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If we wish physical harm on our ex, does this mean we don't love them?

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Background: 2.5 years on and off, very unhealthy, emotionally and verbally abusive. Broke up in January 2012. NC for ~3 months. Intermittent contact for the rest of 2012. (Totalling around 3 years)


During the 3 month NC period with my ex, I was allowed to experience growth and happiness that I otherwise would not have been able to achieve. While I was very sad and depressed at points, I was finally able to make it to a point where I was beginning to reclaim myself as a human being. When I'm in contact with my ex, my growth is stunted. I become angry, bitter, and depressed. *ahem* The easy solution? Stop being in contact with the ex! Easier said than done, though. Whenever I reach a point of acceptance or genuinely moving on and being happy... my ex comes back and tells me he loves me, misses me, and wants to try and work things out (and further more that we CAN work things out). Even though I know I'm happier without him, it's so tempting to believe him. I loved and cared for him and wanted to believe that THIS time, things could work. But they never work. It usually ends with us rehashing the same problems, and my ex turning angry, cold, and unwilling to empathize/apologize.


One of the greatest things I have discovered in the moving on process is the idea of forgiveness. The idea that even though the way he treated me was wrong and hurtful, he is still human... so I can accept it happened and move on in peace. When I am NC, it is much easier to forgive my ex than when I'm with him trying to work it out. I suppose that although I am in the process of forgiving, I will not be able to forget, so I cannot trust him. But I always told myself that I loved him. I think that was part of how I was healing effectively. He hurt me, yes. He did some terrible things, yes. But I loved him as a person, and that is what made my time with him worthwhile. But the past couple months or so (while we were trying, yet again, to work something out)... I have begun to doubt my love for him. I will think about the things he has done to me, the pain I have felt, and I will feel so incredibly angry; hateful. I have begun to wonder: if my ex got into an accident, would I feel sorry for him? If my ex died, how would I feel? Would I be sad? And honestly, my answer has more often than not been no: I would not be sad. I would even go so far as to say that I would think he deserved it because of the way he has treated me. And this is scary. I have been in relationships before, and I have been angry many times. I have never really ended a relationship because I "fell out of love"; it has always been due to incompatibilities. I have never truly wished death or harm on another person for an extended period of time. And... ugh. I don't know. A part of me almost feels guilty for thinking like this because hey, my ex is a person. He makes mistakes just like anyone else! He doesn't deserve to simply not exist or be physically harmed! But another part of me is filled with so much anger and resentment... that I just don't care enough about feeling guilty. Does this make sense? Have I fallen out of love with my ex? This may seem silly to those that would say: "Girl, you're out of the relationship. Who cares?"


But... it matters to me. I want to go back to a place where I am able to move forward in my life and forgive. I want to be able to love my ex still, but have the strength to move on to better things. I guess I'm just dealing with the notion that the love I had for someone for so long... is just going away. (Probably due to being consitenly hurt by him every time we reconnect.) Bah. I don't know if there's any advice out there for me. I guess... has anyone gone through a toxic/abusive relationship and have had similar feelings? Or something?

