I’ve never believed in therapy. Judging by what people tell me it’s paying somebody to listen to your whole life story. Then have them tell you that you also contribute to your suffering even though most times other people are the problem.
My sister spent the afternoon telling us about how she was finally at peace due to therapy. I focused on my food to avoid saying something bad. My parents and brother were keenly listening to her and nodding their heads like bobbleheads. My sister didn’t even have serious problems in life. She had a small fight with her fiancé and suddenly felt like they needed therapy sessions.
“I honestly think everyone deserves to go for therapy. It opens your eyes to the things you think don’t even matter,” She said.
“Yeah sure,” I murmured sarcastically.
“So, Annie, what’s new in your life? How are things with Martin?” My mother asked.
I cringed for a moment. Hearing his name reminded me of the words he had said to me the day he left me. Which was the week before our family brunch.
“They broke up,” My sister blurted.
“Oh my God, what did you do this time?” My dad asked.
I stood up and left the room to avoid crying in front of them. Ever since one of my exes proposed to me and I refused they always blamed me when a relationship didn’t work out. I didn’t like discussing details of my love life with them so I would always remain silent as they blamed me.
“Annie I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to say it like that,” My sister said as she approached me.
I looked at her for a second. Of course, I knew she didn’t mean to but the fact that she was the perfect child made it hard for me to relate with her. It also made me loathe her sometimes especially when my parents glorified her life. I walked past her, grabbed my bag and coat from the living room and left without saying a word. By the time I got home, I felt a little better. There’s nothing that brought me peace more than being in my home in silence. That night I had planned to go out with a few friends but sent them a text to cancel. Staying at home felt like the better choice.
I ordered takeout, watched a two-hour movie and went straight to bed. Being a Koala, I never had an issue falling asleep. Most days I would end up drifting off five minutes after getting into bed. Never had I imagined that I would have to deal with insomnia. I ended up turning and tossing trying to fall asleep but my eyes were wide awake. Given the events of the day, I wondered how after going through all that my body was not tired. Laying there silently, my thoughts started to get the better part of me. I remembered what my sister was talking about and started to wonder if she was right.
My life was a series of unfortunate events. I was almost always angry and sometimes I would bottle up the pain instead of talking things through. In my view that was my only red flag, which is why I never believed in being told I was the problem. Other people often caused me pain and would blame me for their actions. Starting with Martin.
Martin was the only man I had seen a future with. We met through a mutual friend and as we got to know each other I realized he was just like me. Rarely had I ever met a man who shared the same interests as mine so he was so fascinating to me. The first few months of our relationship were great. We enjoyed the honeymoon phase and that short period made me realise that he was the person I wanted to be with for a long time.
Unfortunately, our honeymoon phase ended the day he woke up and told me that he couldn’t deal with our relationship. He was going through a lot of things at home and couldn’t be able to commit to me. I was heartbroken and thinking about him leaving my life was tragic. We didn’t talk for a while and then he came back, apologized and asked me to be his girlfriend again.
Slowly but surely, we went back to how things were. Our relationship was normal, it had its fair share of ups and downs. Although I had come to learn a lot about Martin, he always remained an enigma to me. He had gone through a tragic relationship with his ex and although he never shared the details with me, I knew she had broken him. So, in an attempt to show him we were solid, I would always be there for him. If he needed money, I was the first to send it. Whenever he needed emotional support, I was there.
In as much as I did these things though, Martin never once took them as a form of love. Of course, he would thank me but, in his view, there had to be a catch. He believed that a woman could never do something for you out of the goodness of her heart. Me being the fool in love still gave him my unconditional love and support. On some days though his lack of reciprocation would overwhelm me and whenever I would raise the issue, he would gaslight me.
During the second year of our relationship, things started to change. I could tell he had started to trust me and on the day of our anniversary, he professed his love to me. Everything was going great, at least that’s what I thought until he started taking time to respond to my texts. Slowly he even stopped picking up my calls and after confronting him he said he needed space. He was not in a good place mentally.
I knew what would follow next would be the breakup talk. Martin was unpredictable but with some things, I could always tell. After a week he broke up with me with the excuse that “It’s him, not me,”. At this time, I was also struggling with problems of my own and so I ended up blaming him. Not for leaving me but for choosing the wrong time to do so.
He tried his best to form a friendship with me. Due to my love for him, I convinced myself it was because he still cared. Boy was I wrong. Martin kept me close because I was the only person in his life who was there for him always. Settling for a friendship seemed like a low-hanging fruit so I woke up one day and cut him off. His absence made it easier for me to heal but as usual, the universe likes to test you to see whether you have healed. Martin called me one day and I don’t know how he managed to warm his way back into my life but he did. That one phone call led to me saving his number and we worked on building a friendship.
One day he caught me off guard when I was dealing with a bad day. We had a normal conversation but somewhere along the way, he started a topic that annoyed me. This led us to argue and we both ended up saying a lot of bad things. The next day, since I felt terrible for the things, I said I sent him a text apologizing.
I assumed he would do the same but instead lectured me while defending all his past actions. During the argument, I mentioned everything that I had bottled up. His gaslighting tendencies, his lack of appreciation for me and how I felt about the breakup. Now here I was being called the villain for having an outburst because a man I loved refused to love me right. The worst part was he said that my outburst had proved to him that women can’t love men genuinely.
This made me even more pissed than I was the previous day because of the audacity and the fact that George had done the same thing. George was the man whose proposal I declined because he was always hot and cold with me. Furthermore, he could never apologize when he was in the wrong. Instead, he would manipulate me into talking to him by making me the villain.
“Maybe I do need therapy,” I said as I snapped out of my thoughts.
I had dated two men with the same characteristics and I tolerated them because I wanted their love and approval so badly. Not to mention that because of my love for them, I could never open up about my feelings to avoid conflict. I sat up on my bed and called my sister.
“Hey,” I said.
“Hello? What’s wrong Annie,” She said in a sleepy voice.
“Please could you refer me to your therapist? “I asked.
“Wow, for the first time you listened to me,” She said.
“Don’t be smug. Just send me her contact,” I replied.
“Okay, trust me by the time you get used to it you’re going to feel less heavy,” She said before hanging up.
“I hope so,” I thought to myself.
I placed my phone on my bedside and closed my eyes hoping that after all that thinking my body would let me sleep. A few minutes passed and I blacked out. Turns out even my body knew I needed to get in touch with my inner self, so I could sleep peacefully.
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My Toxic Ex Harassed Me On Social Media Until I Had To Deactivate My Accounts
My Friend Cut Me Off To Save Her Toxic Relationship
The Relationship Coach Who Was In A Toxic Relationship
Her Parents Enabled Her Abusive And Cheating Boyfriend
I Found Out That My Boyfriend Of 2 Years Was Going To Introduce His Girlfriend To His Parents Over The Christmas Period
My Friend Cut Me Off To Save Her Toxic Relationship
My Romantic Boyfriend Was Actually A Toxic Love Bomber
The Singlehood Series: He Broke Up With Her Because Of Her Social Media Posts
He Couldn’t Separate His Work From His Personal Life
The Jealous Ex Kept Throwing A Fit, Yet He Was Dating Someone Else