Six Ways Not To Be Used

  1. Believe Patterns Not Apologies,
  2. Don’t Fall In Love With Potential,
  3. Believe ALL RED FLAGS.
  4. Know Your Worth,
  5. Don’t Lower Your Standards,
  6. Don’t Fall Too Hard Too Fast.

These are very important rules to go by. In order to follow all of these rules, if your like me, you will need to do some work on yourself. In future posts, I will be talking about things like Co-Dependency, Low Self Esteem and Trauma Bonding.

The second rule says not to fall in love with potential. I”ll use my most recent relationship as an example: He is a very smart man, he has 3 degrees. He is a very kind man when he is sober. Ok….so see the potential of what he could be, what kind of life we COULD have? So, I fell in love with what could be instead of facing reality and focusing on what is real right now. When I did that, I saw an unemployed, pathological liar, alcoholic man with a second DUI that was manipulative and abusive when he drank. Those are the facts and the real hard truth. Don’t fall for smoke and mirrors.

In the future, I will go into more detail on these rules if anyone is interested.

Remember, this is only my second blog, so be gentle with me. I am still working on getting my site set up. Hopefully, my site will evolve and get better with time.

Thank you so much for reading my blog! We are in this together, you are not alone! I am always open to comments, questions or suggestions.

Being Yourself Is The Bravest Thing You Can Be

6 Ways Not To Be Used-Expanded

This is kind of an encore to a post I previously wrote called, ” 6 Ways Not To Be Used“. I want to go into more detail on each of the ways we can be used by, in particular, a man .

Believing patterns, not apologies. I”ll give you a personal example. I began to see a pattern of lying in my boyfriend, then he would apologize and try to explain it away when he got caught. We’ve all heard the the saying “actions speak louder than words”. It’s True!

Don’t fall in love with potential. As in my case, this guy was very smart, had had well paying jobs, was very loving, caring and kind. That was where I saw potential. Potential for him and what he could be and for our relationship and where it could go and how happy I thought I would be if it did. Now, the truth of the matter is, he is an unemployed, alcoholic with no job and he’s psychologically abusive when he’s drunk. People are who they are and there’s nothing we can do to change them.

Believe ALL RED FLAGS!!! Here’s a list of some of the red flags to look out for:

  1. He’s quick to get angry, yells or throws things.
  2. He complains about all his exe’s, they’re all crazy
  3. lying
  4. He’s moving too fast too soon
  5. He’s jealous
  6. He can’t stop telling you have perfect you are.
  7. He tries to drive a wedge between you and your family and friends.
  8. He calls you names in an argument
  9. No work ethic
  10. He makes you feel stupid/unworthy

Know your worth. This is one of the things that I am having to do the most work on. After a toxic, damaging relationship, it’s too easy to hold onto some of or all of the negative feelings and attitudes you have about yourself. You then carry that over into a new relationship, which inevitably dooms it to fail. We have to do some serious work on our self esteem before going into a new relationship.

Don’t lower your standards. Don’t settle for the first person that compliments you or shows you attention. Just because someone tells you that they love you doesn’t mean they are worthy of you and your love. What does your family/friends think of him? Don’t think do I deserve him, think does he deserve me!

Don’t fall too hard too fast. This is a biggie! Often with low self esteem, we tend to fall in love right away. He’s saying and doing all the right things but people are always on their best behavior in the beginning. It takes time to really fall in love with someone. You have to take the time to learn their personality, lifestyle and family dynamic. Give yourself time to really know somebody before you decide if he is worthy of being given the honor of being a part of your life.

Thank you for reading my blog! Please follow my blog and my FB page. I am currently working on getting my Pinterest site up and going. Stay strong!

Top Addiction Strategies

As you probably know, our loved ones are basically two people. They are Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde. When they’re sober they are good, loving men but when they drink or get drunk, Mr. Hyde comes out and you’re dealing with someone you don’t even know or like. I’m going to list some of the top strategies addiction (which takes over their brains even when they’re sober) uses to get what it wants. Addiction doesn’t care about you, your kids or even your loved one. It will do whatever it takes to get what it wants.

  • Denial
  • Justification
  • Deception
  • Manipulation

I am going to do a separate blog post for manipulation because it is probably the most used and most effective but I’ll give a brief description of each strategy.

Denial: Addicts experience many different levels of denial, ranging from underreporting the amount they drink or use drugs to denying-even to themselves- that they have a problem.

Justification: Your loved one may offer a multitude of reasons for his drinking or using, as well as the resulting behavior. Addicts may be aware that their behavior has become unacceptable-and they may even acknowledge it at times. An example of justification could be: If an addict takes someone’s necklace to pawn for drug money, he may tell himself that the victim hadn’t worn it in years and won’t miss it.

Deception: However honest your loved one was before the addiction took hold, once he becomes an addict, deception will likely become frequent and pervasive.

Manipulation: Of all the tools addiction uses to protect itself, it’s favorite might be you. Sadly, the most commonly exploited quality is love. Addicts in rehab will tell you whom they can make cry most easily and whom they cannot approach at all. That doesn’t mean the addict doesn’t love you. It means that the addiction is wiling to protect itself by any means necessary. If there’s a way your personality, values, fears, skills, or hopes can be used toward that end, the addiction will eventually seek to expoit it.

