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How to end an abusive or otherwise destructive relationship

Does anyone have advice?

I don't want to turn this into an EST, so not a lot of details. But I will say, I often get into these types of relationships, whether romantic or platonic, and what almost always keeps me in them is a feeling of sympathy for the other party. "He can't really help it." "He has been through a lot in life and I don't want to cause him additional pain by rejecting him." "He depends on me emotionally, and I would feel guilty for taking that away from him."

I continually allow myself to get sucked back in.

How does one break the cycle?

by Anonymousreply 123Last Tuesday at 9:14 AM

Self-respect, and understanding you can't 'save' another person, they have save themself.

by Anonymousreply 101/12/2021

This is tough to answer because I've been in these relationships, though not consistently. And I know they can be tough to get out of. Getting therapy is good, but sometimes it can make you too rigid about looking for the traps you fell into before, and you can end up avoiding relationships altogether.

by Anonymousreply 201/12/2021

Understand that you are giving them narcissistic supply. That is all.

by Anonymousreply 301/12/2021

It takes spine and balls. Just end it. Get away. Move mountains to get away. Just get away. I don't have insight ho to break the cycle though. Maybe some therapy before the next one. I will say the next one is going to result in the same situation - where once again, you must find the balls and spine to get away again. Sounds exhausting.

Doesn't it?

by Anonymousreply 401/12/2021

Therapy and medication. Stat

by Anonymousreply 501/12/2021

Impeach and convict.

by Anonymousreply 601/12/2021

Are you a people pleaser, OP? Discover why you feel other people's feelings and problems are your responsibility. Look for people who add value to your life and vice versa.

by Anonymousreply 701/12/2021

[face slap!]

Have some self-respect.

by Anonymousreply 801/12/2021

But is that slap vicious, r8?

by Anonymousreply 901/12/2021

Therapy.

by Anonymousreply 1001/12/2021

[quote]Therapy and medication. Stat

R5 Medication for what?

by Anonymousreply 1101/12/2021

You're aware the relationship is , as you say, abusive or otherwise destructive. That's the first step. Enmeshment is a problem, once you're caught in that net it can be hard to untangle yourself. You obviously are doing a lot of justifying and rationalizing. "He has been through a lot in life and I don't want to cause him additional pain by rejecting him." "He depends on me emotionally, and I would feel guilty for taking that away from him." As Ann Landers would say, it takes two to tango. You get something from these relationships, too, most likely the comfort of repeating a destructive pattern of behavior that probably goes back to your family relationships.

Haven't you been through a lot, in life, as well? Why is someone else's happiness any more important than your own? You asked for advice. So try thinking this way: Picture someone else being abused or treated badly, someone you care about. How do you feel about it? Now put yourself in the place of that person. Why would you tolerate it being done to you, when you wouldn't tolerate it being done to someone else?

by Anonymousreply 1201/12/2021

Bumping this thread for a friend.

by Anonymousreply 1301/12/2021

Thank you, r12. That was very helpful

by Anonymousreply 1401/12/2021

You've noticed a pattern that you regularly engage in that has severe consequences to living a happy life. This isn't a small thing. Why are you not seeking professional therapy as opposed to asking strangers their opinions?

by Anonymousreply 1501/12/2021

Find a sensual masseur who you find very attractive. Just because your partner is a good lay doesn't mean you have to be with him.

by Anonymousreply 1601/12/2021

I wonder how often r15 has caused an abusive or otherwise destructive relationship by being a feckless cunt.

by Anonymousreply 1701/12/2021

Drop the Olde French Whore With A Heart Of Gold act and they may drop the needy orphan routine.

by Anonymousreply 1801/12/2021

But really, therapy.

Therapy will make you understand why you are doing what you're doing - but you have to stick with it, and be prepared to look very bluntly at your life.

by Anonymousreply 1901/12/2021

Underneath, you are avoiding responsibility for taking care of yourself. It's tough but you have to grow up and do it. And let the other person start taking care of himself.

by Anonymousreply 2001/12/2021

It seems to me like you have low self esteem. On some level part of you must feel that you don’t deserve better. On another level, the savior complex allows you to feel needed and is a boost to your self esteem.

What you need to do is explore this further with a therapist.

by Anonymousreply 2101/12/2021

You are a fixer - you think you can fix people. You can't fix anyone but yourself. Once you realize that you will stop getting into toxic relationships.

by Anonymousreply 2201/12/2021

I think it is a self-esteem issue, OP.

