“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.” ~Brené Brown
To all of my ex-boyfriends, ex-lovers, and especially my ex-husband, I am so sorry.
I’m sorry because I never gave you the chance to really know me. I hid myself from you. I showed you the smallest version of myself because I didn’t trust you to meet me in my strength, my bigness, and my desire. Well, in truth it was I whom I did not trust with my strength, bigness, and desire. I was scared to be in my full expression, afraid that I would die if I were to really presence myself.
I didn’t know I thought this; I didn’t know I was driven by fear and shame. But I was.
I wasn’t courageous enough to be vulnerable and exposed. I needed you to want me, so I tried to fit the mold of what I thought you needed me to be for you. I convinced myself that I was happy to be the object of your desire. I thought I was okay with the way you touched me, and the way you judged my body as an object.
I didn’t know any other way to be with you, but each time I allowed this to happen, allowed myself to be an object for you, a part of me died.
This is the irony of being driven by fear. In being afraid that I would die if you saw all of me, I killed parts of myself in the simple act of hiding from you.
It was a slow, painful death.
I blamed you.
If it was your fault that I felt small in the world, I didn’t have to look at my own limitations and flaws. If it were you who weren’t enough for me, then I wouldn’t have to look at my own fear of not being enough.
My dissatisfaction with you was not your fault. It was mine. I had a fantasy of what a relationship would look like, and I tried to make you into the object of my imagined relationship. No real connection could emerge when I hid myself while trying to make you into the man I thought I needed. I’m sorry for only wanting my wishful version of you, rather than the real you.
I wanted you to be better, but you seemed happy with this small version of me. I resented you for that. How could you be happy with “small” me?
I cooked, I cleaned, and I performed well in bed, never expressing my truth, my passion, or my desire. When I felt hurt by you, I led you to believe that I was okay with everything. I never told you. I never let you see my pain or how I was impacted by you. I just tried to be better for you, to be less of who I was and more of who I thought you wanted.
I took your satisfaction with “small” me to mean you didn’t want me to be big and self-possessed. But I never asked you. I never even let you know that there was more to me. I never gave you the opportunity to know the depth of who I really am, and for this I am so sorry.
By staying quiet and complicit, I led you to believe that I was my mask. That my body and mind were all that there were, and I hid my soul from you.
I never let you see the immense bigness of my heart or the power of my spirit. I never let you touch me deeply in these hidden places, and I took your lack of trying as lack of interest. So I pretended that I was okay with this, that a surfaced connection was enough for me.
I wanted you to know all of me. I wanted you to see the vast and endless range of my being. I wanted you to touch every single part of who I am. I wanted your soul to make love to mine, and I never let you have the chance because I hid all of that goodness from you.
I am so incredibly sorry.
From the far reaches of the universe, where my soul touches the hands of the divine mother and father, I am sorry.
And to my future lovers, I promise to never rob you of the opportunity to really know me. I will be revealed to you, fully and wholly. I promise to let you know who I really am and what I really want. And I promise to meet you there, too, seeing your vastness and immense power. I will gift you the opportunity to lift me up with your masculine strength as I will embrace you with my feminine openness.
No more games. I am here for real love, a love that is deep and powerful and expansive—a love that is aligned with the greater good.
About Harmony Kwiker
Harmony Kwiker, MA, is a psychotherapist, author, and teacher who has been empowering people to live from their true self for over twenty years. Facilitating people in deep healing, integration, and relational connection, Harmony leads workshops and has a private practice outside of Boulder, CO and online. Find out more about her work at www.harmonykwiker.com.