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Sudden unexpected thoughts about abusive ex - February 6th 2013, 10:41 PM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of rape or abuse, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

I had a boyfriend about two years ago and he turned out not to be very nice. At first everything was fine, he was really nice and we seemed to really hit it off. Then slowly things turned sour and he became very mean. I guess he just thought I wasn't good enough or something. He hit me a few times, once he slammed me against the wall and strangled me for refusing to have sex with him. He just wanted me to do whatever he wanted. I tried and tried to get him to treat me like he had when we first started dating, but it never happened. I became incredibly sad and depressed, he stripped everything away from me. All myself esteem was gone, it was amazing. Looking back today I cant believe what an devastating impact that relationship had on me.

Finally something in me snapped and all at once I became very angry. He had never cared for me at all and all of a sudden I realized that. In raged I finally left him, and the rage and distrust toward everyone and the world lasted years until about a month ago. Weirdly I started thinking back on his and my relationship in a fond way, I remembered the very rare good things and I started missing him. Its weird and makes me feel highly uncomfortable. These last few years I've worked very hard at building a healthy self esteem and choosing kind and healthy people to be around. And now all of a sudden I'm thinking nice thoughts about the abusive a** who totally destroyed everything good. I don't understand what is wrong with me. Has anyone else experienced anything like this?

Also I'm suddenly feeling really stupid, and like, wanting his judgement on my life. I've made a lot of improvements in a lot of different areas and its weird, suddenly I want to know if I'm good enough now. I want to know if I'm worthy. :/ I didn't make any of those positive changes for him, I made them for me. So I could be proud of my accomplishments and never have to experience such a terrible relationship ever again. But now I feel the need to seek out his attention. I just don't understand why he treated me the way he did and why he seemed to dislike me so much... I feel as though I wasn't doing a good enough job, or being smart enough. :/

"Setting boundaries is not a more sophisticated way of manipulation - although some people will say they are setting boundaries, when in fact they are attempting to manipulate. The difference between setting a boundary in a healthy way and manipulating is: when we set a boundary we let go of the outcome."

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Last edited by Eternal; February 6th 2013 at 11:01 PM. Reason: Added trigger prefix.
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Re: Sudden unexpected thoughts about abusive ex - February 6th 2013, 11:10 PM

I've moved this to Rape and Abuse as it's about your abusive ex.
I think something you need to do is disassociate his opinion of you from how you feel about yourself. Remember that he was really self-servicing in the relationship, and so his opinion of you doesn't matter. You're worth much more than that, and if you're strong enough to go through an abusive relationship than you are enough. It's normal to want approval from a significant other, but in a healthy relationship he will love you for who you are, you shouldn't have to prove yourself in any way.
Try and focus on being happy with the improvements you've made, and work on moving on from your past relationship. You don't deserve to subject yourself to that kind of treatment.

And here you are living, despite it all.
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Re: Sudden unexpected thoughts about abusive ex - February 8th 2013, 09:46 PM

Hi, i'm not an expert in this area, but I would like to leave a reply to the parts i feel i could respond to, and i hope this is okay with you.
Firstly, i think its okay to remember the good parts of a relationship even though it was a mainly abusive one. I believe that this may be your minds way of protecting itself from all the bad memories, to also include some more positive ones for you. I don't think this is a problem, as long as you remember that it was a bad relationship that you do not want to go back to. There is nothing 'wrong with you' and you have come a very long way, you can be so proud of that!
Secondly, i don't think you should be feeling 'stupid' for wondering about what he'd think. You spent a long time having to do what he wanted you to, and to his expectations so that you didn't suffer from his abuse. Therefore, i think it is completely natural for you to automatically consider his views because doing this is what will have kept you safe. With people like him though, he would just find another reason to 'explain' his behaviours. I think it is great that you see these achievements are solely for you to be proud of and i believe that is a big step!
Also, he treated you that way because of his own issues, it was in no way your fault at all! A boyfriend should never treat you this way, and he is the one that was not good enough for you, because he was not the boyfriend you deserved, you deserve someone sooo much better.
I hope you can feel better about these thoughts soon and that they subside so that you can move on. Once this happens, you can continue to be proud of your achievements for you and enjoy life for you.
Stay strong, you've come so far!

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