If you’re actually putting effort into changing, into becoming a better version of yourself, into dropping your toxic behaviors, that’s a beautiful thing. You should be proud of yourself for actively trying to grow into a softer, gentler human.
However, doing something nice for me today isn’t going to erase all of the horrible things you did yesterday.
You can give me elaborate, heartfelt apologies. You can surprise me with fresh bouquets and sweet-smelling chocolates. You can swear that you’re never going to hurt me again, that you’ve changed, that it took you a while but you finally see the error of your ways. But that’s not going to fix anything that happened between us.
Although those gestures are coming from a good place, although you might have the best intentions, you need to understand you can’t win back my affection. You can’t expect me to change my mind about kicking you out of my world. In fact, it’s kind of insulting for you to think you deserve another chance.
You hurt me, deeply, and you can never change that fact. You can’t take back the horrible, disrespectful words you said. You can’t take back how insecure and alone and downright fearful you made me feel. You can’t erase the damage now, simply because your guilt has been eating you alive.
I’m sorry if me refusing to accept your apology makes you feel shitty — but you made me feel shitty, too. The difference is, I didn’t deserve the treatment. You deserve everything that’s coming to you.
I’m glad you realized you were wrong and are finally owning up to what you’ve done, but really, you should’ve realized that from the start. You should’ve known you were acting inappropriately. You should’ve held yourself to a higher standard.
I’m the one who suffered from your mood swings and outbursts and lack of affection. I’m the one who had to pay the price. How could you expect me to forgive you? How do you even expect me to believe that you’re telling me the truth, after so many lies? You might be the exact same monster who hurt me. You might not have changed as much as you’re telling yourself.
Even if you really have changed, even if you are a new person who would never put me through hell again, I don’t owe you anything. I don’t have to answer your texts or open the door and invite you inside my home. I don’t have to treat you with kindness when you spent so long treating me like nothing.
Your good deeds are a step in the right direction. I don’t want you to feel like your acts of kindness are a waste — but at the same time, I don’t want you to think you can make up for what you’ve done to me. Some mistakes are too huge to recover from. Some relationships are too broken to be mended.
I’m so happy that you’re trying to better yourself — but I’m not going to be your reward.