So the Romance is over and has crumbled around you, the fake future turned to dust. Your heart was crushed and you are left on the bathroom floor wondering what the hell happened. Meanwhile, in a faraway land, fake futures are being created for a new fairytale romance.
If at the end of your relationship you have been left wondering what the hell happened it is quite possible you had been in a relationship with an Emotional Abuser and it isn’t usually until the relationship is over that people start to wonder what did happen.
Not only are you wondering what the hell happened, but you also believe it is all your fault.
Below are just a few signs you may either be in a relationship with an emotional abuser or Toxic person. You may also be suffering from C-PTSD and Adrenal Fatigue.
1. Loneliness • You feel very lonely or empty inside, LONELINESS after being in an EMOTIONALLY ABUSIVE relationship could be for many reasons, you were more focused on protecting your relationship than you were protecting yourself. There is nothing left of you, it feels like your soul has been sucked out of you. During your relationship, you might have been ISOLATED from friends and family. Perhaps it was due to TRIANGULATION, making you feel jealous, QUESTIONING everything. This feeling could be due, to the TRAUMA BONDING that took place, and the fear of not knowing how to function without them. They manoeuvred themselves into your life and then to a place of power, and then they took control of it. They are so insecure they actually fear you will leave them, so they make you believe you can’t function without them. When you were no longer of use to them, they left without a backward glance, you are left with emotions that are completely unfamiliar to you and living in fear. Those around you may be confused as to why it takes you so long to move on, you may even hear people ask why you just can’t get over it, I know I did, one comment was “shouldn’t you be over this by now?”
Everything you believed to be true is now turning out to be a lie. You have lost everything; you need time to grieve. You are grieving the FAKE FUTURE and the SOUL MATE.
This LONELINESS may bring up feelings of being unworthy, they have moved on leaving you feeling very alone, and during the DEVALUATION stage, they told you time and time again what was wrong with you.
You may have found you not only lost yourself emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually in the relationship, but you also lost your finances.
This LONELINESS is a pain that emanates from deep within your soul, you can barely function, and you don’t understand who you have become, and if the real you is still in there.
There is a gift that will come from this, and that gift is the feeling of being whole.
The pain you are experiencing, are old wounds, and I hope one day you will realise the gift they have given you, the chance to heal.
Perhaps this isn’t what you are feeling at the moment, and every ounce of you is holding yourself back from trying to re-engage with them, the pain of being out of this relationship may feel worse than the pain of being in it.
On average, people go back seven to eight times, and I believe this fear is one of the reasons.
2. Feelings of not being good enough • During the IDEALISATION stage, you were swept off your feet with the LOVE BOMBING. During the DEVALUATION stage, they are checking you are more interested in protecting the relationship than you are in protecting yourself - and they do this by making comments about your intelligence or your abilities and perhaps your goals and dreams. If you QUESTION them, you are perhaps oversensitive, or they were only joking!
And these BELITTLING comments and subtle put-downs are followed by IDEALISATION which changes the chemicals in your brain. You find yourself addicted, and you over-ride your INTUITION because they are getting you addicted to the drug of IDEALISATION.
During the DEVALUATION stage, they withdraw the attention you received at the start of the relationship, and you started to accept any little crumb they threw your way. They used techniques such as TRIANGULATION. They may have talked too much about their CRAZY EX or about anyone who gave them attention.
They used this tactic to draw you to them, they created situations that made them look popular so you would fight for their attention. They created these triangles as they love to turn people against each other, they keep them just far enough apart so they can’t compare anything, but close enough to ensure you know they are a threat. They manufactured situations to make you jealous and QUESTION their fidelity.
You may have experienced GASLIGHTING where they convinced you that what you were feeling or seeing wasn’t real, or that you didn’t understand the situation or your facts were wrong and they are so believable you actually QUESTION yourself.
