Why She Finally Left.

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walking away
I am amazed and inspired by the incredible strength and determination of the women who gather the courage to leave what no longer serves them.

It could be a neighbor, a friend, a teacher, a colleague, even a sister or mother.

We witness their struggles and their sadness and wonder why they stay, but we also know that we can’t force them to leave. We only hope that one day they see for themselves their infinite potential and send them encouragement to find their own happiness.

Whether it is a job, a relationship, a city or simply a life that is unfulfilling or holding them back.

The moment they realize their own potential and self worth, is much more powerful than anything we could have said to them.

It’s priceless.

If you have questioned your own situation and wonder if it’s time to leave, consider what makes a woman finally leave and ask if any of these statements ring true for you.

Why She Stayed.

She was once happy where she was. There were infinite possibilities—the love they shared was deep and powerful—she was desperate to rekindle that.

In the beginning, it felt wonderful and joyous as they were exploring new things together and she was learning so much about herself.

She remembered the fun they used to have and how fulfilled she was. He was everything she thought she wanted.

Her friends and family used to comment on how happy she was, as if they were envious of the joy she radiated. They wanted it too, or so she thought.

When things started to change, and the feelings began to dissipate, she wondered where she went wrong. She was hopeful that it would come back that strong again.

She was upset with herself, that she was somehow to blame.

She felt that staying showed her commitment and she was worried that she may leave too soon and live to regret it.

She waited for things to get better. She stayed optimistic that things would change.

She questioned many times if she should leave. That was the first sign that she should.

So instead, she looked for signs that she should stay. And sometimes when she looked hard enough, she found them.
She knew, in some ways that she was settling, but still she questioned if there would be anything better.

Besides, it wasn’t terrible and there was still some good left. Others certainly had it worse, she would justify.

She felt some safety in knowing what to expect, as if being comfortable brought happiness. It didn’t.
She had many ways to rationalize why she should stay.

She was scared about what she was giving up, and worried about what she may lose if she left.
But she didn’t consider what it was costing her to stay.

She started to uncover the courage and strength that she knew she always had. She weighed the risks.

Now, she was tired. She was defeated. She was resentful. She had given up her own power and happiness and she knew it was too far-gone.

She spoke to friends and she built up a tribe around her. They supported her. They always did.

She remembered how much potential she had and how the choice to stay was hurting her.

She let go of the guilt and blame that she had done something wrong. She hadn’t.

She finally had enough. She realized that it was no longer serving her. It was making her sad, hurt and frustrated.

She had given until there was nothing left to give. She wanted to smile and laugh again, like she did when it first began.

She knew it was inevitable that she would leave, but she didn’t know when. She didn’t know how. She knew she was stalling.

But she wondered what she was waiting for.

But finally, she left. The sadness became too much, the stress too overwhelming and the hurt enclosed her.

It was time to move on and she had found the strength. She realized that the only one holding her back was herself.

She was terrified of the aftermath. How would she cope? Who would she be without this part of her life that she had held onto for so long?

She picked herself up, she found the courage and she believed in herself. She knew she was strong, she knew she would survive.

She thought back to who she was before she weakened and how amazing and accomplished she was. How she lived her life without fear—she felt joy and passion. She found inspiration in that.

When it was all said and done, it was like a breath of fresh air. And she smiled again. Just like she knew she would.

She survived and she proved her strength. Not to anyone else, but to herself. She became aware of how much she had sacrificed and how unhappy she had been.

Life started to unfold around her and happiness began to pursue her. She didn’t need to reach for it with outstretched arms like she thought.

Happiness found her.

She still holds onto the happy memories, but she decided she deserved to be unconditionally happy. She decided that her life was worth pure bliss and that she didn’t need to rationalize her choices any longer.

For all of the amazing women of the world, may you find the strength and the courage to live the life of joy you are worthy of and finally take that breath of fresh air.

~

 

~

Relephant bonus:

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Relephant:

How to Leave a Sociopath for Good.

~

Author: Jodie Hebbard

Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock

Photo: flickr

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Jodie Hebbard

Jodie Hebbard is a certified life coach and career fulfillment coach. She works with clients from all over the world to help them get clear on their life purpose and break free from the golden handcuffs to start creating a life that they love by doing what they love.

