After That Assault, Things Got Messy – Part 4 (He Wants Space…And I’m Not Fantastic About Giving It)

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

Picking up from last time –

Once I felt his exceptional anger, I immediately took the post down. And, since he wouldn’t talk to me, I sent a long (way too long) email profusely apologizing.

Then (as with this whole story) things continued to get a little messy and complicated.

Because – even though he had asked for space, I wrote him another email, I think 3 days later where I said I’d been thinking so much about everything and I really really was sorry again. And blah blah blah.

And that was disrespectful on my part. He wanted space and I only gave 3 days before I gave another email (that was also quite honestly pretty freaking long).

(Though, to give context, before this, our normal rate of texting/talking was many, many times a day. And we’d see each other in person a good amount… So, for that normal frequency, 3 days, in some respects, felt like an eternity (especially with the assault and desperation for normalcy still looming).)

And I sent a text within the next day or two as well saying I was trying really hard not to bother him, but I just wanted to know if he had any timetable whatsoever, because I was thinking about going to California. And I just wanted to know if he was thinking he’d want to talk in the time I’d be gone, ’cause I really wanted to make sure I was available if he wanted to talk.

And then he got mad that I was still contacting him,¬†telling me I was only asking about a timetable for attention – not because I actually wanted to know. Of course, from my perspective, at the time, I’m crying myself to sleep every night because I’m having flashbacks of him climbing on top of me in the midst of me crying, completely ignoring my words, my tears, and my body language.

I like to believe that had someone asked me for space after I’d done something wrong and that was the end of the story, I would’ve hopefully been better about giving it. But when we had this assault hanging over my head, I was a little antsy indeed… (Especially when he wouldn’t even give me a timetable – nothing. Not like, “I need a week. Let’s talk Friday.” Just “I’m gonna take as much time as I need. And that’s a reasonable request.” And with everything surrounding it, it didn’t seem 100% reasonable to me – even though I was trying desperately to see his side… Aye aye aye aye.)

So, anyway, I said sorry when he got mad about me contacting him. And I left him alone for, I think, about a couple of weeks.

[One random thing that made this all even harder is that he had randomly said not long before the assault happened that if you’re having problems in a relationship and you take a break for longer than a month, it’s over, period. So, while part of me of course wanted to be free of this relationship, part of me was desperate for normalcy. And I had this ticking time bomb every day of knowing that if we reached a month, things weren’t going to go back to normal…]

Anyway, a couple of weeks later,¬†I invited a group to my apartment for a party. And he was in the group I invited. [Edited to add: It was BMI people.] Anyway, I felt exceptionally weird not inviting him… I didn’t want to look like a petty person leaving him out… But I also don’t want it to look to him like I’m inviting him for attention. But I also don’t want to not throw a party and continue stopping elements of my life purely because I’m afraid of him, or that he’s mad at me or whatever… And I kinda want to tell him this thought process… But I don’t want to contact him again, and disrespect his wishes, and also have him be furious with me… So, I just make a FB invite and invite the whole group (including him).

On the wall of the Facebook party invite, he writes something. He doesn’t just easily hit decline or ignore or whatever. He writes that he’s really sorry, but he might not be able to make it. He has a friend in town, etc.

And I write him privately, thinking this nicely worded, not-angry-at-all-seeming message he left on this Facebook event might be the opening to talk for a bit. And in my message to him, I basically try to explain what I just explained here (about not wanting to not-invite him, but not sure if it was appropriate, and apologizing for the weirdness of it all, etc.)

And he got mad again, acting like I was really ridiculous – asking me if I really thought that writing one thing on a Facebook party invite was truly opening the door to talk to him.

I mean, I don’t know! I didn’t know!

And again, I’m crying every night (at the time), just desperate for this to be resolved. (And it’s been weeks now that I’ve been given the silent treatment for posting about an anonymous friend who hurt my feelings… all this righteous indignation after assaulting me…)

So, in some way, I think the level of patience I was showing was actually pretty good, maybe? (I mean, I know, boundaries are boundaries and obviously I had trouble with not talking… But also, I was the victim, and supposedly a good friend of his, and I deserved so much more. So, I dunno…)

In another way, I do see his point – that he would’ve preferred I waited to be contacted directly instead of thinking a nice message on a public forum was enough to talk to him… (But why did he write that anyway? If he reeeeeally wants to not talk to me that badly, then just hit decline and don’t talk to me, right? Maybe? Is that crazy?)

Anyway, I do indeed see how it was disrespectful that I contacted him a few times after he wanted space.

Then (multiple weeks after the assault), we end up at this same function. I had to rush in late from work. There is literally only one chair left and it’s by him (of course). I whisper apologize and ask if I can sit there. He says of course, and acts like it is legitimately the silliest thing in the world that I’d feel weird or be scared about wanting to sit next to him – after he’d gotten SO angry if I tried to reach out at all. He gave me this face basically like, “Oh, come on. You know you can always sit next to me.” And I think this attitude acting like the anger or drama wasn’t there or didn’t matter was especially hurtful, since I was still crying every single night. (Sorry to mention that again and again. I’m just trying to keep us in the reality of what was going on at the time.) And it was kind of hurtful that he acted like I was being ridiculous for being afraid of going anywhere near him, since he’d been pretty on the intense side with the anger oh so often since I’d known him (and he certainly seemed angry with any contact over the last few weeks)… But now everything is magically fine?

So, that was weird. But okay…

When the function was over, he made some small talk for kind of a while with me, as though everything was all right… Uh, okay then…

And you and I could potentially assume it was all for show (’cause he is reeeeeeeally good at putting on a face). But even when it would’ve been easy to move onto other conversations or leave, he stayed and talked to me some more. I mean, who knows. Maybe it was all for show. I know nothing anymore. The point is, he talked to me as though everything was fine which was yet again, exceptionally jarring to say the least.

(And for the record, obviously we did not talk about the stuff I needed to talk about. I didn’t feel I could be like, “Hey, can we talk about that time you sexually assaulted me and then wouldn’t talk to me?” right then and there, surrounded by other people… I mean, I could’ve done anything… Buuuuut that didn’t seem super like a fantastic idea to me.)

Anyway, later that night (after the thing ends and we part ways), I go to a bar with my friend who’s in town, and sexual assault guy texts me and asks if I’ll have breakfast a week later. Of course I say yes, because I keep going to the same events and stuff as he is, and I am desperate to resolve this so I don’t have to feel so weird or kind of pushed out of the world. (And I am desperate to stop having nightmares… Resolution, for many reasons, sounds pretty dope to me! So, let’s see…)

And this is where we’ll pick up tomorrow.

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