I posted a blog earlier about “Betrayal” to which some of you really seem to relate. But there is another consequence to Betrayal. Solitude. When betrayed badly enough, or often enough, I (and people like me) tend to retreat behind walls.
Walls. That’s really an understatement. After 42 years on Earth, and I’ve long ago lost count, my walls more closely resemble the Great Wall of China — just not as long. Very tall, very thick, practically impenetrable unless I choose to let you in, or choose to come out. I assure you, those are choices I don’t make very often.
Because of my self-imposed exile, I am often very lonely. Some of you would say that is my own fault, my own choice, and you have no sympathy for me. You are the very people that make me retreat into the safety of my barriers. With your lack of empathy, you make me realize once again that I can’t risk showing you my scars, my pain, my soul with its black shadows. I would only guarantee judgement against me again. Condemnation.
I feel like no one else understand. Logically, I realize that other people feel the same way that I do, but the odds of me finding those few in a world of people bred and trained to attack are slim, so I stay behind my walls. Occasionally, I extend a hand in friendship and trust, but it’s usually an offer of trust extended to THEM, not an offer of trust OF them. Yes, now, I feel you must prove your trust in me for me to trust you. If I know your secrets, you are less likely to reveal mine. Not that I would, but you don’t know that. Paranoid? Maybe, but just because I’m paranoid doesn’t mean you won’t broadcast my skeletons.
There is a part of me, hidden deeply inside my walls, surrounded by moats of alligators, behind thick stone tower walls that wishes for a friend. Just one friend to whom I could tell everything, Just one. But it’s not to be. My husband tries, but I can’t talk to him about some things — not that he would judge or condemn (I know he wouldn’t), but he just can’t understand some things. I have a childhood friend to whom I use to tell every secret, but we’re grownups now, and I hesitate to shock her with parts of my past. I have a few people in a chat room I visit that I think are friends, but they haven’t proven themselves yet, and I’ve been attacked in their anonymously, so my trust is even more hesitant.
Distrust and Solitude. Twin brothers of destruction and doom. A self-fulfilling prophecy. A self-continuing cycle. Each feeding off of the other. How do you break the cycle?
I sit in my bedroom, typing these questions to you, while my husband sleeps. He’s the closest thing I’ve had to a friend in decades. Yet some things he just can’t understand. And I can’t burden him with those sins that he can neither understand nor fix. Bless him, he does try to heal my wounds. But he is a carpenter, not a doctor of souls. As much as I love him, as much as he is my soul-mate, I short-changed him. I sold part of my soul a long time ago. I will never get that piece back.
So I’m alone. And distrustful. And that makes me feel fearful and safe simultaneously. Which just isolates me even more because I can’t explain those two emotions living in accord together.