After taking a spiritual sabbatical she decided to make some major life changes and start living life by her own rules. She left her successful career in business management and human resources after 11 years to pursue her passion and live her true calling in helping others live their dream.

Jodie is based in Calgary, Canada and is a travel enthusiast, animal lover, vegetarian and mom to her amazing rescue dog and travel companion, Chai.

Visit Jodie’s website to learn more.

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anonymous Jan 24, 2016 12:32pm

Having a baby is transformative, especially for a woman. You (women) are giving Life … and usually Milk. Your focus changes completely from yourself to your little one. *S/he* becomes your fulfillment, not merely yourselves.

It is wonderful to be a father, but compared to you we guys are only a little more than spectators.

anonymous Oct 17, 2015 8:33am

Excellent Article Indeed !

anonymous Oct 1, 2015 5:40pm

Sometimes its finding the strength to return if the hurt or over whelming stress of life is what coursed her to leave the world. I can only imagine it to be like a breakdown in some way. Its almost a way to survive when the pain and shock is unbearable and it turns to uncontrollable fear of life its self. I’m stuck in a kind of limbo and have actually believed I’ve died. Family tell me I seem more alive then I have done for some time now. Awakening, yet I feel so alone and disorientated that I wonder how long I’ve been away, where do I start picking up the pieces. The bridges I’ve broken and the important things to me I’ve suppressed to some how preserve the best of what was left of me as a way to one day find my way back. My family seem different to how I remember and its almost like recovering from an accident or something? I’m so scared but so grateful I still have family even though I have no friends and pushed anyone else left away from me to avoid the danger of being struck again where it most hurts by the ones you trust the most. And above all its the children that are caught up in the web that we weave that are the most remarkable beings as they look to us for security or reassurance and yet its them that we find the courage for so its them that guide us to the light of hope and a better world. And its them we need to stay in tune with. As well as our own inner child and that ability to see the unknown as adventure and faith not fear it as we experience more and more through our adult lives. We need to come full circle and once they show eagerness to explore and feel independence to go alone we shouldn’t hold them back but continue to guide but then let them guide us back home and remember the innocence of our true hearts. Letting go of the material world itself can be a frightening process. I feel so lost but I’m grateful of that feeling as its something and not the nothing of numbness. I need to tell so many people how much I love them. And I want to say sorry to many others. Wow and I still have all of what made me leave to face on return. None of which really fits a catogry just life living death or existence . that’s as clear as I can be about things right now as I’m still making sense of me and everything around me. If this comment makes no sense.lol.

anonymous Sep 20, 2015 11:43pm

She found happiness

5 years passed, then she left again a new man because the same exact thing happened again.

She found happiness again, and the same exact thing repeated.

She started to guess something might be wrong with her…

But it was too late. She got old and nobody wanted her.

anonymous Sep 9, 2015 5:08pm

This article was published on the very day I decided to leave an abusive marriage. Shortly after that, things fell into place and he was actually taken from the home via a three year restraining order. I was granted sole custody of my daughter just a little while ago. It's only been 3 1/2 months but I have found so much in such a short time. And when I least expected it, a great man walked into my life. I am taking it slow with him and see for the first time what a healthy relationship means. I knew for so long I needed to leave but I was scared. I didn't think I could do it on my own but I am. I am doing it just fine. A huge weight was released and I am no longer controlled. I found my wings…and I couldn't be happier. Thank you for writing this.

anonymous Aug 26, 2015 7:53pm

I was asked to leave. Granted things weren’t perfect. We had already separated once. MAtter of fact I had only been back in the house about 9 months when the bottom fell out again. I didn’t know how unhappy I was until I was free of the burden. I have my smile and laughter back. I was willing to stay for many reasons. One of course being love. Sometimes though love is not enough.

anonymous Aug 4, 2015 8:59am

WOW.. I needed this this morning! its time…..
Thank you,
Jodie

anonymous Jul 30, 2015 1:43pm

Story of my life. I stayed for the good times and the promise…and then I left because I knew there was more to love.

anonymous Jul 28, 2015 7:11pm

Thats all great and inspiring!! I have been through this recently. I left. I knew in the end none of it was my fault and that it is was better i leave. But i have no smile on my face, like this article states. I have no breath of fresh air. I was destroyed by what happened to me and i find courage enough to move on (and leave in the first place) but i am broken by it. I do not trust and i wish i could like i used to. I wish i could find happiness in the little things like i used to. But i just dont. This article is inspiring and speaks directly to me…..but it is one of many fairytales. And it’s not always happily ever after.

