Why Do We Stay With Those Who Hurt Us?


They manipulate us, put us down, stifle our self-esteem and make us feel like we’re worthless, yet we still stay. Why?

Are we that desperate for a companion that we settle for something that damages our inner core? Is loneliness that much of a problem that we would rather cry to sleep almost every night knowing that there’s someone with us regardless of how negatively they treat us? The truth is that most of us don’t want to deal with that utter angst of loneliness. So we stay. There’s a level of convenience and it’s scary when that is ultimately gone. But what happens when we are dragged down day after day? Why do we tell ourselves that it is going to get better when it never does?

We tolerate the little implications at first and then they turn into big tornados. First they may berate you for not being able to drink as much as other people even though they know you have stomach issues. Then they may call you a no-good piece of shit who is just a piece of trash after you had a minor disagreement. Maybe they’ll tell you that your physical ailments are God’s way of telling you that you’re ruining people’s lives and that you’re not worthy of anything good in life. Or maybe they’ll just tell you that you’re no one special and that you’ll never amount to anything. They’ll say that you ruin everything and that they rather spend time with their friends because it’s their friends who make them happy. When you cry, they’ll curse you out and when you beg to see them they’ll refuse and laugh in your face. When you invite them over for Thanksgiving with your family, they’ll scream at you telling you that you’re a nag and that you’re an annoyance. And finally they abuse you and punish you saying that the reason all those things were said and done was because YOU made it happen. There’s never an apology, never any type of remorse. Instead, they justify it by saying that it’s all your fault and that you don’t know how to be in a relationship.

If you didn’t know how to be in a relationship, would you try endless ways to make them happy? Would you think of ways to surprise them just to see a smile? Would you swallow your pride and call them over and over again even if they’re ignoring you so you can fix the fights? Would you be loyal to them and give your hears and souls to them until they’re ripped out and chewed apart?

What have we been doing?

We think about the possibility of loneliness or we think about the good times that we once had with those people. Here’s the thing-we can have great times with people who don’t disrespect us. We can have wonderful times with people who don’t feel the need to hurt others without apologizing. Most of all we can have spectacular times with those who love us so deeply that the thought of hurting us hurts them even more.

Do me a favor. Love yourself enough to know when to walk away. You know what the answer is in your gut. Follow your intuition and don’t ever let anyone take your shine away. Many people say that love self-destructs. That’s not true at all. We are the ones that choke love with unkind words and poison it with hatred and resentment. Love does not just die on its own. People kill it. Be one of the lucky ones who understand that the fate of love is in our hands and we are the ones that have the ability to keep it alive.

Regardless of our negative experiences, we need to understand that love truly exists. We just need the strength to believe in it and the power to know when enough is enough.