Find an old, cute photo of yourself as a child. Put it up on your refrigerator. Imagine that you are responsible for this child. When someone treats you badly, think: would I let this happen to this child?

The answer should be no.

by Anonymousreply 2301/12/2021

Been there, done that. I am a people pleaser too, and I empathize with them instead of with myself. Rationalized all kinds of bad behavior. Never again.

It was VERY hard to break up with my crazy ex. But it was a huge relief. I can’t even relate now to why I was ever with that person. They seem horrible and pathetic to me.

You think you need them, you think that you love them...but it’s more like an addiction. And like any addiction, once you break free, you will look back and go “WTF was I thinking?” You will not miss them. You will not miss the abuse, the drama, the pain.

It takes six weeks for your neurochemistry to revert back to baseline after a breakup. During those six weeks, you will have “withdrawal” and it will give the illusion of missing that person specifically. But it’s just a withdrawal from the chemicals that the relationship stimulated in you. This is why people tend to go back to their exes after a break up. It feels right to break things off, but then, they start to doubt, because they are craving the oxytocin boost that being in a relationship brings. We think it’s a sign that we miss that specific person — but it’s not. If you stick it out, though, after six weeks you will stop missing the relationship and you’ll stop experiencing the detox symptoms, and THEN you will wake up to reality.

You just have to sweat it out for six weeks.

by Anonymousreply 2401/12/2021

Thank you, r24. That was very helpful.

Tomorrow marks "one week" and yes, I miss the person a lot. This is usually when I break down.

by Anonymousreply 2501/12/2021

R25 And heroin addicts miss the feeling of a syringe in their arm when they are writhing around, junk sick in a detox facility, too.

You gotta sweat it out, babe.

by Anonymousreply 2601/12/2021

Thanks, r26

by Anonymousreply 2701/12/2021

Don’t be a “love fool.” Life is too precious and too damn short. This is YOUR life. You existed before you knew your ex and you will keep existing now, post-ex. If you are not at peace with your own self, figure it out.

Manage your shit. Live your life. You are responsible for YOU. They are responsible for THEM. Companionship is wonderful, but co-dependency is not required. It’s unhealthy, it’s ridiculous. It’s so lame. It’s a symptom of woundedness, not love!

Listen to music that empowers you. Get sassy, find your inner bitch. Get empowered. Get therapy. Find the old conditioning that led you to astray. Look straight ahead, not backwards.

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by Anonymousreply 2801/12/2021

Since you're aware of the problem, what you've got to do is ending the relationships earlier. Don't wait for physical abuse or acts of self-destruction, break up the first time he shows what an asshole he is. Say "You can't treat me like that" or "You can't treat people like that", or even "You can't do that to yourself" and go. And stay away, if he calls to apologize and say he'll change accept the apology, but do NOT believe that he'll change or resume the relationship because you know that isn't how these guys work. They behave themselves just long enough to draw you back in, to where they can take their anger out on you.

You can't change them, you can only change how you deal with them.

Of course the real problem is learning to be attracted to men who aren't angry, needy, and dangerous. Right now, you probably look at the sane men and think "We have nothing in common", "He doesn't excite me" or worst... "He wouldn't want ME". That's the thing, these angry, needy men are looking for someone to listen to their troubles and act as their whipping boy and they're very much open to relationships with suckers with no self-esteem, as you have been. It's going to take time, introspection, and possibly therapy to learn how to relate to men who aren't looking for an enabler, so in addition to introspection and possible therapy maybe some time at the gym and giving yourself a bit of a makeover? If you look your best you have more self-esteem, and it's easier to believe that a man who has it together might want you!

by Anonymousreply 2901/12/2021

R29 PREACH!

by Anonymousreply 3001/12/2021

[quote] Since you're aware of the problem, what you've got to do is ending the relationships earlier.

100% agree with this. I'm guessing that OP (and other abused people) have broken up and made up multiple times. Every time you break up and make up, you lower the bar for what is OK, for you, in a relationship. The abuser comes to expect that he (or she) will be able to get away with certain types of behavior.

Things get worse, not better.

by Anonymousreply 3101/12/2021

r31, I start to think, "I have put up with so much shit already. What difference does it make now, if I leave or not? The damage is done."

Not the best attitude, I know.

by Anonymousreply 3201/12/2021

OP, that is *exactly* the point at which you need to leave, the point where you have said "YOU CAN'T TREAT ME THAT WAY" and you need to make it stick!

Again, don't believe any apologies from these guys, but take them in a "I hope you'll remember how sorry you are now, when you're about to take out your anger on the next boyfriend" sort of way. That's part of the official "cycle of abuse": regret, contrition, and building up to a new explosion.

