5 Warning Signs You Are Being Resentful
“Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die” ~ Carrie Fisher
A couple years ago I watched a movie about a woman, who was betrayed by her best friend and her fiance. They took away her company, framed her and sent her to jail. She spent her entire prison time to come up with the best and most satisfying way to seek for revenge.
Needless to say, I felt bad and angry for the lady. She didn’t deserve any of that.
And I dreamt about my perfect relationship. I would never be like her. Because I would love my partner, and he would love me more than his life. I would be the best partner in the world, and he would be a perfect prince for me. Our house would be full of love, laughter and trust. We never fought and we only told each other the most romantic and sweetest things in the world.
Fast forward to the present.
I was standing inside the bathroom with the water running. I let the shower spray directly to my face so that it could sweep away the tears. I just had a fight with my husband. My chest was hurting, my head was spinning and I had to lean on the wall to hold myself straight.
“He is such a jerk”.
“How could he even say that? He is so stupid”.
I let the negative voice in my head going wild, didn’t have the intention to stop it.
“He deserves to feel the pain he made me feel”. The voice whispered in my ears.
And I came up with a plan. I would not talk to him until he apologizes over and over again. He deserves the coldness.
So I washed my face, dried my eyes and walked out of the shower. I made sure to slam the door as hard as I could and walked around the house with my chin up. I avoided eye-contact.
From the corner of my eyes, I could see him watching me, he looked lost and hurt.
“Good. That’s what you deserve”, I thought.
I walked to the bed to get my pillow and blanket and made myself a small bed on the couch. This time, he couldn’t sit still any longer.
“What are you doing?”
I ignored him. I rolled up the blanket to cover my head and closed my eyes.
After a couple minutes, I felt the blanket lifted up to reveal my face. I kept my eyes shut. Then I heard him saying, “Please don’t sleep here. Go to the bed.”
“This is not an apology”, I thought. I ignored him.
He begged, “Please go to bed. I will sleep here if you want me to”.
This time I opened my eyes, “I don’t care what you do. Please stop bothering me and let me sleep”.
I sensed his muscles tightened. Apparently, this is not what he wanted to hear. I looked straight to his eyes, they were full of anger. I immediately knew I just crossed the line, but I kept my chin up and said nothing else. After a couple of minutes, he stood up and left to the bedroom.
I turned to my couch and tried to sleep, in the hope that he would feel as much pain as I did.
And he did.
Every time I opened my eyes throughout the night, I saw the bedroom light and I didn’t hear him snoring all night. Apparently he couldn’t sleep that night.
I thought I would be happy when I saw his pain, but I didn’t. Not for once.
In contrast, I felt terrible for hurting the man I love. I knew I was being resentful. And not only it hurts my husband, it also hurts me.
Resentment is an unsolved anger.
Not every relationship goes on and on without any fight or obstacle. But it’s normal and it’s completely okay. The fact that you get angry on somebody doesn’t mean you don’t love them anymore.
Love and anger can exist altogether in a relationship.
But when you do not solve the anger you have, it lingers in your mind and creates resentment. And resentment sticks around for a very long time.
How many times did you get mad with someone not only for the thing they just do, but also for all other things they’ve done in the past?
Resentment makes us remember people’s faults.
5 warning signs you are being resentful
The truth is, sometimes it is hard to tell when you are resentful, because we often confuse it with anger. But if you are guilty of these signs, you are being resentful.
1. You remember clearly when they upset you
You can forget their birthdays but you didn’t forget the time they’ve wronged you. You played those stories inside your head over and over again, each time you realized something ugly about them. Every time you look at them, those ugly impressions come to you.
2. You want them to feel the pain you experienced
When someone hurts you, you have the need for punishment. You want to punish them, to let them know and feel the pain they give you. Because only until then, they will understand how you really feel.
3. You pick a fight over the smallest thing
When you are upset, even the smallest thing your partner does can bother you. You can let it slip in other times, but you don’t want to do so when you are mad. You are willing to start a big fight over the tiniest thing just to irritate him.
4. You compare what you do and what they do
You feel like you are doing too much, giving too much away in a relationship and don’t get back what you deserve. You compare what you do with what he does. And in this relationship, you are always the innocent victim.
5. You cannot shift the pattern
Sometimes your partner already says sorry to you, but you can’t seem to let it go completely. You don’t know what else you want him to do, but still, you don’t feel any better. Because you feel that an apology is way too easy for him to say. You feel that an apology doesn’t compensate what he does to you.
You might be biased. No, let me rephrase that: you are biased.
Your mind and your tracking list always take your side. Because you make them up with your negative feelings. They will find a way to prove that your negative feelings are true.
But most of the times, they aren’t. Most of the times you are too focused on your partner’s faults and you cannot see all the sweet things he has done for you.
Resentment is just a thought. And a thought can be changed.
It was midnight. I couldn’t sleep well knowing that the man I love was in pain just because of our stupidity and ignorance. Not only him. Both of us were.
I tipped-toed to the bedroom and found him laying down on the bed, with his eyes closed. But I knew he didn’t sleep.
I sat next to him and rubbed my hand to his cheek. He opened his eyes, pulled me into his arms and hugged me tightly.
“I’m sorry honey”, he whispered.
“I’m sorry too”, I whispered back. “Let it go now, please”.
And we fell asleep hugging each other.
P/S: As I mentioned in previous post "How to forgive others: When resentment only makes things worse", I read these two books of Louise Hay: "I can do it: How to use affirmation to change your life" and "Mirror Work: 21 days to heal yourself". Those books have benefited me a lot and I strongly recommend you to read them too.