Side-note: This is important for people who know someone in an abusive relationship, or suspect it, as well. Understand that the person being abused often changes from the person you may have known in the past. They may act happy on the outside, but you will likely start to see little signs that something is not right. This person may start to withdraw or be unavailable for things they used to enjoy. They may smile and act like everything is fine, but it is uneasy. They may constantly say how good things are in their life or never mention their significant other at all. They might excuse behavior that you comment on (theirs or their partners). Or, they may take out their frustrations on you…remember, you are safe, their abuser is not. As someone looking in, you will probably never know the whole story, because the abused individual will hide it. Understanding this, and still supporting this person the best you can, is the only way you can help them.
When I was in the midst of my marriage, and in the time when I was actually in the process of leaving, I thought that I would never be happy again. Really? Again? I wasn’t happy in the marriage. Were there good times? Sure there were. Every relationship has good times and good memories. There is a reason we fall in love and want to be with a person. Obviously there is some good there. And, when you are abused, you can cling to that good.
We all want to be happy and enjoy the life we are living. No one wants to be depressed, anxious, frightened, or lonely. When I was feeling those things, I craved the happy times, when I actually smiled and meant it. But it took me actually walking out the door, threats and all, to feel the weight lifted off of me and start down a road to recovery.
It will not be perfect. You will still hurt, still struggle with certain feelings, and still have insecurities. But with every day that passes, life will get better and happiness will start to reacquaint itself with you. You can be happy again!