Do You Love Him Or….?
The following article was kindly written and contributed by Lisa Lee, 2019 STOP Domestic Violence Conference ambassador.
After living for an extended period of time in an abusive, volatile and toxic relationship you muster the courage, enact the plan and make the decision to leave.
To be free of the abuse and violence. To stop walking on eggshells. To try and remember who you are deep inside. We know it’s the right decision, the best decision to make but are often overwhelmed by the love we still have and feel for our abusers. It can be troubling, upsetting and cause you to rethink your choices and your decision to leave.
Was it really that bad? Did I overreact? How much did I really contribute? Should I go back? Could we make it work?
All valid questions. Only you can answer them honestly. But here are some other questions that may help you out.
Do you love who he is or do you love who he was when you first met?
Do you love him or do you love the idea of him? The idea of being in a relationship. The idea of having someone to come home to. The idea of travelling this journey with your partner in crime?
Do you love him or do you wish your children lived with both parents in a complete family?
Do you love him or are you just questioning your foggy and traumatised headspace?
It’s okay to feel love for someone who you shared a big part of your life with. The person you created a family with. The person you imagined a beautiful future with.
What’s not okay is being made to feel worthless. Being called names. Walking on eggshells. Living in fear.
What’s not okay is being kicked or slapped, pushed or choked.
What’s not okay is not feeling like you are equal partners in your relationship. Like what you say doesn’t matter.
What’s not okay is leaving your children without a mother when he accidentally or deliberately goes too far.
And after all of that, if you still truly love him, you need to learn to love you more. Before love kills you.