Relationships That Hurt: When Enough Is Enough

“Relationships are like glass. Sometimes it’s better to leave them broken than hurt yourself trying to put it back together.” ~Unknown

There was a time when I was quite black-and-white with relationships. I either trusted you implicitly, assuming you’d never intentionally hurt me, or believed you wanted to cause me pain and questioned everything you did.

Once you moved yourself into the latter category, there was no going back.

Eventually, I realized I was limiting my relationships by not recognizing the grey area, where people are human, they make mistakes, and they need forgiveness and understanding.

From there I swung the pendulum the other way—I trusted everyone. I refused to consider that someone’s actions might reflect that they didn’t truly care. And I stayed in a lot of unhealthy relationships while making excuses for people.

I wanted them to care. I wanted to believe they valued me—that it only meant I was interpreting incorrectly if their actions seemed to suggest otherwise.

But this is where it gets confusing. On the one hand, we often create a lot of meaning in our heads that isn’t really there. We may feel convinced someone intended to be rude, inconsiderate, or thoughtless when really that wasn't the case.

On the other hand, sometimes actions speak louder than words, and our interpretations may be accurate.

Sometimes someone is knowingly hurtful or neglectful. We need to be able to recognize that or we’ll end up feeling disempowered, disrespected, and stuck.

So how do you know when to stay and when to walk away? How do you know when you’re not reading into things too much, or being too paranoid, or making mountains out of molehills, but rather simply seeing things for what they are?

After placing myself in this situation more times than I’d like to count, I developed a little three-question guide that’s helped me recognize when enough is enough.

1. Do their actions frequently contradict their words?

Anyone can contradict themselves once or twice. We’re only human, and sometimes we make mistakes. It’s consistent behavior that conveys how someone really feels.

I once dated someone who regularly made no effort. But I wanted to believe he was a good guy going through a hard time, and that we could both be happy if I was there for him.

When he opened his door to greet me on Valentine’s Day wearing pajamas—at 7:00 at night—and then threw my card and chocolate rose in his bedroom, it was obvious that I was deluding myself.

This is a somewhat extreme example, but there were little signs in the months leading up to this—unreturned calls, broken dates, many conversations where he wasn’t really listening.

His actions consistently reinforced that he wasn’t open to the type of relationship I wanted, at least not with me. That didn’t mean he intended to hurt me, or that he was a bad guy. It just meant that he wasn’t available or interested in being there for me in the way I knew I needed.

Or more bluntly put: for whatever reason, he did not care.

Words can be deceiving, because sometimes when we lie to others it’s because we’re also lying to ourselves. Trust actions. That’s where the truth is.

2. Do you frequently make excuses for them, to yourself or others?

If you often find yourself in a position where you need to defend the other person, odds are there’s a consistently unacceptable behavior you’re trying to justify.

An old friend of mine once dated someone who’d get mean and nasty, mostly to her, but also to her friends. She’d explain how he’d had a difficult childhood, and that she wouldn’t walk out on him like everyone else had.

Admirable though that might have sounded, she communicated through her actions that it was okay for him to treat her badly—because of all he’d been through.

You might convince yourself that this person is just misunderstood, and that no one else wants to give them the compassion and support you’re willing to offer.

It’s great to be compassionate, but we need to be compassionate with ourselves first—and that means acknowledging what’s just not okay.

3. Does this person turn things around on you, as if their actions are your fault?

It can be difficult to recognize those consistently unacceptable actions if you convince yourself you’re somehow responsible for them.

You might tell yourself that they regularly ignore your needs because you’re too needy. Or they belittle you because you’ve made mistakes in the past.

In other words, you might justify their mistreatment because they try to make you feel like you’re the “wrong one” or the “crazy one.”

When someone truly cares, they don’t use your mistakes or imperfections to justify neglect or emotional blackmail.

I formerly found myself in quite a few relationships like this, likely because I was recreating the dynamics of a core relationship from my childhood.

There came a point when I realized that people who truly respected me would encourage me to grow, but they wouldn’t let my weaknesses become an excuse to intimidate or disparage me.

No matter what you’ve done or how you sometimes struggle, you deserve to be in healthy relationships with people who treat you well.

In retrospect, I realize I lied to myself repeatedly because I felt unworthy. It was hard to believe that last part—that I hadn’t somehow brought painful situations on myself.

Considering all the baggage I carried around, I felt fortunate to be in relationships at all.

You may have far greater self-esteem than I did before, but you may still find yourself feeling confused and conflicted in relationships. It can be tough to see things for what they are when we’re emotionally involved and invested.

When in doubt, step back and ask yourself, “What would I tell a friend if s/he were in my shoes?”

Odds are, you’d know the truth, and the wisest thing to do. The question now becomes: Can you treat yourself kindly and walk away from what you know isn’t right?

Photo by Liam Liberty

About Lori Deschene

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha and Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. Her latest bookTiny Buddha's Gratitude Journal, which includes 15 coloring pages, is now available for purchase. For daily wisdom, follow Tiny Buddha on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram..

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  • TurtleRabbit

    Have been dealing with this exact thing recently. (#3 to be specific) I left, but I’m still trying to unravel the confusion that it has left me with. Yes, hurt people hurt people, but c’mon… Where is that line? Did my compassion fail? Why did I let the abuse affect me? Breath in the pain, breath out the love… Thanks for the post. Perfect timing, as always.

  • It’s amazing how this article just ‘appeared’ exactly when I needed to read it. Thank you, Lori. I think you and I are soul sisters.


    I couldn’t have asked for this post at a more relevant time. I can answer a resounding YES to all of the questions above for my last relationship and that’s the reason I left, but still, I grieve the loss of this person deeply. Even though I let him repeatedly hurt me, I miss him so much. And I know it’s because I don’t have any self compassion and I don’t love myself enough — but how can you treat yourself kindly when you’re so entrenched in grief you can barely get up in the morning?

  • Coincidental? I was talking on the phone to girlfriend asking myself the same question. How do I know when it’s me and when it’s NOT? The answer to the 3 questions resonated as did the statement that you deserve a healthy relationship. I have been in a marriage for 15 years and the past 5 have been very trying. This was perfect timing. Thanks….

  • Erica

    I feel similarly – the end of a brief but exciting relationship about six months ago threw me into a horrible depression. I have missed him every day since and blame only myself for the sequence of events that led to him leaving. I’ve realized that the reason I allowed this person to treat me so terribly to begin with is my lack of self-love and self-acceptance, but instead of taking the wonderful advice in this article and searching for someone who truly loves me and is compatible with me I’ve convinced myself that I am too broken and that I’ve made too many mistakes to move forward. I still believe I am unworthy of love and the idea of a healthy relationship is so foreign to me that I wouldn’t even know how to describe one.

    I have begun seeing a psychiatrist and psychotherapist to deal with what I now realize is an illness, and it’s begun to help a little. If you truly can’t get out of bed for days or weeks (or months) on end, I think you might seek some help as well.

  • Another great article, Lori! Thanks…

  • C

    I just had this exact epiphany yesterday regarding a relationship I’m in… and then this post appears in my life this morning as if the universe is endorsing my decision to let go. Thank you!

  • Navy

    Great post! I’ve had a lifelong struggle with low self-esteem, which has stemmed from my childhood and I still deal with in my adult life. I’ve also had bouts of depression where I felt very unloved, unworthy and that I was never good enough or desirable for anyone. I’ve always put others needs above my own and still do. Through making others happy and pleasing them, I was happy. When it wasn’t always reciprocated, I felt horrible. It wasn’t until just recently while seeing meeting someone that I realized the root of my problem. I don’t love myself enough, I’m not happy with my life and the way it is. I feel unworthy because I feel I’m not good enough for the other person, who has a great life, great achievements and dreams. I needed to stop comparing myself to other people.

    I read somewhere that even with friends and family around that love and care for you, and if you’re still wallowing and feeling low because that one person doesn’t love you back, it shows how much you don’t love yourself. It’s a reflection of that. That’s when I realized it. At the end of the day, we all have to do what’s best for us and our interests. Others do it, so why shouldn’t I? I’ve always been one to stay and be loyal, while I found others just left me. I couldn’t cut off from someone, even if I hated them. I forgive others and give second chances. I find life is too short to stay angry and that forgiving allows me to move on and it’s easier.

    I still have moments where I feel upset or unworthy, not good enough. I’ve progressed a bit, but I get attached easily to others. Whether it’s friends or the men I’ve dated from my past. Keeping busy and progressing all that energy into a project does help. I need to love myself and it”s through focussing on my own life and needs, instead of dropping those plans to help others and put their needs before my own. Easier said than done for me because I love to help others more than myself, but I’m slowly dealing with it in my own way, day by day.

  • Apostro

    I love this post. It’s so true. Why do we make up excuses for others when we are treated badly? If someone loves you, he or she will respect you and there’s no excuse for bad behaviors

  • Very wise We will be sharing this on our Facebook Page “Heeling” serving woman who are recovering from Domestic Violence.

  • Hi Lori. I find that there seems to be a rule of twos in this area of relationships. “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” Another that springs to mind is the proverbial “second chance”. I’ve not seen an adage called “third chance” yet, but feel it may be properly wrapped up in the three strike rule. Definitely out! Third-time loser and all that.

    The truth lies between the lines in conscientious treatment of those who opt in and out of our lives. Sometimes we care too much, transcending the attention we should be paying to our own sense of well-being. I have known people who cut their losses and run at first sight of impropriety. Then there are their diametric opposites…the ones who soak up the abuse for any amount of reasons and rationale.

    I love “Does this person turn things around on you, as if their actions are your fault?” It says so much so well. A recurrent refrain for this is “You make me feel…” or “You made me do…”. When you (or I) become the recipient of projected maltreatment, it is time to get off the merry-go-round. That person has clearly indicated co-dependency and lack of responsibility for his/her actions. Walking away is the best thing that can be done for BOTH parties. Perhaps the loss will be a wake-up call; at the very least, the cycle is broken.

    Thanks for this. It is definitely a telling gauge of our authenticity when we can sift through the situation in a rational manner and exact our own truth in how we live out our relationships.

    ~ Mark

  • Jen

    Wonderful, as always. Just had someone last week tell me that he couldn’t believe I “convinced” him to be intimate. I had spent months excusing his rude behavior. Won’t do it anymore!

  • Icecreambubbletea

    Thank you for the post. It made me tear…It somehow describes me too in some ways. I had a few relationships too… I decided to let go the last relationship as I felt that I really had enough… Still recovering from a broken heart now…

  • You are most welcome. I’m glad you were able to let go of that unhealthy relationship, even if it was hard!

  • You’re most welcome. It’s such an insightful and compassionate realization–that hurt people hurt people–but that doesn’t mean we have to allow them to continually hurt us. I love the idea of breathing out pain and breathing in love. I’m sending good thoughts your way!

  • You’re most welcome Ashley!

  • I second Erica’s suggestion Raala I saw a therapist for years when I was younger, and it really helped me move forward in my healing. I actually wrote a post related to break-ups that you might find helpful:

    I think getting past a break-up is similar to grieving a death. The initial stages are the hardest, but things get easier with time!

