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Forgiving Yourself After Abuse: The Reconciliation of Heart and Mind

I learned that a self-love is not narcissistic but essential for a healthy and whole person. My actions began to back up these returning feelings.

  1. LuckyLaura
    I was cleaning up some old files today, and found this letter I wrote to myself sometime back. I was having a hard time with self-forgiveness, and I was trying to come to a peaceful solution. I had declared war upon myself as I am my own worst critic. I could not forgive myself for many things including my actions and reactions during and shortly after the relationship ended. I became a hideous person for a short time, and I tried so hard to reconcile that within myself. It felt as though I left one war zone (the psychopath) and stepped into another (the war within myself).

    My Dearest Mind,

    How many times do I have apologize for making a poor choice? I'm tired of fighting you. I am trying to show you that goodness will trump evil, but you keep coming back with your yes buts. Just stop! Look at how far you have come. He no longer invades your every waking thought, yes he occasionally creeps in, but you have successfully fought through the pain to show him the door when he does every time without fail. Will you please take that as a win? Will you accept that you did the best you could with what was presented to you? Will you please once and for all forgive yourself for making a mistake? I know that it sounds easier than it is, but it needs to be done. You just have to trust me one more time.

    It is my wish that you could see all your goodness. I hope you would see how full of kindness and love you are. How you care for virtual strangers with all that you have. Can you show yourself this kindness as well? You tell me you know all of these things, when will you believe them? When will you allow that forgiveness to pour over you like the waterfall you once stood under? Your heart is huge, yet you act as if you have no place for yourself in it. Trust me there is plenty of room. I wish you would allow you the happiness that you deserve. Don't you think you have punished yourself for long enough? Your penance has been paid.

    I wish I could promise you that you will never feel pain again, but you know I can't. The day will come when there will be pain again, but I promise you that it will never be as great as you endured these past three years. I promise that it will be a different pain. I promise that all you have learned you will apply going forward and that it will bring with it appropriate boundaries and proper self-respect. Healing will happen. You will be sitting on your porch, the pain nothing more than a distant memory of a chapter in your novel of your life. I promise you will be surrounded by all the things of life that make your heart sing. Will you close your eyes for just a moment and imagine that? Imagine the peace and the tranquility that will surround you. See your life as it should be not as it once was.

    I wish I could hug you right now if only you would allow me to. I would wrap my arms around you, tell you it's okay to cry it out, then together we could finally move forward. A united front unstoppable by anything. Your strength runs deep. I do admire that about you. Your strength and resolve to grow and learn are what keeps me going. Now if you allow me to lighten your load maybe we can finally be on the same page again. Would you allow me to help you even if for just a bit?

    All My Love,

    Your Heart

    The Reconciliation
    One thing that helped me come through this was acknowledgement that I needed to say it was okay to have been duped. What I felt was very real, and I did not know that such evil existed. I made a decision-based upon the information I was given at the time, and it was time to allow myself the self-forgiveness needed to move forward. It was reaching a point that mind and heart reconnected.

    I realize now that the psychopath exploited and mirrored all my best qualities. He mirrored them so perfectly I essentially fell in love with myself and thus the distrust of myself in the aftermath. It seems to be final parting gift from them. Lovely right? Except that I can feel love again, but I had to forgive myself first.

    Once that happened I learned to show myself love in new ways. I learned that a self-love is not narcissistic but essential for a healthy and whole person. My actions began to back up these returning feelings. I learned that I showed love to myself by having healthy boundaries with the people in my life. I learned that it was okay to say no and not feel guilty or that I was letting someone down because I was letting myself down by overcommitting. I learned that it was okay to treat myself with an indulgence or two. I have learned that by showing myself love I am once again gaining self-respect and through this my heart and my mind have reconciled.

Article Author: LuckyLaura