In the past I've had a lot of family and friends mention me being angry at my hoarder as the reason we don't communicate. I am always stunned. Maybe that is the way she is presenting it. That I am angry and will get over it. Perhaps even that I am throwing some sort of childish hissy fit or having an overreaction of some sort. I guess if you're angry at someone there is the possibility for the anger to be replaced by another emotion. For forgiveness, for reconciliation?
I am not angry at my hoarder. That takes too much energy and focus. And although she was worth that focus once, she isn't anymore. I am angry at the past, at what I had to go through to get to where I am now, that the trials by fire were necessary at all, and I am angry at having adult responsibilities before I was even a teen, but the reason I stepped away from my hoarder is not anger. It's self preservation. It's disappointment and just a general doneness (if that's even a word).
My counselor has tried to get me to admit to rage. Probably as a cathartic work through. The fact is I don't have rage, rage takes a lot of energy & like fire it consumes the one holding onto it. As I mentioned above, my hoarder is not worth the necessary focus required for rage. I know there have been times when I was still interacting with her that I raged at her (see the green ham incident), but those were few and far between and very short lived. I understand the dangers of fire, having seen my father, mother and brother all rage at times and watch them be consumed by it. Luckily my brother seems to have figured out the rage thing.
My hoarder is toxic. If it were just piles of crap that would be one thing, we could go about our merry little lives, but the cruelty and manipulation and general using me as an emotional punching bag, because she knew I had the patience and could take it (she actually told me that once, that she knew I could take it because I was so patient) and being the on call free handyman (who could never do anything right - sigh), were too much. Seriously.
I stepped away for my own health and well-being. Not to punish her or because I was angry with her.
It is amazing how much happier I am. How much less anxiety there is in my life. And how much more time I have now that I'm not on call every weekend and holiday. How many fewer tears I shed.
Stepping away was not something I did TO HER. But FOR ME!