Again, work on yourself for a while, and I do recommend working on your looks as part of the program of change. Not because you're ugly or worthless the way you are, but because exercise time is a great time to think and to release negative emotions! If you're on the exercycle or whatever and start to think hateful thoughts about yourself, let the thoughts come and speed up on the cycle, put all your anger and self-hatred into slams onto the pedals (or speed when running or extra tugs at the weights)... and after a moment or two of letting the self-hatred or loneliness or whatever painful emotions blossom... they evaporate and you're free for a while! I'm quite serious about this, take up running or biking or a gym, and use it as "me time" to think and to release negative emotions. And it can't hurt your chances of attracting a better sort of man.

by Anonymousreply 3301/12/2021

[quote]Tell me what I already know but I'm too stupid and self-destructive to do it.

by Anonymousreply 3401/12/2021

Fuck off r34

by Anonymousreply 3501/12/2021

Omg , thanks for this thread! I'm barely leaving a toxic and physically abusive relationship and I can't stop thinking about this guy. It was sexually explosive but he would attack me physically and sent me to the hospital on several occasions. I'm finally breaking free. But it's hard and I don't wanna go back to that relationship.

by Anonymousreply 3601/12/2021

Ghost em

by Anonymousreply 3701/12/2021

I already posted but want to add, abusive people do not care about you, are not sincere, don't have your best interests at heart, no matter what they tell you or how much they get you to feel sorry for them. I knew one who used to work on my friends, get them to see me as the bad guy and him as the good guy, until they were all urging me to treat him better.

by Anonymousreply 3801/12/2021

R36 Stroll on over to the Armie Hammer thread, and then tell me if you are still pining for your physically abusive ex.

FUCK. THAT. NOISE.

by Anonymousreply 3901/12/2021

r38 thanks. I think one of the things that draws me back is the fantasy that he'll "finally" see the light and realize how negatively his actions have affected me. I know that part of letting go is letting go of that fantasy. He'll never see the light. And he'll also frame my leaving as something wrong with me, not him. But ... it's really not about him

by Anonymousreply 4001/12/2021

R40 Oh honey it's NEVER their fault. You will drive yourself to the insane asylum waiting for that "a-ha" moment to click in their head. Ain't gonna happen. Which is the worst feeling, because you are literally -- quite literally -- powerless to shift, heal, or improve the situation or the relationship. No matter how enlightened or sincere you are. You just have to move on.

by Anonymousreply 4101/12/2021

R40 You're welcome. R41 is right. Even if you do get him to have some kind of epiphany, it won't last. A lot of these guys are just too messed up, usually have drug or alcohol problems, or other addictions.

by Anonymousreply 4201/12/2021

OP next time you meet someone ask yourself these things. If on a date- is it too perfect? Is the other moving things along too quickly? If so end it now. If it is more of making friends, how quickly did they tell you what's gone wrong in their life until now? This person is gauging how sympathetic you can be, what they can get from you in the future, and this is a danger sign. End it then. These are the points at which you must end a relationship. If you go further with people who act like this you can expect the same shit as you've had in the past. Being kind to others is not a weakness, but you have to learn how to identify the people you should not be kind to. When you find the right people to recieve your giving side your life will be a lot better!

by Anonymousreply 4301/12/2021

Oh boy, this ^^^^^^ is so well explained, R43. This is what happened with my last relationship. It went WAYYYYY too fast. In retrospect it was madness, how quickly he globbed onto me, overshared with me, broke through every boundary, claimed me, and wept for me, all in ONE WEEK. He repeatedly peed with the door open the first night we slept together. I was wigged out, but I overlooked that little sign, along with a million others that week, because the intensity of the sex felt sooo meaningful and deep. Well, it wasn't. He was just an intense and weird person. Sucked me in so hard, so fast with the love bombing. Guilt-tripped me, too, for wanting to go slow and not spend every single day together from the jump. He was talking of mystical, magical things, cosmic things after one week. 'I knew I would find my soul mate this year." Omg can I please throw up?

If I could go back in time, I would walk up to the stupid version of me sitting on a couch at a rooftop hotel bar, sitting there with this ridiculous motherfucker, all starry-eyed while he cried about how beautiful the sunset was, how he never wanted the night to end. I would storm over, and I would smack the shit out of myself. I would then grab my arm and drag my ass out of there. It would have saved me many months of emotional exhaustion, family drama, guilt, exasperation, financial loss, embarrassment, etc etc.

