To survive an emotionally abusive relationship and to start loving again. This ColouredFemme shares how she came to terms with her past.
If I take a look back at my previous relationships, in some type of way, I was looking for my father in my partner. I guess I had daddy issues, and I was always looking for a manly figure in my relationships. A guy who would take charge, take control and be a reassuring person. So by trying to do that, I guess I fell into the wrong hands. I got to date this guy who was really sweet at the beginning, but turned out to be a jerk. I guess I didn’t see it coming.
I first met him when I was younger. He was always after me, but he was younger and he wasn’t really my type so I wouldn’t give him the time of the day. I liked the attention, of course. He would get me things and write me poems, but that was it. Years later, we both grew up and we got closer. I saw that he was very persistent, so I told myself, “this guy could never hurt me, so why not?”
At first, everything was fine. But then, I saw a few changes in his attitude. He was more assertive, he was more confident with himself. He knew what he wanted. He knew what he wanted for me. He knew how the relationship should be. He wanted it to be perfect, I guess. Because of the fact he was after me for so long, he had all these expectations of me and of how I should act in a relationship. But back then, I was only 18-19 years old. So I wasn’t thinking about getting married and all that. I just wanted to have fun and see where it would go, but I guess he was taking it more seriously than I was. He was only judging everything that I was doing in terms of what somebody should or should not do in a relationship. He didn’t want me to be alone with another guy even though we were only friends. Even though I wasn’t doing anything wrong, I found myself apologizing for something that I didn’t do.
He made me feel like shit. I always felt like I wasn’t good enough and I always had to do something extra to prove my loyalty and prove that I was serious. Until the end, it was always about me coming up short in some type of way. I think I’d say it was an abusive relationship because even when he was wrong, I would find myself apologizing for what he did wrong. I was always crying, and my self-esteem really took a hit. I thought I didn’t deserve him.
I felt like he was the only person who could love me. Whenever he threatened to leave, I always tried to have other people talk to him for me. I tried to make his sisters talk to him on my behalf to take me back. And I’m pretty sure that if he had said, “in order to be with me, you can’t speak to this person,” I would’ve done it. He even caused me a friendship that I regret today.
I found some type of father figure in him, but it wasn’t the right father figure in the sense that he didn’t protect me. He didn’t try to sacrifice things for me. He didn’t really take care of me like he should have.
I mostly blame myself for letting him have all that power and control over me. Actually, I only blame myself for that. Sometimes, I do believe that I’ve forgiven myself, but other times, I get mad at myself for letting it last that long. It only lasted a year, but I loved him years after that. But I don’t love him anymore. I stopped loving him, but I still think about everything that happened and what I could’ve done differently.
Some people think your past experiences build you into what you are today, but I feel like I would’ve still been a good person if I didn’t go through all the shit that I went through with him back in the days. So yes, I do regret going out with him. I do regret saying yes.
The only thing that I could do to really get over it was to pray about it. Thankfully, God gave me the strength to move on. I healed through prayers and self-reflection. I had to take a step back and think about my life, what I went through and what I wanted for myself. I forgave him, but I didn’t forget because I need to remember in order not to repeat the same mistakes. I can’t say that I forgive and forget and not take anything from the situation that I’ve been in. In every situation that happens, you need to take a lesson from it and try to do better in the next one.