How to get over a traumatic relationship?

I ended a relationship with a guy after a year and a half and so much shitty stuff happened that I feel traumatized by it. He was a sex addict, drug addict, and alcoholic, which led to emotional abuse, anger issues, cheating, countless lies, and in the end I lost sight of myself too. I didn't find out most of this until the very end. I don't want this to haunt me forever in every relationship and I fear it will. I feel like love and trusting people is bullshit right now and the idea of love at all makes me sick. I want to move on and be healthy but how can I be done with this and clear it from my mind? Any advice?


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  • Try not to think of your past relationship as a failure. It was a bad experience, but one that you can stand to benefit from. Try to use it as a lesson to teach you more about yourself. While you were a victim don't think yourself as one. Your attitude is the most important aspect towards moving on. You can dwell on the past and feel victimized, or you can reflect on what parts of your personhood were either too weak/naive/vulnerable etc, to allow yourself to fall into such a negative space, then use that information as a method for self improvement in your future. You may never forgive or forget your ex, but you may come to a point where you can appreciate what his experience will have taught you. A success in self-development. The person you will become in a year is not the sum of the choices you have previously made, rather, it is the sum of the choices you will make from now on. He didn't weaken you, damage you, or put up your walls, you did. Dig deep within yourself to understand what it is that you can do to improve your future relationships, and understand that it is only your attitude that can make them positive or negative.

    I am sorry for what you have gone through, but you can let go and redefine yourself for the better. This it's coming out of my ass, I went through this exactly. Meth addicted, abusive, lying, sex addicted, manipulative ex for 5 years. I appreciate all that she has taught me. I was not a victim, I was weak and forgot my values and what I stand for.
    Good luck, be strong.


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What Guys Said 5

  • I'm really sorry it went down like this.

    I had an ex who was arguably emotionally abusive. I didn't really notice until I was out of the relationship, but people said it was pretty noticeable while I was in it. They said I talked down about myself a lot more.

    Oddly enough, she was somewhat of a nympho herself. It was revealed to me later that she had had a group sex fling just prior to dating me. What consenting adults do is their own business, but for her to say I was like "all other men. Just interested in sex and bragging rights." I was a virgin and we never had sex, yet she had just bragged about group sex to a mutual friend and told me that I was blessed to have someone so patient as to put up with months of no sex.

    The best thing that happened for me was a new relationship. (I don't mean to imply anything.) She was my first girlfriend, so it was hard to get over until I had a new point of reference. Now... I also delved into psychotropic substances for a short period of time between there, but I don't recommend that at all.

    I can't say I'm fully healed. I still have trouble trusting women with my feelings, and have trouble feeling like they trust me. Time did the most healing, and some lovely, but really short, relationships helped put it behind me.

  • You have to give yourself time to get over it. Don't rush back into the world of relationships.

    That said, in a sense you shouldn't worry because (and I don't mean to be flippant) your ex-boyfriend set the bar very low. Pretty much any guy would be a major improvement on the guy you describe.

  • Getting counseling is not a bad thing, whether it's by someone professionally, or like me after some rough times, by someone in my life who is wise and who I trust. Healing may take awhile, and the next person you love can go a long way in helping that healing process if he is understanding and patient. But not until you're ready.

  • I'd say concentrate on other things in your life like work and family, and when it plays up talk to some good friends who you can trust.
    It will gradually go away but the first week or so will be hard. With you all the courage you need!

  • Get some education. Learn something new like martial arts , cooking, something that you can actually focus on that can make a difference in your life.


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