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Regaining your self-esteem after dating violence takes time. It's important you work on it daily, just as you would to strengthen your body after being injured. Building up confidence in yourself is important, remembering you are special and you are worth something is vital to the healing process.
The decision to leave an abusive relationship isn't easy, at one point this was someone who you cared a great deal about. Just because you love the abuser doesn't mean you loved the abuse. You are very courageous for leaving them. You are on the right track to having a safer, happier and healthier life.
Intimate partner abuse can bring depression, anxiety, sleep problems and physical ailments. Healing from the abuse isn't going to happen overnight nor will it be easy, but you don't have to do it alone.
Call our 24-hour help line and speak with an advocate today so that we can help you pave your own way to a healthier and happier you.
Here are some tips:
Congratulate yourself – you may still feel helpless and overwhelmed, but take a minute to feel pride that you are doing something about improving your life. The biggest step is over and you freed yourself from the grips of an abusive relationship. You will be busy trying to figure out how to start your life on a different path and begin the process of emotional healing. It’s important to take a moment to appreciate your own strength, you did it. You’re free.
Forgive yourself – The abuse that you endured was not your fault, and there is never any justification for abuse, emotional or physical. All people deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. It’s important to let go of feelings of guilt you may be experiencing as a result of ending this relationship, and let your healing continue.
Incorporate affirmations into your daily routine – Affirmations are positive statements that you can repeat to yourself or place around your home as reminders of your value. You may put them on your refrigerator or on your bathroom mirror. Some examples of affirmations include; “I am lovable,” “I am beautiful,” and “I deserve to be respected”.
Get Support – Your abusive partner may have attempted to isolate you from friends, family or anyone else who may have offered emotional and spiritual strength. This tactic is commonly used by abusers to ensure that victims will depend only on them. Reach out to the friends and family members with whom you may have lost contact with. Joining or reconnecting with a religious community and attending a support group for people who have experienced intimate partner abuse also can be beneficial. Working with a counselor who has an understanding of abuse dynamics, can help you through this process. At Tri-County Safe Harbor we have a counselor who you can speak with to start the healing process. Call our counselor Tara Segerstrom at (906) 789-9207 ext:12. Our services are FREE and confidential.
Learn the warning signs – Some examples reported by the National Network to End Domestic Violence include pressure to move quickly into a serious relationship, excessive jealousy and incessant phone calls or text messages. Being equipped with this knowledge, if and when you feel comfortable dating again, will help you do so confidently.