    anonymous Aug 11, 2015 10:02am

    …I feel for you. Most of us leaving (or about to) are hopeful that we will find ourselves again. Many of us are scared and probably wondering if we'll ever be happy again. But before you believe that you have been broken by the outcome of your leaving, just remember the person you were when you stepped into that relationship. It may not be a fairytale, but it stopped being a bad dream….Life will always find a way, and time will make it happen.

anonymous Jul 28, 2015 4:35pm

If life is only about how you are served by others, how things are serving you. Then you will never be happy. Leaving one unhappy place for the pursuit of what could be happy, is just continuing the cycle of unhappiness. Its the same reason you wound up in an unhappy place to begin with. Before you sat in forgiveness and trying to make things work, you pursued the place you are in because you were unhappy somewhere else, maybe unhappy being alone, or unhappy with something else entirely. I feel sorry for any person who derives motivation from this story. Because in 10 years they will be in exactly the same place they are now.

    anonymous Jul 30, 2015 4:43am

    Thanks. Good balance to the emotional ride of the article.

anonymous Jul 28, 2015 4:05pm

wow, i am so glad i found this! i am a transgender woman, married to a woman who has not been able to accept that i need to be Vanessa, and i am afraid never will. I am struggling so hard with the thought of leaving her, even though i know it is likely what i am going to have to do in order to find my highest happiness in life. i am so filled with guilt, and so afraid of the drama that i am pretty certain will happen when i try to make the break.

anonymous Jul 25, 2015 6:53am

Perfect timing. Thank you so much.

anonymous Jul 25, 2015 5:22am

This article started out so well … then it descended into the predictable paradigm. No your friends do not necessarily gather around you. More likely they abandon you as it is too much for them to fathom. Ultimately in life, you have only yourself … No there is no sweet answer to all this ”stuck”…. jsut more of the same. No, not everyone can leave, get real.

anonymous Jul 24, 2015 5:20pm

Thank you for this. I wish I could go back and tell everyone in this struggle…DO IT! I spent yearssssssssssssssssssssssssss in a terrible marriage, hoping, waiting, praying, trying. Bullshit. I won’t ever get those years back and they are dulled now that I have a new, triumphant life. Time is a gift to ourselves. We get one ride in this life. I had 2 kids, l8 and l0 and made $12 an hour. It was hard, it was scary. It was worth it. I am a beast! You can be, too. Life is short, so short and so precious. Leave. Just leave.

anonymous Jul 14, 2015 6:06am

Yay you Cindy! I need to muster up my courage. Emotionally I am ready. Financially I am not.

anonymous Jul 13, 2015 3:51pm

I kind of stumbled on this on Facebook when I needed it most. I left my husband a few years ago after a long, hard, fight to save our marriage. He was repeatedly unfaithful, lied all the time, called me crazy when I’d catch him doing things behind my back, and generally made me feel terrible out who I was. Near the end, I hated myself. I hated who I had become in the attempt to save something that didn’t bring me even the slightest bit of happiness. We were only married for 6 years, but it felt like an eternity. Everything was a constant fight, a constant compromise. I started drinking heavily to numb the emotional pain. I was angry and bitter. I became a shell of who I am and that happy, smart, motivated girl disappeared behind all the pain I felt. I couldn’t trust him and he didn’t understand that when you step out on a relationship, on your wife, you have to earn that trust back. He didn’t even want to try he just WANTED it. Immediately. The expectation was that I just get over it, right away, I wasn’t allowed to heal or work through things and he never listened. He couldn’t be bothered to. There at the end, he was seeing someone else. When I found out, we had this huge blowout fight. I left and went to a hotel. When he came in, after telling me earlier in the day that he wanted me to kill myself, he told me how sad he was because she had called it off after I sent her an email. He was telling his wife that his girlfriend had dumped him, how much they liked each other, and how sad he was because of it.