You may have discovered their lies, and they may have told you, that you were wrong; or you misunderstood the situation. They possibly told you, you, were just too sensitive or perhaps they accused you of having trust issues. And you may have started to QUESTION if you were wrong, did you misunderstand what you had been told? Perhaps you had forgotten what they told you or you weren’t listening… This spiral of QUESTIONING can go on for a long time after the relationship is over and takes a long time to untangle from. They used DISCARDS to test you, to make sure you were hooked to them, and sometimes because they were bored, and were looking for a bit of excitement. They might have disappeared or not called when they said they were going to. They then reappeared with a gift or compliment, giving you back the feeling you had at the beginning of the relationships and reaffirming that they did love you!
You did notice the cracks in their MASK, but you justified their actions because they keep reaffirming their love for you by going back to the beginning of the relationship.
3. You are lost without the relationship • They may use MANIPULATION techniques to alienate you from others. They sabotage relationships resulting in you being cut off from friends and family, they may use this in professional relationships, or you may find you are no longer attending a group or club. They may have made up stories about people, feeding you information making you QUESTION your relationship with them.
You are alienated as they can’t risk you speaking to anyone who may expose them. They are visible to other people, but their bonding techniques have made them invisible to you. You may have experienced waking up to messages from them and messages before you went to bed. You believed this was because you were the first thing they were thinking about and also went the went to bed but this was for them, they love the attention they get from playing this role. And the quicker they can secure you in a relationship stepping into your life the easier it is for them.
4. Your boundaries were eroded and you are don’t know who you are • They triangulate you with others to create a sense of being popular and you end up competing with invisible people. They talk about their exes far too much and they are still in contact with them. The triangulation makes you feel insecure and you shift your focus on protecting the relationship rather than protecting yourself. You might experience coercive control, this could be sexually, things you may never consider; perhaps you have discovered an infidelity, the reason this infidelity happened because you wouldn’t oblige and you were put in a position where you had to decide if you wanted to stay in this fake relationship and compromise your own integrity and you don’t even know if this is true and of course this was all your fault.
What about your charity work or the volunteering you used to do? Why did you stop doing that? Were you worried if you weren’t around to supply the attention they needed would be supplied by someone else? What about your friends and family did you start to make excuses changing your plans to make sure you were available?
Someone who has respect for you and showers you with love wouldn’t make you feel insecure, in fact, they would want you to feel secure and would do anything in their power to keep you feeling that way. They would want you to be you, love you for who you are not be manipulating your emotions.
5. Your Self-Esteem is on the floor • Put-downs and BELITTLING remarks are MASKED by fake friendliness, advice, or they may have offered you words of “wisdom”. These were designed to make the abuser feel better about themselves, making them feel knowledgeable. They may have used this during the DEVALUATION stage to knock you off the pedestal they had placed you on; they wanted to make sure you were more invested in the relationship. BELITTLING was done to confuse you and to maintain power and control, you worked harder to get back and stay on the pedestal, you may have found yourself WALKING ON EGGSHELLS. They blame shift to disguise their actions, taking the focus off their behaviour. Because they can never take RESPONSIBILITY for any of their actions, they shift the blame on to you or another person. This may sound like ‘well if you hadn’t done…’ or ‘I wouldn’t have to if you…’ then they wouldn’t have behaved the way they did, reacted in the way they did. When your INTUITION was telling you that something was wrong and you tried to discuss it, the conversation transferred to you and your behaviour. You may have found your feelings became minimised. By playing the VICTIM, they aren’t to blame for their actions; and it serves another purpose, they got the SUPPLY of attention they so desperately needed. They use blame-shifting to minimise your feelings and circular conversations that left you confused, or they guilt-tripped you and their pity stories. Remember the stories about their CRAZY EX? They don’t seem so crazy now do they? You can now understand what they went through. Who is the real VICTIM?
You may ask yourself ‘AM I THE NARCISSIST?’ Are you really BLAME SHIFTING? Look at the context, are you or were you, WALKING ON EGGSHELLS? Are you or were you deflecting the blame being put on you to protect yourself from being caught out or to deceive someone?
If you were raised by an emotionally abusive parent, it is likely you were taught some techniques and as children, we are naturally narcissistic and we are all on the spectrum, but the question to ask yourself is do you manipulate your behaviour to hurt others?
