It’s now been 7 months since I decided to separate from my husband. Last month would have been 11 years married. Surprisingly, that day came and passed with very little feelings at all. No one goes into a marriage expecting it to fail, but some marriages are not meant to last.
***Caution*** If you or someone you know is in a toxic relationship, I would advise you to step away from it long enough to find out if it’s safe enough to re-enter. If you find yourself feeling better, stronger, and healthier; I would question if it’s worth going back. I know now, that mine is not. Now that I’m on the downslope of my separation, I will share all of the things that have helped me so far in making that decision and assisted in my healing journey:
Having a good therapist to help me navigate this process has been crucial.
All of the feelings and emotions, from sadness to anger to uncertainty and happiness.
At times it has been scary. I don’t know what I’d do if I didn’t have a professional to help me make sense of all that has happened.
I don’t know what I would do without all of my friends and family members that have been there for me. The shoulders I’ve leaned on, the late night phone calls when I couldn’t sleep. The people who were there to help cheer me up. I had one friend who talked to me on snapchat using those funny little filters. We laughed so hard that night until I cried tears of joy. The outpour of love that I have received on social media. People
checking in on me and praying daily. My co-workers who have become my second family and constantly provide words of wisdom. I will forever be grateful.
I have read countless books. Books about divorce, separation, dating, healthy vs unhealthy relationship, parenting, red flags, boundaries, self love, intimacy, and domestic violence. Knowing where you came from, where you were, how you got there, where you are now, and how to get to where you need to be. I’m learning how to make healthier choices and changes for the future. The most beneficial books that I’ve read are:
- “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman,
- “RELATIONSHIP RED FLAGS: Domestic Violence, Dating Abuse,
Pathological Bonds, Toxic Partners & More Decoded (Relationship Literacy Series Book 1″, by Anna Moss,
- “4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication in Love, Life, Work–Anywhere!: A How-To Guide for Practicing the Empathic Listening, Speaking, and Dialogue Skills to Achieve Relationship Success”, by Bento C. Leall III,
- “Mindful Relationships” (4 book series) by Amy White
- The “Boundaries” books by Henry Cloud
I’m learning to ask God for help and wait for him to answer. I recommend the Holy Bible App. It’s available on your cell phone. My top 5 daily reading plans (with bible verses and daily devotions)include:
1. Self Worth,
2. Proverbs 31,
My top 3 podcasts that have helped me with this healing process have been:
1. “The Narcissists’ Code by Lee Hammock,
2. “The Naked Marriage” with Dave and Ashley Willis,
3. “Betrayal Trauma Recovery” by Anne Blythe.
The top 10 songs that have helped me get through this break up include:
1. “Traitor” by Olivia Rodrigo,
2. “We’re Good” by Dua Lipa,
3. “Happier than Ever” by Billie Eilish,
4. “Part of Me” Katy Perry,
5. “Praying” by Kesha,
6. “Bird Set Free” by Sia,
7. “I Don’t Think About You” by Kelly Clarkson,
8. “Heartbreak Anthem” by Galantis,
9. “Good as Hell” by Lizzo, and
10. “IDGAF” by Dua Lipa.
I started an Instagram page in which I talk about toxic relationships and betrayal trauma. 3 benefits of posting on Instagram:
- I have connected with multiple Therapists, Counselors, victims, and survivors.
- I’ve been able to post others stories anonymously, which helps spread awareness in reference to toxic relationships while protecting the victims and perpetrators identities.
- I’m blessed to report that I have 310 followers and my page continues to grow daily.
It’s a confidence booster and helps me learn to feel beautiful in my own skin.
I’ve turned it into a family affair. I bring my teenage daughters and they have the opportunity to help me dress and give ideas of how to pose.
It’s been a way to express myself through art and be a representation of the Artists work.
Lastly, this Blog. No one else may read it. But at least I will have it to look back on and see the progress and just how far I came. You see, the day I decided to leave my unhealthy marriage, was one of the worst days of my life. I left my house after an argument with my husband and headed to work, knowing that there was no way I would be able to function. But I had no where else to go. My home was no longer a safe place to be. I pulled over on the side of the road as I fought through a panic attack and contemplated calling an ambulance to take me to the Emergency Room. Instead I called my supervisor because I didn’t want to just not show up to work. She kindly asked me where I was and drove to me. She listened to me and helped calm me that day. I know I’ve never been the type to contemplate suicide but I had definitely reached the point of not wanting to live another day in my current life. It was him or me, and I chose me. Today I’m healthy and happy again and I’ve had nothing but blessings come my way.
I thank God everyday for my life!