Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Things I don't understand

Or maybe I do.

I can remember lying in bed with L, about six years ago now, and thinking to myself, "I could just leave. I could just get up and get dressed and walk out of the room and never see him again." I didn't even really like him. He was selfish and controlling and arrogant and borderline emotionally abusive. He wasn't even good in bed.

But I didn't leave. I stayed and was miserable.

I left L eventually, but only after I had let my self-esteem take a royal ass-whooping. So I guess I do understand on some level. But sitting at this vantage point, from my Happily-Single-in-the-City throne (or so the story goes) I cannot fathom what makes a woman (okay, a person) stay in a relationship where she (or even he) is self-proclaimed miserable. Where she has articulated more than once that the partner probably doesn't even love her, that it feels like a waste of time, that it's been this way from day one, that things will never change (do they ever?), that she cannot imagine a future like this, that she hates herself for taking it again and again.

I don't think it can be as simple as insecurity or fear of being alone. Sure these things are wrapped up in it, but in a world where we can proclaim our self worth (and where bookstores are crammed with books celebrating singlehood and independent living) what makes us turn so quickly into accepting a life of misery?


Blogger Julia said...

Yep. I heard the same thing today, and it just leaves me speechless. All I can do is remember how unhappy I've been, and how I've been unable to say goodbye. And hope that these women get that whatever-it-is that makes you wake up one day and just say it.

11:27 PM  
Blogger TessaJ said...

I think the thing that makes me speechless (when I'm not immersed in it myself) is seeing how happy she is with herself, with him, with the relationship...and yet time and time again, it goes on.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Jules said...

I think that it is about what you believe you are worth - if you don't think that you deserve anything better, then it is easy to stay in a relationship that isn't working.

9:28 PM  

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