I’ve been told that I was worthless, that no one loved me, that I should die, that the world would be better off without me. I heard all of this from a woman who said she loved me. I lived for years in pain and misery until I finally found the perfect way to get even.
Pain for Pain’s Sake
I was with this woman for several years. She would tell me she was cheating on me. She would make fun of me in front of other people. She would work to isolate me from friends and family. She would constantly berate me, hurt me, and work to control me.
She would do whatever it took to rain down pain on me. She would often call me at work to berate and belittle me. When she ignored my requests to stop, I would hang up the phone, only to be besieged by 40, 50, 60, or more calls, one right after the other, trying to rope me into more abuse. I had to turn the ringer down to avoid causing a scene and putting my job in jeopardy.
When I went home I would pray she would be in a good mood, but that could change on a dime. Anything bad that happened was reason enough to find a way to take her personal pain out on me. It was evident that her goal was to inflict as much pain as possible, and, no matter how much I tried to be kind to her in spite of it, she would do all she could to hurt me.
Hard to Leave
As much as I needed to, it was very difficult for me to leave. She worked diligently to separate me from people that were close to me, often using me as the vehicle to do it. A family member would do something she didn’t like and she would inflict pain and agony on me. I knew their actions would mean pain and misery for me. Sadly, I became frustrated with them for indirectly causing my pain, which caused a rift between us.
I wanted to leave so often, but had little support. It was long, painful, and lonely, but I did it. I left and fell into an abyss of isolation and heartache.
The Climb Out
It took years, but I finally climbed out, working hard the entire time to become stronger and better able to handle the challenges of life – something made more difficult with the weight of self doubt that was a byproduct of the relationship.
I made it to the surface, better, stronger, and more capable than before. Which meant it was finally time to get even.
My Diabolical Plan
You see, I still see this person quite often. I interact with her regularly. I talk with her on occasion. So I decided I would do something to make all those years of pain and heartache worth it. I knew the best way to get what was coming to me.
I loved her. I prayed for her. I encouraged her. I helped her when I could. I listened to her. I accepted her as she was.
Don’t get me wrong, there are times I have had to tell her I won’t be talked to the way she was talking to me and hang up the phone. There are times I have had to excuse myself and leave. It hasn’t been easy.
But, as the saying goes, anger and not being able to forgive are the poison that we drink expecting our enemies to die. There is what is right and what is easy, and what is right bears much better fruit. In order to get what is coming to me, I need to love my enemies. Because it’s not revenge that makes life better, but becoming the kind of person who grows in adversity.