6. Your energy is on the floor • The cycle of abuse challenges you on every level. It causes confusion, the brain fog is horrific, and it causes stress on your body. You started to wobble on your pedestal, they started to devalue you, belittled you, blame shifted and generally created drama, if you weren’t quite hooked up and this was when you questioned them or pulled them up for something, their response may have been “you’re too sensitive” or “I was only joking” but this was an indicator for them that they haven’t quite got you hooked up enough and they took you back to the Idealisation Stage. Like chef testing the recipe have they got enough seasoning in the dish, they add the flavours until it is perfect, and it is at this point you are more invested in the relationship than you are in yourself. It is like the frog in the pan of boiling water, the water heated up so slowly it got used to it and now it is being boiled alive. If you discover anything or are not happy with their behaviour they are so so so sorry and they will never do it again, until the next time or they will make sure they are better at covering their tracks. And then when you are ready they take you into the discard stage, at this point you were addicted, you turned your INTUITION off because apparently, it wasn’t working properly… and you were prepared to do anything for your drug of choice, them. And as the attention you received started to disappear, you accepted any little crumb they threw your way. You experienced them withdrawing from you. They weren’t as available as they had been, and this pattern continued. Each time they phoned, texted or became more present in the relationship, they were hooking you back up and reconfirming that you were the love of their life and you were their SOUL MATE. And this cycle continues until The final DISCARD, and this is when you have nothing left to give them, they have sucked the life out of you, they have drained you of your finances and they have found a suitable replacement; who is able to supply them with the attention and finances they need. And leading up to this point they made claims about you, your behaviour and they may have suggested you were bipolar. They criticised everything you said and did and they covertly compare you to their new supply. Inside you is an inner child trying to get your attention, and you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms from the DOPAMINE and OXYTOCIN. DOPAMINE is the hormone responsible for the brain’s reward centre. And a lot of research has been carried out on the DOPAMINE pathway and addiction. The same regions that light up when we are attracted to someone that light up when someone takes cocaine, the same brain regions also light up when we become addicted to material goods as well as when we become emotionally dependent on our partners. Too much DOPAMINE in a relationship can underlie unhealthy emotional dependence on our partners. During the idealisation stage you received a lot of OXYTOCIN, this is a bonding hormone, also known as the "cuddle hormone" or the "love hormone," as it is released when people bond socially, it can also be released when playing with a pet. It plays a huge role during pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding promoting mother-child bonding.
It also eases stress and creates feelings of calm and closeness. In a love relationship, your brain releases OXYTOCIN during physical contact, cuddling or sex; it is released when someone shows they trust you. These strong bonds are created early on in the relationship, so, when they started the DEVALUATION stage, it caused you great pain and confusion. If your reaction is disproportionate, this is an indication you were TRAUMA BONDED. When the relationship ended, these bonds were so strong that they made withdrawal so painful; and perhaps you looked for ways of getting the relationship back to where you were at the beginning of the relationship are addicted to the feeling it gives you. But OXYTOCIN is two-faced as well as creating bonds researchers have discovered it strengthens bad memories and can increase fear and anxiety. The hormone strengthens social memory in one specific region of the brain, that activates a part of the brain that intensifies the memory. Oxytocin also increases the susceptibility to feeling fearful and anxious during stressful events going forward. From sciencedaily.com research from Northwestern University.
7. You are replaying the relationship If only and Maybe • All the ‘what if’s’ and maybe’s… QUESTIONING the relationship; was it real? And a really painful one, ‘did they really love me?’ Even more painful for me was the realisation that they didn’t… You may go back over the relationship step by step and QUESTION ‘What if’ you had said something different or ‘What if’ you hadn’t said something. Then you may go over the maybe’s, maybe if you had done something differently, would you be here? Maybe if you hadn’t done something it would be different? Eventually, you will realise that you couldn’t have done anything differently. If you had, you would have been giving even more of your soul away. The relationship may have lasted a little longer, but it was always going to end.
If you have experienced any of the above it is very possible you were in an emotionally abusive relationship, bound by invisible chains, but you can untangle from them. Understanding what happened and why, reprogramming yourself to understand this wasn’t your fault and take responsibility for what was your fault, creating new routines.
Understanding and healing the original wound is crucial x