I Told My Ex How He Abused Me and He Surprisingly Apologized
He took ownership of it too.
This was our last interaction, probably forever. He came to finally get one of the pets he left me with. I hated to have to split them up — but I couldn’t take care of all of them anymore. What I didn’t want to do while he was here was talk. But what did we do? We talked.
We got onto the topic of how he thinks he changed for the better and is a different person than he was while we were together and that left me confused and a little irate because I still follow him on socials and keep up with things he is doing and he appears to be more of an ass now than he was when we were together — and he was an ass then too. His impending question came long after the narcissist talked about himself in circles about how great he is. How have you changed?
This is when I contemplating giving him a sugar coated answer or telling him that his abuse left me cold, heartless, and scared.
I don’t think you’re ready to hear what I have to say so I’d rather not answer your question.
He told me he was ready and he wanted the truth.
I’ve gotten worse. I don’t have an open heart like you do. You were manipulative, emotionally and mentally abusive. You left me in the most dramatic way and left me wondering not only why but if I am good enough for anyone. You beat my self-esteem so far into the ground that I couldn’t find it if I tried for months after you were gone. I had to rebuild who I was before you and not only did it take time and effort, it took more work than I had in me. So I’m not a better person because of it. I’m cold, I run at the first red flag, I gravitate towards men just like you, and I don’t give out second chances.
He followed with a senseless statement of “none of that is my fault.” So I laid it all out for him. I reminded him of the gaslighting with examples. I talked about the name calling and how he would choose others over me and then make me stay home. How if I wanted to go out with my friends he would question his love for me. How I had to unfriend some of my closest friends because of his insecurities.
As he sat and stared at me. I see his eyes swell with tears and before I roll my eyes and get up like I had intended, he looked down as his palms and said two words I’ve never heard him say before
He’s been in therapy like I have for the last few months and this conversation made him realized he treated me like his parents treated him. He was made to feel small and inadequate his entire childhood so he thought the way they showed love was how love was supposed to be shown. It must be hard coming from a house where both of your parents are narcissists. Right?
As I’m watching him cry into his hands and buckle over in his seat, it hit me. This time, he means it. His tears are real and I think he finally is accepting fault on our relationship.
I should have never done those things to you. You were enough, it was me who had the problems. You did nothing but love me even when I didn’t deserve it. I’m so so sorry.
For the first time in 10 years, his apology meant something. The look in his eyes was different from before. Had he really grown? Was he really a new man? Did he really understand what I said?
“Bear,” my nickname to a few close people, “you deserved so much more and I didn’t see that I was pushing everything wrong with me onto you. I don’t want you to treat people poorly from learning my behavior. I want you to thrive in love, to accept love. Like I know you can.”
Was this what I needed to hear? I’m not sure. Did seeing him from a human and not a monster perspective make me actually want to be around him more? Did it remind me of times when we were truly in bliss? A little.
I had nothing to say back to him. So I didn’t, I sat in silence and let him hold my hand and as I felt the distance between us I simply said thank you. And nothing more.
I wasn’t sure where to go from here so we sat in silence for a few minutes before I got up to pretend to use the bathroom. When I got back things were back to the normal “just stopping by to see my dog” he was by the door with the leash, ready to take her on a walk and I was at distance not speaking.
This may have been the last time.