  • You’re most welcome Amy. I think the longer you’ve been in a relationship, the harder it can be to see things clearly. I’m glad this was helpful to you.

  • Thank you and you’re most welcome!

  • That’s great you’ve had this realization, and you’ve chosen to move on. I know it isn’t always easy to do that!

  • You’re most welcome. I’m so happy for you, that you’re moving on and opening yourself up to something better!

  • Thanks Richard. I hope your Facebook community finds it helpful!

  • Absolutely! Oprah said, “We teach people how to treat us,” and I think it’s so true. It can be so hard to speak up or walk away when someone treats us poorly, but I’ve found we lose respect for ourselves when we don’t.

  • You’re most welcome Mark! That’s been a big lesson for me, about the “you make me feel” language. I find that taking responsibility for my own feelings makes conflict resolution so much easier, in all relationships!

  • I am so grateful for Lori Deschene! This post is spot on and will help many people who are experiencing this right now. I am glad u were born Lori xxx

  • Just A. Guy

    Buried in #1 and #2 is a common relationship mistake: assuming that our presence will change the other person. (“we could both be happy if I was there for him”; “she wouldn’t walk out on him like everyone else had”)

    Personally, I got myself into a very sorry state with this one a few years back. The “aha” moment came on a phone call, when I recognized we were having the same argument for about the 1,200th time, and it occurred to me that we would continue having this for however long we were in each others lives. It was very calming to realize her behaviour had nothing to do with me, I was just there. (Unless she’s done some serious work on herself, she’s probably treating whoever is currently in her life in a similar manner as I type this!) I went over to her house, against her objections, ave her a big hug, told her I loved her and that I never wanted to see her again. She thanked me. I went home on the same bus transfer.

    Flash forward a few years: married, kids, the type of life I’ve always wanted. But I could not have had it without letting go of the assumption that I could somehow change my old flame.

  • Lori, when you think about all the relationships we have throughout our lives your message is really critical and spills into so many aspects of our lives.

    We can struggle with our parental relationships, our siblings, our “best friends” our spouses, fiance’s, and boy/girl friends. Your tips apply across the board!

    I’ve often struggled with giving too much benefit of the doubt. Especially in work relationships where you also want to “make something work” so badly you overlook obvious signs. Like you said, having that kind of neediness stems from certain insecurities and you’re really expecting others to prop you up. That’s never a good way to grow!

  • vernette

    Lori, what I love about this post, is that it relates to all relationships we find ourselves in, parents, siblings, friends as well as significant others.
    “There came a point when I realized that people who truly respected me would encourage me to grow; but they wouldn’t let my weaknesses become an excuse to intimidate or disparage me.

    No matter what you’ve done or how you sometimes struggle, you deserve to be in healthy relationships with people who treat you well.”
    This resonates with me deeply. In the last year of my life, I have had to make difficult yet freeing choices about the people I allow into my life and what I tolerate from them. We create our lives and we create the love in it too. We teach people how to treat us. I’ve found that the people closest to me are the ones who hurt me the most but “closeness” is not an excuse to hurt or a justification for that hurt.
    Thanks for sharing this.

  • Excellent post. It takes two people to make a relationship work – but if one of them isn’t putting in the effort, overcompensation by the other partner can’t convert a bad relationship into a good one. And even if we “win” a relationship where we are doing all the hard work, and the other person is slacking off and has our implied permission to treat us badly, we’re not getting what we need or want.

  • Terri Dziak

    omg. this just absolutely struck a cord with me. i have been in a relationship, off and on for 7 long years. we would break up, get back together, break up, get back together and so the cycle continued. i was often lead to believe that i was worthless, and often faulted for mistakes i made at a young age. i now am at a point in my life that i am VERY excited about new beginnings and feel so good about myself. i know that i am on the way to the best years of my life. it has taken me a long time to get here, but i feel it. part of it, is being secure with yourself, and more importantly happy with yourself! i cant tell you how many times i was made to feel bad about myself, but now realize, it was this other person’s own insecurities and narcissism that lead me to feel that way. happy 2013 and thank you for sharing and clarifying! it has come at a point in my life that i am looking at all wake up calls!

  • terri

    omg. this just absolutely struck a cord with me. i have been in a relationship, off and on for 7 long years. we would break up, get back together, break up, get back together and so the cycle continued. i was often lead to believe that i was worthless, and often faulted for mistakes i made at a young age. i now am at a point in my life that i am VERY excited about new beginnings and feel so good about myself. i know that i am on the way to the best years of my life. it has taken me a long time to get here, but i feel it. part of it, is being secure with yourself, and more importantly happy with yourself! i cant tell you how many times i was made to feel bad about myself, but now realize, it was this other person’s own insecurities and narcissism that lead me to feel that way. happy 2013 and thank you for sharing and clarifying! it has come at a point in my life that i am looking at all wake up calls!

  • Thank you so much, and you are most welcome!

  • I’m sure that must have been difficult, even after 1,200 similar arguments. It always seems that next time things will be different. That’s wonderful, that you found the strength to walk away and opened yourself up to something better!

  • I could relate to a lot of what you wrote Navy, about self-esteem issues from childhood, attaching to other people, and going through periods of depression. I see it as a lifelong process, this whole self-love thing. I actually wrote about that in a different post, if you’re interested in reading it:

  • Bri

    A truly valuable piece of writing! Thank you! I had been guided by principles and mutual respect all my life. Despite my shyness I managed to pick the right people and build healthy relationships. They were founded on trust and reciprocity.
    However, my working relationships were not that healthy. I deterred confrontation because I did not know how to defend myself. I avoided making scenes because I thought that the work place was not the right place to get emotional. I did not have friends among my colleagues but I did not have enemies either.
    Deep down I was confident in my skills and abilities. On the surface, my behavior used to signal otherwise.
    Somehow, I was perfectly OK with my life as it was until the two worlds collided. This happened 6 years ago. Initially, I was furious then I felt betrayed by my closest ones. Colleagues abused me. My personal relationships were not healthy any more. Suddenly, no one was there for me.
    However, over time I found my way. I learned how to be myself with different groups of people. I got rid of my shyness. It’s true that I still learn how to defend my positions better but I know that the worst is in the past. I know that I’m not going to stay in shade any more.

  • It’s funny how sometimes obvious signs don’t seem as obvious when you don’t want to see them! That’s how it’s been for me. I’ve been in that “want to make things work” place many times before, and I know all about acting from a place of neediness. You’re right–not a great way to grow!

  • You’re most welcome Vernette. I’m sure it wasn’t easy to make those choices. That’s great you were able to set those boundaries for yourself!

  • That “implied permission” part really resonated with me. I used to think that so long as I expressed my anger toward someone, I was letting them know their actions weren’t okay. Then I realized that every time I carried on like nothing had happened, I essentially communicated it was okay to repeatedly hurt me. I didn’t have the strength or courage to walk away or set clear boundaries, but once I did it once, I realized I could and needed to do it again (in any unhealthy relationship).

  • You’re most welcome Terri, and congrats on all your new beginnings! That’s wonderful, that you’ve gotten out of that unhealthy relationship and you’re now feeling good about yourself! =)

  • You’re most welcome Bri! I think confrontation in general is difficult, but it can be even more challenging in work relationships. Congrats on overcoming your shyness. =)

  • Liz Roberts

    Hi Lori, another great post! And a good personal refresher for me as well being in situations where I can now, looking back, hear myself saying over and over “But he’s… yes, but he’s just… but…” yikes too many buts along the way! I will carry with me the word in your post, and really start to listen to that little voice inside that knows wrong is wrong… many blessing to you this holiday season Lori and warm wishes to you and yours for a New Year filled with light, love and much joy! Liz

  • Thanks Liz! I have said those things many times in the past as well. Sending love and light back to you!

  • Icecreambubbletea

    dear lori,
    thanks for your kind words..ive forgive all who have hurt me.. im still struggling to forgive myself from the previous relationship.. i hate myself for bringing myself into a heart break.. ive been reading articles after articles from tinybuddha and some other sites…. but still finding it tough to forgive myself….life has been tough.. but at least some articles here help me get by the day… thank you…

  • Julia

    Thank you so much for this post. Life gave me three wonderful oportunities to learn to say enough is enough, this is not what I want. And I failed the “test” twice, but like they say “third time’s the charm”. I was a bit afraid but love and respect for myself was stronger. I discovered that when you do the right thing, truly the right thing, when you listen to your heart, you feel in peace and relieved.

  • You’re most welcome Julia. So true. Nothing feels better than taking care of yourself, even if it’s hard!

  • Heather K

    Wow! This post spoke to me. With everything that is going on with my divorce, I look back on my marriage and all three of the questions apply to my husband. 1) His actions didn’t match his words – he was telling me he loved me while he was having an affair. 2) I constantly made excuses for his behavior – he is depressed, work is not going well, etc. and 3), everything is my fault. His affair, our marital problems, his bad relationship with our son, his mistress breaking up with him. All my fault.
    Great post!!

  • Thank you Heather. I’m so sorry to hear about your divorce, but happy for you that you’ve gotten out of that unhealthy relationship!

  • Jigz

    I came across this blog last week only as I like to read self help books and blogs online in my commute. This blog has very interesting post and points that many of us do not necessary focus on our fast pace life…My favorite part on this blog so far is “part 1. Do their actions frequently contradict their words?” from this entry…RELATIONSHIPS THAT HURT: WHEN ENOUGH IS ENOUGH

    It’s very true that, often we ignore clear facts and clues in life and evaluate situation around us with emotion and attachments. We drag ourselves into sad situation and blame ourselves at the end. Nothing wrong with us, but the we either do not focus on those clues that others sends us or clearly not ready to accept the facts. I love this part 1 and definitely helped me evaluate some of my situations at work, and personal life. You need honest people around you who has only 1 face.

    Thanks Lori for great content on this blog and looking forward to read and learn more from this. Thanks for offering a chance to participate in this giveaway contest as well.

  • You are most welcome. I heard a line in a movie recently that really resonated with me. A woman was talking about her father, how he’d suddenly stopped coming around when she was a kid. (He was actually married to someone other than her mother and had a whole other family).

    She said the crazy part was that she didn’t ask herself, “What’s wrong with him?” She asked herself, “What’s wrong with me?” I suspect a lot of us do that. It’s so liberating to realize we don’t have to take blame for other people’s actions. We’re not responsible for what other people do.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  • Stephanie

    I feel as if this response was written by me…word for word. I could have sworn that I loved myself. Look at how much I love others. Is it true that I don’t? Could that be the missing link in it all?
    Thank you for posting.

  • tough to walk away when there is a child involved .

  • Hi Jay,

    I don’t yet have children, but I can only imagine how tough it is to make a decision like this when there are children involved. I suspect a child is better off with two parents separated, if they create an unhealthy environment by virtue of being together, but I know I can’t really understand until I am in that situation.

    You are in my thoughts.


  • Great question to pose! What would I tell a friend? That she deserves better. She deserves to be happy. To have someone that truly values her enough to make a genuine commitment.
    Excellent thought provoking article.

