I’ve come to realize that abuse is not just physical. It is often the scars that you cannot see, the bruises felt within caused by bitter tongues that are the reason I am struggling to stay afloat.
It’s the way you tend to forget that your words have an impact on me, and when you speak with haste, my heart and mind become inevitably damaged.
Because your words do not fall on deaf ears but rather, they nestle a home into my soul and body that I cannot escape from, no matter how many times you try to unlock the doors for me.
Your words are haunting, all-encompassing and never truly disappear from my memory. Time will pass, but the damage remains as I carry your words on my back like a weight I cannot free myself from.
You justify your moments of cruelty as being overwhelmingly frustrated, caught up in the moment, or not thinking clearly. You always try to reassure me that you didn’t mean it, but your words are already engraved in my mind—I can revisit them any time I please.
And I did…over and over. Your words played on repeat for months upon months, creeping up in the darkest of nights and the brightest of mornings. They were heard on my drive to work, my run on the treadmill and while I was eating dinner with my family. You words were everywhere, and I felt like I was suffocating.
You are the voice I hear when I am down on myself, as your controlling and manipulative words always made me feel less than. I tip-toed around your emotions, fearful that one wrong move would send us into a spiraling downfall of yelling and crying.
I accepted your nastiness as demons that you were struggling with from the past. I accepted the shit that you gave me simply because you made me feel like that was all I deserved.
Non-existent feelings are just as hurtful as inconsistent ones. In one moment, I was your best friend, and in the next, I was useless in your eyes. The emotional struggle of giving my all to you, only for it to not be wanted, was something that never became easier. I felt like I had to promote myself, to sell my qualities to make me more appealing in your eyes.
I was damaged. I was completely lost and consumed by this unhealthy state of living that I forgot what it was like to be happy. I began to mistake this unstable environment where our relationship thrived as loving and caring, even though it was the farthest thing from it.
Though you never laid a hand on me, your words left me with scars that no one else will ever see and only I will ever feel. No one likes to admit that they were blind to the mental abuse they were put through, simply because no one wants to accept that someone they love would do that to them.
Sure, I have to live with the words you’ve said…but you have to live with the fact that you said them.
So, please be mindful of your thoughts. You never know just how much of an impact they have on people.