A confession.

I have a confession to make, and I owe you guys an apology.

Well, it’s a little more complicated than that, because one of the people I’m confessing and apologizing to is myself.

You see, back in June, I found out that Isabel had discovered my blog. Specifically, she found it immediately after I made this post . The very astute of you may recognize that as the last post where I talked about Isabel in detail, where I spoke honestly about my pain and distress, and where I stopped regularly making anything beyond the gauge check post. I still posted faithfully every Friday – but rarely more than that.

I’m pretty sure that those two events are very, very connected.

Some years ago, you see, an ex-friend of Isabel’s created a web site for the express purpose of… getting a lot of attention, I think. Any sane person would’ve rolled their eyes and shaken their head and shrugged it off, especially after she met people later who had seen the site and were able to recognize that it was ridiculous and clearly the result of someone with an axe to grind. Isabel, of course, had a total meltdown over it. It became a Giant Fucking Deal, even years later, and one of the things she made me promise as I was leaving was that I would never Talk Bad About Her On The Internet.

It took me a long time to even scrape up the courage to start this blog, and it’s about me and my healing, not about her. I’m not Talking Bad About Her On The Internet. I am not Attention-Seeking Ex-Friend. I’m not “warning” people about what a bad person she is, and I’ve taken every step I could to make sure that anyone who didn’t already know her wouldn’t be able to figure out who she is – and the people who already knew her weren’t surprised by anything I’ve said. They’ve seen it firsthand; your friend’s abuse is the secret that everyone knows and nobody talks about. Nobody’s going to meet her and say, “Are you the Hurricane Isabel I read about on the internet? The internet says you’re a horrible person,” after all. Because, well, obviously her name isn’t actually Hurricane Isabel. Because of a lot of things, and I’ve re-written this paragraph half a dozen times. I went over it in my head over and over before she found it, because I was afraid. What I was afraid of, I couldn’t really say, especially after she moved to the other side of the country, but living in fear is a habit that’s hard to shake.

Which is why I owe everyone, especially myself, an apology. When she found me here, it was no longer a safe space, and I thought about everything I was saying in the context of her reading it. I wasn’t even doing it consciously. It’s the way abuse works: it affects the way you think so completely that you censor yourself. You hold yourself back. And I’ve been doing that, without even realizing it.

It took a meltdown yesterday to figure it out, and I didn’t even figure it out myself. Jack pointed it out to me, and it was like a revelation.

I’m making a commitment to all of you, now, to post at least twice a week. I’m re-committing to emotional honesty, no matter who might be watching. I’m going to talk about communication challenges, and healing, and endlessly about my knitting. Because writing is the best thing I could possibly be doing, and I owe it to every one of you to keep doing it.

Thank you. And I’m sorry.

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~ by Amber on September 20, 2011.

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