Dating again after an abusive relationship
I am curious to know how others have struggled with the prospect of dating again after leaving the abuser. I am nearly two years' out of my 10-yr marriage, 4 yrs of living together prior to marriage. Stuckette, I can’t say at first that I was “scared” to date. I was pretty sure most men weren’t the creeps my ex was and if I remember you and I had one from a similar mold.
Were you ever attracted to someone yet scared of them at the same time, even though they were not scarey? My son became a senior in high school and I started to become open to the idea of a “friend/date”.
I found myself unwilling to tell the first guy I dated after my abusive relationship about the abuse at all, for fear that he would judge me for it and see me differently.
He had never experienced abuse firsthand, which only increased my reservedness.
You fear (and rightly so) becoming vulnerable to a person who may only use that vulnerability as a weapon.
Part of learning to trust again is purposefully working through the grieving process. And, ultimately, when you have reached a place of healing, you still have a right to protect yourself from hurt.
Why would you want to open your heart again and risk being hurt?
You fear betrayal and therefore find it difficult to trust this person.
The chill in the spine is stronger and prevails, making me hurry past him. I spent 33 years married and we dated for 2.5 years. He beat me in the head, the legs, places where it could not be detected, would throw me across a room. You would think I would have the courage to leave, but I did not think I could survive on my own. He got within an inch of my face and screamed and yelled at me. I missed signs along the way telling me he wasn't committed to our relationship.
It can certainly make the idea of dating again very difficult.
There's an understandable reluctance to expose yourself to what might be more of the same.
Starting over and dating after abusive relationship can be daunting but providing you have recovered sufficiently and rebuilt your self-esteem, know your own strengths and what you need from a relationship, there is no need to avoid meeting new people.
Abusive relationships, whether physically or mentally abusive, or both, are terrible, and getting out of one can seem like a huge relief.