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I Don't Want to Hate

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I spent a very long time being afraid of my anger and being afraid to think about or address my life story. When memories started to come back to me and I started to think about them and try to process them, I was so angry but I was terrified my anger made me a bad person. I worked on accepting my anger and emotions. Accepting them freed me. As soon as I accepted the way I felt, how angry and hurt I was, I realized that being angry wouldn't make the people who hurt me regret. The people who hurt me would never feel my anger. The anger was only hurting me.

I've been toying with the idea of forgiveness, just considering it. I don't know if I need to forgive as much as I need to understand why. The people who hurt me are just humans. They hurt me a lot and it wasn't okay but they are still human beings. I know a lot of what was done to me was done as punishment and was therefore intentional. I can't forgive that. But the guards who dislocated my shoulder didn't mean to dislocate it. They meant to punish me but not in that way. I have a body where all my limbs dislocate easily, it's the way I was born and it's the way my body's built. So I accept that that happened and it's okay. It was an accident.

I don't want to hate to the point that it consumes me. I still want to be able to love and to keep my heart open. I don't want to become a cynic about the world.

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Ether Blue

Hi Hela,

I hear you.

I was emotionally abused by a "Dr Jekyll / Mr Hyde" peer at my university, and I remember being in shock for a time. The mistreatment was happening to me, unfolding right in front of me, but in the shock, I couldn't believe what I was seeing--that someone could treat another person that way--on purpose. It was like up was down, and down was the new up. For a while, I basically grieved for "Dr Jekyll," but later was (and still am) really angry with "Hyde." Sometimes it feels like there is this pressure to hurry up and forgive even while we still may be working on processing it all.

I think it's really neat (and a great strength!) to have empathy and see that people are just human, but also to see that what happened to you is neither acceptable nor OK in any way. Could I share a quote? I don't mean to put it here as the magic-words-that-will-solve-everything-in-under-five-minutes, but just something I've found interesting to think about:

"Love may forgive all infirmities and love still in spite of them; but Love cannot cease to will their removal." ~ C. S. Lewis

I think maybe Love could be substituted with sympathy or empathy? Not sure if it really makes anything easier. I definitely don't want "Hyde" to run around and have a good life while treating me (and surely others) the way he did, not feeling remorse or seeing a need to turn his life around. But that being said, I'm still not sure how I'd feel if he was truly sorry, made the crazy long-haul effort to get better, and then had a good life! I'd like to hope and think that I would be glad for him at a distance.

I wish I had a real answer. Those "magic words" would be great, too!

All this to say, I just want you to know that I think I get what you're saying, you're not crazy, and you're not alone.

Ether Blue <3

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