I have been clean for twelve months and six days. Call it a week. Tonight, a week ago, I confronted my ex-boyfriend, about the night he and a friend of his raped me. I did it in an email, and I was apprehensive about sending it – I first sent all my friends and supporters a teary-eyed Whatsapp message, saying I was about to do it – and eventually I did.

And then the next few days were filled with the celebrations of hundreds of friends, colleagues, strangers in meetings and on social media all making good with the noise. I felt the love. I felt the milestone reached was good, big and important. But while I had the smile plastered on my face, I was waiting for a response from my ex, though I’d made it clear I didn’t want to hear from him.

So far, he’s honoured my wishes – but I can’t say I am not a little disappointed. While I was fearful of a venomous and vicious attack in response, I was also hoping just to get some acknowledgment for what happened that night. But nothing.

I want to strike out – I have an urge to send another email – an angrier one, calling him spineless, a bastard, a sick and twisted rapist. I want to call him a coward for not responding. For not acknowledging my pain, and my confession, and my healing.

But I guess that is the next lesson – for what is any of this but a series of lessons from which I must grow, and learn? In my letter, I very carefully worded it to fire as little anger and hatred at my ex as possible – the point of confronting him was not to make this wound any bigger. I did not say “You raped me!” – I said, instead “You held me down, and I was violated.” because in the language we use, the healing has its foundations. And at the end of that letter, I offered him forgiveness.

This next lesson is the realisation the conversation is over, finally, and that forgiveness only has meaning if it is unconditional. I did not offer forgiveness on the condition that he acknowledged his crime. I did not say “I’ll forgive you IF you say you did it, and that you’re sorry!”

No. I said “I forgive you.”

And that has to be enough. Because it is. My higher power forgave him long before I did, and that forgiveness came unconditionally. Therefore, to truly live in this new-found freedom I have claimed, my forgiveness of him is unconditional. My friend Susan counselled me that forgiveness sets me free, and allows me walk lighter, and live life abundantly. How right she is!

I grow. I learn. Sometimes, I stumble – but what’s important is I pick myself up, and I carry on carrying on. Each day free from drugs, addiction and that night.

© Dave Luis 2013. All Rights Reserved.


  1. I have always said that this journey as much as it is yours, can teach everybody something. I for one keep learning so much!

    The road of forgiveness is often a lonely one filled with much bumps as it is travelled and the wounds encountered along the way have to licked clean so the journey can continue. You have shown such amazing strength of character and will through this all Dave – I can but only be proud and smile at this awesome. Even though there are rough days and crazy days that plastered smile does wonders and I just one from that, that you’ll be ok… That you ARE ok.

    1. Thanks, Ryan! I know that I AM ok…and I continue to be OK. Some days will be difficult, but they are not a return to the old days, and the old ways. If life were easy, and only a bunch of smiles, we’d learn nothing and no growth would happen. It’s important to focus on the good, and the lessons, and in that way to continue to attract the good, and the lessons. Laws of attraction – they apply!

  2. You are truly brave to share your walk with us. Thank you for reaching out and taking our hands. Thank you for allowing us into your soul. The road will not be smooth, or level – it will force you to sometimes go a little bit slower, and at times you will fly. The difference now is that you will see with eyes that are not shaded with drugs; you will breathe the air that is not filled with toxins – you will experience with senses that is unsullied with chemicals. Celebrate!

    1. Susan, I couldn’t put it better if I tried. All my senses – all my experiences – are now free from the non-reality created by the drugs. It’s the only way forward, and yes, some damn difficult and tough days, more so because in certain circumstances, I am feeling or dealing with things for the first time in 39 years, my previous default setting has been to hide in the numbing embrace of the drugs.

  3. The art of unconditional forginess can be so powerful! You have empowered yourself spiritually beyond belief and the imprint on your soul and its evolution will follow you beyond many incarnations to come. Good for you!

    1. Thanks! It’s an amazing release, of course, but I find that the forgiveness is something I have to work at, because there are days the rage raises its ugly head.

      1. My dear yoga teacher used to say the battle is already won when we are conscious about something. Your awareness of forgiveness will in the end override the rage.

        Much blessings on your journey, I have read some of your posts today, I think you are brave and extremely blessed to share your journey with people – thank you for sharing, through your sharing I am sure many, including me are learning and experiencing as well.


      2. Thanks, Willie – really appreciate the feedback and the support. I haven’t written a blog post for a long time, and am hankering to do so! I agree with your yoga teacher’s sayings – though the learnings I have taken show me that there is more to it as well – for many years, I was aware my control was diminishing. And I thought that THAT knowledge was enough to make me tread carefully. The lesson learned was that it’s not enough to just know, and to say you know you have a problem and need help, you have to start the change and start to help yourself. THAT’S when the awareness becomes so powerful – because you KNOW what to work on, then!

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