My experience of being involved in a 2 year long relationship that was based on me being abused mentally and emotionally left me to question why I remained to be involved in that relationship, allowing myself to be mistreated in such a way.
This article will be based upon what I have come to learn as a result of this experience. I will not go so much into describing intricate details of the events and how I was being abused in this way, I feel it is irrelevant. What is relevant is the lesson I learnt in terms of why we choose to stay in relationships with these characteristics and why the victim of the abuse and the abuser themselves act in such ways.
I believe many of us are in relationships where mental abuse is taking place. But, why do we tolerate treatment of this sort? Is it because are we simply not aware of it as being a form of abuse or are we just disregarding this fact and choosing not to accept it as abuse and making excuses to hide the truth and ‘cover up’ for why we are staying in the relationship and also, on behalf of the person giving the abuse for why they are behaving in this way? You can decide upon your own opinion of what is right in such cases after reading the whole article. I hope what I am about to bring forward to you from my experience will open up something in you that will make you really take a closer look at the situation you are involved in, in terms of the quality of your relationship.
In my case, it was not confirmed in the beginning, however I grew increasingly suspicious of my ex boyfriend having a strong drug habit. We were living together, so obviously I did spend enough time with him which enabled me to detect the signs which helped me to determine exactly what type of lifestyle he was living. It started with him staying out all weekend partying and coming home, in what you could call a state of being ‘wasted’! He did know where he was, what day or time it was and sometimes he didn’t even know who I was! With having him spend all of our money that was intended to be used in paying the expenses in the house, on feeding his habits, I would be upset and with my being upset that would trigger a mood in him that made him capable of potentially killing someone!
It doesn’t matter what you do or say, when someone is in that state of being under the influence of drugs, you would have more chance of success in hitting your head off a wall, because they don’t have a clue what they are doing or saying to you in the first place!
As time passed by, his behavior became increasingly worse to the extent that he crawled in one Sunday morning at 5.00am, thinking he was going to the bathroom to use the toilet when it was in fact my wardrobe full of clothes that caught his ‘passing shower!’ I was sickened by him, but I still could do nothing to stop him. When confronting him about this only 5 minutes later, he had recollection of what he had done. I then caught the brink of his temper and was accused of being a ‘psycho’, as well as a few other names which I cannot mention here! What could I do? Well all I can say is under those circumstances, is it not enough already to confirm it is time for a quick exit on that relationship?
What was my excuse for not leaving? Even then I was smart enough to know that anyone who is dependent on abusing drugs has a serious problem with themselves. Using drugs to the extent that he did was merely an attempt to substitute something that was lacking in own his life in the first place.
So, why did I stay? Well, because I had an understanding of the concept I have just given and I will explain why later in another article. However, for the time being I can honestly say that by me loving him and understanding how really he felt inside in terms of what his life consisted of, I thought I could help him heal his problem. This assumption of mine turned out to be drastically wrong. He took my love and understanding for granted and used it to gain his own advantage by turning it against me.
Deep inside I knew what I was involved in was all wrong, but I chose to stay anyway. This guy had won my sympathy when he described the state of his childhood after suffering the consequences of his parents divorce. I myself have come from a similar background and could relate to his experience and the way he has been left to feel as a result.
I felt sorry for him and disregarded all of the mistreatment he gave to me and excused it as being ‘okay’ because I knew that he too felt the same hurt, anger, insecurity and instability that I did due to his own parents separating. He felt unloved, loveless and simply didn’t know how to love anyone as he had never been shown any example of this as a child. He was so afraid of losing me too and experiencing the same hurt he did when he was young that he turned this fear into his tool in order to keep me from leaving him.
I was not the most stable of people at that time in my life. I was still not accepting the state of my life in terms of my relationship with my parents, as well as being in the height of an eating disorder I was afraid of being left alone in the world and felt unloved, lonely and quite worthless. He managed to detect and become familiar with all of my weaknesses and insecurities and begun to ‘play’ on them, using them as his tool to bring my self confidence and self esteem even lower than what it already was. I hit ground zero! In fact, I was eventually so low that I felt truly dead inside.
Why does a person treat someone they claim to love in such a way? My conclusion I reached after this experience is that a person who is abusing someone else mentally is using that abuse as a means of bringing their victim to such a low level in order to gain power and control over them. Why? In the case of my ex boyfriend it was his own fear of being left alone and unloved that drove him to this. The less he showed his love to me the less he would be hurt in the long run if I were to leave him. That is what he thought anyway!
It is ironic really when you think about it. How can anyone justify this behavior as being an act of love? He claimed he loved me so much and he didn’t want to lose me. Instead of him letting his guard down and releasing his built up fears and really showing the truth of his love towards me, he let his own anger and fear of being hurt and left alone take over, bringing him to the extent of abusing me in order to claim power and control by having me being afraid of him.
If you are into a relationship that resembles any of the characteristics I have described above then GET OUT! It will never change and if you think otherwise, you are seriously misled. Take it from me! By you staying in the relationship you are already giving them the blessing to continue treating you in this way. From the example you have already shown them in terms of the level of mistreatment you are prepared to accept, do not expect them to make an effort to change their ways because you’ve already let yourself down by tolerating their abuse in the first place. You are neither doing yourself or your abuser any favors by staying in the relationship. You do not deserve to be treated in this way and they will definitely not learn their lesson whilst you continue to stay with them and accept that abuse. Think about it!
Your relationship is a dead end and even if you were to stay together and try to make amends, it will never be successful. The damage has been done already and you have lost any love or trust that ever existed between you. Staying in this situation will always result in having the past creep up to haunt you. Don’t wait for miracles either because it just won’t happen! Accept the fact your time in this situation is over, then do both of you a favor and take the opportunity to learn and grow by moving on and hopefully the abuser will learn his or her lesson by you walking away.
Just do it! You will grow to become far stronger, wiser and should definitely learn to love and respect yourself more than what you ever did before. In the end, the quality of our relationships reflect that of how much we truly value ourselves and how much we value ourselves is shown in the extent of abuse we are prepared to tolerate from another person. With that in mind and from what you have come to learn and appreciate from having experienced a previous abusive relationship your future relationships should definitely improve. When you realize and understand all of these facts you will see what type of relationship you attract to match your level of growth. That’s the law of life! And if fear of being alone makes you apprehensive to leave then consider this? Being alone and at peace to do whatever you feel like doing, whenever you please and without having to answer to anyone or being afraid to go home after work each day because you don’t know what you are about to face! Think about it!
It was not easy for me to leave my relationship and the longer I stayed, the more difficult and frightening it became until one day I couldn’t take it any longer. That was then and this is now and I have to say when I think back to those times I sometimes wonder how I ever managed to persevere and survive through it all! I don’t know how but what I do know is, it was that same strength that kept me going on afterwards and managed to bring me to where I am today and would I ever go back? Never! As far as my ex boyfriend is concerned, I don’t know where or what state he is in today, but I honestly hope that for his sake he has learnt his lesson and tried to deal with healing his own fears. I do forgive him for what he did to me and feel a hint of sadness toward him deep in my heart; I cannot blame him for what happened as I believe nobody is really a bad person. Our actions and reactions in life towards both ourselves and other people today are only the reflection of how we have dealt with our past experiences and how other people have influenced us in accordance to those experiences. This is more reason why we should try harder to heal ourselves, in order to prevent more pain and suffering from spreading between each other in the future.
What happened in my life, happened and both my ex boyfriend and I have our individual responsibility towards ourselves and in terms of how we choose to live our lives, as it is likewise for every single human being in this world.