I have recently been in a position where I have had to make a decision to distance myself from a very toxic relationship. This decision has not been easy to make as it is a close relative. But when you get to the point of exhaustion, despair and depression things must change.
Believe me, I am a therapist after all, I know all the signs, but when a healthcare professional decides you are more of a health risk than the toxic person, and describes it as abusive relationship, then things must change, you owe it to yourself and those who care about you.
Letting go is a bit like a bereavement I have discovered, I have felt sympathy for the other person, anger at them for making me so unwell, and so unhappy, grief for the loss of them in my life, and most of all guilt, for what I don’t know, I am not feeling guilty for all the pain and hurt they have caused me, or the continuing erosion of my life as they take it over for their benefit, but it is grief nevertheless.
What I do know however is that these feelings are normal, natural and they will resolve. I will be using all the skills I have as a professional therapist, and seeking help from an independent therapist in order that I can move on with my life in a nurturing, sustainable way, letting go of all the negativity I have spent my adult life living with and setting free the strong, resourceful person that I know myself to be deep at heart.
So if you are in a toxic relationship, even if you know it deep at your heart, and your intuition is screaming at you that something is not right, but you are still denying it outwardly and plodding on, coping as best you can. Know that you too can be brave, seek help, move forward and live the life you deserve. Letting go is hard, sometimes one of the hardest things you will ever do, but for your own development, and of those who love you and care about you, it is something you should do.
The best advice I can give you, other than talking to someone independent, is to let those who love you help and support you, giving up controlling people is not a weakness it is a choice. It is very easy in a toxic relationship to keep all others at a distance, perhaps because they remind you of how bad things are, or because you are protecting them, but give yourself permission to embrace those who care, let them into your life and become your cheerleaders as you move forward positively with your life, leaving the toxic people behind, after all they are usually never happy, and you can never get it right for them, so make the decision to get life right for you instead.
How do you recognise you are in a toxic family relationship? Here are a few indicators
If they constantly tell you what you are doing, or saying, is wrong, even if it is what they have told you to do.
Perhaps they criticise you on your appearance, belittle your intelligence, and hate all your friends.
If they actively have a drama that needs your full attention on them whenever you have made plans to go out, meet friends or do something for yourself.
If everything they want has to be now, immediately and if you cannot do it then they have a tearful no-one loves me you are horrible moment.
If they tell you something and you remind them of it, then they accuse you of being a liar or making it up.
If you recognise yourself in this relationship and need someone to talk to in order to move forward please do not hesitate to contact me to make your appointment.