Needless to say, I am not a romantic any more. I still like the idea of companionship, but I will be much more of a pragmatist moving forward.

by Anonymousreply 4401/12/2021

"Oh honey it's NEVER their fault. You will drive yourself to the insane asylum waiting for that "a-ha" moment to click in their head."

THIS. No matter what he says, OP, what's actually running through his head is something like:

"OP (or any other friend or romantic partner) is supposed to take care of me and make everything better and make me personally happy, and if they fail I have every right to punish him/her for failing! Our relationship is about nothing but ME ME ME, my feelings, my pain - they need to GIVE GIVE GIVE and if I don't get to TAKE TAKE TAKE I will rage until they forget everything else in the universe! My lovers shall have NO GOD BUT ME!!!".

Of course what they actually say is that they're in pain, they need someone sympathetic to make it better, and none of it is their own fault.

by Anonymousreply 4501/12/2021

[quote]He repeatedly peed with the door open the first night we slept together.

R44 Does he have a bladder problem?

by Anonymousreply 4601/13/2021

Just walk away!

by Anonymousreply 4701/13/2021

Boundaries.

Get a self-help book on it and APPLY it. Unless you want to pay for a therapist - and it's crapshoot getting a decent one.

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by Anonymousreply 4801/13/2021

R44 do all straight women have hang ups about someone they just fucked peeing with the door open? That’s honestly a weird “warning sign” to me.

by Anonymousreply 4901/13/2021

I'll say the same thing I said to the poster in another thread wondering why he was still single after many years.

I know you're trying to end this relationship and so your focus is on a specific issue. But the larger work that needs to be done includes work on yourself. A good therapist will help a lot. Even if you don't believe in therapy or have the resources for it, you need to, for lack of a less cliched way to say it, find yourself again. You need boundaries and a clearer sense of self, both will help you if you enter another relationship, so you don't hand everything - including your consent to the relationship and the very steering wheel that guides all of it - over to someone else.

I recommend two books for almost everyone, as their lessons are so helpful in so many different ways. One is Necessary Losses....

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by Anonymousreply 5001/13/2021

The other is Absolutely Shouldless, which as the title suggests, is about escaping the overwhelming power that "shoulds" have in so many people's lives.

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by Anonymousreply 5101/13/2021

I feel like I'm going through a strange grieving ... for the person I always thought he could be, but never would. It's almost like grieving a phantasm.

Yes I know MARY!!!!!!!

by Anonymousreply 5201/14/2021

R52 Then grieve. Grieve the loss, but make it a permanent loss. Know it's over and move ON.

by Anonymousreply 5301/14/2021

[quote] I feel like I'm going through a strange grieving ... for the person I always thought he could be, but never would.

Agree with R53, move ON!

by Anonymousreply 5401/14/2021

I am r53/r54!! This was a four-year, on-and-off relationship. I broke it off half-heartedly several times before. But this time is different. I feel like the scales have finally fallen from my eyes and I've abandoned the fantasy that he'll ever be anything other than what he is.

by Anonymousreply 5501/14/2021

R55 You for SURE are grieving a dream, and not the reality. And I get it. I've been there. It was your dream. You are grieving the fantasy. Everything you needed from him, you could never get it from him, and now you are still sitting there with unmet need, and longing, and frustration, and hurt, and loss.

Go DEEP. Feel all of it. You will come out the other end never wanting to go through anything like this again.

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by Anonymousreply 5601/14/2021

Thanks r56

by Anonymousreply 5701/14/2021

This is probably a common dynamic, but another thing that kept me around for so long was a sense of indebtedness. He never, ever apologized for anything, or even acknowledged we had had a fight. However, he would buy me gifts after arguments -- like, really nice gifts (eg Creed Aventus cologne that cost close to $500). I could never afford the same for him. And when I think back on those gifts, it makes me feel bad for wanting out. And I always felt that was the subtext of the gifts: "Look at everything I've 'invested' in you."

(NOT saying I'm going back; just explaining the dynamic.)

by Anonymousreply 5801/15/2021

Ask Claudia

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by Anonymousreply 5901/15/2021

Oh OP honey, give me a fucking break with the cologne. Do you know how much easier it is to throw money at somebody, rather than actually being a good partner consistently?

Wouldn’t an apology and self-awareness have been as cherished as gold, compared to the dented tin of some dumb cologne?

And it’s the oldest trick in the book. It’s clichè in fact. Wife suspects husband of cheating. Husband buys wife new earrings. Wife relaxes her suspicions for awhile. It’s a bunch of meaningless bullshit. And you know it.

by Anonymousreply 6001/15/2021

Take a moment... to honor your spirit.

