She sat in a chair, in her own home, a place that is supposed to be filled with love, comfort, and peace. Her home that is supposed to be a place where she feels safe and loved, but that day it was not the case.
She sits quietly, looking in his eyes while he speaks. She can see the anger and frustration within him, as well as, smell the alcohol on his breath as he gets close to make sure she hears every hateful word that comes out of his mouth.
The words that are directed towards her are in reference to how he feels about her at that moment. The names that he is calling her, no one should ever say to another. He is angry and his goal is to hurt her as much as he can with every word. He is in the mood to fight and wants her to be the opponent.
Some feel she is weak as she just sits and listens. Some feel she has to have ‘courage’ to fight back. But yet, she just sits and listens, not uttering a word. And when the storm passes, she cries silently, away from him, not letting him know how much it hurt.
Why? Because she is strong. Because she has the courage to stand her ground for what she feels is right. Because she does not want him to change who she is or what she believes.
You see, she believes that the majority of the world is good. She believes in kindness. She believes in love. And she knows that if she engages with him, she will betray her beliefs. She also knows the good in him and that the words he says, he truly does not mean.
Much of our society today fuels the ‘fight back’ mentality. If someone hurts you, hurt them back. If someone hurts us, we want to dehumanize them, make them hurt, make them feel less-than or inferior, make them wish they never crossed our path, because this will make us feel better. If we fight, we will feel better.
How many times have you reacted to someone only to feel horrible after thinking about your response? Have you ever had a fight with someone who maybe started crying or just broke down, knowing your words truly hurt them? Did it make you feel good?
Something I would constantly say to my kids “If you don’t have anything nice to say, DON’T TALK” (I shortened it to get straight to the point; short attention span-ha). There are times that you need to speak up, but I encourage you to find words that aren’t meant to ‘destroy’ or are said with anger, but find words that are said out of love and peace.
How do you do this? Take a moment, a day, or even a week before responding. Try to understand their hurt or their fear that caused their action. If it is due to alcohol or drug addiction, understand that they are battling demons that we cannot see. Don’t try to hurt them more. As well as, understand that there are times that no response is the right answer.
In the story above, she stayed true to herself by not attaching back. She had the courage to step out on her own, to build a new life, and surround herself with people that know, love and support her. She got rid of what was toxic to her and took away the hurtful situations. She had the strength and courage to weather that storm, learn from it, and tuck it away as a chapter in her life.
She still has him in her life, but keeps him at a distance. She prays for him to find peace and love because she knows the good in him and we all deserve peace, love and happiness.
In life we decide who we want to be. We can only control ourselves and our own actions. Our decisions may put us in bad situations, but don’t let the situation change you. If it is bad, change the situation. Find your strength and courage to stay silent until you can see and speak with love and compassion, not hate.
There may be times that someone hurts you that you cannot speak to for years, maybe even for life, and when you think of them, it just brings back hurt and anger. It is important that you find it in you to forgive, not for them, but for you. It hurts you to carry that hurt and anger. If this is not something you can do on your own, my prayer is that God puts someone in your life to help you through. Be open to heal and let go of the burden you carry.
If you are in a toxic relationship that is hurting you, I pray for strength and courage to step away. We all deserve to feel love, peace and happiness. YOU deserve to feel love, peace and happiness! Step up and claim what is yours!
Sending peace, love and joy to you my friend! Sam