After reading the first installment of my three part series of men in toxic relationships “Men are Abused too. Know the Signs of Toxic Women”, you may now feel as if you are in a toxic relationship with your wife, girlfriend, baby mamma, husband, or boyfriend. Some have asked me how I know what it feels like to be abused as a man in a relationship if I have never been a man in a relationship. Easy. I have been the one abusing the man in a relationship. I am not proud of this. But I know I can help shine some light on this subject. You can read more of my story in my upcoming book “Signs in the Rearview Mirror” Early 2018.
Your relationship started out great. She was caring. Intelligent. Quirky. Beautiful on the inside and the out. She shared your interest in football, she even sports a bright pink jersey of your favorite team. She wanted to meet your friends and they approved of her at first when she encouraged you to have a guys night out with them. You laughed a lot, went out with her, and had fun. She paid for a few dates and to your surprise she knew where she wanted to eat. For the first time in along time you felt as if you could be yourself and she accepted you for who you are. Things were heading in a great direction and you were starting to relax opening up to her and letting her into your life. But then things changed. Slowly, over time. Your jokes were stupid and no longer funny. That shirt she loved to see you in was now old and make you look bad. She began to put your friends down and insult the way you made dinner. She questioned you when you didn't take her call while you were working and she was always on your social media asking why another girl liked your post. She started to take up your time and began to shut off the football game she once watched with you. Slowly she was turning into someone you don’t even know. Once in a while the same girl you fell in love with would show up. She laughed at your jokes, invited your friends over, and asked you to cook for her and she liked it. Those things put you at ease and you began to relax. But after while instead of relaxing when the girl you once knew showed up, you were on guard. You felt as if you were being tested and you always failed. You had no idea when the girl you fell in love with would show up or when the girl she turned into would show up. You began to think you were crazy and she agreed with you. You question what to do.
“Should I stay because I love her. Should I stay because when the girl I fell in love shows up, she’s great or leave because I have no idea who she really is”?
How much longer do you hang on?
“How did this happen? How did I not see this coming”? You ask yourself and your friends and family ask the same questions. Your mom does not like her and she likes everyone.
First you need to know you are not crazy. You did nothing wrong. But now that you are feeling as if this may not be the relationship for you, you need to make some decisions. But what is a man to do when society says you need to “suck it up”? It is not an easy position for a man to be in. But here you are. How do you get out?
Just because a relationship is not physically abusive, that does not mean it is not abusive.
- Name Calling~ “Are you a total idiot? I asked your dumbass to get the green apples. You cant do anything right”
- Insulting~ “Only weak as man would wear that color. Maybe I should take your man card. Oh wait you never had one. Loser”
- Jealousy~” Why do you spend so much time with your friends or talking to your mom? I am here with you now. They had you for years.”
- Control~” Didn't I ask you to block your ex on social media? You never do anything I ask of you. If you loved me would have blocked her without me asking you to”
- Financial Abuse/Spending Your Money~” I know you said you didn't have the money, but if you loved me would buy me nice things”. “ I thought you wouldn't mind me taking your debit card. I thought you trusted me”?
- Threats~ “ If you do that again, I will call the police and say you threatened me”.
These are all signs of abuse going on in some relationships. You do not have to accept any of this in a relationship just because society says so. What can you do in order to get out of an abusive relationship?
- Talk to someone you trust. As a man asking for help you may be laughed at, so find someone who loves you and cares about you.
- Seek help from a therapist. This is something you can do privately. You do not have to announce you are seeing a therapist, but making that appointment is a very healthy step in order to get you out of a relationship you are no longer happy in.
- Make a plan. You may have a child with his person and that does make it more difficult for you to leave an abusive relationship. But remember if you are being abused so is your child. It’s the second hand smoke syndrome. Your child may not be directly abused, but when a child’s parent is abused, so is the child.
- Get into a support group. After leaving a toxic relationship, you need to heal before you move on. You need to heal in order to be happy and healthy.
It is not an easy decision to leave a toxic relationship, but it is the best decision you can make for your self. If you or anyone you know is in an abusive relationship, encourage them to seek help. Please visit my website for more information on men in toxic relationships www.thoughtsbecomingwords.com or call The National Domestic Hotline