I sat there, falling apart, on the bed and felt sick. All he cared about was himself and the pain he was feeling because the girl he was cheating with had broken up with him. Had I been a stronger person I would have left him years before, but I always hoped that things would get better. I had hope that somehow the person I thought he was would come back to me. It didn’t occur to me until much later that person never existed. We were so young when we married and we married very fast. We should have taken more time to get to know each other. We should have really had open, honest, talks about what we wanted out of life and made an informed decision whether or not we were a good match. Ultimately, we weren’t. I disappeared into that relationship, changed horrendously by all the things that happened and all of the hurt I carried around, and I began to hate him. I began to hate myself.

None of the choices I made were made with my happiness in mind. They were made with the thought that we were married for better or for worse, which meant we HAD to make it work. He destroyed the trust I had in other people, completely. He destroyed the trust I had in myself, not to mention my self esteem. He has since said awful things about me to mutual friends, implying that I was emotionally abusive when it was quite the opposite. I don’t think he realizes how much abuse he leveled at me…. the ugly things he said about how I look, who I am, and so on. It was almost like he was trying to convince himself I wasn’t worth it. But, I fought so hard for him.

Leaving was the best choice I ever made, for both of us. I was finally able to find happiness again, with a wonderful man who has been the absolute best partner. I know what love is now and it is not at all what I thought it was. I trust him implicitly and I love him completely, good and bad. We have our ups and downs, but we communicate and work through them as partners. It isn’t like it was with my ex-husband, where I tried and he ignored. We work through it together and that has made all the difference in the world. I no longer drink, which has helped me feel better about myself. I just recently graduated from college and I’m planning on graduate school. I’ll never be the virologist I wanted to be, but I’m so much more now. I’m happy. Staying in relationships that cause you nothing but heartache and pain… serves no one. Sometimes you have to release yourself and the other person.

My ex husband isn’t a bad person and I wish him the best. I really do. I hope he finds happiness, but I also hope he figures out what it means to be in a partnership. I know our breakup was hard on him and I know that a lot of the ugliness that has been directed at me has been placed there because he doesn’t want to face up to his failures. It can be hard to stare all of that in the face and still like yourself. I just hope one day he makes peace with it. For his sake and for the sake of whoever he ends up with.

anonymous Jul 13, 2015 2:53pm

Thanks so much for sharing this. I think you looked into my life 6 years ago and wrote about it =) It was the hardest thing I have ever done, but worth it in the end =)

anonymous Jul 13, 2015 10:13am

Frankly I find this article reckless in that it encourages women to think selfishly and get rid of that which doesn't serve THEM as if their sole purpose in life is to be served and that is just NOT reality. If you are in a marriage these decisions belong to BOTH parties and if there are children involved their well being and happiness should be put first before selfishly choosing your own happiness at everyone else's expense, as real happiness can never be gained at the expense of others. You're ideas here are shallow and ridiculous and one day you will realize all the women you led astray with them and the unhappiness to other it caused. You are not God and you have no authority to encourage women that are in covenants to betray their own promises.

anonymous Jul 13, 2015 2:45am

For someone like me who went through a hard time struggling to leave or to stay when I was in my previous relationship with a partner who had an affair behind my back yet denied it all, this article had totally described what I went through. I find all sorts of reasons to stay, for a man I love and a relationship I cherish. I convinced myself with his denial and I was afraid that I might regret my decision of leaving him without giving him and the relationship chances. I fear of my future without this person even though I had a strong stand that I will never accept betrayal in any relationship initially.

I made life miserable for myself, crying almost everyday struggling with his hot and cold attitude towards me and it was terrible but I am glad my instinct told me something wasn’t right and I found that piece of concrete evidence to slap myself in the face that he was indeed cheating. That was when I got the courage and finally left.

Thank you for writing this article that speaks my mind because it ain’t easy to say out how I felt. Life still has its ups and downs but I’m happy with the right choice made and my life without him now.

anonymous Jul 12, 2015 2:43pm

I have been married for 24 years and have thinking about leaving over the last 6 years. I am scared. I know it might destroy him. I filed for a divorce in June 2014. I told him I was leaving and he begged me to stay. I did but all the hurt through the years have hardened my heart. I have seen a glimpse of how happy my life would be once free. I could go and do things I have wanted to do and not worry about someone else not wanting me to do something. He has bent over backwards to try to make me happy and I tried to rekindle that too in my heart. But its just not there! My heart is cold. I love him but not in love with him. He doesn't understand that. He says I am all he has. So I stay. When deep down my soul is screaming to say the words I want out. I have no courage. If he was mean to me I would have the strength to do it. I just hate hurting someone else cause I am no longer happy. How do I find courage and strength?

    anonymous Jul 12, 2015 6:39pm

    Torn Heart, I like your name. Not that it's good you're having confusion, but it shows you still have an openness to choices. My husband was torn. I begged and pleaded four years ago when I got the "I love you but I'm not in love with you" speech (and his actions soon turned from "love" to "tolerate"). I tried to change, tried everything. But he too had already hardened his heart, and my responses not being vicious or bitter just made it that much harder for him to justify leaving.