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by Anonymousreply 6101/15/2021

[quote] And when I think back on those gifts, it makes me feel bad for wanting out. And I always felt that was the subtext of the gifts: "Look at everything I've 'invested' in you."

Uh huh. Well, mission accomplished then. Master manipulator. And btw buying cologne or any other expensive gift is not an "investment" in another person or in the health of the relationship. It's called bribery. Fuck. That.

by Anonymousreply 6201/15/2021

Wtf? I **definitely** did not post r62 on this thread.

Muriel!!!

by Anonymousreply 6301/15/2021

Okay, r62 ... please ignore r63.

DL is being wonkier than usual for me

by Anonymousreply 6401/15/2021

Leave!

by Anonymousreply 6501/15/2021

Be firm and tell your lover " My caftan shant ever lift again for your undeserving love shaft! You're services are not longer required!"

by Anonymousreply 6601/15/2021

No contact. It's the only way.

by Anonymousreply 6701/15/2021

Take a deep breath, think of Dionne Warwick, and walk on by.

by Anonymousreply 6801/15/2021

I'm on my third day of no cigarettes. If I can do that, then you can do this. Just stay super duper busy.

by Anonymousreply 6901/15/2021

Repeat after me, OP:

Bye, Felicia.

Now observe how it works when someone irritates you in a whining and withholding manner, because I shall not be here to say it again, for what should be obvious reasons:

Bye, Felicia.

by Anonymousreply 7001/15/2021

[quote] However, he would buy me gifts after arguments -- like, really nice gifts (eg Creed Aventus cologne that cost close to $500).

OP, if you feel "indebted" due to a stupid $500 bottle of Creed cologne, you need to work on your self esteem.

If you like gifts, at least get cash or something you can easily resell.

by Anonymousreply 7101/15/2021

I know, r71. Which is why I ended the relationship. But things look a lot different from the inside

by Anonymousreply 7201/15/2021

"I feel like I'm going through a strange grieving ... for the person I always thought he could be, but never would."

Nailed it, OP! You weren't in love with the real him, you were in love with the man he pretended to be at times, or the man you wanted him to be. But the man you love doesn't actually exist, he was a mutual fantasy the two of you created because it kept the relationship going.

OP, you have actually been living out "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf".

by Anonymousreply 7301/15/2021

[quote] OP, you have actually been living out "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf".

The Liz Taylor or the Richard Burton character? Both halves of that couple are abusive.

by Anonymousreply 7401/15/2021

If I were ever going to take up smoking again ...

by Anonymousreply 7501/16/2021

[I will not take up smoking again, though. But this breakup is one of many stressors right now, including, of course, COVID and a precarious political situation]

by Anonymousreply 7601/16/2021

OP, I took up smoking again at the start of this pandemic. And although it felt stress-relieving at first, and was certainly a distraction...it of course turned into something that made me feel physically sick, toxic, and gross. And then I felt hooked and addicted while regretting having started again. Don't do it. I flinally just quit the other day after many failed attempts. Starting smoking is only replacing one false god (your ex) with another (smoking). It would be finding another destructive, unhealthy outlet for the inner turmoil that you really need to deal with constructively. So don't even THINK about romanticizing smoking, like it would in any way be useful to curb stress. It's supremely unhealthy and actually exacerbates anxiety and stress. What are you avoiding? Why can't you imagine or reach for a healthy way to deal with your burdens and stress?

by Anonymousreply 7701/16/2021

Well, here's some practical advice from someone who's been there as there, if he hasn't found your DL acct/post yet. If you are able to get away for short periods of time you can start prepping by doing these things -

Start a bank account just for you he doesn't know about. Make sure you have enough to get a hotel room for a week or until you can find a place to stay. Get a back up cheap minutes phone he doesn't know about, the cheapest burner phone they have is fine, just something with GPS. Save the important numbers in it. Make sure there is a plan for the pets - do you have a carrier? Will the hotel take them? Do you have food/water/leaches/litter/poop bags etc? If you can discreetly start packing an overnight bag or take the items out to your car one by one. Wear an extra shirt out.

When you're ready, after a fight, if he's going to be gone longer than normal one day, you'll have what you need to get away. One day, you go to work and you don't come back. OR if there's pets you may have to wait until he leaves to go get booze/drugs.

If you don't have access to the car or he's keeping it from you it's a lot harder. There are almost no shelters that will take men in. You might have to ask a family member for help, a ride, or a place to stay.

