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Staying in an Emotionally Damaging Relationship Can Give You PTSD

She says she wants to leave, but she can’t. She still stays. You don’t know why, but you pretend you do. These kinds of relationships are just as hard for you to understand as they’re hard for her to escape from.

Imagine, for a few moments, that you’re her. Let’s delve into her story, where you’re the character…

It’s your first date. He’s all smiles himself, and he’s making you smile along with him. When you talk about your life and how you like deep conversations, he looks at you, his eyes boring into your soul. He pays attention to you like you’re the only girl in the world. He couldn’t be more perfect.

 This is the kind of guy you were looking for all along. This is the guy you need. Between the flirty chats and the little laughs, the feeble jokes and the tiny touches, you start falling for him. Because he makes you feel like you’ve always wanted to feel_ special.

It’s been months or even years after you got in a relationship with him. But his attitude towards you has changed. You can feel it. He’s not that perfect, dreamy kind of guy anymore. He’s entirely someone else. And you don’t want to be with this “someone else”.

But deep down, you know that dreamy guy is still there. The guy you fell for on your first date is still inside the “someone else”, deep down. You remember that guy, because he stole your heart. You don’t want to leave that guy, do you? He stole your heart, after all. That’s what you repeat to yourself day after day. But as the “someone else” drops a couple of shitty remarks now and then, you cry yourself to sleep night after night.

You decide to tell him that this bothers you, that you’re hurt. “Why do you take everything so seriously?” he asks you in return. And then the same thing goes on again and again, like a broken record. You trust him, but he hurts you. You want his time, but he gives it to someone else. 

You tell him how handsome he looks, but he tells you that he hates your outfit, and that your haircut makes you look ugly. On and on and on it goes. He doesn’t really mean it, you say to yourself. It’s not his fault. You tell yourself every day that every relationship needs time, that he’ll come round someday, that everything will get better. But every night, your pillows are wet with your tears. It’s an ingenious trap that you want to escape from. But you don’t want to.

Slowly, very slowly, you start believing what he says. Maybe you shouldn’t wear this outfit. Maybe your haircut really is bad, you think. Maybe you’re… ugly. Part by part, he tears you down.

When he shouts at you, you seem to have lost your voice. But you don’t want to talk back at him, because it’s not his fault he’s shouting at you. You understand that, right? You love him so much, that nothing can ever be his fault.

But sometimes, you think of leaving this toxic relationship behind you. But then, what will you do? Where will you go? To whom will you go asking for help? No, it won’t work. Because you need him. Because without him, you’re good-for-nothing.

Fast-forward to a few months or years, and he has left you. After all those years or months manipulating you, he’s done just what he had intended to do all along. You’re not the smart, confident, pretty girl you were when you had met him on your first date. You’re broken and scarred. 

But you’re not alone. You’ve got so many voices screaming inside your head, asking you why you didn’t leave earlier, why you stayed on, why you did this to yourself…

If you know someone who’s dealing with physical or emotional damage, please let them know that we all stand with them. There will be PTSD with anxiety and depression, but that’s fine. Life goes on, and you must, too. Never be afraid to leave.
Staying in an Emotionally Damaging Relationship Can Give You PTSD Staying in an Emotionally Damaging Relationship Can Give You PTSD Reviewed by Tim on August 03, 2019 Rating: 5

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