Daily Share – I Found The Courage To Leave – Why Is It So Hard?

For the fist time in 33 plus years in a abusive marriage I am on my own. I found the courage to leave, now trying to get on my feet so I will not have to go back every one telling me what to do, but no one know hows hard it is for me to be doing this also the same people who are telling me what to do are not there for me. I feel alone and afraid. I am an older women with some health problems and just would like to hear from women who have been are in my shoes or in my shoes now and why it’s so hard to let go of my husband who has been abusive to me for years. I know I deserve better so why is it so hard?

A TDL Reader

  • Megynblanchard

    Cycles of abuse are addictive. It’s kind of like a pain pleasure cycle. Normally people like us are the empaths, the abuser takes advantage of this. So they dribble out crumbs of behavior that can feel loving and caring or apologizes or rationalizes behaviors. We hang on to this, often for too long. There is codependency issues too. Sometimes the empathetic person is trying to rescue or fix the abuser inorder to feel worthy subconsciously. Either way it’s hard to break cycles or old behavior if you aren’t aware of where and why it’s happening. I suggest reading this blog every day. And picking up some books on codependency and inner/outer child work. Once you’ve identified how your ego, self worth, all played into this it becomes less painful and actually more liberating. Even if it takes a while to move on…awakening to your self is the most loving act you can do.

  • Shacklefordv

    I think we get complacent in our environment so that when we move out of it we just can’t handle the newness of it. I found a good counselor that is helping me to adjust. It is an adventure and you have to embrace it as such. You have to acknowledge that yes it sucks to be on your own but you are and everyday is a new day. It is truly about baby steps. Find people tht support you a good doctor new friends. Remember old is a state of mind not who you are.

  • Pil_low

    Sometimes doing the right thing isn’t easy, but in time it becomes your new normal. Be patient with yourself, friends and family alot of change is taking place. Believe you deserve better and better will find you, look out for the signs. Keep moving forward even if some days feel like you are crawling. Lastly, be grateful everyday for the breath given to you.

  • kk

    Hang in there! Almost a year ago, I ended a 2 year engagement to a man who was abusive and controlling.  While I have my bad days, I am mostly happy to be free of him and his lies. I know I am free to be me.  I am free to smile and laugh and cherish the things I want to cherish. This freedom is far more precious than having companionship.
    On my bad days, I wonder if I will ever be married (I’m in my mid-30s) and if/when I will be a mom.  I am trying to be gentle with myself on those bad days.  I genuinely loved my ex.  I am grieving a loss as much as I am celebrating my future.   So, be gentle with yourself too.  You were in the marriage for over 3 decades; of course you will be greiving the loss!  Just know that as time goes on, there are more good days than bad.
    I found great comfort in reading some books about abusive relationships.  The books helped me discover the patterns that led to the abuse and overall made me feel better about myself as a survivor.
    I wish you peace and blessings as you start this new journey.  It’s not easy but it is worthwhile!

  • Kmo6161

    I too, left an abusive relationship. It took me 20 years. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. And just like you, those that were standing on the sideline cheering me on and encouraging me to leave, were no where to be found when I walked out the door. I spent 2 years feeling lost, scared and wondering If I had made the wrong decision.

    It’s been 6 years. I look back on those first 2 years and realize those were the most powerful years of my adult life. Although I cried, a lot, I also found myself again. I learned to enjoy the things in life that I wanted for the first time in 20 years. I could do what I wanted , when I wanted. I was in control of me.

    Take it one day at a time. Journal. Cry when you feel like crying. You need to feel every emotion you are experiencing. Don’t suppress it, work through it. You will feel yourself becoming strong and independent. Don’t be afraid to be alone. You will learn to embrace your freedom and the power it brings you in your life. Being married for 30 years is nothing you can forget. It was a major part of your life and who you are. But that was only one part of your life. You are now on the road to a new adventure in life. Where you can make it anything you want. You are in control. You will become stronger everyday. And before you know it…you will look back on this time in your life and think to yourself, wow, I did it!

    • Rosemarie

      Thank You for these words it’s been a month now since I left and I do find times when I think did I make the right choice only because I am alone and for the first time in my adult life I am truly on my own, I went from a disfunctional abusive family to a marriage  of abuse it’s like this is all I know so when I say to myself did I do the right thing I know I did just have to learn not to be so afraid and to be Happy .

  • Zankelly

    Stolkholm syndrome is common. After so many years you empathized with, or at least normalized  your abuser and the abused life became your ‘normal’. You are also forming a new life now. Everything is new, challenging, and scary. What you are feeling is normal. I would join a support group ASAP. Either online, or preferably in person. There is support out there for domestic violence victims like yourself. Please utilize it. You must not do this alone. You need support to heal. Reach out for assistance and you will find it:

    National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−SAFE(7233) 

    They will guide you to the right resources.

    Take care,


  • Ema

    I am young and haven’t been in your situation or even married ever, so I am just sending much love and blessings your way.

  • Sonia

    You’re  strong and alive and wanting to enjoy your life so you made the best decision. Keep Moving Forward!  You deserve to be happy. 