Good luck!

by Anonymousreply 7801/16/2021

R78 They've already been broken up for over a week. I think this is his way of staying away and not crawling back, by starting this thread to get moral support.

by Anonymousreply 7901/16/2021

[R79] Ah, the other responses make a lot more sense in that light

by Anonymousreply 8001/16/2021

[quote]Do you have food/water/leaches/litter/poop - bags etc?

Leaches?

by Anonymousreply 8101/16/2021

Leave and don’t look back. Change your number and delete any old messages. Learn from the experience, because you allowed this to happen to you. Be alert to it in future and shut it down when you see it happening again. Spend time with people who love you, if that’s possible. And get help to build up your self esteem.

by Anonymousreply 8201/16/2021

Even if you just watch the first five minutes, OP, I found this really enlightening.

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by Anonymousreply 8301/16/2021

HI OP. Just checking on ya. Hope you are well.

by Anonymousreply 8401/17/2021

Rule #1. Abusive people do not change.

Forget the calls here for going through therapy, trying meds, and all of that BS. I've been through this so please consider my advice.

Before the break-up, covertly go out and find a new place to live. It's best if it has some type of security, like an apartment with a secure entry and garage. If you have the means, find a secure neighborhood (guard gates, patrols).

Important: Sign a lease. You won't back out.

The day that you plan to leave for good, wait until he goes off to work, or at least someplace he will be away for enough time to get your stuff and get out. To accomplish this successfully do the following:

Have a moving truck already hired and down the street waiting.

Arrange for trusted friends and/or family to help you quickly get your belongings into the truck.

Once you've got your stuff out, you just leave. Walk out the door and don't look back. He will know you are gone when he walks through the door and realizes your stuff is no longer there.

Don't tell him where you have moved if you believe he could be dangerous.

Give him time to calm down and assess what went down. He needs some time to think over what he did to get you to the point of leaving.

If he's not a total moron and crazed narcissist he may figure it out without your having to tell him, but don't count on this.

Do NOT get back together with him. If he wants to discuss anything and you are in agreement, bring a friend with you and meet in a very public place. He will beg you to come back. He will promise you the moon. Don't believe any of it. Do not get back together with him, hold your ground.

Understand why the relationship went sour. Don't hook up with the same type of person again. Make a vow to change whatever it is that drew you to want to be with that type of personality and fix yourself. You're most likely a nice person that repeatedly gets used by others. That was me. Not anymore.

by Anonymousreply 8501/17/2021

cold turkey. end it.

in time, it'll get better.

Oh, I was unable to follow this advice last time I needed to.

Good luck.

by Anonymousreply 8601/17/2021

The advice I just gave at R85 is for anyone currently in that kind of situation. The OP has already done a break up from what I can tell. I wanted to put out there a successful way to get out with no confrontational drama or danger. That is the exact route I took and it was perfect for me. My live-in bf was both mentally and physically abusive. I had to get out the way I described or I'd have never been able to do it without a scary scene. The worst part was leaving our dog but it was his to begin with.

by Anonymousreply 8701/17/2021

R87 That sounds about right. Wow I am really happy for you. You had a total Katie Holmes moment! My only concern is that some people do not have the money to secure their own apartment, especially one as you described with a secure entry.

by Anonymousreply 8801/17/2021

Hi r84! Yes, still no contact. Funnily enough, I just got an email this morning from an old friend. They have no idea what's going on, but it made me think, "You have other people in your life who care about you. You'll be fine."

by Anonymousreply 8901/17/2021

Try putting yourself first. Also, get therapy. You’re just repeating unresolved patterns from your own abusive childhood.

by Anonymousreply 9001/18/2021

R89 You are CRUSHING this, OP!!!!

by Anonymousreply 9101/18/2021

Thanks r91!

by Anonymousreply 9201/18/2021

PS One of the reasons I started this thread, I realize now, was to hold myself accountable

by Anonymousreply 9301/18/2021

Watch and learn OP

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by Anonymousreply 9401/18/2021

R93 / OP I started the "Why Do I Drink" thread for the same reason. It got me through 13 days of sobriety after a few solid years now of abusing alcohol pretty severely. I had a lapse last night. My brain got hijacked my a craving because I hadn't eaten all day and my blood sugar was on the floor. So I was weak. I had a small amount to drink, stopped quickly and decisively, and raced home to confess on the thread. It's like, I just need a little visibility to keep me honest. I can't do it in a complete vacuum.

