“I don’t understand; what’s wrong with me, what did I do?”
Every waking hour of every day, he'd call and we would talk for a while each time.
The psychology of a betrayed person is teetering on the edge of a breakdown. It’s honestly the worst thing about being human; the fact that we connect our identities/self-worth to an association (person, job, etc) and that if it leaves us, we lose our humanity.
When people are drowning, you throw them a life preserver. As supporters, our role is to listen, sincerely promise our hurt friends that they aren’t alone in this battle and together we’ll overcome the pain.
Being lost and without anyone to listen, you're left to defend yourself against a gang of defeating thoughts. Having been through it, they were the scariest battles of my life.
He’d explain the scenarios, trying to rationalize why she left. Being left in the dark only intensified the struggle for answers. I’d do my best to explain that some people do horrible things whether they mean to or not, or they’re battling their own issues and sometimes the answers aren’t there.
“How do you know?”
“Because I've been on both ends. I promise that in the end you’ll live a better life than ever while she’ll always regret the pain she caused. She'll see how great you are without her, while she struggles in the search for meaning.”
You see the progression; from very afraid to returning signs of life; personality, laughter, and most importantly, confidence. Each week grew a realization that if someone is here for me then I do have importance.
Our lives are defined by the people (family and friends) that love us, not by the jerks that leave us hanging by a thread.
As time went on, I wondered how he was doing, but didn't want to bring the situation up, just to want to keep his mind off of it.
Then one day the phone rang, he said laughingly and victoriously:
“You know, that was the best thing to ever happen to me.”