    In his case, he already had another woman lined up. But if he hadn't, he would have found one soon enough. He didn't understand that the mythical "out there" didn't hold the key to happiness, so he has tried to use other people, new jobs, new friends, new beliefs, a new identity, to fill the void. It's not always what we expect it will be.

    Happiness is an "in here" game. As Wayne Dyer says, "Wherever you go, there you are." 🙂 If you are unsatisfied in life, that will travel with you as you leave your marriage. Finding self-satisfaction does not have to be a marriage-destroying act.

    I let him go with love on his Homeric quest to find himself. After two decades, I feel that best serves the love we had. I am not telling you, then, that you have no right to leave your husband. It may be a great gift to give him – I know it has been for me. I've found a lot about myself that had gotten lost in the several years prior to his leaving, as well as new things that are important to me now!

    But a marriage is a valuable thing. Be torn. It's worth considering every angle of. If this was a case of abuse I would tell you to run, but you don't imply that's it. Get inside that hardened heart, and find out who you really are. You have every right to take that journey of self-discovery. But weigh those decisions. They will change your life, but there is no crystal ball to show you with definiteness that it will be for the better.

anonymous Jul 11, 2015 12:05pm

Thank you

anonymous Jul 9, 2015 5:46pm

This hit home for me. After 4 years and having a child I finally left my unhealthy relationship with her dad who was an alcoholic and had no goals to be anything in life. It was hard more so for the sake of my child, no one WANTS to break up their family but I would rather my daughter see her parents happy with other people then miserable and hurt and dishonest to each other. In order to be the best mom I could be I had to find myself again. I had to find happiness so I could be the best ME for her. And like the article says once you realize the potential you forgot you had and what you deserve nothing can hold you back. It's unbelievable the strength you find that you could have never thought existed. My decision ended up being the best but HARDEST decision I ever made

anonymous Jun 22, 2015 11:53pm

“She was scared about what she was giving up, and worried about what she may lose if she left.
But she didn’t consider what it was costing her to stay.”

This hit close to home. Ive been with a guy who i am deeply in love with for 11 months already. Time, as they say, isnt a basis of how much you love a person, so within that short period of time, we planned on getting married in 3 years and traveling the world together and make a family together. Everything was perfect during the start but things slowly faded and i caught him cheating (flirting) 3 times on different months with numerous girls. I continued to forgive him and take him back and i continued to let him disrespect me and abuse me. One time, out of nowhere, he asked for some time and space. I was really heartbroken and i kept on blaming myself for it. Weeks after that, I found out about his other girls and i confronted him about it, he was begging me to not leave him, promising me that it would get better and that he would fight for me to the best he can. I waited for 4 months for things to get better, but the lies and excuses continued. I waited for him to make some effort into winning me back, but he did not do anything, he did not even come to see me or listen to me when i needed him to listen to me. I never felt the sincerity of his words and those promises never came true, it just continued to be just words. I gave him a lot of ultimatum, told him I’m giving up and he’s losing me, but he keeps on saying that we should just clear things out when our heads are cooler and our hearts are warmer. I dont get why he would make me wait for him to do something about it. We had this conversation for more than 5 times and it always ended with me telling him i dont want it anymore and that he lost me already. But after awhile i get this feeling of depression that i should’ve have let go and that i should’ve waited cause i know deep in my heart i still love him and i want our plans to become reality. I’m in the process of sorting out my feelings, since i know that this is not what i deserve and i know I’m just settling. I know ive done the best i can to fight and stay but i just got exhausted from fighting alone. I hope one day i’ll be able to be happy. I hope one day that this feeling of always wanting him back even though he doesnt deserve a space in my heart and the feeling of regret because of me leaving him will go away. I know what I’m doing is right for me, i just haven’t realized it well enough.

