Post # 1
I have two friends right now in exremely unhappy relationships. To the point of emotional abuse. One has a partner that cheats and lies. Both have become so unhappy that they aren’t even the same people anymore. One friend constantly criticizes other people and their relationships to make hers seem much better. I’ve since had to cut ties with one friend. I tried to support her as long as humanly possible, but it started hurting my life to help her.
I just have to ask.. Why do people stay in unhappy relationships? What is the thought process behind this?
Post # 3
@happilyeveraftergirl: Because they are afraid of being “alone”? Because they think they can’t afford to leave? Because they have come to emotionally depend on their partner (i.e. us against the world)? Because in some people’s minds, it’s better to be miserable than to be single (because that sends the message that no one wants you)? Because they grew up with family chaos, so it’s “normal” to them?
Post # 4
@happilyeveraftergirl: I think a lot of people are afraid to be alone.
Being cheated on can also wreck someone’s self esteem so they may have the thought process of I’m not good enough for him so I’m not good enough for anyone else. Its not the right way to think but especially if it started as emotional abuse and he ruined her self confidence and then started cheating I can see someone thinking that way.
Most people that I personally know that stay in bad relationships are there for purely financial reasons.
Post # 5
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
@happilyeveraftergirl: It’s less stressful than breaking up. They may be financially dependent on their partner and have no savings to move out and live on their own. Breaking up means it’s relaly over and they are going to be alone for at least some period of time. I stayed in an unhappy marriage for two years because I thought the next year would be better/easier. I didn’t finally divorce him until he asked for a divorce because he wasn’t happy either.
Post # 6
@SeaSalt: That’s super depressing to read.. but a lot of good reasons.
@sugar_biscuit: This one hurts because that sounds exactly like one of my very close friends.. Her SO cheated on her, it was her first relationship, and now she has stayed for six years.
@beachbride1216: Gah, I’m sorry! I can really understand that though. I could believe that things could get better too.
Post # 7
@happilyeveraftergirl: I love the quote “people accept the love they think they deserve.” Whether they realize this or not…
Post # 8
@Payless: I love that quote too. I guess I wish I could just give a confidence boost to my very close friend so she would understand that better. I think it’s hard when an awful person gets ahold of you when you’re young and they are as well. I think she thinks she can never get someone better because no one else will want her. But she is such an amazing person! And so beautiful, inside and out. And kind.
Post # 9
I was in a relationship I didn’t want to be in for almost 3 years. I stayed because he was a good guy, just not right for me (he was very introverted and I’m really not) because I coldn’t stad to hurt him. He loved me and he didn’t realy do anything wrong, he was faithful and caring, but he thought my Goth friends were absurd and generally hated any socialising in groups. He was completing his PhD and I felt that if I dumped him, he may not finish it. Ot fidn’t help that everytime I tried to dump him, he refused to believe me. That’s a very effctive technique for not breaking up with someone. Also they somehow manage to convince you the isue is with you and not them.
Post # 10
@happilyeveraftergirl: there isn’t much you can do and although it is sad you don’t want to ruin the friendship. She will come to see the light in her own time whether that is soon or a very distant future
Post # 12
@Payless: I have learned to accept that I can’t help people who can’t help themselves. It breaks my heart in half because one friend is like my little sister. But oh well.. Can’t help someone who won’t help themselves.
@RECrerar: I’m so sorry you had to go through that! That gives a lot of insight into why someone would stay. :/ Thank you for sharing your story.
Post # 13
Of course, we all feel fear when making a change, but sometimes we are so motivated that fear cannot paralyze us (this is good…this is courage!) Those of us who stay in situations (of any kind) that obviously make us unhappy are paralyzed by the fear of what the alternative might be.
Post # 14
@happilyeveraftergirl: My abusive ex convinced me that I was totally unlovable and that he was definitely the best I could ever do!
I also had another ex that I was with off-and-on for five years. After year 3 or 4, I was CONVINCED we were “meant to be”, no matter how mnay times he cheated on me!
Post # 15
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
@happilyeveraftergirl: Because you can’t see outside the unhappy relationship when you’re neck-deep in the middle of trying to save it. You don’t know that things can be easy or you can’t imagine your life without that terrible person!
Post # 16
@happilyeveraftergirl: Honestly, I think it’s usually familiarity. You’re so used to being with someone, that the thought of not being with them (even if it’s for betterment in the long run) is terrifying.
I know that, for me personally, is why I stayed in a very toxic relationship with my ex. I’d been with him for so long, and had been friends with him for so long before that, that it was just unnerving to think of losing all that time. Though he was both physically and emotionally abusive, I was so used to being with him that I didn’t want to leave- even though I was miserable, and I knew I’d be happier in the end without him.
I valued myself (it wasn’t self esteem at play), and knew I could do better, but I wanted it to work out so badly that I tried to ignore the flaws and focus on the (rare) good moments.