Dating after a Abusive Marriage
Dating or even trying to date someone after and abusive marriage came with its own set of problems for me. After leaving the Ex, I lacked any sort of self-esteem and did not know my self-worth. I waited with every interaction with a male to be verbally abused. When the beatings did not come to me like I thought that they would, I started to abuse myself. I had picked up right where he had left off. My Ex had achieved stripping away any sort of self-worth that lived within me. The voices of my past still swirling in my head, they were telling me I was not good enough. Telling me I was not pretty enough,telling me that I should just stop trying and that nobody would ever love me, or even want me.
I had left the relationship, but the voices of verbal abuse had not left me.
I was twenty-one when I met the ex-boyfriend who would, in just three months, show me a love I did not know could exist. I met him at work. He was tall and dorky and so sweet to me. He was romantic and thoughtful. He was everything that a boyfriend should be.
And so I waited. I waited for the red flags of verbal abuse to start appearing. I waited for him to say something mean to me, for him to cut me down. For him to start abusing me. When that did not happen, I would say something about myself that would cut me down. The voices of my past repeating to me how I was fat or ugly.
Instead of verbally abusing me, he just loved me. And it scared me. All my world knew was the verbal abuse. I would call my mom and talk to her about what my mind thought were ‘red flags.’ He never did give me those red-flags that I was searching for.
He was the best thing that had ever happened to me at that point in my life. So when we broke up after just a few months of being together, my world was shattered. I felt mocked by God. How could somebody so amazing come into my life and show me what I deserved, just to be hurt so deeply in the end? I loved that man.
That relationship took me several years to get over. To this day I truly believe he was my one true heart-break. I would crush over several other guys here and there. I would sleep with guys I shouldn’t have. Silently searching each time to find some of my self-worth buried inside the approval of a sexual partner. The abuser was out of my life and yet the scars still lingered. I would eventually fall in-love with my best friend and spend several years hoping we would get together. Hoping that one day he would see just “how great we could be.”
I loved this guy for (thought I loved him) for three years. It took me moving to Alaska to get over him. In reality, it wasn’t even me getting ‘over him,’ more like getting over the fantasy of him. I had spent years building him up in my head, living in a fantasy of how life could be, if we ever got together.
My most resent ex is my last one. I met him here in Alaska. We also dated a very short time. This guy wasn’t as amazing and wonderful as the boyfriend before him. The way he broke up with me was the abuse I had been missing out on. At the end of our relationship, right after Christmas 2013, he decided to dump me at his friend’s house. Yes ladies and gents he is a classy one.
According to him I was fat, he tried to be attracted to me, but he had never been with a bigger girl and I just was not doing it for him. He said I should want to take care of myself for my partner and my own well being. He said that he just didn’t have time for a girlfriend.
You know just every singe horrible thing and reason he could throw at me. I had found the abusive relationship yet again. This one was just short-lived and he did the dumping.
And me, being me, would spend the next year trying to ‘win him back.’ Yep. I hadn’t learned my lesson with the ex-husband. My self-esteem never existing, I, again was afraid I couldn’t find somebody else. Somebody who would treat me with the love and respect I deserved.
Eventually though I had found my ‘value’ with the hot, younger guy who paid me attention. I went down the rabbit hole only to find more white noise. A continuation of bad relationships after bad relationships. Sleeping with people who didn’t want my story or my heart. Only wanting my body for short spurts of time.
I never had taken the time, stopping to find myself and self-worth after I left my verbally abusive marriage. I didn’t take the time to heal my wounds and because of that they have burned for the last nine years. It is only now, after starting this blog and really deciding that I want to work on myself; that I have found the courage to stop looking for validation from the opposite sex.
I have caught myself seeking the approval of men and women. Doubting my voice and feeling the need to explain my reasons behind the actions. I need to learn that this is my life. Seeking approval behind the choices I make will always leave me that young girl, looking for approval my mom or dad. The validation of me.
I need to learn that I am enough. I need to share my story and talk about abuse. Sticks and stones do hurt you, so do words. I need to learn the difference between the right kind of attention from men and the bad attention from men. Healing a past that is living with me in the present moment.