Let it go – Choosing not to respond.

I am trying really hard to not rain on someone else’s parade. Been trying for almost a week now and succeeding. But it is still stuck in my craw.

If you grew up being physically and emotionally abused, and the emotional abuse continued into adulthood then you know what I’m talking about.

It doesn’t matter how many hours you spent on that therapist’s couch. It doesn’t matter how you rationalize it to yourself. It doesn’t matter how you use your intelligence, your own psychology training, your own inner strength – You are still THERE.

So when you see, online, a paean to your abuser, filled with misinformation about everything including a recipe (a recipe for god’s sake) the anger rises. When you see people comment positively on the subject of the post (my abuser), saying what an amazing person they are, the inner you screams “You wanna know the truth. I’ll tell you the truth – about everything!”

But you don’t. I didn’t. Why rain on the writer’s parade? They want to believe the lies they were told – let them. They have their story which they love, I’m guessing. My story impacts them very little.

Or maybe it has affected them more than we both know – and do we need to?

That is the question for me – does the writer of that post really need to know my truth when she has her own. And when her own truth is mostly positive. I’m assuming her truth is mostly positive because I was not witness to her relationship with my abuser, only witness to her loving paen.

No. She doesn’t need to know my truth. Or even that manicotti is NOT cannelloni – two different things girlie, two different things. Just as our relationship with the person in the post are two different realities.

I can’t let go of my past anymore than I can let go of a piece of my DNA.

There may come a time when the writer of that post may come to me and ask about the past, about my truth. As I sit now, I don’t think I would share. Just as I won’t share now. I won’t rain on her parade. I won’t comment on that post. I won’t correct even the innocuous errors, such as the date of her grandfather’s death or the difference between cannelloni and manicotti or even her grandmother’s past (no, my father was not my mother’s first “gentleman caller”, and no, my mother did not learn to cook from her mother or grandmother, and no – oh, hell the girl got not one fact correct except that, indeed, my mother won many dance contests in her youth.)

So – no parade raining. No fact checking.

Still – the anger is there. But it’s my anger. And it is more than memories, it is ingrained. It is who I am. Who I always will be. It’s hard to move on when there is nowhere to move on to.

15 thoughts on “Let it go – Choosing not to respond.

    1. It’s not so much that they are lies as that they are misinformation, fed to her by folks with their own agenda. As for the factual facts – far more tempting to correct but then that road might lead to correcting the experiential facts – and I see no point in going down that road. It serves no purpose.

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    1. I’ve come to a point in my life where I think twice before opening my mouth. Would what I say change anything? Would it hurt someone, needlessly? Who benefits from my speaking out especially in matters like this? Yes, it would make me feel better but only in the moment. The factual facts are one thing, the facts of ‘character’ – my reality vs. hers. Both are valid. Her reality deep in helping to care for someone living in the world of dementia, my reality, having lived in the world of that person’s sociopathy.

      True, my nitpicky intellect wants to correct the factual facts, I think perhaps they might annoy me more LOL

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  1. i hope by posting this entry, you can let go. no sense to hold onto something that eats you from the inside out. just my unasked for comment. so take it for what it is worth. a new year for maybe a new beginning??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The date on the calendar is meaningless. And let go of what? Of the past? No, that simply can’t be done, for people who have pasts like mine, you don’t get over it, you don’t get passed it, it is what has shaped you. You do try to put it into some sort of perspective – with lots of therapy. When even your therapist apologies for stepping out of line because he just had to say “How did you survive your childhood” and “I do not like your mother” – you know this is not some minor thing.

      Let go of how my niece portrays my abuser? Eh – as I said, what would be the point of disabusing her of her fantasy? I think the factual mistakes are annoying me more at this point – I’m a fact-based person – feel however you want to feel, but what IS, IS – facts are facts, what happened when it happened is true and cannelloni and manicotti are two different things!

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  2. Different situations entirely but I’ve been in the spot where I’ve wanted to open my mouth and correct someone’s account of certain things. But as angry as it made me I realized what they were saying was their truth, not mine but it was theirs

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    1. If the account involved emotions, then yes – from where they sat, where they were coming from, a different take on the situation. I can think of many such examples in my own experience. In this case, the emotional involvement aside, the errors of provable facts I think irks me more!

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  3. I’m not sure I could bite my tongue and not say anything but I understand how it’s their reality to live. This sort of thing came up when J’s nephew showed up uninvited and unexpected. To him his grandpa walked on water. To J, he was an abuser physically and emotionally. I wanted to tell that kid so many things but J looked at it that the man they each knew was different to both so just let Gabriel believe his own truths. He did elude to the abuse when Gabriel asked why he left the family with no contact so he knows his grandpa was’t as perfect as he thinks he is but nothing to the extent of how horrible he truly was. What did drive J batty was, according to Gabriel, his mom (J’s sister) and some of J’s other family members have never said one word about being abused and he knows for a fact they were because he saw them being hit. He didn’t tell Gabriel this but it really bothered him that they swept it under the rug like it was no big deal when it’s something he’ll never be able to forget, ever. As for the manicotti and cannelloni, that I would definitely point out!

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    1. Yes they knew different people – I suppose that is my stance. If the abuse was family-wide, well, there are entire books written on the subject of victims defending their abusers – family silence because – cultural pressures? societal pressures? economic pressures? J was strong enough to walk away – it is SO not an easy thing to do. My heart goes out to him.

      As for the factual facts – that just opens doors that I want to stay closed – that should stay closed. Even mentioning the manicotti/cannelloni just might have my niece coming to me for other info…Don’t want to go there.

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  4. I completely understand, Grace. I’m wondering if you have to be in the “presence” of the other person, who is saying glorious things about your abuser? Everybody loved my mother. Everybody. And she loved everybody…. except me. She’s been dead ten years now…. so I can talk kindly of her and remember ONLY the good times with her. But when people say to me “Andrea, your mother was a wonderful person”, I simply nod & smile. Because she’s gone now and she can’t hurt me anymore…. and in my mind’s eye (aka: imaginary world) she’s “wonderful” now to me too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thankfully I do not have any contact with people who knew my mother and thought she was
      “awesome” – the only person I have contact with who knew my mother is my husband – and believe me he doesn’t think she is/was awesome. He didn’t believe my stories about her until he experienced her! I suppose in your situation just nodding and smiling is the best strategy – why get into it? I use writing to work out my issues, when they get overwhelming and I need to get them off of me. My mother will never be wonderful, awesome or any positive thing – because there are no positive things you can say about a sociopath.

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    1. I write to get things out of my head for a while. Obviously idle conversation or casual conversations are not the place to work out traumas – but if these memories still bedevil you, perhaps just writing them out (and then destroying them?) will help – like taking a deep breath, letting it out and saying “There!”

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