I’m not quite sure when it started, but once it did, it was like an inescapable obsession that was driving me forward.
The overwhelming pain slowly subsided. It felt as if a veil was lifted from my eyes, and something new was beginning. Something that from now on would shape my recovery.
The Energy That Drove My Recovery
After experiencing a relationship break-up, you have to go through the different phases of recovery. Whether you want to or not.
It’s the same for each and every one of us – from shock to denial; from an emotional roller-coaster to acceptance; from letting go, all through to the re-opening. It’s the natural way of healing after a break-up. (There are actually ways to sabotage your healing, but I’m ignoring those for the moment)
Part of this process, (especially in the beginning), is experiencing anger and resentment.
We are angry at ourselves for all the mistakes that we think we’ve made, (be they real or not), and we are angry at our Ex for everything they did to us, (leaving us is on top of the list).
Very few of us actually realize that anger can be a good thing in the beginning of our recovery. It keeps us away from depression and despair, (this is because anger is more positive than the latter, it’s higher on the “emotional ladder”).
The tricky part though, is that it has to be expressed in a healthy way or it will harm us.
Not expressing the anger in a positive way was a big mistake I made back then. The unconscious anger I felt towards my Ex re-directed and became self-destructive. The result was that it pushed me even further down. What I couldn’t do at that time was to acknowledge that I was angry at her, so I turned it at myself.
How I Took Revenge Upon My Ex
“I will hurt you for this. I don’t know how yet, but give me time. A day will come when you think yourself safe and happy, and suddenly your joy will turn to ashes in your mouth, and you’ll know the debt is paid.” – George R.R. Martin, A Clash of Kings
A natural consequence of anger is revenge: “To inflict punishment in return for injury” is the definition.
Many readers wrote me that the anger they feel towards their Ex, and their inability to resolve the anger non-violently, contributed negatively to their recovery.
But what to do when we want them to feel the same pain we are feeling right now?
My answer was always the same: “You have to find a healthy and positive way to express your anger.”
There are many ways to do this, (find some in the article I referenced above).
Back then, I discovered by accident what helped me the most – what became my “revenge”.
What I did was, invest almost all of my energy into becoming the person SHE wanted me to be.
I dressed better, I worked out harder, I became more confident. I did lots of things she would approve of and became her “Mr Perfect”.
The only problem was – and I didn’t know that at the time – most of this wasn’t ME.
What I desperately wanted her to say/think was:
“Wow, look at him, he’s exactly what I always wanted in a man… I made a terrible mistake leaving him. I want to reconcile desperately with him… but I know that he doesn’t want me anymore and that is REALLY killing me”.
I cannot tell you enough how much it helped me imagining her saying these words.
It gave me back my power, it put me back in control… and I desperately needed that.
That was my revenge. Becoming the person she desperately wanted, and knowing that she couldn’t have me.
As written, you will have a problem later if the person you are becoming is NOT the person you really are. If it’s not the real YOU.
But that’s ok.
You will enter a new phase where getting back at your Ex won’t matter anymore, and it will become irrelevant what they think.
Then you will understand that the most important thing is to be authentic, to re-connect to the real you – a person you might have missed for a long time.
My point is that this driving energy of revenge, by becoming the person they really want, is NOT a bad thing at the beginning. It will get you through the toughest times.
But it has to be temporary, a transportation device to get you from one break-up phase into another. When you manage to do that your perspective will change, (again), and it will release a self-finding process that is extremely important for your recovery.
This kind of “revenge” might not necessarily be the right thing for you, but it has helped metremendously.
Isn’t it the ultimate revenge to finally get over them and live a happy fulfilled life, being able to reach your full potential?
I, for one, had triumphed in the end… and also looked stunning as a positive side-effect.
What do you think? Do you want revenge on your Ex? Tell me in the comment section.