  • SoulSearching

    i personally love this post and i keep reading it again n again now and then…i m going through a tough relationship phase right what are the options when answer to all the above questions is you are married to that person and have two kids. is it easy to walk away? i think the biggest hurt in a relationship is ‘being taken for granted’ and if you realize that your lifepartner actually doesnt need you, it burns your soul and smother your belief in every relationship and feeling in life…

  • Thanks Token! That question always helps me make wiser decisions, because I’m generally better at advising people I care about than identifying what’s right for me. It becomes a lot clearer when I step outside myself!

  • Hi there,

    I’ve actually had a few people ask me about what to do if they’re married and have kids, and the short answer is that I really don’t know. I am not married (and not sure I ever will get married), so it’s hard for me to speak to this, though I can understand the complexity involved when there are children.

    I personally suspect children are better off with two happy, separated parents than two parents who unhappily stay together as to not tear apart a family. A relative of mine divorced her first husband (he left her), and of course it was hard on her kids, but later in life she met a man who loved her in the way she deserved. Then they had more children together, and he was/is a wonderful father, and stepfather to her first two children.

    I am so happy for her that she was able to create that new life, and a much happier relationship. She deserves that. We all do.

    You are in my thoughts!


  • Michelle

    Wow! This article explained why I ended a lot of my friendships last year. One of which, fit into number one and three. She was a childhood friend so I continually let things slide..after all, we were ‘friends’ forever! But when she ignored me when I needed to talk to her repeatedly and then attacked me by saying things like ‘Michelle, I can’t just DROP everything and answer an email or call you’ a little bell went off in my head. The problem was that she was NEVER replying to emails (which I sent because I thought it might be easier for her to answer than a call) or available for my calls – and the excuses were endless – apparently she worked 24/7 and I was the jerk who didn’t understand. I finally text her (since she never had time to talk) and said ‘obviously this friendship isnt’ working out for either of us. I don’t think we should be friends anymore’. She replied by again, attacking me and that’s when I pulled the plug. I had other friendships that I ended after doing a great deal of work on myself and learning to love myself, most were older friendships from a time when I hated myself and these people supported my insecurities. It’s essential to have people around you who believe in you and support you especially during vulnerable times otherwise they pull you back.

  • I’ve had similar experiences! When I thought the least of myself, I had a lot of friendships with people who thought just as little of me. It was like I purposely got myself into these relationships to confirm what I believed about myself (that i didn’t deserve better). It’s such an empowering feeling to walk away and confirm to ourselves that we are worthy of so much more!

  • Evie

    Hi Lori,

    I subscribed to Tiny Buddha just over two years ago when I was going through some stuff and it has helped me so much over the course of this period so thank you, your time and energy is so appreciated. It’s amazing what you do!

    I wanted to share something with you maybe just to tell someone who has done a lot of work on themselves. I have a friend who fell in love with me just over a year ago and there was a time when I thought we could have something. I later realised that something deep inside was saying no. I thought perhaps we could be friends. I find that he is is really scared of loosing me and panics everytime he thinks I am distancing myself. I am often told I am responsible for his anxieties for not getting back to him. I am not how he needs me to be or he would never treat me how I treat him. He turns to me everytime he is going through something and this seems to be often. Because I feel bad these utterances usually command a response and get my attention. I want to walk away but I feel like I’m being selfish and not doing my service to humanity?! I have ignored his many texts and calls for a week or more now. This has happened before but I have always gone back or our talk has resulted in us speaking once more! I am considering writing hom a letter because I know he would do everything in his power to prevent me from walking out if I was to see him and talk face to face. I guess I just feel really guilty about this and what I want to do and what I have

  • Evie

    wanted to do for some time. Any response would be very much appreciated. I thank you for your contributions to the world. Love Evie x

  • Hi Evie,

    You’re most welcome! I can understand why this would be difficult for you. Based on what you wrote, I don’t feel you’re being selfish. It sounds like you’re trying to listen to your instincts about what’s best for you. So long as you’re clear with him, so he knows what you feel and where you stand, I don’t personally think there’s anything wrong with making a choice based on what feels right for you.

    That’s my take on it!


  • Alexa

    Hi Bri – I just wanted to say that I was in a situation that sounds like it was similar to this. I was shy, but had a good set of friends at school. Suddenly, I was hunted down like an animal…preyed upon, by teachers and higher ups in the school’s administration…even though I hadn’t done a single thing. It was very weird, but I think that they got their kicks so to speak, off of hurting and abusing me, a very young female shy quiet student. This may be very different from your situation, but I just wanted to say that I have experienced abuse by colleagues and then abandonment by my friends, and at the time when I needed them the most. It inspires me to read that you’ve become stronger and learned how to defend yourself. I can’t say the same for myself, but I do have hope that it will happen soon.

  • RJ

    Wow. My thoughts & situation exactly. It is that greater power telling me all will be ok. In tears, thank you all

  • dolfin

    “What would I tell a friend if s/he were in my shoespecially ?”
    The answer is there….I just needed to read this blog to accept n implement. It is not easy because you want the relationship to work but one has to listen to the answer n move on. Thank you for writing this n gratitude to the universe for bringing it to me at this point in time.

  • A


    Thank you for this post – it truly hit home for me. I recently broke up, for good, with my on and off again boyfriend of almost 5 years. He’d always had a bit of a bad temper, but as time went on, it got worse and worse – he began to get just inches away from my face and scream profanities at me in the midst of an argument, belittle my feelings and threaten to leave the relationship time and time again. I, as you described, began to think of myself as “the crazy one” and continually made excuses to my friends and family that validated his behavior – “we were both just drunk”, or “I probably set him off”, things like that. However, I would continuously recognize/apologize for the times in which I was in the wrong, but I hardly got any remorse from him, especially in the tail end of our relationship – everything was always MY fault. A big validation of how angry he would get became the fact that his dad died (when we were in college) and ever since then he’s been fragile and easily upset. I completely recognize that this was a heartbreaking tragedy, and absolutely one of the worst things that can happen to a person, at any age. I began to walk on eggshells and never wanted to bring up a concern I was having because I did not want to make him angry, which is very unhealthy and definitely affected my self-esteem and overall mind-set. But I’ve realized that there is NO reason or excuse to treat someone you claim to love so disrespectfully and so aggressively, no matter what the issue being argued over is. I am proud of myself that I had the strength to finally walk away. Posts like yours are what help me and others going through similiar toxic relationships to stay confident in our judgments and to realize that we deserve so much better.

  • I’m so glad you were able to walk away! I’m sure it was even more difficult, knowing the tragedy he’d been through–but you’re absolutely right. That doesn’t justify mistreating you.

  • Hopekeeper

    Ugh I know but I don’t know makes for a lot of late nights and a lot of different emotions

  • Ms Nono

    Hi Lori,

    i am so struggling to come to terms with my break up. i admit i made a mistake to jump into another relationship without being purely healed. In the interim i lost my baby father and fell inlove with some one who was a divorcee.

    He seemed like he cared and wanted to be with me but changed over night.

    i have made so may excuses for his behaviour that now i have lost count. i wanted him to love me because he made me believe that there is life outside my very toxic but bearable relationship with my baby father. i have never been alone and somehow i am scared to be. right now i am a single mother with a very broken heart. always in fights with my baby father because he blames me for the breakup and now he is threatening to take my baby away.
    i am so lost i feel alone at times, i have prayed so hard but i some how feel like the prayers do not go anywhere as the hurt is always on my shoulders.
    i feel like taking about my problems is really starting to even bore my friends and families. my most question is whether there is anything wrong with me. i have so much low esteem that i am not even enjoying life anymore.
    i feel angry at myself cause i am not stupid but i was stupid enough to believe in this two men.
    i am truelly out of my depth. i need help

  • I am so sorry to hear about what you’re going through. I don’t think you were stupid or that there’s anything wrong with you; you’re human, like all of us, and sometimes relationships are hard–I imagine even harder when there are children involved. Have you considered seeing a therapist to work through your feelings? I’m sure your friends and family aren’t bored, but sometimes it really helps to have an objective ear. I know it helped me a great deal!

  • Sue

    So difficult! Following Buddhism has improved my growth and ability to handle situations greatly, however, I battle with the direct conflict between these two thoughts 1) being happy with what I have right now, because everything right now is exactly how it’s meant to be (this thought serves me well and has been the basis of recovery from much depression and anxiety in my life) to….hang on a minute, this person doesn’t need me anymore.

    The whole basis of improvement in my negative thoughts, has been to be happy with what I have and not make mistakes of keep changing and dropping things (like I have done in the past) in search of things that are better. When it feels like my partner acts like I’m not important anymore (after nearly 5 years) It clashes my the two beliefs together. ..Don’t settle for less than you’re worth, but don’t disregard what you already have as not being good enough. It’s really very difficult!

  • I actually found this post by accident. I took what you had to say Lori and posted on my personal blog along with my opinion. Check it out.

    Relationships: Battling of Minds. Gerald Smart Versus Lori Deschene

  • Thanks for sharing the link Gerald! It seems we have similar opinions on the matter. I’m glad you found the post helpful and I appreciate that you shared your thoughts!

  • Sad and Worried

    Thank you for this post.. I’m currently struggling with a decision about my 7-year marriage in which I have two small children.. My husband has had infidelities both real and online emotionally, and has addictive tendencies toward things like alcohol or sleeping pulls, which is a huge problem for me. He continues to lie and tonight I stumbled across a recently filled prescription he’d hidden as well as a membership to an online flirting site… This all while both of us are going to individual counseling in attempts to improve our relationship and ourselves

  • Hmm it looks like my post hasn’t been approved or it was deleted. Hmmmm?

  • Hi Gerald,

    It’s two comments below this one, and I responded to it! =)


  • You’re most welcome. I’m so sorry to hear about what’s been going on with your husband. I hope counseling helps him work through these issues, both for his own well-being and for your relationship!

  • Craig Alexander McLaren

    Amazing how true ur message is, I never took myself for low self esteem but here I am writing this post. My wife whome I try to defend keeps letting me down in each and every way, I found a video of her and another man whome she was apparently datin when I broke up with her bc of past actions. I know what I would tell myself and I always justify her actions for a reason il never understand. I just wan to b happy I guess, thought I could change her but as u said give urself the advise u would give others and u will know the answer. I am sue everyone who reads this post is going through something so my advice to them and to myself is be happy, take ur own advise and if u think something is not right don’t justify it, move on to someone who is truely worth it bc deep down I think we all know that we should move on

  • Blast from the past

    Wow Ashley, all theses years go by and now the irony in it all is very amusing. I guess it is true, “the apple does not fall far from the tree”. Best of luck with your divorce, I’m sure you have already moved onto “greener pastures”.

  • I’m so sorry to hear about your wife, Craig. That’s excellent advice!

  • alias

    I hated how the mother I love (but no longer have any respect for) treated me throughout my childhood and continues to do so till this day when she gets the chance which is not often at all. It used to make me seriously consider two things; should i choose to live and run by which i was thinking of asking for help from outside (school had Councillor who would often call me to speak to them but I somehow felt I was betraying mom if I did) or just to quit this life and see if I can get reborn somewhere happier. Then I met someone who I thought was an angel sent by god, for the first time someone accepted my everything and complimented on me . that used to be a big thing. a simple compliment for what I did, said, wore, made. well, time went by and one day, I notice myself behaving just like I do in presence of mom when he is around, like a sad dog constantly minding your mood. he was constantly doing the tsk sound with tongue to let me know he was irritated. he was the sort of a person who is this quiet nice to all outside, but at home he somehow feels very important and is just in bad mood to make you try your best comforting him, serving his majesty. I tried to let him know I was moving away, which to my surprise also made him decide to move with me, to the opposite side of the country! I then decided to not go. It was the best thing Ive ever done for myself. being alone is no where near as sad as being with someone who you just cant be happy with, or in my case who just cant be happy with me.

