When you’re in an abusive relationship, it can be difficult to see the way out. But, you don’t have to be trapped in a relationship with an abusive partner.
Discover how to separate yourself from them in a safe way by using these strategies:
1. Understand why you stay. You can’t gain the courage to leave until you understand why you’re staying. Are these reasons preventing you from leaving,
- Maybe you’re staying out of fear.
- You may feel stuck in the relationship because it’s the only thing you have right now. Despite the issues, it’s a familiar place. You may even feel secure in the familiarity.
- You might even stay because you feel that you deserve to be punished. You’re worried that you won’t be able to find someone else who is better. And, because of the abuse, you may feel responsible for the situation.
- In addition, perhaps you believe that you can fix the issues. You may think that if you love your partner enough, then they will stop being abusive.
2. Strengthen your self-esteem. Low self-esteem is at the root of many abusive relationships. Increasing your confidence and self-esteem will help you gain the courage to leave the abuser. You can start by acknowledging that your self-esteem needs work.
- Look for causes for your low self-esteem. Were your parents perfectionists who expected too much from you? Did you feel inadequate growing up or at work? Once you have the answers, you can work to resolve your feelings about your past. You can put the past in the past and ensure that these negative feelings don’t affect who you are today.
- To raise your self-esteem, do a nice thing for yourself each day. Pay attention to what others say about you that is positive. Journal about it or take notes, so you always have a reminder of your positive aspects.
3. Get outside help. It may benefit you to get help from friends, family, or others. You may need to turn to therapy or a doctor. In some cases, outside help is needed to leave an abusive relationship.
- Your friends, family, coworkers, or others may be able to assist you so you won’t be alone and can develop the courage to leave. There may also be community resources, nonprofits, and organizations that can help.
4. Figure out your finances. Are you scared to leave your partner because you depend on them financially? Maybe you’re dealing with financial abuse, too? If you know that you’re financially secure, then it’s easier to leave.
- When you have a job, set money aside that your abuser can’t access. You can also ask friends or family to contribute to your savings.
- When you don’t have a job, you have to be more creative. You may be able to save money from the stipends you receive. You may be able to sell some items.
- Even if you’re not certain about your finances, you can make plans for the future. Prepare for a job that can support you after this relationship ends.
You don’t have to stay with an abusive partner out of fear. Relationships can be difficult to end, but it’s not impossible. Figure out a way to escape and leave them, even if you need someone to help you do it. There are resources and people who can help you get out of your abusive situation and get started in a healthier life.
Angela Atkinson is a Certified Life Coach and the author of more than 20 books on narcissism, narcissistic abuse recovery and related topics. A recognized expert on narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder who has studied and written extensively on narcissistic relationships since 2006, Atkinson was inspired to begin her work as a result of having survived toxic relationships of her own.
Atkinson offers trauma-informed coaching and has certifications in life coaching, level 2 therapeutic model, CBT coaching, integrative wellness coaching, and NLP. She is a certified trauma support coach and certified family trauma professional. She also has a professional PTSD counseling certification. Her mission is to help those who have experienced the emotional and mental devastation that comes with narcissistic abuse in these incredibly toxic relationships to (re)discover their true selves, stop the gaslighting and manipulation and move forward into their genuine desires – into a life that is exactly what they choose for themselves.
Along with her solution-focused life coaching experience, Atkinson’s previous career in journalism and research helps her to offer both accurate and understandable information for survivors of abuse in a simple-to-understand way that helps to increase awareness in the narcissistic abuse recovery community. Atkinson founded QueenBeeing.com Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support, the SPANily Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Groups and the Life Makeover Academy. In her life coaching practice, Atkinson’s clients enjoy her personalized approach that allows and encourages them to become the best possible versions of themselves and to succeed in doing what they love most. She offers individual and group coaching for victims and survivors of narcissistic abuse at NarcissisticAbuseRecovery.Online and NarcissismSupportCoach.com.