My next post will be talking about manipulation in more detail. Once you recognize when you’re being manipulated, you can start to deal with your partner in a more informed, educated way. If you’re not currently in a relationship, recognizing maniupulation can keep you from getting involved with someone that’s just going to hurt you.

Thank you for reading my post. I hope you follow my blog and FB page to continue discussing toxic relationships and how to live with/get out/recover from them. You are strong!

Low Self-Esteem

I though I would write my next post on low self-esteem because it’s a very important subject. Most people would rather not admit that they have low self-esteem and some people that have low self-esteem don’t even know it. I’ll admit, I never wanted to admit that I have always had low self-esteem. The 1st time that I can remember feeling not good enough was the very first day of first grade. I went in the door and started to sit down and somehow automatically knew, these were the popular kids and that they probably wouldn’t like me. I still have a lot of self work to do regarding abandonment and rejection issues. A lot of psychiatrist and therapist think that low self-esteem usually comes from some kind of childhood trauma. If that’s so, I haven’t remembered anything from my childhood yet.

Some of the signs of low self esteem are:

  1. being very sensitive to criticism
  2. social withdrawal
  3. excessive preoccupation with personal problems (ex: constantly wondering what he’s doing, if he’s drinking, will he be drunk when I get home, where is he)
  4. hostility
  5. physical symptoms such as: fatigue, insomnia and headaches(it did much more than that to me this time).
  6. depression and anxiety

When you have low self-esteem you think poorly of yourself. Maybe you feel like a failure or not smart enough or not pretty enough or not successful enough or not a good enough mother/wife, etc. Everybody has negative thoughts sometimes but when you have low self-esteem your self-talk is almost always negative. Practice paying attention to what your self-talk is saying to you.

Most of the time when someone with low self-esteem is in a relationship with an addict, it’s going to be toxic because addicts are liars, manipulators, deceivers, cheaters and most often they turn from Dr. Jeckyl(sober) to Mr. Hyde(drunk) and are very mean and abusive. A lot of times after you’ve been in this situation for a while you turn into a co-dependent person(which is what your addict is). We’ll talk more about that in a later post.

Some of the ways we show we are co-dependent are:

  1. people pleasing-you feel anxious if others are unhappy with you, and you give their needs, feelings and opinions precedence over your own
  2. guilt-“I’m always sorry”
  3. perfectionism-it may be on your job, tidiness of your home, your job as a wife/mother/daughter/sister, your body, your hair or clothes
  4. no boundaries-we’ll talk a more about the importance of boundaries in a future post
  5. we’re one-becoming obsessed with your partner
  6. depending on someone too much

I have been working on a workbook to help me raise my self-esteem. I would like to recommend it to you. It’s called, “The Self-Esteem Workbook for Women” by Megan MacCutcheon, LPC. She is a licensed professional counselor with a private practice in VA.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my post! I hope you were able to relate to something I’ve said. If you ever need someone to talk to or have any questions, please feel free to contact me via my FB page or here on my blog. I’d love to hear from you! Please like and follow my FB page and my blog. God bless you! You are not alone! You are strong!

Lesson’s Learned

This is my very first time writing a blog so be patient with me as I navigate the in’s and out’s. Hopefully with time, my blog and I will get better.

First, a little about my life experiences. In my 51 years, I have been in five toxic, psychologically damaging relationships. My first husband cheated on me twice and ran off with the second one not even a year after our son was born. The next four men have varying combinations of the following: narcissism, pathological liar, alcoholism, drug addiction, various mental disorders (nothing diagnosed) and co-dependency. Oh yeah, and one of them actually stalked me to the point of me having a loaded shot gun in my house. So, I have done a lot of research on the above issues and have and am doing a lot of self-care and self-work to ensure that this never happens again. I would love to have a blog to teach, inspire and empower women of every age.

Thank you so much for reading my first blog! Please follow my blog if: a) you’ve never been in a toxic relationship and you want to be sure that you never are or b) you have been in one or more than one toxic relationship and you want to make sure it NEVER happens again.

If you like my blog, please follow me here and on FB.

I’ve been in several toxic relationships and have done a lot of research. I’m writing this blog to help myself and hopefully others, as well.

A little bit about me

My name is Susan. I have lived in the Charlotte NC area all of my life. I have a brain malformation that made me have to quit work about 10 years ago. I have a grown son whom I love dearly and a yorkie name Bear. I hate cold weather and I love the beach. As I’ve said in my post, I have had 5 toxic relationships. For those of us going from one toxic relationship to another, there are things about ourselves that we need to acknowledge and heal from before we can move on to having a healthy relationship. I just want to get myself physically and mentally healthy so the rest of my life is a great life. I have done and am doing a lot of self-care to ensure that I reach my goal. This blog is another way for me to heal. If you ever need someone to talk to that is right there with you and knows exactly how you feel and what you’re going through, please feel free to reach out to me on my blog or facebook page. There is no judgement here. You are not alone. If I can encourage, support and help anyone else going through what I have been through (see my first blog), it won’t all have been in vain.