  • Stuff

    Thank you very much for this!!!! It is EXACTLY what I needed!

  • You’re most welcome. I’m glad it helped!

  • Nathan Burns

    So my girlfriend Isabella cheated on me.. It’s ripping me into pieces. I loved her more then anything in the world. She was my life. Is it wrong that I feel like I want to die because of how much she hurt me?

  • Hi Nathan,

    I’m so sorry to hear about what happened. I don’t think it’s wrong to feel devastated; most people would–but I hope you aren’t seriously considering taking your life. Are you?

    Incidentally, you may want to share your story in the Tiny Buddha forums to gain advice and support from the community. It’s a really loving space! It’s free to join here:

    Then you can access the forums here:

    You are in my thoughts…


  • Nathan Burns

    Not anymore. I just lost my mind yesterday. But you know, I just don’t see how anyone could do that to somebody.

  • Has she explained what motivated her to do it?

  • Nathan Burns

    No I haven’t been able to speak with her. She got sent to an insane asylum and I found out yesterday. It’s one of those places where np contact is allowed with the outside world.

  • I know it likely doesn’t make it any easier, but this gives some more context into where her head was at. She clearly hasn’t been in the greatest mental space. I hope she gets the help she needs, and that, in time, you’re able to heal and make peace with all this. Sending good thoughts your way…

  • kellydenihan

    my husband brought another woman in my home ,,my bed..its been a year chocking down his lies . hes told me repeatedly he does not care…stupid here…im moving on finally,,,,

  • I am so sorry to hear about what happened Kelly–but glad you are moving on! I can only imagine how tough this has been for you. You are in my thoughts…

  • Sally Brown

    Gosh, Lori this is such a great post. I really love your last line about stepping back and asking what I would tell a friend in my shoes. I would tell her that she is worthy of a healthy, compassionate, lovely person in her life and not what she has. Your website is so great. I have it saved in my favorite whenever I need some inspiration. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are making such a difference in the world!

  • You’re most welcome, and thanks so much, Sally! It means the world to me to know the site makes a positive difference. =)

  • anonymous

    Thanks to for At last my happiness has been restored by a Man named Dr olori ,, my name’s are miss KIRSTEN i want every one on this site or forum to join me thank this DR olori for what he just did for me and my kids . my story goes like this i was married to my husband for 5 years we were living happily together for this years and not until he traveled to Italy for a business trip where he met this prostitute who be witched he to hate me and the kids and love her only so when my husband came back from the trip he said he does not want to see me and my kids again so he drove us out of the house and he was now going to Italy for to see that other woman. so i and my kids were now so frustrated and i was just staying with my mum and i was not be treating good because my mama got married to another man when my after my daddy death so the man she got married to was not treating i and my kids well so i was so confuse and i was searching for a way to get my husband back to me and my kids so one day as i was browsing on my computer i saw a testimony about this MAN DR olori of shared on the internet by a lady and it impress me too so i also think of give it a try at first a was scared by when i think of what me and my kids are passing through so i contact him and he told me to stay calm for just two days that my husband shall be restored to me and to my best surprise i received a call from my husband on the second day asking after the kids and i called Dr olori and he said your problems are solved my child so this was how i get my family back after a long stress of brake up by an evil lady so with all this help from DR olori of i want you all on this forum to join me to say a huge thanks to olori and i will also advice for any one in such or similar problems or any kind of problems should also contact him for help
    Good bye

  • I

    As I sit here reeling from a recent argument with my boyfriend and realizing I just spent 30 mins in the shower crying… I am wondering… why is it so hard for me to just give up? The excuses I have made are.. we’ve come so far, he loves my child, I love his. Yet… I am broken. I keep trying and seem to be failing. Todays argument was about a FB post, he thought I was salivating over a celebrity when I posted a song and said” It’s getting sexy in here!”… what I meant was… the song was sexy. He went off and said that he was hurt and couldn’t understand why I followed artists. As if I could even get with one…. or want a celebrity! It was the most ridiculous argument ever. He said the fact that I was upset was because I was guilty … but I was MAD because it was so Stupid! I don’t know if that’s normal guy behavior or what!? Maybe I did mess up but his reaction was so ridiculous.

  • Eric

    I have been dating an amazing woman for the past few months. We recently decided that it would be a good thing for me to move from Wisconsin to the Chicago area. I decided to move and have been living with her for the past month. The problem I have is that she suffers from depression. She is very moody and shuts down. Countless hours just wanting to sleep. She feels she is broken and has nothing to give to the relationship. She gets very overwhelmed with simple tasks and in turn makes her very standoffish. I want her to know how much I love her and how much I want to be there for her. I understand depression is an illness! Someone please help me! I really love this woman. I truly want to spend my life with her. Depression is an illness. I am not willing to turn my back on her. Deep down I know we can have an amazing life!

  • Tania

    Hi, are you still responding to this site

  • Brevity

    This is very sweet, and helped me on a very tough night at a very tough time. He walked out a month ago tonight.

    He did threaten me before the break-up. I jokingly put my face close to his when we were in bed talking. He didn’t react then, but later he said that when I did that, he “had the instinct” to hit me. When I raised this in a post break-up row, he said I should have known not to do that to him, because he was in a bad mood. Now, I’d be fine with someone saying, at the time, that they objected. But to tell me coolly later that he’d thought of hitting me – that’s worrying. I became rather nervous of him after that. And I cannot conceive of ever wanting to physically hurt someone I loved.

    I have to keep reminding myself of this, because I can’t quite believe it happened. But as you say – What if a friend had told me that story about her boyfriend? Well, I’d be very worried.

    Would I say to someone, “There’s a man you should meet. He’s lovely and charming. He has a conviction for slapping a 16 year old girl, and he did threaten his girlfriend, but he can explain why he was in the right about all that.”?

    So it’s (a) Where did I learn to fancy such people and, (b) (much harder) how do I change that, and have love in my life one day, without the dangers, emotional and physical?

    Mentally scarred and very scared, both of others and my own inclinations.

  • Brevity

    Oh, I hope so.

  • Brevity

    Yes! I too thought I was “getting my point across” but I realise now that I was training him to treat me badly – just a bit of whining from the “missus” and then, business as usual. I didn’t walk away because I felt so much for him and I was scared (and still am) that I would never find anyone again. Then after the break-up, I had this phase of “understanding his problems” which I thought meant I could go back and make it work. But for my point of view, his problem was that he had no respect for me whatsoever by then. What a horrible mess it all is.

  • Siquando

    My ex partner left me in September. My mum died in 2011 and I didn’t deal with it properly….I realise now that my depression lead to a form of emotional abuse. Her ending our relationship was the right thing to do, because if we had carried on I would have damaged her and our children more….I’m so ashamed and embarrassed with my behaviour. I’m now taking a really active part in counselling and support groups to rebuild myself. She has moved on and met someone else who I hope treats her far better than I did during the last part of our 4 year relationship. I only want her to be happy and understand that she needs to be without me for that to happen.

    I have to deal with regret, remorse and guilt everyday….I ruined the love of my life.

  • Paradox Phrike

    I got all of these. What do I need to do now?

  • Hi Siquando,

    I am so sorry to hear about your losses. I know how easy it is to feel ashamed of yourself when you think you’ve made a big mistake, but from my vantage point you have a lot to be proud of.

    You’re incredibly self-aware, you’re working hard to heal from the pain of your grief, and you want for your ex-partner’s happiness, when you could easily be bitter and resentful. It may take a while to release your regret, guilt, and remorse, but if you keep doing what you’re doing, I’m sure you will. I’m also sure you deserve that. You didn’t act as you did because you’re a bad person. You were going through a tough time and doing the best you could.

    I wish you continued healing and boundless self-love. You are in my thoughts…


  • rach

    You know what you are talking about through experience and I agree with you 100%.

  • chaz

    Hi there.. exactly the same thing has happened to me word for word ur using and for the same reasons though it was his mum.
    You just cannot reason with them
    . Did he realize in the what he lost and want u bk? then it was too late i moved on?


    I am here to testify on how Dr Lawrence help me to bring back my ex-husband who left me 3 months ago i got his email on the internet on an article how he had help so many people,so i emailed the Dr and tell my problems to him and after that day he gave me assurance of 3days,to my greatest surprise my husband came back to me in third day of contacting him,i want to say a very big thank you to

  • Anonymous.

    Most people will not and do not care about your feelings or your needs.
    The best way to be responsible is to let people be who they are and rely on them as little as possible.t

  • awakening1

    This 100% me. I have committed myself to being single for at least a year. I won’t even date. I am about to heal my self-esteem issues, learn to be alone and love myself for once in my life. I know when someone is wrong and when they don’t deserve me. I refuse to accept it any longer.

  • Jay


    I have been experiencing the same thing.
    An ex-boyfriend left me. So many details, so painful. He left without a word. I battle with myself over my parts and his. It hurts very much. Very very much.
    I’m sorry about your pain. I really understand.

    – J

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for this – I don’t know how I didn’t come across it before. I too stayed longer than I should in a relationship, because I didn’t feel I deserved any better. Odd thing is though, is the longer I stayed, the more he broke me. I worry that I am broken forever. But I work every day to get stronger, meet healthier people, and I am hoping with time to put it behind me. Finding this site has given me some comfort, and I thank you for that. Truly.

  • You’re most welcome. I’m glad the site has been helpful to you–and I’m inspired by what you wrote about working to get stronger every day. I think that’s the best any of us can do. Sending good thoughts your way…

  • samantha

    I agree that’s exactly how my boyfriend asks we have been together for two years now on my last birthday he didn’t get me anything or take me anywhere and he kept yelling at me and making mean comments i have been diagnosed with endometriosis and when I’m in bad pain and need him he isn’t there for me won’t help me and he definitely ain’t there emotionally

  • Jack

    My girlfriend said that to me many times “as if i could even get with one(celebrity)”. As silly as it sounds, that made me feel like i was just a substitute and started questioning what is going on in her mind, does she really like me or just find it convenient.

  • sean

    All relationships involve dissonance and conflict. It is what keeps them unfolding and developing. Keeps them alive. As soon as we get emotionally involved with others, we make ourselves liable to being hurt after rejection or loss. I think it is naive to think otherwise. If we live or try to live without being hurt, then we are not putting our whole being into the relationships in our life. Pain of rejection or loss is just an intrinsic part of life and we have to learn to live with it and assimilate its specifics as a learning experience. But we cannot avoid it. Only if we are dead does it end.

