Leaving a abusive relationship is difficult. You may feel that you don’t have what it takes and you’re probably scared. Scared of your partner, scared of living without your partner, scared of what your partner might do to you or your loved ones, or even what might become of your partner after you left him.
Even though your life might be like a nightmare right now – the fear of the unknown that you jump into when you leave can keep you caught in this nightmare.
Maybe your friends and relatives have an idea what is going on and advise you to get out of it. But someone who has not been in it can’t really understand what it’s like, and how much risk there is involved, how much courage it takes.
But you have to recognize this: you deserve a good life. You deserve happiness. You deserve feeling safe and secure and respected in your own home.
You deserve it because you are a human being on planet earth. It doesn’t matter whether you think you are a good human being or a bad human being. It doesn’t matter whether you feel guilty about things which you have done in the past. What matters is that you recognize this fact: you are alive now. You carry the gift of life right now. You have the power to make other people smile and feel better. And if someone else takes that power away from you, if someone else takes away what’s rightfully yours – then you have to stop them.
Leaving an abusive relationship is even more difficult if you have kids. But it is also more important. You are doing your kids no favor to have them grow up in such an environment. Sometimes adults tend to believe (or make themselves believe) that kids don’t notice what’s going on – but that is simply not true. Children are very sensitive and percedptive to the emotional state of their parents, whether they show it or hide it. It is important that they learn that leaving a abusive relationship and pursuing a better life is the right thing to do.
So far we have mainly talked about the emotional and psychological aspects of leaving – but there are many practicalities involved too. You will need money, documents, maybe the help of professionals and addresses of a domestic violence shelter, you need to plan a lot in advance and you will also need to plan for what you can do if your partner goes nuts or uses violence or coercion to stop you from leaving.
But all of these practicalities can be sorted out best if you first take care of yourself. You have to be in the right state of mind. You don’t want to be totally overwhelmed by emotions and fears when you do this. It’s like an athlete before an important contest – an athlete makes sure he is at his best on the day when performance matters most. And that is exactly what you ought to do.