#Personal Stories

I Got Into A Toxic Relationship And It Changed My Life

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Toxic Relationships: I used to be a very carefree person till 3 years ago. Slowly, I got into a toxic relationship and it transformed my life. Never before had I thought that I will be the person that I am today. From being carefree, outspoken, extroverted, non-selective and kind, I have turned into someone who is an introvert, quiet, careful and highly selective person.

I see myself having turned into a better and more careful person about everything. However, being too careful has come to me at the cost of being kind. I am overly conscious about the people that I associate with. I never want to get hurt again.

“Thanking” my toxic relationship has just been a way for me to feel connected with my ex. I need to admit it. Toxic relationships do more harm than good. You don’t need to thank anything toxic in your life, for giving you a bad experience and for turning you into the person that you are today. In life, we see betrayals which turn us into more careful people, but I would rather live in my bubble than be hurt by someone I love. 

When I was dating my ex, he often complimented me on how I was becoming a more patient person. He told me, very shamelessly, with utmost confidence, “Your patience bar is increasing on a daily basis because I test your patience so often”. I saw myself as someone who was not patient enough and I felt like I needed to learn the art of being patient with him. I never once thought that I needed to get away from toxicity for the sake of my mental health.

I wasn’t feeling patient, I had just started feeling numb. Now, one year after that relationship, I feel more alive again. Positively, I’m willing to look at myself differently and take new steps in my life. 

A patriarchal person, my ex often taught me that my career was not important. The way he validated my homeliness made me look down upon myself, not because being homely is bad but because it did not align with my goals. I have always wanted to be an independent woman with her career.

After the relationship ended, I saw myself working on my career a lot more. I wanted to achieve more in my life. I never wanted to be the woman that my ex spoke fondly of (the woman who was homely and was willing to give up her career). Having learned to respect myself and prioritise my dreams is something that I see myself thanking my ex for. However, I need to give myself more credit and realise that none of it was my ex. It has been me who put in all the hard work, I deserve more respect and appreciation from myself. 

My toxic ex often praised me for being “better than other women”. I had no idea what this meant and I never took pride in it.

Now, I know that he looked at other women in a degrading way and I am glad to be away from him. There are countless other men who pass reductive statements on women and their female counterparts rejoice with pride. I see myself thanking my ex for showing me what a bad person can be like. However, I don’t need to get overly positive about things. I don’t need to look at everything in the most positive way. It’s okay for me to say that “I’m not thankful for him and I wish he never happened to me.”

I have never imagined telling the stories about my toxic ex to people. Or the things he said to me which put me down. But I think it’s important for me as a feminist to share these stories so that other women know that they don’t need to be thankful for any toxic relationships in their lives. 

Being a strong feminist, I want to tell the toxic men out there, who look at women and think they need a real taste of the world, that “No thanks, we don’t”. Toxic men often feel like women need to taste the real world, have had it too easy, without realising the struggles which women have faced in their lives. As a child, my mother had often warned me about men like my ex. He was truly the man “My parents would have asked me to stay away from.” and I am in no way ever going to express gratitude to him. Patriarchal men do not deserve our gratitude for showing us how bad the world can get. “No, thanks”

This is an article by direct contribution. Views and info expressed is author’s own and not that of SheThePeople.

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