I knew a woman once that did not know how to love her boyfriend. Her way of showing how she felt about him was keeping a tidy house full of stuff that had no meaning but plenty of monetary value. She made sure other people saw her house and them in it so happiness looked a certain way. I remember judging her for it (and not silently either) because that is not what love looks like.
How dare I tell someone else what love is?
I know now, of course, that I judged her because of my reflection on the situation. I could not understand how she felt and would not do what she did so how on earth could she do what she was doing? And I thought he deserved better and blah blah blah. Never considering that what she was doing was the best she could do. That she loved him from the very bottom of her heart. That the creation of her living space showed him how much she adored him and the life they had away from the chaos that is outside their door. Their home is their sanctuary.
When she got angry at me, the first thing she did was to pick apart what my rental looked like. I thought she was just being a bitch (I had no control over the colours of the walls, I did not own that house) and with nothing else to fling at me, she went after something she felt that she did “better” than I did.
I was not paying attention. I was so wrapped up in my own emotions and thinking that someone I cared for was being neglected that I did not see what was right in front of my face.
I have been apologising to the wrong person.
All along she has been the bad guy in this story. I did not blame her for her reactions, I just blamed her for not loving him. He would have never come to me if she did, I said to myself.
What if she did love him and he came to me anyway? Who becomes the bad guy then?