When you want to leave a toxic relationship, your own beliefs can be the biggest obstacle, even bigger than those described in my last 4 posts. What to do then?
How many times have you sabotaged your actions? It is our thoughts and beliefs which determine that we do one thing, not the other. Here are some beliefs which determine your lack of taking action:
“Abuse is Normal.”
You may not recognise that your relationship is unhealthy if you do not know what a healthy relationship looks and feels like, perhaps because of growing up in an environment where abuse was common.
If you do not know what a healthy relationship looks like, perhaps from growing up in an environment where abuse was common, you may not recognize that your relationship is unhealthy. What is more, if you read a lot of books about abuse, watch violent movies, you can also consider abuse as normal. But opinion of your friends and family is the worst, if they suggest that abuse is normal, happens and nothing can be done about that.
“I have to work at a relationship.”
Sure. But not that hard, girl. Remember that there are two people in the relationship. 50% depends on your partner, you cannot have an influence on everything. Therefore, it is not only your duty to take care of the quality of your relationship, he also has to do his part of the job.
For example, you can be responsible for your decision, your quality of communicating him your ideas… but not for his reactions or the decision he makes. In case of abuse, it is totally up to him and only depends on him – how he treats you. Your love, devotion, passiveness will not change the abusive incidents unless he wants to end them.
“I could fix him.” I found one sentence on the Internet: “Sometimes I think I’m naive for thinking I can ‘fix’ your problems, but some days I think I’m inspired. Our love will heal the wounds left over from your past. I can take away the loneliness and pain. I’m going to pull out everything that’s black inside you and fill it up with light. You feel worthless because people have hurt you and abused you and left you and won’t be able to feel that way when I never do.”
You will never fix the relationship unless he also wants to do so. You will never change him, unless he decides to do so. You will never stop him from abusing you, unless he stops it.
“I deserve it.”
On some level, many abused women think that they deserved that kind of treatment to put up with it for so long. Additionally, you may feel so bad about yourself physically that you believed that kind of relationship was the best thing which you could do.
From growing up fat and being mercilessly bullied, you had low self-esteem to begin with, then the relationship itself did the work of beating me down so low that you felt grateful to have a boyfriend at all, even one who abused me.
However, the truth is different: NO ONE DESERVES TO BE ABUSED, regardless the sex, social status or race, no one and never. If you think that you deserve abuse, you give yourself and others permission for such treatment, which is not right.
If you know a belief which is not described in this post, let me know in a comment. I will publish another post in which you will find solutions.
Author: Victoria Herocten Writer and coach.
Since 2009 she helps women with abuse to start over and how to be happy .
The co-author of the bestseller “Gratitude Book”.