Tuesday, October 10, 2006

timidity and old scores

I want to share a story. It's a long story, and I give you my apologies for that. But if you care at all, please read it. It matters to me what you think.

Once upon a time I met a guy. Once upon a time we set up a charming online flirtation. Once upon a time was my first time, and I went a little overboard. Once upon a time someone introduced me to blogging, and chatting, and the charm of esoteria. Once upon a time I was almost in love.

And then I found something someone had written about it.
Yes? Go look. That second part is about me.

What I did after I read this, I'm not proud of. I could not believe there existed in this world people who, if faced with the facts would not turn around and at least admit their validity.
(Such naïveté. I cannot smile about it yet.)

I sent him a letter.
Then, not content to leave well enough alone, I bombarded him with emails. Explain to me, I'd pleaded. Explain to me how someone so nice can have a friend as horrible as you. Explain to me how someone who sent me virtual hugs and kisses and had said "I love you" within ten minutes of our first chat could accuse me, me, of being the desperate one in the relationship. Explain how you can make blanketr statements about someone you don't know. Explain how you can take such liberties with something as precious to a girl as her reputation.
How stupid was I?
I'd wanted him to eat those words, I'd wanted that slander out of his mind. I'd wanted no one to think of me things that were based on nothing. Dislike me as much as you want, I'd always think. Just do it on my own merit.
I didn't think of it in those terms, naturally. I didn't have the self confidence to put it in those terms either. It's only now that I see that that (so many thats!) was what I was trying to say.
How stupid was I? How cowardly? How timid?
The man had given me enough fodder to rip apart his morals, his ethics and his mental ability. At every step he insulted me, and then defended his thoughts by saying I shouldn't care what a stranger thought of me. He'd defended his decision not to give me advice by saying he knew nothing about me; and then he'd said he was entitled to his opinions about me and there was nothing I could do about it. He'd shown himself, with every subsequent letter, to be crude and prejudiced and contradictory and stubborn. Blanket generalizations and unfounded accusations.

And I tried to make excuses for him because I'd liked his friend. The stupidity of a susceptible heart.

I was young and inexperienced and clumsy, but that does not excuse my behaviour. What I realized after five months is that even less does it excuse his.
I was so unwilling to blame the common factor that I wrote him letters as well. These were the kind of letters that make me think "Glenn Close!" Even then I thought it.
There is no excuse for the way I continually abashed myself, put every bit of the blame on my own head. I must have done something to give him the wrong impression. Because I knew nothing, it's what I assumed. For someone who sees sexual harassment in every lone man around, I missed just plain harassment when it was staring me in the face.
Because I liked the boy. Because he was the first person who'd ever thought I was pretty. Who'd spent an hour in a conversation with me about nothing. He was someone who'd made me feel special, and attractive, and fun, and to think it was all a lie was breaking my heart. See, I never wanted a relationship. I never asked for a relationship. I was not the one who started this thing.

This has sat heavy on my head for far too long, and I never did anything about it. What stopped me, every time, was the thought that I owed the boy. I owed him. For things he showed me. And taught me. And brought to my life. Every time I wrote a post, I'd think, If not for him.

What I know now is that nothing is worth this.

Consider the score settled, love.
Take this, my gratitude.
I wish you joy of your friends. I have mine.

Author's note: As always, after a spewing of bile, I began to doubt the statements I'd made. But then again, this pain is mine; and all I've stated here is the truth. Perhaps I'll remove this sometime. But I did not think it fair that I could get no answers from direct contact, and that's why this is here. When all I met were evasions and sentences that said nothing at all. I will leave this for that.
For the clarity, and the explanations. For the closure.
This might be a temporary post.
I hope it is.

Update: Edited. All I've left are the links. To publicly posted material. Nothing more. I couldn't follow through, and I couldn't make it stay. I haven't asked permission. I haven't given warning. I have not covered my bases. The pain I'd cause is not worth the settling of old scores. Do you blame someone because you were too inexperienced and naïve to know any better? Or do you leave well enough alone when everything is done even though the memory rankles as much today as it did five months ago?
*sigh* I await further developments.
Update again: *sigh*, ow.

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