  • britt

    Thank you for this post, this is exactly what I needed to see. I too, have had a lifelong struggle with self-esteem and depression. I’ve always tried to be the “fixer” in relationships and need validation of love. Unfortunately, my need for validation made me stay in relationships with emotional unavailable men. My current situation has been going on for a year. I lost my job shortly into the relationship and he stepped up to take care of me and the bills despite his age (he’s younger than me). For this I feel that I owe him the world and I look past a lot of things that I know I shouldn’t. He’s struggled with drug abuse throughout our relationship and I just learned he had been doing coke for the past month and pissing away money. He has lied over and over to my face, broke promises, stealing from his job, and being very careless with his responsibilities. I love him and appreciate his help so much that I don’t know what to do. He is putting his drug use, lying , and stealing on me. Saying, that he’s under all this stress because of me and situation. That is too much burden for one to carry and I’m scared he is going to take me down with him. Reminds me of my last serious long-term relationship where I was cheated on, but was told over and over that it was my fault because I didn’t do blah, blah. My current boyfriend has struggled with drugs, lying, and some stealing way before me. I feel like I owe him so much, but this is just killing me. I don’t trust him and I’ve lost so much respect.

  • Selina01

    Hello to all, I do hope my post gets read and hopefully helps somebody along the line. i will never forget the help the priest of JAYEMA temple render to me in my marital life. i have been married for 4 years now and my husband and i love each other very dearly . after 3 years of our marriage my husband suddenly change he was having an affair with a lady outside,i notice it then i was praying for divine intervention the thing became more serious i told my pastor about it we prayed but nothing happen. my husband just came home one day he pick up his things and left me and the kids to his mistress outside at this time i was confuse not knowing what to do again because i have lost my husband and my marriage too. i was just checking my mails in the office when i saw someone sharing her testimony on how the priest of JAYEMA temple help her out with her marital problems so i contacted the email of priest JAYEMA i told him my problem and i was told to be calm that i have come to the right place that i should fill some information concerning my self i did after 30 minus he called me again congratulating me that my problems will be solve within 48 hours. he told me what went wrong with my husband and how it happen.that they will restored my marriage but i will make a free donation to their JAYEMA home anything my heart told me. to my greatest surprise my husband came to my office begging me on his knees that i should find a place in my heart to forgive him i quickly ask him up that i have forgiven him.friends your case is not too hard why don’t you give priest JAYEMA a try they work surprises because i know they will also bring back your husband. contact him via or Tel; +(234)-706819-3499.

  • kavin paker

    Never liked them, but that is what I had to study in school in Singapore since Science stream was the way to go.
    Lubeck Altstadt

  • How To Get Your Lover Back After Separation?(Dr Brave).

    My name Terri Dziak i live in Canada i want to give thanks and i will always give thanks to Dr BRAVE who brought back my love that has left me for 6years within 48hours, i have said about this last week but i promised to always tell people about this every week end so that those that did not read about it last will read about it this week, i have been looking for how to get this boy back to my life because i love this boy with the whole of my heart, i could not replace him with any body,one day i was watching my television when i saw a lady giving thanks to Dr brave and telling the world how he helped her i was so shocked i could not believe it because i never taught that there are powers that can bring back lost love, then that was how i decided to contact him too because i do really need my love back,when i contacted him i told him everything and he told me not to worry that my love will surely be back to my arms within 48hours at first i could not believe because i was thinking how could somebody that has gone for 6years come back within 48 hours,so then i decided to watch and see,unbelievable within the next 48hours i got a call from unknown number so i decided to pick the call the next thing i could hear was my loves voice he was pleading and begging me on the phone that i should forgive him that i should forget all that have happened that he did not know what came over him,he promised not to leave for any reason, that he was really sorry for what he did,i was so surprised because i never believed that this could happen,so that was how i accepted his apology and the next morning he came to my house and still pleading for me to forgive him i told him that everything is okay that i have forgiven him, that was how we started again and now we are married, i promised to say this testimony in radio station, commenting this testimony is still okay but before this month runs out i promise to say this in radio station and i will,sir thank you very much.World please am begging you people to try and thank this man for me,or if you need his help here is his email , you can still contact me through my email to know more about him.this is my email

  • Anna

    Your words are beautiful. I am in a relationship with a narcissist who will never see the error of their ways and it is hard to accept that – whether I stay or go. I wish I could meet someone who can reflect honestly as you do. Thank you for sharing.

  • Anna

    I’m a little late to the party here… what if you’ve finally built enough self-love and belief to know you deserve to be treated much better, but you have a 10 month old baby who loves her little family, so you don’t want to break it up? On the one hand I don’t want my little girl growing up with a poor example of how to be treated by a partner, on the other she receives total love from him and it is lovely to see. As an only child myself I would also very much like for her to have a full sibling. I’ve grown up so much since I had her (although I’m 36!) and as such I put my needs second to those of my family, but the daily awfulness that I put up with from her 48 year old father is really getting rather pointless. Life’s too short to be unappreciated and sworn at a lot. His own family have diagnosed him as a Narcissist. I can’t talk to him gently or ever receive a thank you or apology from him because his default position is defensive, and he won’t see a counselor. However, he is wonderful with our daughter, and through him we also get to enjoy every second weekend with her super lovely half-sister, who is 11. I don’t know whether I should stay or go for both of these girls – I really don’t.

  • Hi Anna,

    I’m so sorry to hear about what you’ve been going through. I can only imagine how difficult this decision must feel.

    Let me ask you this: If your mother had been in this position when you were a baby, and she stayed in an unhealthy relationship for your benefit, would you think, in retrospect, that she should have stayed or left? If she had stayed, would you look back wishing she had given herself a chance for a healthier, happier relationship? If she had left, would you look back and think she should have put up with mistreatment from a narcissist for your benefit?

    Perhaps viewing it from this perspective will help you gain new insight into what choice feels right for you.

    You are in my thoughts!


  • Anonymous

    hi lorie
    please solve my case i am a guy who is in love with a girl from past 3 years in my class who was showing positive attitude to me in first 2 years but twist came when i said (unknowingly the outcome of the results) to her friend who is also our class mate about my friend wishing to propose her…from that day till now my whole story vanished and my confidence get zero and from past 1 year i wanted to talk with her but she always trying to ignore me….

  • Hi there,

    I’m so sorry to hear about what you’ve been going through. I wish I could solve the problem for you, but unfortunately, I don’t know how to do that!

    My best advice is to talk to her and share how you feel. While it may not be easy to do that, or to hear what she may have to say, it’s the only chance of discovering what’s going on with her.

    You are in my thoughts…


  • britney

    Hello let me share this testimony to the world to hear about him too this man really exit I was hiv positive over 9year I have being in medication and I try to look for cure to my problem and I go through internet doctor and I found a tradition doctor named DR.look man I contacted him for help he give me all his laws and rule that if I get cured I should write about him and that is what am doing now, this man ask for some information about me, which I give him this man cure me from HIV what a great man thank for your help when he get the information he told me that he is about to work on it 20 to 30 minute this man email me and told me what to do for the curing which I did after all the things needed for the cure is provide the man call me in 45mins later and tell me to go for test what a great day to me I was negative thanks dr.look man you can contact him now. SUCCESSSPELLCAST@GMAIL.COM. +2347053977842

  • l

    Simply, yes. I need to keep these questions on a business card in a wallet. I’ve also stuck around too long, while someone lied and betrayed me – then justified themselves! Tried being compassionate, but realized they were just taking advantage. No more.

  • Helsing001

    I have just asked my “other half” to leave. I have spent the last two years trying to make our relationship work, but you cant make it so, on your own. I am exhausted, and stressed out, and I cannot do the manipulation, the ignoring, the games, and the tantrums anymore. I know I have done everything I possibly could to keep us together, but I know in my heart he has not put in the same amount of effort, and we have now come to this stage where the relationship is now doing me harm…. and he gets to sit around, do nothing, and get looked after, all for the price of a bit of bitching here and there, and if you get aggro enough, she will eventually grovel and apologise for it!
    I will not apologise anymore…. if you dont find me worthy of your attention, effort and love, then you may leave now.

  • Shelby

    Thank you!!! I have been struggling for a long time about what to do with my relationship. My husband is the sweetest man ever and then he hates me for the stupidest reasons. I have stayed with him after he had an affair, we have gone to counseling I feel like I have tried everything and he still treats me bad. The roller coaster never ends. I have justified and justified and I am just tired. Your post really helps me to see what a healthy relationship should be and I would rather be alone than be treated badly. I can’t seem to understand after sticking with him through thick and thin and forgiving the affair how he could go days even months being so cold and hardly speaking to me. How can you treat someone you love like that? How? The moment I go to him and say I’m sorry (for something he did) he will go right back and be the charming sweet guy. Your post really helps me see that I am in a toxic relationship and nothing I do will ever be good enough to make him love me. I also answer YES to all three.

  • You’re most welcome, Shelby. I’m so sorry to hear about your marriage. I’m sure it isn’t easy to form these conclusions, but it sounds like you’re at the cusp of a powerful decision to change your life. Wishing you much love and happiness as you move on to the next chapter.

  • Paul

    You’d think we just discovered the word but I wonder if any of the writers here recognise they might have been in a relationship with a narcissist? Seem like I attract them like wildfire – perhaps I’ve got a notice on my head saying ‘Narcs welcome here!’ You’ll find a lot of answers in an amazing book I’ve just stumbled on called “What makes narcissists tick?” by Kathy Krajco. Actually it’s more like a workshop manual for human beings written in absolutely clear concise English yet the author claims ‘not to be an expert’ but for some reason has lots of experience in dealing with narcissists and abusive relationships. Sadly she is also deceased, I so wanted to write to her and thank her for being the first person to give me any insight at all into this complicated and enmeshed stuff. Good luck to all. Paul.

  • noairbubbke

    Hi, i am in a relationship, i had been in several horrible relationships but the first one ended and i thought i was at fault, i treated him terribly, but he had broken my trust, when my first relationship ended i went into a terrible depression and started thinking everything was my fault and was determined that i wouldn’t make the same mistake again, then i had a few crappy relationships where i made efforts and it didn’t go that well,
    now i am in a relationship where ihave sacrificed a lot,i guess both of us have, i give more time to him less to my studies because i feel he’s the best that ican get and i dont want to upset him in any way, i do feel he loves me but his actions do contradict his statements, he does blame me for the way he behaves, says i give him reason and set him off,
    but my question is, what if that is true? What if i do give him a reason.? I have had so many awful relationships that i don’t truat my judgement anymore, i don’t understand when it’s his fault and even if i start a fight, i end up apologising because i somehow manage to believe that it was my fault, but what if it truly is my fault. ? I don’t want to make the same mistake i made with my first relationship, i don’t want to be alone forever, and yes i do have extremely low self esteem
    but what if al my mind us trying to do is feek sorry for myself, therefore i misinterpret his actions. ? I’m confused and in a lot of pain, please help me

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  • Ginny

    How do you know which you are? Are you the one causing the pain or the one in pain? I feel very much in pain but when I try to talk to my husband about this, he more often than not gets angry, says he can’t hear this anymore, its the same narrative, and often dismisses how hurt I’ve been by actions or lack of actions. Sometimes, he may say he is sorry, but that is where it stops…the words don’t carry into actions. He’s made agreements with me, then turned on me, and claims either no knowledge of them or blames me for bringing them up. He hates to feel guilty so if I bring anything up, he gets angry. I have tried to compromise in the past because I am told I am inflexible only to have it bite me so badly because he doesn’t even recognise these efforts. I’ve seen horrible things he has written about me to people and he fights with cruelty and thinks this is part of a fight, no holds barred. He tells me how cold I am, yet when I’ve gone through a really difficult times of learning of a possible life-limiting genetic disease in my family, he told me how he didn’t like that when we went to his friend’s son’s wedding (in fact his ex-girlfriend’s nephew), I didn’t get up and talk to people and socialise. I am introverted as is and apart from the parents of the groom and wedding party, I knew no one and I had only learned this thing 2 weeks prior and I went with him to be his partner and he begrudged that I affected his evening out. Or that when I was trying to deal with this, he couldn’t accept a request to write invitations for his niece. I asked him many times to read about this illness to help me, and he said I just don’t have an interest in health topics. I guess I kind of think, if I am cold, is that warm?

