When I wrote ‘Losing you was a blessing’ I thought I had finally moved on from my toxic relationship but boy was I wrong. I’m a person who loves sweeping things under the rug and pretending they’re no longer existent. I dislike acknowledging and addressing my feelings because I’m scared of letting go. With all the time in quarantine, I had no option but to address events that I’d ignored and that’s when I realized healing is a tough process.
Before I left my toxic ex, I didn’t know he was toxic because I was so consumed by what I thought was love but wasn’t and blind to the red flags that were evidently there.
It was a relationship full of mind games and doubts and questioning every move I made and every word I said. It was every fight that always ended in me apologizing and it somehow always being my fault. It was saying things just to piss each other off and knowing exactly how to. We used to fight all the time for things he used to do, but they were always my fault. I would pull away, he would reel me back in, I was stuck in that emotional rollercoaster. Every time I confronted him, he would make me doubt myself. He was never responsible, he was never at fault. I was crazy. I was insecure. I was needy. I was unfair. I was problematic. I was unstable. I was imagining things.
But then it was the good stuff too. It was the nights together where I wanted time to freeze in that moment. It was every bad day he was the one I knew I could turn to. It was the date nights, the FaceTime calls and the gifts he got me.
My friends had blatantly told me how they disliked him and how I was being treated, and I was too consumed with creating a future with him to see that he never intended for me to be there at all.
Life after a toxic relationship is like recovery in a way. You have to admit to yourself there’s a problem and it isn’t something to be fixed in a partner. It’s something you need to fix within yourself first. Then you need to be able to identify it and step away from anyone or anything that will bring you back to that self-destructive path.
“When did I even start thinking that I wasn't worth of love?” Then it dawned on me that I had dedicated so much time into someone who never really thought I was good enough to begin with, and eventually I started to believe it too. I was so wrapped up in loving him and, getting him to love me, that I forgot how to love myself first.
Honestly, it’s so hard to understand what people in these relationships go through. It’s easy to judge and to give advice, but it wasn’t until I went through what I went through; waking up every morning with a heavy soul, drinking every day, failing all my classes, losing weight and giving up my ability to trust my own decisions, that I really understood it.
Convincing a man of my qualities and worthiness of his companionship was deeply humiliating.
If your friends and family are telling you your relationship is unhealthy - chances are, they’re right. Listen to your loved ones because those who know your value want what’s best for you. No relationship should ever endanger your self-worth. Common decency, sincerity, and respect should not be waited on. Know that it is wrong and manipulative for a partner to convince you you’re too dramatic for addressing behavior that hurts you or makes you uncomfortable. It is integral and healthy for partners to hold one another accountable, not from a place of seeking power but from a place of wanting a strong, honest connection.
Moreover, knowing the difference between someone loving you and them enjoying the way you love them is crucial. Someone can be infatuated with you, and not be in love with you. Someone can love all that you have to offer, and not be in love you. Someone can feed you grandiose statements proclaiming love for you and not be in love with you.
Seek out the red flags in their patterns of behavior and forget the words that lose meaning the moment they are said. When you display unconditional love to someone who doesn’t reciprocate it, your sense of self will deteriorate. You will drain your energy by constantly overthinking why they can’t practice what they preach, what their true motives are, and how they claim to love you yet continuously hurt you.
So many questions will be left unanswered and no real goodbye will provided, so give yourself the gift of closure. Acknowledge that you deserve so much more than someone who took for granted the amount of love you have. Make peace with the fact that someone hurt you. No amount of anger or suffering will change the past. You are responsible for putting yourself back together, nobody else.
You cannot control how someone feels about you or their behavior towards you, but you can focus on yourself. Focus on your dreams, your values, and what fulfills you. Seeking “justice” or wanting revenge against your ex is the refusal to gracefully let go.
Once I was out of my toxic relationship, I needed to forgive myself. I regretted not dumping my boyfriend the first time he shamed me about my body. I hated myself for putting up with being mistreated.
I held onto a lot of blame…specifically for myself.
Part of the victim mentality is being in disbelief that you allowed yourself to be treated so badly. But it’s essential to forgive yourself, or at least begin to, so you can truly move on.
Choosing to be single is a choice that wasn’t influenced as a result of my toxic relationship. It’s been 4 years since I left my toxic ex and I’ve had a better relationship after that. The reason why I chose not to date at this point in my life is because of the many things that I’ve going on. And I feel that I’m not mentally ready to be in a relationship because I’m not ready for that type of commitment.
My advice to you who has ever been in a toxic relationship or still recovering from one: If you choose to spin gold out of pain, I promise you will manifest magnificence.
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