The Atlantic

Trump Is in an Abusive Relationship With America

The president says he loves America, but he has shattered it in two.
Source: Brian Snyder / Reuters

She mistreated me. I mistreated her. But we loved each other, we’d proclaim time and again.

I’d listened for “I love you,” as if listening for a sign of life, like a doctor listening for a beating heart. I had been led to believe “I love you” is that beating heart of love. Say it, love lives. Don’t say it, love dies.

Months before starting my first professorship in 2009, I ended the relationship for good. We’d been through breakups and makeups before. Mistreatment drove us away several times. Mistreatment did not keep us away, or cause me to question whether we loved each other. The desire to be in something I thought was loving drove me back time and again.

I was fragile, and insecure. Oh, I wanted to hear her heart beat those three sweet words, wanted to say them time and again. Hearing them and saying them made me feel so good. Love, I thought, was all about feelings. Certainly not growth. Love, I thought, was supposed to make me feel good. Hate, I thought, was supposed to make me

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