    I am at a point where I don’t sleep and I am bursting at the gills with anger and hurt. I try to talk to him but it all falls down into worse arguments where my hurt is dismissed because his anger at having to hear any of it wins out. He says he can’t live in this marriage anymore and I of course think I’ve been in too much pain to accept it all and swallow it down.

    So in your information, I see so much of what I am feeling and experiencing but then I see his accusations of me as well. I don’t know what to do. I know I am messed up, but I guess I feel like I am trying to reach out, to have him understand, to have him hear me but all it does it make it worse and I don’t know which way is up. If I try to explain to him how these things have hurt me, am I communicating or am I just a person seeking turmoil so I can play victim. I truly don’t feel like it is the latter as I do feel this pain, all day, everyday and I so want to communicate but I cannot seem to do it right.

    I was very much in love with him when we dated, and for most of our marriage but I find that I hate him now and I can’t see how to grow from that, especially when it feels like my hurt is turned against me and there is no healing. I grieve for the marriage I had, at least the love I felt for him.

  • Hi Ginny,

    I’m so sorry to hear about the struggles in your marriage and the pain you’re feeling right now. I can understand why this would be difficult for you, given how hurtful and dismissive he’s been.

    I think it’s not black and white–that one person is the one in the hurtful one and the other is the victim. But I can say that based on what you wrote, it seems like you are aware of your own shortcomings (which we all have), and unlike your husband, you are open to communicating and working on the problems in your marriage. And if he’s not willing to make an effort, there’s only so much you can do.

    Have you considered/suggested marriage counseling to him before? If he’d be open to it, perhaps that could help you both find the mutual love you once shared.

    Sending good thoughts your way…


  • Ginny

    Thank you for your response. We are trying different things…I do want counselling but as I am without support in his country and have struggled since my discovery of the genetic disease, I am seeking help for myself at the moment because that is all I can handle. It is just very hard because I wanted dreams with my husband and I feel they are gone, when your dreams go, so does your hope and will to improve. I sacrificed a lot to be here with him and now that it would be my chance to pursue my needs, I am broken and our marriage is broken. There is so much anger that I am unsure how to engage the spark again, or if it is even possible. Do you know of truly broken down marriages that survive?

  • You’re most welcome. I think anything is possible. If two people are both willing to make an effort, even the most broken relationship can be fixed.

  • Steven Beasock

    Where do I begin!! Relationships and so called love will only exsist if both are willing to put forth the effort. I’ve put my self into some horrible situations with someone who I thought I loved, someone I cared deeply about, but to only be lied to, cheated on and to be hurt very deeply. You always want to make things work because we all think they can change, they must have a heart some where, but honestly if you’ve been hurt once in the relationship it will repeat, don’t give in to second chances or think he/she will change once you give them the satisfaction of forgiveness they will always know that you will take them back, love is blind until you open your eyes wide enough to see, love is caring, love is patient and love is kind, love will never destroy you, make you insecure or even hurt you, so remember love your self before you love anyone else.

  • Jacqueline Ashley

    Hello i am Jacqueline Ashley ,from USA, I am out here to spreed this good news to the entire world on how i got my ex lover back.I was going crazy when my lover left me for another girl last month,But when i meet a friend that introduce me to Dr Agumagu the great messenger to the oracle that he serve,I narrated my problem to Dr Agumagu about how my ex lover left me and also how i needed to get a job in a very big company.He only said to me that i have come to the right place were i will be getting my heart desire without any side effect.He told me what i need to do,After it was been done,In the next 2 days,My lover called me on the phone and was saying sorry for living me before now and also in the next one week after my lover called me to be pleading for forgiveness,I was called for interview in my desired company were i needed to work as the managing director..I am so happy and overwhelmed that i have to tell this to the entire world to contact Dr Agumagu at the following email address and get all your problem solve..No problem is too big for him to solve..Contact him direct on: or and get your problems solve like is my email address in case you need any question from me

  • BeerCat

    This really helped me. Thank you for this comment. I just went through this same scenario.
    Now I just have to wait for the flash forward part!

  • irene

    Hi Navy, your experiences speaks to me. I’ve known my issues but it’s so hard to deal with it especially the thought that i’;; be facing the uncertainty of the future alone. I don’t have enough to pay for therapy and there’s no insurance for it, i feel like im stuck with my issues and no one to help. i can’t talk to my family as we are not close and i can’t talk to my friends either. It’s been 2 years since you commented, how are you doing right now? have you managed to keep it together all these years? i would really love to hear it from you. i dont think my sense of self worth can get anymore low than this, i keep crawling back to a man that treat me bad and i’ve had had been in an abusive relationship before. each time when he’s being inconsiderate i would tell myself to walk away and never again, but the moment i see how unaffected he is by me leaving i came back crawling. i hate myself. i hate how cheap i am, how much in pain i am and why i keep wanting someone to love me. sometimes i think im crazy. i feel like a rat in the corner now, i have nowhere to run, i want to confront my issues and i dont know how and i desperately need someone to support me.

    Navy, i would love to hear how you are doing right now. i wish you are doing better than ever before.

  • Natalie Mitchell

    I met this amazing guy it was an instant connection. I noticed at first he coldnt keep to his word and sometimes ignored me it had only been a short time a few weeks but i felt a feeling no one had ever made me feel. Hed say stuff like we was gonna do this together i was falling for him. He told me he had a coke promblem and issues with his kids mum. A few days later he vanished i spent 4 months absoulotly in tears i finaly contaxted him i told him i needed answers and i missed him he said he was sorry for hurting me by txt and said im an amazing loving woman and he didnt mean to hurt me he said he was in a better place now i asked him to call he said he would im became upset that it took him a week to answer wether he wanted me in his life i swore at him in a message cause i didnt get why he wouldnt answr he then sent me such a cold hutyfull text … just move on find someone your to much for me dont ever contact me again thank u… i broke down in tears and sent him another rude one i guess to make myself feel better how and why would someone do that i was always nice to him he had no valid reason to not want me around why end it so badly after iv waited around for months i proved my feelings he could of at least been kinder about it im so depressed 🙁

  • Lydia laures

    I am out here to spread this good news to the entire world on how I got my ex love back. I was going crazy when my love left me for another girl last month, But when I meet a friend that introduce me to DR Olawole the great messenger to the whole world who God has given him the grace to help people in their relationships, I narrated my problem to DR Olawole about how my ex love left me and also how I needed to get a job in a very big company. He only said to me that i have come to the right place were I will be getting my heart desire without any side effect. He told me what i need to do, After it was been done, In the next 2 days, My love called me on the phone and was saying sorry for living me before now and also in the next one week after my love called me to be pleading for forgiveness, I was called for an interview in my desired company were i needed to work as the managing director.. I am so happy and overwhelmed that I have to tell this to the entire world to contact DR Olawole at the following email address and get all your problem solve.. No problem is too big for him to solve. Contact him direct on: And get your problems solve like me….. ONCE AGAIN HIS EMAIL ADDRESS IS:

  • soo true

    Considering all the baggage I carried around, I felt fortunate to be in relationships at all…
    You have said it for me. I cannot add even a full stop.

  • Lonely & Hurt Chi-Town Gurl

    Goodness this sounds like something I’m currently in. Sad part is I know what needs to be done. Putting it into action is hard because of my emotional ties. I need to learn how to become emotionally detached n realize I deserve happinesses n Loneliness may not be my worst enemy

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    loved our self’s but when I was unable to give him a child for 2 years he

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  • Noah

    May i join the conversation.. So myself looking this up, only one would actually look this up. I am suffering pretty dramatically between me and my girlfriend, recently i found her texting other guys (happened way ttoo often for a long time, i keep forgiving her multiple times) when i said dont do it, recently found out she was “hanging with friends, stayed out late i told her to go home she never did, she said its just friends” (first time just found out and i snapped at the guy and the guy told me the truth “he was trying to get down with her that night”) when i said dont be around guys. To only find out they only wanted one thing from her and we all know what that is.. at this point in time im so f’ing confused why do i keep forgiving ?why is it me feeling that thats wrong and not her? What should i do? What if it happens again? Should i really call it quits and walk away? Tbh nothing prepares you for this to happen in your life and its so hard to walk away. Well i only have one thing inmind which is i told her ” if she does it one more time ever doesnt matter who what when why and how i will leave her” am i doing the right thing? Or is that the worst possible solution ever? What am i doing wrong? Or will she just never change? I heard this quote before and it keeps replaying in my head “once a cheater, always a cheater) any advice is really helpful,thank you.

  • Mel M

    Clever 3 steps! Whilst the first 2 made me think “yup”, the 3rd came full circle. I have a clever manipulative friend who has a habit of taking my friends, a fox dressed in lambs-wool! As a giving and forgiving person, it’s so very hard to just walk away, I’m not programmed to do it, so this will be my first. I’m looking forward to bright new friendships without The Fox.

    Having never walked away before, my question is, how? What do I do? Social connectivity, do I “unfriend”. Do I ignore text messages/phone calls? I don’t want to appear nasty. I also enjoy seeing her children grow and don’t want to lose connection, but I also don’t want her in my life!

    For those struggling, start by believing YOU ARE ENOUGH! Everyone has something to give. Move forward by starting something new. Share your request with the universe and ask for it. Believe it will happen. Everyone deserves to have a friend/love/happiness.

  • Barry

    I get the blame for everything that happens in each day, and my past keeps being brought up,I’ve had enough of It. thank you for the post.

  • I’m so sorry to hear about that, Barry. I’ve been there before, and I know it’s not easy. I’m glad this helped a little!

  • Onofe Auguster

    Today being the most happiest day of my life after 1 year of sadness and sorrow without being with the one i love so much, i tried all my possible best to make sure i make my lover happy but it never seems to work out well it was like am doing everything in vain but all thanks to Dr onofe for coming to change all my worries and sadness to Joy. i knew the great man when i read some wonderful reviews about Dr Onofe how he has helped a lots of people on there relationship problem i was reading a magazine which then i saw great testimonies as well which then i decided not to waste time because i have missed my lover so much i decided to contact him and share all my problem with him which then he told me not to worry that he assures me that within 48 hours everything would be sorted out i believed Dr Onofe so much because i believe he can’t fail me but truly Dr Onofe never failed me cos a man that stand on his worlds is really a man,my husband who left me for a year plus replied my text and for the first time returned my calls and asked me to please forgive him i was so happy and so grateful to Dr Onofe for what he has done for me. if you are there passing through this same problem or of any kinds just contact this great man on or call him on +2348100078330.

