Decide how you will manage this relationship(DW# 793)
Jul 07, 2020
Once you have had time to process the emotional abuse and taken stock of its cost to you and to your life, you will need to decide what to do about this relationship.
Take the time you need to do this. It is not a good idea to hurry the process. It is not a good idea to make significant life decisions or to end/leave relationships when you are at the peak of emotional distress.
Some relationships are easier to let go of than others, of course. If gaslighting or emotional abuse is a part of a work relationship or a relatively new friendship, it is easier to walk away than when it is from a close family member or a spouse.
Please know that there is no right or wrong answer here. It is up to you whether you choose to continue or end this relationship. Please remind yourself that it is your situation and that your decision is valid even if other people in your life do not agree with it.
Before you decide, here are some options to consider:
You can walk away.
You can continue with the relationship as it is.
You can set some non-negotiable boundaries before you continue (Do not bluff here. Do not say you will walk away if you are not planning to do so if your terms are not met).
There is at least one more option to consider:
You can stay in the relationship and shrink the relationship to a manageable size – where you do not put yourself in harms way if the abuser is unwilling to change. This is very different advice than what I usually give people to mend relationships and it is a last resort. This is only recommended once you take responsibility for yourself, get support, do what you can get the relationship back on track and the other person is still unwilling to take any responsibility or accountability and is unwilling to change.
It is only then that you remind yourself that it does not make sense to make yourself vulnerable through self disclosure when there is no trust in the relationship. It is only then that you should take steps to protect yourself while being in relationship with the other person.
Whatever you decide, recognize that it is a choice. That you have options – even though it may feel like there are no options and that you may not like many, most or any of the options. You still have a choice about what to do.
When we choose our situation, we navigate it from a sense of empowerment as opposed to when we tell ourselves that we are victims with no choice but to endure the situation.
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