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Yes I know how you feel. I have never been in a relationship where I was treated so terribly. When you said he never apologized when you were together, I could really relate.I never understood why he ccouldn't see the wrong in the horrible things he did. While we we together I just summed up his actions as stress and made excuses for him. I now know how unhealthy it was to deny myself of the treatment I deserved. I'd lay awake in bed listening to his snoring and fantasizing about slapping him in the face repeatedly. Towards the end, I stopped crying when he upset me. His comments no longer hurt me. This went on for three months of me no longer crying and just brushing them off. I haven't cried since the breakup 2 weeks ago. I feel ****ty but IM STRONG! I know the slapping comment makes me sound horrible. I also know I should have broken it off before I felt this way. Do I wish horrible things for him? Well I don't wish bodily harm but more a course of unfortunate events. I believe he will get that since I'm not there to cushion his falls. He will just spiral out due to his own anger problems. I won't feel bad I did everything I could to help him. It wasn't enough, it never will be. I hope that he finds that on his own and betters himself. It would improve his life as well as others around him. Most of all, I wish I could warn his next girlfriend of the hurt she will feel. But there is nothing I can do about that. You aren't a terrible person to feel this way. As long as you aren't the cause of hurt for him, then let it play out as it should. Fair is fair. No one deserves verbal and emotional abuse. There are things he said to me that I wouldn't say to my worst enemies let alone someone I even remotely cared for. Its just not right to purposely try to hurt anyone. Especially the ones that don't deserve it. I'd rather be physically abused than the emotional hell he put me through. Ive had a few long term relationships. I care and have love for them. I can see what our differences were and why it didn't work out. There is mutual love and respect there. With this one, it wouldnt be such a bad thing if he just fell off the face of the earth so he can never put another girl through this. And do yourself a favor. Grow that confidence, self worth, and dignity again! Surround yourself with people that make you feel good about yourself. Don't live life miserable with him. You can do this and so can I! Just love yourself because this is the only life you have dammit!

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Thank you evensteven. I read some of your past posts, and I'm so sorry you went through such a terrible time with your ex. I can definitely relate when you say you'd rather be physically abused than emotionally. Sometimes I use to wish my ex would just hit me and get it over with instead of dragging it out and "punishing" me by withholding his love


At so many points in my relationship with my ex I had catered to him so much and consistently put up with his anger and disrespect that now I think I'm kind of snapping. I'm also getting so frustrated with his back and forth behavior.... loving me and begging for me back one day and ignoring and disrespecting me the next. I need to accept that some people just won't and can't change. And no matter how nice or sweet he tries to be in order to win me back... he'll eventually go back to his old behavior. :sulkiness:

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I'm glad you realize this now. No human deserves to be treated this way. I don't care what kind of a person you are. I'm so lucky that he's not being nice and trying to get me back. It makes it really easy to stay mad. In all my other break ups I felt like it was the end of the world and I was just dying inside. Maybe its too soon to tell but with this one I'm relieved that its over. I was so miserable, isolated from my family and friends, and my confidence was falling apart. Now that I'm away, I'm looking at my past barriers and I'm excited to change them. My family has been so supportive. If I feel the slightest bit down, my sisters quick to talk me through it. I don'thave a job yet but I'm looking at it as a way to change my career path into something I want to do. I can't get all my household stuff. I'm looking at that as a way to get new stuff that I like even more. I'm looking at my life without him as time for me to be myself again. And I've really learned my lesson from this guy. I've learned to never move in with anyone again. From now on they live with me or not at all. That way I can kick them out when I need to. I've also learned to pay attention to the signs in the beginning. We didn't have a fight for an entire year but I watched him scream horrible things to his kids mom over the phone the entire time. I should have put 2 and 2 together that he would eventually treat me like that. So stay optimistic and mad! If I feel down about him whatsoever, I remind myself of the worst thing he said to me. I dig deep for how I felt most of the time with him.I remember my nights crying and how he just ignored me. For now its enough to get me by. The only thing I'm having a hard time excepting is not being able to see his kids again. I loved them so dearly. I was their mom for 4 days out of the week. Since he worked from 8am-9pm he was never there. I took them to school, gave baths, did homework. I spent every extra cent I had on them. They were just my world. I try to look at it as I'll have my own someday but its really hard. They loved me and I loved them with my whole being! I hope they remember me and grow up just fine. Its not their fault this happened. But in the end I'm what's most important. I couldn't stay for them because I would be giving up on myself. So please stay strong and confident. Find youself and who you were before the relationship. I can bet you weren't you in the relationship since you had to deal with him. Do the things that you denyed yourself before. In the future look for the signs, don't ignore them. No people do not change. Relationships never work the second time around. Its early to tell but I'm really happy about my decision and I do hope that you will also find this happiness. Stay strong. There's no harm in relying on loved ones for a while. That's why they are there. There's nothing wrong with you so don't blame yourself.

*sorry for such lengthy replies. Apparently, I had to get out some stuff as well and I feel our situations are so similar!

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