  • izetta

    You have to change your thoughts. Tell yourself you deserve and demand better. Tell yourself, think to yourself its his loss and you are better off w out him. Its better to be alone then to be w someone who makes you miserable.
    Also start working out. Do it for yourself. You will have more energy, be healthier, feel better, look better and it’ll pass by alot of your depressed time.

  • mark

    I married my husband less than 3 years now. But before that, he had cheated 3 times. I still forgave him and yes got married to him thinking he would change. But last night on his birthday party, I saw him kissing his friend in our backyard. I just left the house. Now I found this post and reading through it, though I am in denial, all three question I can affirm to. It hurts to realize that my relationship is unravelling before my very eyes. The relationship I worked so hard to keep negated by alcohol, lust and infidelity.

  • The cat

    I’m very sorry hearing that. Your comment really made me touched. I also hv low self esteem , and as you said crawling back when I see the guy is unaffected when I leave. However this time I made a revolutionary decision of ‘ enough is enough ‘.
    Like you I also don’t afford to go to therapist because I’m unemployed, but what I did was that I started to study about my issues, I went through lots of online source, I googled intensively for all the symptoms and problems I had. It helps. Be determined to improve and do something for yourself and just read and read and read… There is a hope for us too. You are not alone, so many people feel like us, and we all can get better.
    Best of luck

  • Johnny b

    So i definetely think this is the case with me, it took her physicial violence for me to see her colours, but i cant move on at all. I still love her and she is pregnant with my baby. She has said she will speak to me in 6 months when its born, no scans, no contact nothing. To me this is just totally immature and selfish. I feel like im just floating in a state of total confusion and unhappyness. I tried nothing but my hardest to provide and support and love this girl, but she just seems to be evil, and i can say she was like this from week 4 of our short 6 month relationship. Devistated i wont see my child and be a family with this girl, even after all the emotional abuse and me feeling guilty as if i caused this.. Maybe i need counciling 🙁

  • Donjuan Damarco

    I been separated from my wife n daughter 4 8 days today 3 spent n jail I been residing n my pop up camper n my dads backyard n I have recognized my flaws n our marriage n I am ready 2 do whatever I can 2 make this marriage work 4 our spiritual sake n our girls I am so broken tomorrow I will see where I stand

  • PhilChance

    I’ve reached this article searching for comfort bec. I cannot be ok with my 18yr marriage and I need to accept moving on. I’ve been trying for a year. I’ve been to couples therapy 5x, read books, internet research, tried and tried to change me…. I and we are in counseling but my heart still tells me to leave. I wanted to post her bec. you can try to find therapy. I’ve worked in those offices, find a therapist that will charge you based on income or not at all. Some places have free call in counseling services, find them. Gather knowledge and gather strength. I wonder how each of you are doing. For me it seems a long slow process w/ out physical proof it isn’t so clear. Instead of finding resolution I find more reasons as to why I should leave, it is heartbreaking.

  • PhilChance

    Jack, saying that is hurtful and can cause insecurities why would someone who cares for you do that? I’m glad you question it. Maybe she doesn’t know how to communicate properly but don’t let her ruin your self esteem.

  • Gherica Bates

    I dated a guy for several months and it ended badly. I tried to treat him well, but it was never enough and I knew it deep down. I let him treat me badly because I thought that I did something wrong and it was my fault all the time. It took me a long time to heal, and I still am till this day. I even went on dates while dying on the inside just to block out the pain of being hurt. It’s hard to understand what’s really going on when your trying to constantly fix things but the truth is you can’t alone.

  • Casey

    Trust actions. That is where the truth is. I love this! Ive been waiting for the actions to come as promised every time I leave him but they never do. I really beat myself up about not being strong enough to walk away from this relationship for 5 years. And now we have a child together. Its funny because I have never in my life let anyone treat me with disrespect but then he came along and my love for him was so strong I clung to hope that if I was there for him he would have the strength to help himself. Well it doesnt work that way. He took advantage of everything I gave and slowly wore my self esteem away so that I constantly needed his validation. I dont believe he did this on purpose. I know he loves me but he is a troubled soul and I cannot save him. Thankyou for your inspiration!

  • disqus_DOTZ7JkMNP

    I too am going through some crazy stuff. I met the love of my life 7 years ago. I have 3 kids which are all moved it the house. However we now have his two kids leaving with us now. It was just he and I for a long time but now we don’t get much time alone and when we do mostly is arguments or just not much conversations. Well its a long story I feel like he just want to run out with his friends while I stay home with his kids. I wouldn’t mind much if he gave me attention but the worst part is he don’t give his kids much attention either. He don’t worry much about the things around the while and always to tired to do anything with me always some excuse but if his friends call he runs. One example I was in allot of pain and and needed my pain medicine so from the time he got home from work he took his time then he left to go get it he saw a friend and stopped and talked to him it took him about 2 hours. Does he really care about anyone but him? What do you think?

  • I’m so sorry to hear about what’s going on. That must have been pretty hurtful when he didn’t prioritize getting your pain meds to you. It’s tough for me to answer your question because I don’t know him or that much about him. What does your gut tell you?

  • joy

    my son unbelievable no reason at all robbed me 14 times in 18 months tried to kill us by fire 3 times and poison me twice. I was a great mom and stood by him thru it all a drug addict I can’t believe now he has a better life because his mother in law married for money I got all the info and its my turn.

  • joy

    my ex husband the same I do not look my age and I have become attracted to woman since there was no sex for 14 years. I am bi sexual but never had an encounter but would like to and don’t no where to start or who would want me.

  • Stuck

    I totally feel the same way. I feel stuck. I’ve been with this man for a total of 15 years. I just recently found out he been cheating. On me for 5 years. He claims I knew about. He blames me for allowing it. I started feeling that way for awhile but know realize not .He has not change yet. He is so openly and blunt about. It’s like he respect this person more than me and we still live in the house together with our kids. I have tried to leave several time. I know he wants me to leave , so the kids can blame me.He has totally verbally abuse me. I feel stuck and I want out . Im so depressed everyday.It’s hard to leave cause I know that it for us. He doesn’t take me no where. But he takes her places.He wants us to stay together for the kids. Not an option anymore .

  • I’m so sorry for all the pain you’ve endured. I can only imagine how hurtful it was to find out that he’d been cheating – and for so long. I’m glad to hear that staying together isn’t an option anymore. You deserve so much better than this!

  • Debbie Marlina Swarley

    My Boyfriend treats me different this days, he shouts at me, when I’m not mad at him he assume I’m mad, he seems to always make his faults turn into my faults. He shout at and fight with me most of the time, just today he ask me to get out of his house. I don’t know if he still loves me or not because who would treat someone they love like this. I’m happy when I’m with him but sometimes I feel that I’m more sad then happy. Does it mean that he still loves me? I just want us to be as happy as before.

  • Djizzle Moon

    yep, to all three. current marriage of nearly 2 years might as well have been on drugs when agreed to bc I somewhat knew better. (fell for the “I changed” line typical Lifetime). already emotionally walked away just need the lease end, a new home & free divorce lawyer to make it legit.
    f$#* this crap life’s too short to live in complete depression.

  • Heather

    I am so desperate I feel so pathetic. People tell me I am so smart and attractive and strong, but they have no idea I am in the most dysfunctional relationship I know of. I sicken myself that I give up time with my children to be with a long term affair who I love but who is emotionally abusive to me. As I type I have my phone by me waiting every second for his call. I stayed over and we usually spend the morning together with our little one. He got up swearing and told me he had to help his adult son with something. They have a horribly dysfunctional relationship where my boyfriend seeks support from me but then when he caves in to his sons behavior and continue yes the cycle and I question it, he turns on me violently saying I am the issue. Regardless, he left the house saying he would be back in a short while and never returned as we waited and waited at his place to have breakfast together. Now later if I question him he will fly off the handle and call me names for questioning him. We are to return for supper and although I want myself to just stay home and blow him off like he did to us, I will obsess about him all day and then drive there and make us dinner. I also has a possible let rec urrence of cancer and go for. Hemp this week. I have feeling so sick lately and he never calls to check on me or ask if he can watch our little one while I go to apps. But when he had a headache the other night he asked me to get him special soup and I drove my child out in the cold to come take care of him. Yet when I questioned him about something he committed to the other day he told me I make him so mad he could kill me.

  • Sherita

    My boyfriend constantly throws my past mistakes in my face. He calls me fat, ugly , stupid, bitch, donkey lazy and even a bad mom even though I’m working and taking care of our son while my boyfriend sleeps.I cook wash clothes and wait on this man hand and foot. He is more needy and demanding than our 19 month old son. And it is taking time away from my son.

  • Jana

    I know this is a very old post. However, what if their actions DO stir feelings within you?
    Meaning – someone who consistently ignores me during conflict…that makes me feel uncared for. That seems pretty reasonable, no? How else can I look at this or phrase this? I could say “I don’t feel cared about.” But I think the only thing missing from that sentence is “Your actions are the reason why I do not feel cared about.” I mean, isn’t it all about how someone makes us feel, at the end of the day? If I’m rude to my boyfriend every day, he’s not going to feel like I value him very much, right?

  • David

    I walked away from a abusive partner who also told me she loved me, and thought that i needed her more than i had to offer myself. Yes i was a sucker for the abuse both physically and emotionally and because she knew i wouldn’t touch a hair on her head no matter what she did to me. Also because i was caring and trust worthy no matter what financially and hard working. Until i decided i am out and ever since then she has wanted to keep in touch and she wants me to be friends although i have spoken to her but only for a short hour or so in public she also still try’s to dictate how and what i should do with my life, but i think it’s a way for her to say to her family and friends that she cares about me still, and wants to convey compassion, but i do not want to have to much to do with her in that i am trying to get my own life back and that i am doing my best even in this difficult stage, i lost my job, now i need to find a new job new home for myself, i need to keep on grinding away to let go and build my self worth and confidence, peace in my own caring, empathy, and strength to physically and emotionally with time as the greatest healer. I would say that i do need some help and nurturing from family and friends which i do get but i have to also look for professional help in a guided way of caring and stop the guilty blame game that is my current burden. Blessing to all and Lori.

  • Hi Jana,

    I think it’s a subtle difference – knowing how someone’s actions affect us (what thoughts we think in response to their actions, and what feelings those thoughts evoke) and making that person responsible for our feelings.

    So, for example, if my friend ignores me, I could say, “When you ignore me, I think you don’t value me, and as a result, I feel hurt, rejected, and insecure.” This acknowledges my thoughts and my feelings without blaming the other person or making them responsible for my thoughts and feelings. It’s taking ownership of my internal process and sharing that with the other person so they may consider making changes based on how their actions affect me. I find this tends to make people less defensive, allowing for more effective communication. Does that make sense?


