Lessons Learned

tears2I’ve been thinking a lot lately about lessons I’ve learned over the last several months. Things I’ve lost and betrayals that happened by people I trusted. So, today I’m sharing some of the lessons that I’ve learned so that someone else in the same situation know that they aren’t alone or the only one it’s happened to. Several weeks have passed since it happened and I’m still extremely angry about it, but with each day that passes, I realize that this is how it was going to end and that makes me sad.

We were doomed to fail because of our expectations of each other. I expected him to turn into my ex and was always afraid to talk or express myself with him. He expected me to turn into his ex. So when faced with a situation that provided the expected outcome, he failed me. He expected me to betray him or to be like “her” so he inadvertently set me up for that fall and justifying the sharing in the logs that fulfilled his expectations, instead of talking to me about them from the beginning and telling the person, who I thought of as a confident and sister at the time, to stop sharing them. It didn’t matter how he got them, he got them and in the end they came from her and he participated in a betrayal of confidence because of it.

A confidence I had in them both. It all boils down to those actions. The very first log shared (at least two months before) from a conversation that was meant to be private and “talking” should have been turned away. The whole situation boils down to that. The fact that instead of talking to me about what I meant or why I said what I did or what was going on in my head, he assumed and built his own story up around it. And instead of warning me to watch what I say to her, he let it keep happening over several months. Then with each new log she showed him (And I don’t care how the logs “got” to him, they just did), he built another piece of his own story around them and his own truth. I kick myself for not seeing it earlier. For not seeing how he would know things before I had a chance to even tell him or how she would know things before I had a chance to tell her. How she would suddenly know that I’m not feeling good, even though we hadn’t talked all day. How he would know that I had said something when he hadn’t even been awake at the time and I hadn’t had a chance to even talk to him about it. All the little stories all add up to one thing: betrayal. A betrayal of confidence that lead to an even bigger fight when he made his assumptions of what I meant or why I said something and added his own meaning to the words. Instead of seeing how much I was missing him, he saw me talking about him behind his back. Instead of seeing that we hadn’t had family night for two months, he saw me as being mean about him. Instead of seeing any of that, he saw something bad.

In the end, this taught me several valuable lessons.

1. If someone is willing to share logs with you about a conversation they had with someone else in an effort to make that person look bad or to get them in trouble or cause drama and make themselves look good, eventually they will do the same to you. Therefore, those people who share logs, in an effort to get someone in trouble or create drama, are not to be trusted and be wary of what you say to them. That was a valuable lesson that I neglected to see until it was too late.
2. If a man is willing to put you second to any fan group, then it’s worth taking a second look at your relationship as he will never put you first. In a relationship, you put each other first in all things. This means that you make an effort to be with them. You don’t have to spend hours or days with them, but putting their thoughts and feelings before that of a fan group is important. This includes protecting your partner from gossip and malicious backstabbing. You always have your partner’s back. Someone sharing logs behind your back is not having your partner’s back. Instead, that is participating in backstabbing and a break in trust.
3. No matter how much you count someone as family, they may not behave that way. There are people in Second Life who will lie to you and tell you that you are important to them, but then as soon as the going gets tough and you have a problem, they are telling you that you’re a “bitch” and abandoning you. Or there are people who will work their way past your “boundary fence” and then as soon as they are in, they use what they find against you. In the end, be careful who you count as family because one day those very people who claim to be family, may turn around and bite you in the ass.
4. The biggest lesson I learned from all of this was: Watch your back. Look out for number one because there are people out there who will say they are looking out for you at the same time as they are stabbing you in the back when you aren’t looking. That no matter how long it takes you to get to know them, if they demonstrate that they will betray someone else, they will eventually do the same to you. As I said before, if someone is willing to do this to someone else, then eventually they will do it to you.

In the end, I’m kind of glad this happened to me. It reminded me that the “boundary fence” I created around myself is not infallible. That sometimes you can let someone in and give them information about yourself and they’ll use it against you no matter how careful you are. They’ll either do it in the beginning or they’ll wait until they have enough information before doing it. There are some people out there who get off on plotting and planning the demise of others all because they need to feel better about themselves or they have some other need they need to fulfill. Either making themselves look like little innocent angels by making those around them look bad or by drawing attention to themselves, in their true emo selves, by making a hard situation that has nothing to do with them, all about them. They create the drama they accuse others of causing and twist situations and words to make themselves look like the victim or innocent in the situation. These are the kind of people to steer clear of.

Looking back I see the signs. People telling me to watch my back. People warning me that she tells lies and talks. But because I had the ideal that everyone is human and not knowing both sides of the story, I took the warnings at face value. Other signals that I should have listened to came from the source. Turning our leaving a group into “all about her.” Hanging up on calls because she felt we were “mocking her” when we weren’t. Talking shit about her kids with me, then sharing logs to prove that she was the “innocent victim” in the conversation. Opening up conversations with her ex’s, either her “ex mother” or her “ex boyfriends” in an effort to supposedly “be the bigger person” and ripping off the scabs on any past wounds in an effort to cause even more drama. Just a few things that should have clued me in on how untrustworthy she really was. And because of this, I now know what to look for in the future when deciding if I should trust someone or not. The biggest lesson I learned in all of this was to guard your heart and don’t give away too much information about yourself, no matter how long you have known the person, until they demonstrate that they are trustworthy. And above all, if a man puts you last in his life while telling you he loves you, then run…as fast as you can, to the nearest exit as they will never put you first.

I learned a lot of lessons recently and have gone through a lot of transitions, lost several good friends, left a group that I was a part of for years and now I’ve lost family because of one person and her betrayal and the others twisting words to fit their own paranoid truths. I don’t know if I can ever forgive any of this, but I do know that I will be more careful in the future. Eventually I’ll get over my anger, but I don’t know how long it’ll take for me to get past my pain.

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