He stares in condemnation from behind as she tries to rub away her wounds, trying to start a new life in a world without joy. She was once the manger of an accounting firm, but now she sits on the cracked ground, his silhouette over her. What had once made her unique and powerful, he had diminished into worthless tufts. Looking back, she could see the mechanisms of control... the disapprovals and judgements, the withholding of affection.

As she looks up into the a, she sees herself as a messy paintwork of colours, a fragmented reflection seeking to reform into something new, hopefully something beautiful again. His childish face, his mischievous grin, had been a brick dungeon, a place she had felt so unable to get out of, unable to talk to anyone from, unable to be herself. Now, in this shattering of trust and love, the walls were gone. It was just her and this mirror.

By jessbk, May 13, 2019*.

This spreading purple with yellow blotches is only the surface wound. The real one is within, that feeling of betrayal, that breaking of trust that is so essential to true love. For what we love, we protect, right? I know that in the moment you were reacting, locked down into your primitive brain, that when you come back to your senses, when you are responsive, able to use your higher thoughts, you are the one I love. Yet these wounds, the real bruises within, when they have healed I will seek safety with someone who has never caused me such pain, a person I can love and be loved by, sharing a bright and happy future.


You withdrew your love right at the start, as soon I was addicted to your touch. How quickly you gave me only ice. Then you sat there as if you were a victim and waited to be soothed, waited for me to pour in the warmth you refused to make for yourself. Then, as I drained over the years, you took more, accused more, had ice storms more often, more harshly... until I broke... and you blamed me for that... absolved yourself... you coward, you unspeakable coward...

By Angela Abraham, @daisydescriptionari, February 11, 2019.

I gave to you freely from a sense of deep love, yet you assumed you had taken it from dominance. I saw our relationship as cooperation, yet you saw manipulation instead of helping words, as if we were in some bizarre live game of chess. It broke my heart to realize that you saw a cold war instead of sweet love, for it was all in your head, a paranoia.

All I ever wanted to do was love you and bring happiness, to heal where you were hurt. What I gave, I gave freely from my soul, yet you thought yourself entitled to all I ever had and more. You were as a guest at a restaurant who, because he pays the bill, he feels entitled to be rude to the chef. Yet love is more akin to cooking one another meals for the joy of feeding the other, the coziness that comes from nurturing being the reward. What you saw and felt isn't love at all; I'm sorry that I failed to teach you, yet it was also your duty to learn.

I should have seen the signs, how you were cold, how you never took the initiative for connecting with touching words or physical love. I should have seen how every good thing you achieved was solely accredited to you, yet all my achievements were also accredited to you. I wish you had learned humility, humbleness and kindness, the happiness that comes from feeling as part of a team, one where each is boosted by the other, proud of the other's success. Love brings joy to giving, it is the difference between feeling as a valued helping friend or a slave; it's the magic ingredient that makes everything wonderful. What you showed me was indifference to my pains, refusing my emotional needs, demanding resilience and compliance.

Leaving you was a harsh road to my "bad place," a personal hell, yet in truth, it was also the only road to my "good place," my best chance at a better life and, with luck, one day experiencing real love. I hope you find your way too, that you learn how to truly love instead of hiding behind that mask of what you suppose friendliness is.