The truth about why people stay in abusive relationships | Rebecca Jane

I’ll start off by saying, this article could be a trigger for some people...but then again, it could help people too.

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 12:30 pm
Updated Thursday, 27th May 2021, 3:18 pm
Rebecca Jane

I’ve had my amazing hairdresser Nicola for over nine years now. She knows more about me than almost everyone.

A hairdresser's role is often a dose of highlights and a bit of counselling on the side, and over the years Nic has become a firm fixture of our household and a true trusted friend.

I was sat with her last week, and by chance we got onto a topic surrounding domestic violence. God knows why.

I was casually telling her that I had suffered physical violence from someone in a previous relationship just for joining Facebook and had a laptop thrown (and hit) my head from 6 feet away because I made a spelling error on a document.

Nicola was stunned. In all the years she knew me, I’d never mentioned anything about that relationship.

Nicola had stopped doing my hair and her mouth was on the floor. ‘But, this isn’t like you! You’re far too confident to put up with that. Why did you stay in the relationship?!’

And with that... a lightning bolt hit me. That’s a very good question! Why DID I stay? An obvious question, but one I never asked myself.

It still doesn’t really register, but I know that’s my protective mechanism. I’ve told myself for years that I wasn’t abused because that would make me feel bad about myself. I allowed it to happen, I was weak enough for it to happen, I was weak to stay in the relationship.

They’re all the subconscious thoughts that protect my own ego from admitting to myself that I was abused. I don’t know why everyone stays in abusive relationships, but I know for me... I didn’t see the abuse,

I have not been in a long-term relationship as actually I can’t find anyone I want to spend longer than two months with anymore. I can’t even envisage being in a proper relationships again.

I constantly ask myself, ‘Why?’, ‘What is wrong with me?’, ‘How do all these people around me jump into relationship after relationship within weeks and there’s no one I want to spent more than 8 weeks with?!’.

I constantly beat myself up about it, and analyse myself to death! Then it finally dawned on me. There’s nothing WRONG with me, everything is finally RIGHT with me.

I finally saw and realised I absolutely have the ability to survive and provide for my girls and I don’t need anyone by my side to do that.

I don’t need the security of another person anymore, because I finally found security in myself, and I LIKE it!!!!

I always kept wondering why I’m actually happy being ‘on my own’ and why I kind of want to let someone in, but I kind of don’t... because actually, being on my own is great.

I AM happy. I don’t need anyone for security any more, I actually don’t want to let anyone in that could rattle the security I have created for us all.

My girls and I are one very happy unit together, and it will take a pretty amazing person that I allow in to become close to us.

I’m sure that person exists, but right now, I’m happy, they’re happy... and I think I’ve earned the right to enjoy it for as long as I can.

And on that note, my highlights were over, my free counselling session had concluded. I paid Nicola, resolved my life and went on my merry way