Posts by Hayley Brooks

Hayley is a social worker who has dedicated her career to empowering and advocating on behalf of others. She is also a survivor of domestic violence and, as part of her recovery, takes what she is learning on her journey to self-love and shares it with others in her writing.

How I Healed from Gaslighting and Found Self-Love After the Abuse

“I smile because I have survived everything the world has thrown at me. I smile because when I was knocked down, I got back up.” ~Unknown

Had you asked me only two years ago I wouldn’t have even been able to tell you what gaslighting was, nor that I had been a victim.

That’s the thing about gaslighting, it can sneak into your life unknowingly, and before you know it, it can lead you to breaking point where you are doubting your sanity and your life is spiralling out of control.

Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse, where an …

How I’m Healing the Vulnerable, Rejected Kid Inside Me

“In case no one told you today:
 You’re beautiful. You’re loved. You’re needed. You’re alive for a reason. 
You’re stronger than you think. You’re going to get through this. 
I’m glad you’re alive. Don’t give up.” ~Unknown

I was fourteen years old and it was a holiday of firsts: my first holiday away from my family with my school and my first holiday abroad, where I had my first real crush.

For the two weeks I was away, I was caught up in a flirtation with a boy from one of the other schools. I had to pinch myself when …

Before You Send That Message to Your Ex, Consider This

“If the hurt comes so will the happiness. Be patient.” ~Rupi Kaur

What if I said instead of messaging our ex, we had a different choice, a choice that will be even more fulfilling than acting on the urge to share whatever we’re feeling right now?

It’s been over a year since I last spoke with my ex. While I’ve thought about him and missed him, I’ve known that getting in contact wasn’t the right thing, and so I haven’t taken any action to reconnect.

For the past few weeks, however, my thoughts have been seeping in, focusing on …