Surviving Toxic Relationships
Love yourself so much to leave a toxic relationship.
How can one person that you put on this pedestal just let you down? How could one person that you “loved” so much end up hurting you so badly? Manipulative relationships could be the hardest thing to get over, but I don’t regret mine at all. He is the one person that I am so happy I met, but I never want him in my life again. He taught me everything about relationships. He was my first real boyfriend. The first real person to truly show an interest in me, and I held onto that because I thought that I would never find someone else that is romantically interested in me. However, I slowly started to learn (with the help of an amazing therapist and support system) that I do I deserve better than some boy yelling at me, calling me a bitch, and giving me the silent treatment.
I would live life with him constantly thinking, “When is the next fight? Next yelling match? Next breakup?” Until the inevitable happened, I lost my fucking mind. Prior to the explosive break up, we were on and off for a year. Throughout that year, he broke up with me 4 times and then would come back with “I made such a horrible decision” bullshit. Naturally (because I felt horrible about myself), I took him back in my life. We fought almost daily and it was never about anything important, he would just pick fights because he knew that would make me mad but also I wouldn’t leave. I hated going in public with him because he would leave me downtown after a night of bar hopping or he would start a fight in the middle of the restaurant if a guy looked at me the wrong way.
After the fourth time of dumping me, I started therapy. I was still talking with him but starting to finally get a backbone of my own in order to hopefully leave him for good. We were in the process of getting back together for the fifth time throughout that year and I started questioning WTF am I doing with him, but couldn’t quite erase him from my life yet. I never thought of myself as a “cheater,” but I guess it was my “cheating actions” that led to a huge explosive downfall. But I don’t regret one part. I kissed someone that was not him and I knew it was done. But I still forced it… anyone else just know in their gut that things are not okay and you shouldn’t be here with this guy but you are anyways? My gut was screaming for about a month until I told him and he blew up. Did not even want to touch me, kiss me, comfort me, look at me, but still expected me to be his girlfriend. The thing with manipulative relationships is that anyone outside of it is screaming at you to GTFO but you are so deeply infatuated that the idea of living alone without your manipulator is terrifying. The highs were high, the lows were low. It didn’t even end with me knowing I was ending it. I remember driving to his apartment thinking, “We’re going to have a quick talk about this situation and then we will order dinner.” Then the inevitable happened, we fought (go figure) and I just got up and left during the 15th yelling match between us that week and never fucking looked back.
You never know it’s toxic until afterwards when you start doing research on narcissistic, toxic relationships. But what no one tells you is that the anxiety brought on from this relationship continues to follow in the following relationships. “Does he like me?” “Am I too much for him?” “Is he going to end it?” “Does he even like me?” Phrases I continued to tell myself in my toxic relationship, I brought to new ones. I’m still struggling with relationship anxiety, but with the support of my amazing friends and family (and loads of therapy), I know that is possible to overcome.
The truth is no one on this entire Earth is worth losing your sanity over. It’s been almost three years since I’ve last seen him. The funny thing is, he still texts me, still calls me, still reaches out on Facebook. That is how you know someone is manipulative, when you tell them you are done and they continually hit you up to try to get you back in your life because they need to control someone and you were that person for so long. They know they are a loser without you, so they will do anything to keep you in their life to continue to control and manipulate you however they want.
This relationship taught me more than I wanted to know, but needed to. I hope anyone reading this can see the silver lining behind a manipulative relationship. I can promise you that once you leave, things will get better.