Trauma bonding is like a ghost; you don’t see it, but you most definitely feel its presence and consequences. Why can’t you just let go of your abuser?
You’re never actually fully aware of the fact that you’re stuck in an abusive relationship. At some point, you may feel something’s off, but the realization won’t hit until much later.
Unfortunately, this happens a lot and for various reasons. We never think it could happen to us until we find ourselves in this kind of situation.
The abuser is like a magnet; the closer you are to him, the tighter he holds onto you. But once you distance yourself enough, there’ll be no attachment to him whatsoever.
Some things are easier said than done, and we all know that. It’s easy listening to these kinds of stories when they’re happening to someone else. But when you feel it on your own skin, it becomes very real.
Situations like these should be nipped in the bud, but sometimes, it’s nearly impossible. We never know what we’re getting ourselves into.
One day, you’re dating this perfect boy that you’re ready to marry at any time. The next, you find yourself regretting the day you met. It’s obvious he wants to hurt you, but you can’t seem to let him go.
This makes you feel every emotion at once. Most of all, you’re mad at yourself for not making a move. What is it that’s telling you to stay and not letting you free from the chains of this abusive relationship?
What does trauma bonding mean?
You know when you don’t want to let go of something that’s hurting you? Well, sometimes letting go hurts less than holding on.
This is hard to admit to yourself but once you accept that fact, it’s easier from then on. If you’ve ever been in an abusive relationship, you’ll understand.
Trauma bonding is what happens when you can’t let go of your abuser. For some reason, you’re attached to him even after all the emotional or physical abuse he’s put you through.
It’s a pattern that keeps repeating itself over and over again. You go through a cycle of abuse that ends in praise and affection. What does this mean?
Why can’t you let go of your abuser?
Your abuser will hurt you, emotionally or physically, and then proceed to shower you with love and devotion. Oftentimes, the victims are met with the abuser’s statements of regret as well.
This repeated circle seems condemned. You know it’s wrong, but you can’t find a way out. When you attach yourself to your abuser, it represents the birth of trauma bonding.
Still, why is it happening?
You may not see anything wrong with the way your partner’s treating you. One of the reasons for that is your previous toxic relationships.
You’re used to this kind of treatment from your partners, so you simply learned how to cope with it. Deep down, you know it’s not right, but that’s just how it’s supposed to be.
Although you may feel like this is your only choice, it’s not. Past experiences can greatly impact our point of view, but we shouldn’t let them decide our future.
Love is blind
You’re head over heels for your partner which makes you oblivious to his ill intentions. Perhaps you just got over the honeymoon phase and you’re still under the impression.
However, your friends and family members may be nagging you about your new boyfriend. They say how you’re not the same as you were before.
Your abuser tells you that it’s because of all of the love he’s giving you. It’s easy being fooled by someone you love because, as we all know, love is blind.
This is why you’re unable to recognize the abusive nature of your partner. It’s usually people around you that will start to notice the red flags before you do.
As kids, we were taught that sorry doesn’t cut it when we do something wrong. But it seems as if this was somehow erased from our memory.
Your abuser will proceed to hurt you and then act remorseful. His manipulative ways will trick you into falling for it time and time again.
All he’s got to do is say how sorry he is and how it won’t happen again. You feel like he’s genuine and because you remember the person he was before – so you believe him.
Later, he will carry on professing his love and how he’d never hurt you intentionally. It’s easy to trust him because he sounds so convincing… until next time.
He makes a promise
One of the reasons you can’t let go of your abuser is his promises. He gives you his word that he’s going to change for the better, although it never happens.
Just when you feel the sun shining down on you, the clouds turn dark and gloomy. The pattern repeats itself and before you know it, the promises are broken.
Besides assuring you that he’s never going to hurt you again, he also promises to love you as no one else has. This might give you some hope, but it’s only temporary.
He guarantees that everything he does is out of pure love and adoration. Unfortunately, you find yourself deceived once again. Still, you’re not letting go of him because you’re looking forward to his next promise.
In an abusive relationship, you feel like you’re never safe. You dread the moment the abuse will start again.
You might feel like you’re all alone and don’t have any help. It feels futile to try and get out of this relationship because you’re too weak.
You feel there’s no point in starting to plan your escape because you’re in too deep. This is completely false because there’s always someone who can and wants to help you.
You may be too afraid to make the first move, but you have to start somewhere. Talking to a friend, family member, or a professional can get you started on your road to recovery.
Fear is justifiable, but don’t allow it to stop you from breaking free. After all, what is the alternative?