So yeah, I get it. Accountability is crucial, and it really works!

by Anonymousreply 9501/18/2021

Shirley Horn should be a DL fave

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by Anonymousreply 9601/18/2021

R88 Yeah, I was lucky to have a great paying job. There are shelters that can be checked out and also good friends that might let someone in need, stay a while. Parents can also be a good fallback for some. The point is to get out completely and get some space and time between yourself and the jerk. Abusers rarely if ever, change for the better. It's best to just get the Hell out of Dodge and save yourself.

by Anonymousreply 9701/18/2021

This has always seemed to me the quintessential "end of a relationship" album

(I adore Billie)

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by Anonymousreply 9801/18/2021

#truthbombs

by Anonymousreply 9901/18/2021

Update: it's been 13 days and I'm still going strong.

r95 I hope you're doing okay. Interestingly enough, I gave up drinking (and coke ... ) about ten years ago. Smoking too. And I remember thinking that summer, because my boyfriend at the time was a barely-functioning alcoholic and crackhead, "I can give up alcohol, cocaine, and cigarettes. But I just can't quit destructive relationships."

by Anonymousreply 10001/19/2021

Hey OP 👋 I’m doing great, back on track and not stressed about the lapse. Eyes on prize. I was thinking, though, that if YOU were to “lapse,” the stakes are much higher than for me. Because unlike booze, your lapse would involve reaching out to the other person ... and sometimes you can’t put THAT genie back in the bottle so easily once it’s out.

by Anonymousreply 10101/19/2021

While this isn't necessarily exclusive to breaking off an abusive relationship, one thing that's hard is realizing that any piece of good news, or bad news; or any good movie or song I discover ... well, he was the first, and sometimes only, person I'd share these things with.

by Anonymousreply 10201/21/2021

Start bitchin at ‘em

by Anonymousreply 10301/21/2021

R102 That’s what friends are useful for, OP. Now you know.

by Anonymousreply 10401/21/2021

I've made it almost three weeks, which is the longest I've ever stayed away.

Now a certain sadness is sinking it. It's started to feel real, and final. We had a lot of history over the past five years and it's tough to let go.

by Anonymousreply 105Last Saturday at 4:09 AM

It starts with your family. Most of the time, not always, your relationships with others parallel your family dynamics. If you have parents or siblings who were critical, overbearing and bullying, you will gravitate towards people like that in your life. At least that has been my experience. You can change yourself, but it takes work. It did for me.

by Anonymousreply 106Last Saturday at 4:22 AM

Dear OP,

tell yourself over and over again that you deserve better until it becomes your dominant thought and mantra. Embrace your willingness to help and support other people and expect that you are being rewarded handsomely for your empathy and compassion.

Don't belittle or judge yourself based on previous experiences. Learn to see them as extremely valuable learning experiences. Maybe based on past relationships you can come up with a list of warning signs that make you see if someone is worth your time or is just another soul-sucking, abusive jerk? Use this list and your gut instinct about the surrounding people. Are they good for you and your physical and mental well-being? Do they take more than you give? Do they only come to you when they need you and are never around when you need them?

Don't be afraid to cut toxic conditions out of your life. It will create space for good and healthy conditions you are deliberately looking for from now on.

by Anonymousreply 107Last Saturday at 4:55 AM

Thank you r107. That was very helpful

by Anonymousreply 108Last Saturday at 4:56 AM

It's hard as hell, but walk away. Cease all contact with the abusive or controlling partner. He'll whine, beg, plead, and even threaten you. There will be endless promises that he'll change. He won't.

Walk away. Find support. If he's physically, emotionally, verbally abusive, get help...legal, medical, and moral. There are people and resources out there, who will help you..

For anyone in this type of relationship, you can get out of it. You have it within you to do so.

by Anonymousreply 109Last Saturday at 8:08 AM

OP, maybe learn to be more self-validating. From the way you describe your ex-BF, you can plug a lot of other men into that role (yes, there are a lot of selfish assholes out there who will throw you a bone now and then). You'll be vulnerable to that same type until you can be okay with your own judgment.

by Anonymousreply 110Last Saturday at 8:32 AM

I know this isn't the right attitude, but from time to time I get mad at myself for tolerating his shit for so long.

by Anonymousreply 111Last Saturday at 12:54 PM

Forgive yourself first, OP, R111. That way you can move forward and heal. You made some mistakes in your interpersonal relationships and now you're trying to do better, that's all.

by Anonymousreply 112Last Saturday at 1:27 PM

Actually, OP, it's good to be a little mad at yourself. It made you motivated to get the fuck out and move on with your life. Don't waste any more of your young years (you sound young) on this kind of shit.

by Anonymousreply 113Last Saturday at 2:16 PM

Okay I have a general question ...

