Forgiving Myself

Tympanum of Door of Forgiveness, Cathedral of ...

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Over the past year, with the help of a trained therapist, I’ve been able to forgive myself for falling into this man’s trap. Yes, I was naive, but it was not entirely my fault.For months, I kept thinking “I should have known better” , “I never should have trusted him,” etc. But I did not ask for him to lie to me. I never agreed to a relationship based on lies.

A man, the ‘love of my life’, my father’s daughter, came back into my life after an absence of nearly twenty years.

He managed to convince not only myself but his mother, my father, our daughter, and my friends that he’d cleaned up his act and was ready, finally, to be that family man who he could not pull himself together to be when our daughter was a baby. He convinced us all that he was done selling drugs and that he was done using drugs.

Because I had always longed for him, because I was vulnerable, because he asked for the forgiveness I’d been waiting for throughout most of my adult life. I forgave him

I forgave him lock, stock and barrel. Like it was a movie, like it was a novel. Like it was the New Testament. I took the words of Christ to heart and forgave this child husband of mine. I forgave him for a life of drinking and drugs. I forgave him for 18 years of no child support. I forgave him for living in a life so unwholesome and dangerous that I took my daughter to another state to stay away from his friends.

This forgiveness was naive of me. Also, it lacked true understanding of how long term substance abusers behave (ie: they lie.) It is true that the one huge lesson I learned from this harrowing experience has been that I am too trusting. That I was too trusting. I will not be again.

But, it’s not my fault. This man lied to me. This man lied to me deliberately and with great detail. He lied to me convincingly and made up complex stories of how he’d stopped getting high (he hadn’t). He presented his life to me as wiped clean. When I asked questions, he made up answers. Not only did he lie to me, but he lied to our daughter, to his mother, to our father and to other relatives and to my friends.

Having a greater understanding today than a year ago of the mind of the long-term substance abuser, I understand that he may have been lying with good intentions. Certainly there were many indicators at that time, that he had cut back on the drinking and drugs during those first few months we started dating again. I belive it is strongly possible that he had the idea of changing in his mind, without an understanding of what it would take to actually change. At some point, he probably realized that it was very easy to hide it all from me as I lived in another state. How much conscious deceit he came into the relationship with, and how much was misguided true intention, I will never know.

But it was not my fault.



One thought on “Forgiving Myself

  1. Pingback: Trapped By the Fairy Tale Romance « Phoenix Rising

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