  • Gramechka

    Bravo for YOU!!!! I know it is a difficult decision to make, I also did it!!!! I ended a thirty year in total relationship. The first 5 years (3 years dating/2 years married) were fabulous!!! Then the Abuse started & I spend the next 25 years trying to find & rescue that man I had fallen in love with!!!! I am over 6 years out & its been a journey to healing.  In the beginning my tears flowed, I worked on changing the only person I can change myself, & with time & effort I have made a new & great life for myself!!! Leave the abuser in the past & focus on you & your well being. It does get easier with time & work. You are a worthwhile human being & never forget that!!!  Give it time & put your heart, soul, & body into healing yourself. Fill your life, abusers seem to leave a void in where their all consuming presence used to be. Fill your life with positive things that you enjoy & love. Limit your ex abuser thinking, they do not change, but you can & you will have the best life if you choose to!!!! God bless & wishing you much JOY!!! 

  • Fabmpernas

    i was in an abusive relationship too, it took me 18 years, he said i was naothing without him, and the worst part is that i believed it, but i had no choice but to protect me and my children, and that was 2 years ago, it is not easy but toda i am better than ever, feeling better than ever, you are going to be fine, take it one day at a time, and listen to your heart, no to everyone, who is not actually in your shoes, you can do it, there is always something great waiting for you in the future, you will see

  • hopeful

    I know how much it hurts in the beginning. I was in an extremely emotionally abusive marraige. I filed for a divorce after 25 years together. Please give it TIME. Nobody deserves to be mistreated. You will heal. Keep the focus on yourself and surround yourself with positive people. Life gets better once you believe that you deserve better. Much love and light moving forward. 

  • Shel

    My husband of 29 years said he is leaving. That was 3 weeks ago. In our 4th year of marriage he had an affair with a gal he worked with at a construction site. (Never really said he was sorry)It was a psychologically abusive relationship  I will be alone in my relationship with both of my grown children: ages 24 and 27. I do not want anything to change regarding our relationship between my son and my daughter. They are the  most important people in my life, always have been and always will be. 

    I too am scared about what the future will bring. I think it will bring peace and me no longer “walking on eggshells” forever. Virtually no communication at all since we started couples communication therapy. Things have actually gotten worse. We live like two roommates. We know how to push each other’s buttons really well. I think some of the advice given already is great:  working on you as an individual; taking small steps etc. Noone is saying it will be easy. One step at a time or changing one perspective at a time, as Gabby Berstein is fond of saying. Finding some great books to read; and a good support person (professional or friend) may help. 

    Wihing you all the very best. I am doing some SoulCollage(R). I attended a Facilitator’s Training Course–what an amazing activity to help you start developing tools to get into being your inner self. discovering your inner self. We all havae both a shadow side and a light side. It is the shadow that sometimes we need to become friends with.

    As someone said the new normal may be uncomfortable but will become more and more comfy. I too tried to find and rescue the man I fell in love with. He is in there, but only comes out to play extremely sporadically. I married to be soul mates and share a life. NOt to have secrets and be told I was trying to control every move. That’s his story not mine to deal with…the wanting to be in control. I want to share, communicate and love.
    Take care, 

  • I’m so happy for you for making the best, most brave decision of your life. It isn’t always easy, but it gets better <3

  • sunshinegirl

    What do you do when you moved into a house with your husband, although we are really more like roommates, and he tells you that you don’t own the house?  We just bought this big house in Jan from a really small flat and I said then that he would tell me I did not own it because my name is not on the mortgage, but it is on the deed.  And whenever we get into arguments, I will tell him I want to move out and he will remind that I dont own the house.   I am just miserable living with him.  We have been married for 26 years.  I am miserable.

  • Isabel6456

    I was married for 19 years to an abusive husband as well, it takes courage to get out of there, I was the bread feeder and succesfull woman with 2 kids. Now, That my kids are in college, I feel great to know they love me and respect me, they are my triunph, smart kids and healthy, I still provide them what they need, I got a nice boyfriend, established and caring, sometimes in life you loose something to get something better, I am 54 and look like 45. It only takes a while when there is much assets to be split, I am going to do a settlelment to get my freedom as quick as I can. I feel good with myself and I will never turn back again.

  • LuluLa

    Hello – congratulations for taking such a huge step…you are very brave, especially considering the health problems; I can relate to that – in fact, I’m bedridden and cannot leave – I feel like a prisoner in my own body.

    I supported my partner financially for most of the past 17 years but now that I’m out of resources and so very ill, none of that matters to him any longer…having promised to repay me by taking care of me as I did him, he now says “that was then, this is now”.

    I dream of leaving, but  nowhere to go – I’m pretty certain I’ve cried every single day for several years – surprised that I have tears left.  I used to have a successful career with lots of friends, but friends fell by the wayside after being ill so very long.  I’d be happy if I could pick up the phone and call someone just to chat…

     …I think the saddest thing is that there isn’t anyone in the entire world who knows I’m even alive; every day I read of women who die of my disease (CFS), most of them alone. 

    Lots of wonderful women here – be glad you left when you still could.  Take care of yourselves.

  • Karen

    Every morning before you get out of bed,  picture the amazing day before you and feel the freedom and relief of being allowed to live your life as YOU choose to live it with all the fears and joys that we all have.
    Some people are forced into prisons and some choose to stay in self imposed ones – you have chosen to be free.  It’s scary not to have the 4 walls around you but the beauty you will now be able to see far outweighs that…
    *hugs* – I have nothing but admiration for your courage…