Do you think some abusive people are situationally abusive? In other words, will he be abusive in his next relationship, or is it possible he will he treat the new guy a lot better?

That is always a fear I have in these situations. Maybe he is right and it really WAS me.

by Anonymousreply 114Last Sunday at 7:22 AM

[quote] Do you think some abusive people are situationally abusive? In other words, will he be abusive in his next relationship, or is it possible he will he treat the new guy a lot better? ... Maybe he is right and it really WAS me.

It's possible that your ex-BF would treat a new partner better than he treated you. For example, if he met someone who refused to put up with his shit. But, OP, you did put up with his shit. Doesn't justify his behavior. OP, you were not put on this Earth to be abused.

by Anonymousreply 115Last Sunday at 2:30 PM

Leave and end your denial trip. That shit doesn't get better.

by Anonymousreply 116Last Sunday at 2:41 PM

Marion Harris - I'll See You In My Dreams

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by Anonymousreply 117Last Sunday at 2:44 PM

^^^ wrong thread!

by Anonymousreply 118Last Sunday at 2:46 PM

[quote] Okay I have a general question ...

[quote] Do you think some abusive people are situationally abusive? In other words, will he be abusive in his next relationship, or is it possible he will he treat the new guy a lot better?

Think of it like the universe playing matchmaker where you and your partner were the perfect match in order to learn the lessons you both needed to learn for yourselves. Now, the universe doesn't give you and your partner an actual manual at the beginning of the relationship and a lecture at the end of it. If you have learned your lesson you move on to learn your next lesson in the next relationship. If you don't learn your lesson you are bound to repeat the lesson, with a new relationship and a new partner, with the same result until you learn what you were supposed to learn (about yourself).

[quote] That is always a fear I have in these situations. Maybe he is right and it really WAS me.

It may sound silly, but seek comfort in that. "For once", it is about you. Not that you are the problem, but you having the opportunity for personal growth which you rejected. But do not worry, the opportunity for personal growth will reveal itself again and again.

by Anonymousreply 119Last Sunday at 3:58 PM

Today I found out about another betrayal. Which ... I kind of knew about during the relationship. But I found out for sure today.

I think I'm in better position to stop deluding myself. If we were still together, this would devastate me. Now I'm kind of like, "Meh."

by Anonymousreply 120Last Monday at 10:29 AM

[quote] next time you meet someone ask yourself these things. If on a date- is it too perfect? Is the other moving things along too quickly? If so end it now. If it is more of making friends, how quickly did they tell you what's gone wrong in their life until now? This person is gauging how sympathetic you can be, what they can get from you in the future, and this is a danger sign.

OMG, yes, yes, yes! I [italic]repeatedly[/italic] made this mistake until, well, very recently. I seem to attract guys who do these things, the number of them that have told me deeply horrific things about their past on the first date is nuts. And I hate hearing about people suffering so my sympathy comes out. But it is definitely a warning sign. I have had such little self-esteem for most of my life that I think these people must hone in on it, even unconsciously. So now I'm working on myself. Would literally not be unhappy being alone the rest of my life if the alternative meant being in one of these toxic relationships. And I still feel so sad for these guys, but the fact is, as many others have said, you can't fix other people, and you shouldn't waste time on people who are unwilling to work on themselves. I find that with friends too. If someone asks me now for advice and I give it and then they continually come back with the same problem again and again because they aren't interested in solving it? Then, I'm no longer interested. Which is hard because I want people to be happy, but I've realised how pointless it is to get in that cycle, and we all only have so much energy to give. Rather give it to the important people in my life, and to be honest, use it to work on myself.

A friend once took me aside and said: "You know, you aren't just the comic side-character in other people's lives". And you aren't just the "supportive boyfriend", OP.

I have a much smaller friendship group now, but they are good people, and I'm much happier.

You can do it, OP! Your happiness is just as valid as everyone elses.

by Anonymousreply 121Last Monday at 11:02 AM

Thanks, r121. That is a great perspective.

I remember when I was a kid, my mom (a nurse) had a coworker who married to an alcoholic. My mom once said to me, "Never stay in a relationship because you feel sorry for the other person." Sage advice.

by Anonymousreply 122Last Monday at 11:05 AM

r24 I keep returning to your post.

Tomorrow will be three weeks.

I am halfway there.

by Anonymousreply 123Last Tuesday at 9:14 AM
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