If you have ever been in an abusive relationship, it can be hard to form new relationships rather romantic or just friendships. It can be hard to overcome the sensitivity of the situation, or it can be hard to not overreact.
This means that when you get into a new relationship that you need to learn to communicate, and you need to learn to put your own needs ahead of others like you didn’t do in your other relationships.
Whenever you are ready to start a new relationship, you have to make sure that you are starting new habits and that you are getting over the stress that you faced in the past relationship. You also have to learn to even see yourself differently.
Before you get deep into any new relationship, you have to pay attention to triggers that will cause you to shut down after having to deal with the past relationship. You want to make sure that you aren’t dealing with another person that is going to hurt or manipulate you.
People that leave abusive relationships often feel that they are overly sensitive, and they get triggered when they have to deal with people that are narcissistic. Since they have learned to stop listening to the red flags or since they don’t listen to their gut feeling, they have a hard time knowing what to do when it comes to moving forward.
Not Knowing Yourself After Abuse
It can be easy to lose yourself after being in an abusive relationship. People sometimes compare living with a narcissist to living in a cult because these are often abusive relationships. It can be hard to understand the loss that you are dealing with until you have fully left the relationship.
A narcissist will try to control the person that they are with, and this can cause there to be deep rooted hurt. The narcissist will never show off this behavior and sometimes it is very subtle.
A narcissist will try to control other people. They want to make them do what they want, and they will try to manipulate them and make them think just what they want them to think.
- Cognitive Empathy: This is when you are empathizing or manipulating other people. You have empathy but you aren’t compassionate to others.
- Trauma Bonding: This is when you are bonding with someone based on trauma and this keeps you from leaving relationships that are bad.
- Feeling Guilty or Worthless: Sometimes when you say what you are feeling, the narcissist will make you feel wrong even when you aren’t. This can cause you to feel that everything you think or do is wrong.
You don’t lose who you are right away in a bad relationship, it takes time for this to happen to you.
Dealing with Identity Loss
Narcissist are people that will do whatever it takes to make sure that you have no voice or opinion. This is a way for them to make you lose who you are. This also allows them to make you part of who they are.
Here are some identity problems that you might face:
- You don’t talk about yourself because you feel that you are being prideful.
- You have no real purpose in your life.
- You often feel uncomfortable or that you did something wrong.
- You don’t feel like you are in control.
- You don’t think of yourself as changed but that you are different. You don’t even know who you were.
- You focus on what you look like because you know that your physical being is real.
These are things that can happen when you lose your identity. If you are experiencing a crisis with accepting yourself, you have to figure out how to deal with this.
Dealing with C-PTSD
People that have been in abusive relationships often have Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This is also known as Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome.
PTSD happens after stressful events, but C-PTSD happens after psychological trauma comes in your life and you feel that you are unable to help yourself or recover. These are some of the things that C-PTSD can lead to:
- Unable to handle stressful situations.
- Eating disorders.
- Bad relationships with other people.
- Looking at life negatively.
- Having no self-esteem.
- Loss of desire and career.
Recovering from Abuse
You have to learn to deal with your life in a healthy way. You need to restore your self-image and heal from your identity loss. Here is how:
Find People that Support You
Go to the people that you lost in your abusive relationship. They will understand why things went the way that they did, and they will accept you back in their life.
Do Things You Normally Wouldn’t Do
Find a new job or a new hobby that you have always wanted to do and enjoy it.
Don’t rush through your healing process and let it come as it needs to come. Find ways to cope that are healthy.
Make sure that you set boundaries and don’t let people cross them. Draw the line and be healthy.
Find a Program
There are programs that can help people to get past emotional and physical abuse. Find a program that can help you to heal and to live your best life.
Try the no contact rule and do not contact the narcissist for any reasons. You need to heal from your loss of self, and this is the only way that you are going to live your best life.