So last year, my best friend of 8 years ended us after a few months of me having random depression if I couldn't be around him. Over time, I've realized how much I was hurting him with emotional abuse and I feel so terrible about it. But I know he won't ever let me in his life again and I agree with that. So I just need to know, How can I forgive myself for abusing someone I love?
Hey Nonnie, I have a friend who went through a very similar situation, so I asked for their advice on your behalf. They wrote:
Acknowledging that you made a mistake is important, but also be kind to yourself. Recognize what you did wrong, and learn from it. Know that your friend doesn’t owe you anything, but also know that – although you aren’t absolved of responsibility, you were/are mentally ill.
I truly believe that the thing that separates you from a ‘bad person’ is that looking back, you recognize that what you did was bad. Another thing that makes you a ‘good person’, is the fact that you’re actively seeking a way to resolve this situation.
Now, you can’t change the past, but what you can do is decide how you approach the consequences of your past actions. Reach out to your friend if you haven’t already. Apologize to them a final time. That’s all you can really do – try to fix your wrongdoings, but give your friend space if that’s what they need from you right now. Then you can rest, knowing that you’ve done all that you can. You can work to forgive yourself in the knowledge that here, now, you’ve done all the right things. You’ve changed, and you will do everything in your power to ensure that history doesn’t repeat itself.
I really hope this is helpful, Anon. If there’s anything else that I can do for you, know that my askbox is always open.