  • Hi David,

    I’m so sorry to hear about your relationship and your recent challenges – but also inspired by how you’re healing and moving forward. I know how tempting it is to get caught up in the blame game. Good for you for getting out of that trap, getting the help you need, and focusing on your self-worth!

    Blessings back to you,

  • Kate

    I don’t know what to do, my boyfriend of seven years consistently lets me down. We have a child together. He’s so busy helping out other people and spending time with them because “they need him”, he totally neglects me. I’m also mentally ill and very upset about this, he hasn’t spent a full day with me in years. He spends a few hours in the evening with me sitting with his phone and watching tele. I’ve tried to break it off many times because of this. This isn’t the worst thing he’s done but it’s been bothering me the past few years. When I try to break it off, he promises a day with me but it’s always cancelled by someone who needs him. He’s very sincere when he explains why he needs to go do whatever for them. I’ve got angry at him about this and upset but he just gets defensive and angry back at me. He never apologises when he lets me know he has to cancel and if I tell him to at least say sorry, he sulks and says it in a childlike way. I’ve told him I don’t love him anymore because of this and he keeps trying to hold on to the relationship but he’s not making any effort to do so. I’m so unhappy I think I’d rather die than carry on like this. You’ll tell me to break up with him but he won’t let me. I try all the time, it would be so much easier if he just became a better boyfriend, maybe then I’d get my feelings back

  • Hi Kate ~ Sorry for my slow response. My heart really goes out to you, as this sounds like an incredibly painful situation. I know how difficult this is to swallow, but I am going to share with you something a therapist told me years ago: We can’t change other people; we can only change how we respond to them. What would you choose to do if you accepted that he may never change?

  • Lee30

    I am a man who has recently been subjected to all of these actions you have mentioned from a recent girlfriend and although I do miss companionship, I now realise her companionship was not what I needed or healthy. I made myself believe it was all my fault and put myself down constantly, however I now see it was her actions that made me feel like this and so after the relationship ended these feelings where left with me. Thank you for making me realise this. Brilliant article, very helpful.

  • Hi Lee,

    You’re most welcome. I’m so sorry to hear about your relationship. It’s so easy to blame ourselves in situations like these. I’m glad this helped. 🙂


  • Adrian Rivera

    Is Unknown a middle schooler? Who actually tries to hurt themselves? A better quote would address making yourself too vulnerable – inappropriately placing yourself in danger – trying to heal a relationship, rather “than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.”.

  • Helga

    Hi, thanks for the article. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 6 months and generally we get on. The big issue for me is that when we are together he looks other women up & down, if we are talking he will stop and look and sometimes even look for excuses to keep looking over. I’ve mentioned it to him, I’ve tried ignoring it, giving him a shove or blatantly stating that he’s doing but he still does it. He makes excuses like in the spa he was checking a woman out and said its because he noticed her makeup hadn’t smudged!

    I’ve just come home from a few days away together, we had great sex but he still does this. We had coffee and said ‘bye’ to the waitresses bust! On the train home he couldn’t take his eyes off an attractive girl sat next to us. If find it totally disrespectful but he says I’ve nothing to worry about there’s only me he fancies but this is getting to me now, I feel uncomfortable and feel that he’s keeping his options open. I don’t feel like I do this to him as i wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings. Any advice please ad this becoming a deal breaker for me, though we get on in other ways.

  • Chrissy

    I feel the same way I’m so sorry you are going through this.

  • Natasha

    Thank you for this. I’m going through this period and I realized for over 3.5 years I was making excuses blinding me from the obvious. Even when he stopped all his wonderful gestures I kept telling.myself he is busy trying and preparing for our wedding and future. But after seeing the same problems recurring almost like a pattern past 3 cycles, I had to accept this wasn’t going to change. Some had gotten worse.
    I had to put aside all the sweet talks and fantasy we discussed including our wedding. I had to clear my vision to see who I really was in this relationship. I was no longer the woman he pursued as a partner and wife. I had become my fear in any relationship. I had become a crutch to all his weaknesses.

  • You’re welcome, Natasha. I’m so sorry to hear about your relationship. I hope you’re doing okay!

  • Angelina

    I have a question guys if you came into a relationship and gave your all to this person and this was the only long relationship you ever had in your life but the person constantly treated you bad over and over the good times over powering the bad you got tired of being hurt so you go and have sex with someone else to ease your pain and your partner was hurt because you did this. Now its ben over a year and a half and he keep bringing it up after i slept with the guy but i keep telling him you hurt me i wanted you to see how i felt when you keep hurting me. Was i wrong? Did he deserve it? Or are we even?

  • Shattered

    That’s absolutely not true. A breakup is sad,yes, but it’s NOTHING like a death, plz stop saying that. I lost my husband to cancer last year. Let me tell u, that pain is way worse than a “breakup” bc death is final. With a breakup the ex is still alive, there’s still conversation, still some hope. Not with a death. Plz don’t make that comparison.

  • I’m so sorry for your loss, and also sorry for any pain my words caused you. In my experience of grieving both lost relationships and deaths, the feelings felt similar, but I can see why these words would be triggering to you – especially after losing your husband just last year. You are in my thoughts…

  • TeeKay

    My husband is an alcoholic. When he drinks he is nasty. He is verbally abusive and this can lead us to both being physically abusive. When he is sober he is brilliant. His most recent period of being sober lasted 11 days. He was great, he was kind, caring and our relationship was in the sky!

    Now i feel so low. I really feel so down. I have assignment deadlines as I’m currently doing a post-grad course at Uni. And due to his mood swings I am unable to do my work.

    We have been married 6 years. I left my home, family and life for him. My family were againts my marriage and I suffered so much emotional pain at that time. But my relationship with him was perfect and I really wanted to be with him at that time. Now I feel I can’t go back to my parents because i feel ashamed of what i did when i ran away from home for him. I know my parents will welcome me. But I’m so scared of being a failure. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to cope and make things better.

    I have tried to get help for him, he didn’t attend the counselling i set up for him, or the addiction support. he won’t go to his GP. I feel he may be depressed and this is why he uses alcohol the way he does. I can’t help but think that he is depressed because of me and that I have caused him to have problems. But i can’t cope no more. he doesn’t seem to be receptive of my support and in turn just becomes evil when he drinks. The things he has said to me, i would never even say to my enemy.

    I feel my inability to bear children has caused many problems and my financial demands for my uni fees are also a big strain on our marriage.

    I don’t know what to do. I desperately need some guidance. I can just see my world falling apart right in front of my eyes.

  • jaime

    Need someone to knock some sense in me…were lesbian couple and live together for a 1 year n few mos..we broke up May last year..we’ve had some rough time prior break up, a month before she broke it off we always argue about this guy a colleague who obviously have hots for her. I ask her to keep her distance from this guy, his a friend we’ve been on group trips with him but im just being cautious since we’re on our vulnerable, he always treats her to something and always offer support which my gf appreciate so she ignores what i ask of her and still hang out with him… i let it pass and ignore the warning vibes im feeling off that guy since i trust her..then time came she broke it off well technically asking for space saying im suffocating her, i agreed and move out thought its temporary so when i ask her when can i move back in she told me its over that she fallen out of love, that it wouldnt be fair for me if we stay together.. we try to stay friends since were really the best of friends before we got into relationship, 2 weeks later notice she’s been txting someone so i ask her told me that shes having a fling with another girl i just let it pass whats wierd is she keeps convincing me that its nothing serious nothing compared to what we have, it makes me think that we still have a chance and that she just needs her space shes 23 and im 28 so i thought shes not ready to settle so i let her have her space…but a month later i notice she created an instagram acct (we share same email so i notice) shes not into social media so that got me curious and check it then… Boom! i saw a picture of her and this guy (the colleague) kissing in bed, the girl shes flirting with is none other than the same guy we’ve been aguing about. that killed me so i asked her, she deny that acct that she never created one that it was the guy she still tries to convince me his nothing that she cant give anyone the love she gave me that its still me, after that another lie came to light, when she wont be home she tells her parents she’s in my place when in reality she’s over his, i told her to stop it i can see she’s ashamed of it as well but still denies that he matters to her ughh..stupid right shes stringing me along dont understand why…now 9 mos since we broke up i stop communicating with her for almost 2 mos though she still keep txting me saying the same shit that she still loves me and cant forget about me though shes still seing that same guy..when i asked her to stop seeing him if she wants us to work out she ask for time saying that he doesnt have a clue and would feel guilty for using him then suddenly dumping him coz were back together…well guess what after seeing him again which was supposed to be her breaking up with him she told me thru txt that she spoke with the guy and appreaciates him coz he understand why she’s still seeing me she told me she got confuse and not sure what to do anymore i got upset of course i told her that ofcourse he would understand it wont matter im a woman for fuck sake i wont be a threat as i cant get her pregnant, so she decided to just let go of me saying im suffocating her which makes her appreciate him more and that i wont be able to take it and it will just hurt me if were to be together and she still thinks about him that she dont want to hurt me anymore and we should just move on…like wtf??? im already hurt like how many times now, I dont know i just want to forget her and move on its sad because shes my best friend but after what happened i dont think we can still be friends…i want to talk to her and discuss this in person but i dont think it will make a difference im afraid she’ll convince me again and make me believe her lies again that she loves me blah blah blah and just string me along im afraid coz idk whats the truth anymore..i think shes in denial the she love him and convince herself that she loves me idk sounds confuse because even shes with him she choose to spend holidays with me and cheats on him with me…we still had sex and it was great she even says that it was just like before when were still in honeymoon stage and dont have much problem…i know i sound stupid i should be focussing my mind on more important things rather than waste my time figuring out whats on her mind and why shes doin this..its draining..

  • Joanne

    Actually you can ask any therapist, a breakup is exactly like a death, you go through the exact 5 stages of grief, like any other loose, one loose is not more of a loose then another, pain is pain, it’s very sad your husbands pasted, but it does not make your pain worse then someone else’s, you make think that’s unfair, but it’s true, grief comes in many forms not only from death

  • Yezzy Bueno

    I relate to this…. 🙁 I love him very very much…

  • Angel Lowery

    Can we text over the phone…your situation is just like mine. 832-296-9344

  • Ms. Kitty

    Miss lori you hit the hammer right on the head it’s just that I didn’t want to admit it myself I have so many physical flaws that I feel like no guy is going to want me. In school I was picked on and talked about due to certain flaws that I had. So when i found a guy that loved those flaws or appeared to not be bothered by them. (I have always been insecure about my knees,never did i tell him though. One day we were watching a movie and he KISSED THEM) he embraced a flaw of mine with one word

  • Ms. Kitty
  • Ms. Kitty

    Me tooooooo!!!!!!

  • Ms. Kitty

    My feelings exactly. I feel cheap dirty and useless. And he knows it to. That’s why he doesn’t have 2 pretend any with me anymore . he lies and says all the right things BUT his actions NEVER MEET HIS WORDS. He is VERY inconsistent,very conniving with some brute underneath…. I know he hates me and is in love with the other woman. Excuse my english

  • Thandri R. Narayanan

    Spot on Deschene! Great post! Could relate to every piece of your content or theme including the 3 questions that came to you intuitively after going through all the motions and noises in our minds.

    With best regards, Thandri

  • Thanks, Thandri! I’m glad this was helpful to you. =)