I’m sorry. I’m sorry I made you sad. I’m sorry reading my story hurt you. I’m sorry you were able to relate to it. I’m sorry you saw yourself in me. I’m sorry he’s made you cry.
You asked me to tell you if I loved him the way you love him. What I saw in him, what I loved about him, why I stayed in the beginning. He couldn’t have been that bad…
You were right. There were things I loved about him. He was crazy fun, passionate, impulsive. He made me feel like the world was ours for the taking, together we could do anything. I was his princess. There was once a time that the touch of his skin, his fingers entwined with mine was all I needed. There was once a time, long ago when he made me feel safe.
Then there was that first time. The look. The words. The back of his hand. The bruise…
I’ve been in your shoes, dear friend. Wondering if he’ll do it again. What you’ve done to deserve it. He says he’s sorry and you accept the apology. Do you ever forget what he did? Can you be sure he’ll never do it again?
So your question to me was, if he’s only hurt me once, will he do it again? Should I stay? And my answer is this. Stop what you are doing for a moment and go and look at your reflection in a mirror. Look yourself in the eye and ask yourself the same question you’ve asked me. My answer will be just the same as yours. You know the answer. Deep, deep down in your guts it’s there. It’s just whether you choose to listen to it, or ignore it. I knew, the first time he hit me, when he sat there apologising, tears streaming down his face, begging me to stay, and I was numb, at some point he’d do it again. He had it in him. Something nasty lived inside him, and regardless of how much he said he loved me, it would come out again. But I stayed…
If you really, truly love someone, can you hurt them? Listen to your heart and head, are they telling you the same thing? Only you know the answer, you just need to listen to it. I wish I had.
Keep safe my friend
This letter is for all those of you who are wondering if your situation is that bad, those on the edge about to fall. To my friend, you know who you are. And to the brave woman who now walks in my shadow. I hope you and your new baby are, and always will be safe, and if you ever need me, you know where I am.