Thursday, May 24, 2012

Broken: rising above damaging relationships

When I was 18, I started dating a young man who would become my first boyfriend.  When it began, it was a fairly typical young adult relationship, but by the time I finally had the courage to walk away over two years later, it had became abusive and manipulative.  The physical abuse was minimal, but the emotional abuse left deep scars.  Both during and after the relationship, I searched for other women who had been in similar situations, for both comfort and advice, yet I found no one to turn to.  

I have since discovered that many of my friends faced similar damaging relationship, some that had cross the line into physical abuse and others that were marred by jealousy and possessiveness, yet all left them with low self-esteem and feelings of emptiness, guilt, and shame.  We all kept our experiences secret, but had we shared, there is a possibility that we could have prevented each other from getting so deep into the relationships, from staying so long in them.  We could have helped one another see that as beautiful daughters of Christ, we were worth so much more.  

Just last night, I was discussing my past relationships with a friend who had similar experiences.  Although it has been years since I left that relationship and I have since married my husband, who treats me with respect and love that only comes from the Lord, there are still lasting scars.  But I realized talking about them helped, having someone else share her experiences made me feel a little less alone, a little less shameful, a little more hopeful.  With that in mind, I decided to start a series of posts for women who have had current and past damaging relationship (and hopefully by doing so may help prevent women from having future ones).  

If you have a story to share, I welcome you to do so.  I would be happy to change your name or make it anonymous, if you like.  It doesn't have to be a personal narrative, it can be advice to women about avoiding these relationships, getting out of them, or for friend/family of women who are in such circumstances.  You can write about the healing process or about how you found yourself in that situation.  In essence, you can write anything you think might help someone in a damaging relationship.  Please send submissions or questions to


  1. I'm looking forward to reading this series. I hope people realize that nobody is alone!

  2. Wow, what a fabulous series.  

  3. So thankful that you're doing this, as it is so needed.  So many women (and men) don't even know the signs of abuse.  Often we're told, "If he's abusing you, then you can leave but if not, then you need to love, respect and submit (if you're married) to him regardless of his behavior."  All the while, we don't even know how to define abuse and women end up staying in an unhealthy situation which is usually becoming more unhealthy by the minute.  There is so much needless pain because women aren't educated to see the signs and if they do see them and seek help, excuses are made for the man's behavior.  So, a lot of education still needed.  I'm subscribing today so I don't miss any of the series.  

  4.  Thanks, Sandy! I agree, I think most women think of abusive of damaging relationship as only ones that include physical abuse - there are so many other ways that relationships can be negative and need to be ended! 


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