What do you say to someone who is trying to hurt you? At what point do you draw the line and not take their abuse any longer? How much understanding does one have to afford someone before they stand up for themselves?
I’ve endured six months of repeated verbal attacks by my lover’s wife. *(How do I even talk about this? How do I share this without welcoming more abusive attacks?)* Anyway… she is obviously deeply angry with me and is lashing out any which way she can and again I have not responded to her. I’ve let her spew her anger and I have exuded understanding as best as possible. But today, I feel like she crossed the line. She sent me a message telling me that I was not worthy of lasting relationships, nor marriage, because I did not respect her marriage. She said that I was like a snake slithering on my belly waiting for weakness in a man and then I would strike. She said that all marriages experience times of weakness and that her husband’s moment of weakness with me was my fault and that I should have shooed him away and respected their marriage. She said my curse now is that I will never enjoy a marriage of my own in light of my behavior.
This is the thing: I know that falling in love with a married man was not the “right” thing to do. I did not go out looking for him. I did not seek him out and plan this. I did struggle with the ethics of it time and time again. I cried. I prayed. I fought to find love elsewhere. I planned everything I could to NOT have this happen. And yet, it did. I am still at fault for my decisions. I accept responsibility in this. I even accept the consequences, for the most part. I struggle with accepting full and total responsibility for my relationship with him though. We were two equals throughout the five years we were together who kept deciding again and again to choose each other. Which means HE CHOSE ME, TOO!! He is not a victim in this situation. He actively participated in the entire relationship the entire time. So, I don’t really want to hear how I “struck him like a snake” and did some evil thing to him to make him stray from his marriage. I am no magician. I have no spells to cast. I am a woman, flesh, blood, human, and in love with a beautiful man. Send me to hell if you must. Cast spells upon my soul. Wish evil upon me at every turn. Do whatever makes you feel better to ensure that I get my due punishment, I suppose. But, when I have had enough of the abuse, which I am nearing, I will hold my ground and stand up for myself. And dammit, I am worthy of just as much grace and forgiveness as he does. In fact, if we’re being brutally honest, maybe I deserve a little more considering that I am indeed single. Last I checked, I didn’t take any vows to ensure the sanctity of their marriage. He did, though. And he stepped outside of it. He’s no more to blame than I am, but maybe there’s some transference of anger happening here.
I guess that’s where I have been operating from actually. He told me that he loves his wife and that she’s hurt right now. I respect that. I can imagine how she’s feeling which is why I have refrained from responding to her attacks. He loves her and if I hurt her further (or in return), I am hurting someone he loves. I have never wanted to hurt anyone. I know that I did and I can’t take it back, but I don’t want to hurt her further. He cares about her and to hurt her means I hurt him as well.
There’s no one standing up for me though and I don’t think I can take many more of her rants. As soon as I think this though, I have the distinct thought in my mind, “What would Jesus do?” or “How did Jesus endure the hate he received before the crucifixion?” I am trying very hard to be on the right side of this situation as much as I can. I am still wholly in love with him and want only all of the best for him regardless of who he spends his life with. At the same time, I have to live in peace at some point too. So all of this drama must come to an end. And soon. Therefore the question remains, do I retaliate or just leave it all be?
The Repressed Peach