Here I am talking about how toxic relationship that I was holding on to for about 2 years affected my mental health. I honestly am so grateful that I had courage and enough mental and physical resources to get away from a person who was 100% not good for me. However, I don't usually regret anything, as I think there will always be hardships in life, as long as we choose to keep living it, at times risking and trusting "wrong people". It's important to remember that we do learn and grow along the way, painful experiences tend to be most valuable for making better decisions in the future.
In this post I would like to share with you what being in toxic relationship has taught me. And probably you can find it useful. If it's something you could be interested in, please follow me.
My worth is not defined by other people
When I was being in toxic relationships, I felt like I lost myself. And the problem was that my self-esteem had already been low when I got into that relationship (bad combo), which made it even more complicated.
It was very hard to overcome that feeling of self-hatred that was even supported (not obviously) by the person who used to be important to me, but once I finally found my way out, I felt much stronger.
I am a firm believer that nobody in the world can make you feel confident if you don't feel you are worthy, but people who take advantage of our weakness they know about, in order to intensify our negative feelings, need to go. Letting them define our worth because we trust them is a mistake.
Remember, your worth can only be defined by you. If someone makes you think worse about yourself, their actions should always be questioned.
I should always trust my gut feeling
Low self-esteem doesn't help with that either, cos I tend to second-guess myself a lot. I struggle sometimes regarding what I feel, not knowing if what I feel is valid. So gaslighting can often be used to manipulate people like me. We feel guilty and don't trust ourselves, which makes it easier for us to trust others. However, what I have learnt, is that I should trust myself more. My experience shows that my gut feeling is often right. And yours probably is as well.
It's not ideal, but you can also open up to someone you trust (outside the situation), and maybe get a second opinion. Again, it's important to learn to trust yourself but if it seems too hard right now, find other people who you can trust and who can help you deal with fear associated with leaving toxic relationship.
I am better off alone than with a toxic person
I used to be afraid to be alone. I worried that I would be abandoned, and as result I kept holding on to relationship that didn't make me happy. Very often toxic people will try to ruin our relationships with other people, which will make it even harder for us to leave them.
Sometimes it requires anger to leave toxic relationship, and there is nothing wrong with that. I had to learn to love myself and put myself as a priority to be able to say "enough", and I had to accept the fact that I was going to be alone for a while, but have faith that I was capable of doing that.
The thing with anxiety is that sometimes we feel it, but we do what we think is right despite discomfort or even pain. We are stronger than we think. Pain is not going to last forever. And loneliness doesn't hurt as much as a manipulative person on your side, trust me.
It's ok to seek help
Remembering that it’s totally ok to seek help, including professional, is extremely important. No matter what I was going through in life I quite early discovered that there are options: I could be helped if I needed to be.
I think staying in toxic relationship for a long time can make us feel like we failed at something important in life (that’s how it made me feel), and there is a lot of shame and guilt around this topic. I was dealing with everything alone for the most part, but eventually I asked for help, and I am incredibly happy that I did.
Those who love you won't try to hurt you
Always remember that. Like I said, when I was in toxic relationship, I constantly second-guessed myself, and I thought I maybe deserved to be mistreated. But now after I am no longer in that situation, I realize how bizarre that way of thinking was.
Lack of confidence, fear of abandonment, longing for love - all these things can contribute to us staying in toxic relationship and justifying it for a long time. That's why I am here writing this post. To share my story, to maybe let someone who needs it right now know that they are not alone, to provide knowledge and comfort for those in need. I hope you enjoyed this one. Let me know if you did. Until next time on Pillows&Trees.