everything you did. And to be honest, I had expectations that were too lofty for my position. I wanted to be first in your love, warmth, kindness, thoughts, and everything else one would expect but I was second. Like Seh would tell me, I only got what was left. I wish I had looked at myself in the mirror and told myself that I wasn’t going to be anything more than this, my love was hurting me and you were never going to do what you said.