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  1. I've been with my current boyfriend for about 2 years. We went to the same middle school, became really close friends in high school (around 2011), and because of his relationship at the time of like 3/4 years, we kind of drifted apart around 2014. Some sort of social media post led to a conversation, which led to us being inseparable since 2020. I've been struggling lately though, because he's great. I love him so much. He makes mistakes, but even when things start to turn unhealthy in any of our behaviors, he acknowledges it. He can say the hard things, but he can also sit with his thoughts and come back understanding. When we began talking again, I had gotten over a tough 5 year relationship, so I started an entirely new life and hadn't spoken to most of the people I went to high school with. Once I graduated, I immediately had to work and eventually moved in with my boyfriend when I was 19 because my family home was being foreclosed on. I paid bills (every single bill. rent, utilities, everything) on my own for 6 months not knowing if I'd be evicted with one mistake and was working for a miserable utilities company that I hated but had to stay at. I couldn't even afford to go to college, and paid out of pocket for a class or two just to have something. All the while, I was in an emotionally abusive relationship that ended with heart palpitations and suicidal thoughts. I went through a lot of trauma even before then and I've been putting the pieces together to fully heal. It's been so hard. I forgotten so much and was so happy to just speak to him again because we were so freaking close and the same. Little throwbacks would come up when he would say I was always there for him on social media or some old, long conversations we used to have when venting. I admired that kid since day one. He was just like me, a weirdo. I wanted to know him since the day I first saw him. Lately, a lot of our high school past has been resurfacing. It's been years, right? But I started to remember how much I cared for him and some hurtful memories began to pop up. He was in an on and off relationship with someone who gaslighted him, and I was there for him to speak to for advice. I remember liking him but was such a tolerant person who accepted any treatment to be real with myself. I put my energy into being mature even then and did what I could to *never* selfishly give him advice against her. I rooted for them hard. To me, he was so admirable. He treated her wonderfully, and if anything, it probably would've changed my entire perspective if he ever crossed a line with me. I had a lil crush, but maintained it without ever being disrespectful and keeping my distance always thinking about how she would feel. After being told about awful cheating and gaslighting, they broke up. During that time, he crossed the friendship line and began flirting with me after 3 years of just being close friends. I was like a lil school girl, talking to his friends for advice and being all giddy updating them on how things were going. He confessed to me he always kinda liked me, we hung out, hooked up (he was probably only like, the second guy I ever hooked up with at the time so this wasn't a light thing for me). Right after, he asked to stay friends, he eventually got back with his ex and after high school, again saw their relationship flaunted everywhereeee, he asked me to hook up again, I said no, and we "drifted" apart. Thinking back on it, I think I'm starting to realize we didn't drift apart. He actually hurt me, and during that time, I dealt with sexual abuse, dealt with losing my family home, dealt with depression and suicidal thoughts and I remember always talking to him through his depression but don't really remember him being there for me. I remember us being so similar, but so different. I went to a pretty wealthy school, but I was not that. His parents were together, mine divorced. He lived in a wealthy neighborhood, mine was being foreclosed on. He was allowed to have people over, I was stuck to my house and actually "snuck" out just to simply hang out with him. He went to college, no student debt, for four years right after and got to experience his life, I had the opposite and had to begin paying bills fresh out of high school and had to pay to go to school online, on my own, still pursuing that degree. What life handed us does not take away a single thing he's been through, but it gives some context, but thinking back on it is so painful. I was always there for him, little ole me who went through abuse and trauma and betrayal, but I was always there. He never checked up on me or reached out. ***ty exes reached outs and I ignored them, but still always had a glimmer of "I meant something to them. *** them, but I meant something" and nothing from him. After going through all of that, and putting it aside to be there for him, I didn't even get a check up. Even after knowing I liked him, he didn't check up to make sure I was okay. After his got back with his ex, I was nothing to him. I'm looking back now and I'm so hurt thinking that's my story, and it's like I remembered it all wrong. It feels like I'm the nice girl who finished last and I'm so internally pissed. He doesn't remember though. All he remembers is his ex, his ex and what she put him through, the ex that unfortunately is also a part of my story because him going back and forgetting about me is what made me feel low, and like a side piece, and like someone was chosen over me, like people who hurt others are the ones that win and people like me are forgotten, easily. I remember him, I remember the good things and the bad, and what he put me through, maybe even unintentionally. It's like my soul feels like he had a chance and waited so long. He had the chance to be there for me when I was going through the worst pain but he wasn't. Was he willing to go on without me in his life forever? After all that time? Was he part of my villain origin story where people like him had no interest and dropped me and I was moving on, and then regressed and now I'm dealing with this? And also, is it even fair to him?! I'll go there, because it was years ago. The thing is, this isn't something I held on to and slowly threw this up, I've been trying to figure it out and put my thoughts together on where certain unrecognized behaviors from me come from. He thinks it was a lifetime ago. Even my friends remember. I'm 25, we started talking again when I was 22 and that happened when I was 17. I've been having nightmares about it, and having gone through that trauma, me and him have two entirely different processes and understandings and memories. It could be small to him, but this is needed for my healing journey and I'm done telling myself to let it go if it keeps coming up and is obviously something I have to deal with. I feel so bad for my inner child, and I'm feeling that hurt. What would you do? How can I process this and in a healthy way try to get past it?
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