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Thursday, September 1, 2011

Thursday Love: Living in Fear...How to Cope? Part 6

Jewel of wisdom du jour: The way you treat yourself sets the standard for others." - Sonya Friedman

As previously mentioned, having a support system is of the utmost importance when dealing with an abusive situation or trying to get out of an abusive situation. At times though, it may be necessary to get legally separated, divorced, or even have a restraining order placed against your abuser. Please do not feel falsely secure with a restraining order because there are tons of examples where person's who've had restraining orders placed against them have broken those orders and attempted to harm the individual anyway.

Well what can you do then? If you're planning on living in the same area it's important to change up your routine. Take new and different routes to work, avoid places that you and your abuser may have frequented or that they know you frequent. Change your appointments that they may know about and find new places to shop and run errands. If you had joint bank accounts, those NEED to be closed ASAP and any new accounts you plan to open...should be opened with a different bank.

It might be a good idea to change your cell phone number, email addresses, etc. so that your EX has no way of contacting you. Because if those things remain the same...things could easily evolve into a stalking type situation. Try screening your phone calls for a while if there are numbers that you do not recognize. Also, make sure that your closest friends and family know that you and this person are no longer together, let them know about the restraining order and make sure they know that under NO CIRCUMSTANCES are they to give out your personal information to ANYONE. You might also want to look into contacting the national domestic abuse hot line for any more tips and suggestions they've found useful in moving on from an abusive relationship. (1-800-799-7233 or http://www.thehotline.org/get-help/help-in-your-area/)

So now that you're ready to move on and start rebuilding your life. What's next?

Well it's important to know that there could be some emotional scarring as a result of the abuse that you had to endure. So it may be wise to seek help from someone, maybe a psychologist or therapist might be helpful. Remember that self-esteem comes from within but it can be violently assaulted from the outside...so here are a few tips that you can employ to move forward.


  • Pay attention to your own needs and wants - Listen to what your mind, body, and heart are telling you and act on it. Begin treating yourself as you wish you had been treated in your relationship.
  • Change negative thoughts about yourself into positive ones -  I know that's overly simple to say but now is the time for you stop playing the role of the victim and tell yourself, NO, force yourself to start showing yourself the respect and dignity you deserve.
  • Thinking negatively about yourself is not a natural behavior - We aren't born with these negative thoughts in our heads so we need to get them out as quickly as possible. These are learned thoughts and behaviors and need to be unlearned because they are far from helpful and absolutely detrimental to growth in your life.
  • Take note of the things that put you in a good mood - Many times it's the simplest things that put us in a good mood. Remember these things and do them as often as you can to improve your own mental attitude.
And don't be afraid to talk to someone.....anyone who's mature enough to handle the seriousness of the conversation. Sometimes it may be simply seeing yourself from someone else's perspective to help you see in a better light. And last but certainly not least....remember that "You're Worth It" and that there is light at the end of the tunnel!

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