I Stitched This Blanket Out Of All The Red Flags... I Didn't Use For The Other 243 Blankets I Stitched...
I Didn't Realize How Many Of Them I Had Thoughtlessly Stuffed Into My Spare Room...
But, when I opened the door today, they came tumbling out, and I had amassed a number far too great to dismiss. I thought of burning them, but instead, I sat on the floor and learned the lesson they stood for, one by excruciating one.
It wasn't as though I didn't see them; I most certainly did. They're red, for gods' sake, I just thought I could make something from nothing and ended up with a whole lot less.
42 "I'm abusive" and 93 "I'm insecure so I'll verbally abuse you" later, and what do we have? About 999 left to sort, and me thinking I should brew a pot of coffee...
I'm Not Usually A Willfully Ignorant Woman...
I'm a fixer of things and a collector of strays, and that is a bad combination when it comes to applying it to relationships. I used to believe, no matter how bad the trauma a man told me was the root cause of his issues, I thought it could be buffed away, like minor dings in the paint job on a classic. Now, I understand I don't ever run a buffer across a classic, that's why there are people much more talented than myself to do that, and the issues that these men had were not minor dings, they were front end collisions that had damaged the frame. They were totaled. They were scrap.
It was as though if I admitted that I couldn't fix them, I was saying that there were pieces of myself, deeply damaged, that I should just give up on fixing too. However, what I know now is that someone needs to want to heal and change, and if they don't, there isn't any amount of love or compassion in this world that will cause them to be a better person, a less abusive or possessive person. They can't change because you wished it hard enough. Trust me, I have wished until I was blue in the face, and it was for nothing.
Toxic men with toxic habits and toxic ways about them threatened to cause me to give up on the idea altogether...
I'm Still Not Entirely Sure I Haven't Given Up
Perhaps it depends on the day you ask me about it. Some days, the scars are more visible to the naked eye, and I can't possibly imagine moving forward and trying this again. It was a waste of my time all of these other times, and my averages are enough to make any baseball fan boo their home team had they put me on the starting lineup.
I'm a decent woman. I live a decent life. I don't hurt people intentionally, and I try to be supportive and compassionate most of the time. However, with the long line of absolute sanitation that called themselves men that have come my way, it is quite clear to me that I messed up pretty badly somewhere because if this is what I deserve, I've misjudged myself. No half-decent woman should tolerate the Bozos that showed up honking their noses and piled 13 to a car. I still shake my head in disbelief at all of the nonsense I listened to from these sorry excuses for men.
I Know The Signs, Yet I Held The Door Open For The Terrible Men Who Wore Them...
Looking back now, I can joke about the sheer ignorance I displayed in allowing horrible man after horrible man to do everything in their power to destroy me. They all brought a special power to the table: some were gaslighters, some were serial cheaters, some were professional fuckboys; they all were beneath me, and took me down a few pegs so that they could feel as though they were worthy.
I could look one in the face, tell him exactly how he was wronging me, draw him a diagram, chart him a graph, GPS him an exact location of where he fucked up, none of that mattered. In the end, I still told myself that there was something redeemable. There was something good underneath all of that abuse they kept doling out to me. As it turns out, there actually wasn't.
In The End, I Had To Close My Broken Boy Repair Shop. You Can't Fix The Man They Become.
Do I Regret My History Of Hard Learned Lessons?
Of course not. I'm smarter for it. I have learned the difference between those that don't love me, and those that just don't know how to love. I know that the first time he shows me that I don't mean something incredibly important to him, believe it, and leave. I don't give any second chances, because you were lucky to receive the first one. And, most importantly, I've learned that whatever it is that caused them to act like all women were the issue, that was their problem. I'm too good to fill in for the mommy that didn't hug them.
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