Thursday, February 07, 2019

WHAT AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP TAUGHT ME

Aireys Inlet, Victoria.
Some people might think that the longer we knew people, the more we knew about them. I thought so too, but in my case, I was wrong. In fact, I knew nothing.

The red flags didn't pop up immediately, although I might have been too busy to fall in love with the idea of love to notice them. Or maybe he was just so clever to hide the other side of him. As days changed into months, he showed me who he really was and I was slowly losing myself.

They said experience is the best teacher. I learnt so many things from that relationship. I'm not going to call it my relationship anymore because I no longer possess it. Now, that relationship is just a thing, like a piece of paper or maybe a receipt of my Sephora shopping. It means nothing. But the lessons I learned have followed me into my current life. 


Abuse can come in many forms, it can be physical, emotional, and sexual. 

My therapist said every abuse is connected to one another. If someone started emotional/verbal abuse, there's always a possibility to start doing physical or sexual abuse. There's no form, no organisation. Everything connects. 

I had never experienced physical or sexual abuse because I was far away from the abuser.  Who knew if I was so close with that person, right? But the yelling and harsh words were always the worst parts of his abuse, and to this day loud voices or noises always frightened me. The worst of those came when I was about to do something good for myself, even my future. It felt like I was walking on eggshells. I didn't know when he was going to yell or snap harsh words. I was so afraid to tell him things, even good things. I was in constant anxiety. 

Control is not love, in any of its disguises. 

Every time I hear a loud voice, I think of him, yelling at me. He didn't hear me when I defended myself, my voice became so loud and hoarse, but he heard me when I left him. 

An abusive person will always tell you that it is for your own good that they control your life in an abusive way, but it is not

Love should lift you up, not down. 

Back then, I told him that I was happy and everything. I did, truly. But because I had faith that he was the one for me. Because I was so blind with love that I justified his abusive behaviour as a normal fight. 

Reading back to my daily journal, I constantly wrote the words fear, scared, and painful. Do you think those are the words you use if you want to describe happiness? It was too late for me to realise I wasn't myself when I with him. I was struggling to stay connected to myself. 

Emotional abuse is the murder of your soul. 

Knowing that I will have this experience for the rest of my life, I promised myself I won't let my past defined my future. I know today I'm still struggling and trying my best to pull myself back together, but I'm getting there. It's not an easy thing to do, but it's not impossible. I felt like I was dead back in 2018 and somehow, I came back from the darkness. I'm slowly being myself again. 

I would never say I'm thankful for him, I'd say I'm thankful and grateful this experience became a bridge for me to find more strength. I'm thankful that now I found my true self, the woman that was so brave to leave someone who was manipulated and controlled her life. 

More than that, that abusive relationship showed me what real love is not.

If you experience any of mental abuse signs, please tell someone you trust and they will help you to stand up for yourself before it's too late. 

Or if you are a survivor, stay strong. This experience will not define our future. 


Love, Vera
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