anonymous Jun 22, 2015 6:20pm

I recently left. I should have left long ago, I was never strong enough. I don’t understand why these relationships are so hard to leave. I did things in the end that I am not proud of. I know why I did them now, I knew almost immediatly. I purposely sabotaged the relationship so it was impossible for me to go back. In doing that I probably hurt myself more than anyone. I did so opposite of what this article talks about. So completely out of character for me. Now I have to figure out a way to forgive myself

anonymous Jun 16, 2015 2:28pm

This is so true ,so helpful to uplift those that find so much of their journey still lies ahead of them . They will continue to get strength & encouragement until one day their so far ahead they see their worth their passion for life was born in them & they could not help bet to help themselves to live life & not hate it . Go higher .go higher there is always room to increase butter joy !,,

anonymous Jun 14, 2015 6:09pm

I have been trying to leave a marriage for over 5 years. financially I am unable. it is a nightmare. I am married to a mentally ill person who will not sign the papers to let me leave and i can not afford to leave without financial support. I so wish I could find the strength to just take my child and leave. i am a prisoner in this home

    anonymous Aug 10, 2015 5:59pm

    Hi Adrienne,

    I was in the same boat, but I was the one who had a good job, paid all the bills and supported a man who lost his job, ran up a ton of debit and is still trying to get more money from me. I stayed far too long knowing it would cost me to pay him off. Out of fear of being in financial rune I stayed to try to fix the mess, but it just got worse. Although I am now in debit up to my eyeballs and about to have to move again it was worth it. I would rather be poor and free of him than with him. Things have a way of working out. There are resources for you and the place you are in financial won't be forever. Best of luck to you.

anonymous Jun 14, 2015 5:32am

I would like to add that if you are leaving a true psychopath please be careful. Be sure to protect yourself and your children. A friend of mine was killed in her home while her children slept by her ex after she had moved out. Restraining orders are just paper. I do not share this to cause fear just awareness of real psychopaths. This does not happen most of the time and only you know your situation, but if you are connected to someone you feel is capable of such things you must protect yourself. On another point…my husband and I have been married 13 years now. The first two years were great, the next 9 were terrible and I thought I wanted to leave. I almost self destructed because of the conflict within myself. I chose to stay. I had to change. I had to see him for the wonderful man he truly is. Negativity (mine toward him) completely blocked me from seeing his many wonderful qualities. The last 2 years have been a gift from God and I see no reason why this will not continue. We have worked hard. Very hard! And the result is a love deeper that I could have imagined coupled with a respect greater than I thought possible. I am truly greatful I stayed and took a good hard look at myself and how I needed to change as well. My husband is definitely not a psychopath tho. He is a loving, kind, true, hard working, faithful, genuine man and an exceptional father. I am lucky to have him in my life. Regarding my earlier thoughts….please do seek protection if you are leaving a true psychopath as people are capable of horrible things especially if they feel they have lost control of someone they have had as a possession.

anonymous Jun 13, 2015 9:18pm

i guesse this goes for the man as well. If you don’t like anything about your relationship just leave. Woke up with a headache;leave. Nagging; leave. Don’t like your mini van; leave. Pregnant wife not acting her old self; leave. Kids to noisy; leave. Miss the good old days; leave. Financially better off before; leave. Be as selfish as you can be. You will feel better about yourself after. Lawyers will help you. After all this is the message women are being bombarded with.

I think your message doesn’t have enough here nor there to support the broad based suggestiveness of its nature. There are definitive reasons to get out of a bad relationship which I whole heartedly agree agree with. Your article is valid to a certain demographic Or to certain situations but to encapsulate all people having difficulties in a relationship is plain wrong and sends the wrong message.

    anonymous Sep 1, 2015 10:43pm

    I stayed in a very unhappy relationship for 28 years the last 8 years were barely livable I was a lot worse off financially after I left but I have rediscovered my self worth and am truly content and happy now it took a while. I am not seeking another relationship or even interested in dating. My life revolves around my family ( I have 2 adult children) and my work.
    I know the failure of my marriage was not all his fault, I was there maybe there are things I could have done differently I'm sure.
    Most of the people I know who have been divorced or have left relationships (male and female) did not leave at the first sign of trouble. Most people do genuinely want to work things out and don't have unrealistic expectations of their spouse. there just plain has to be something worth saving.

anonymous Jun 13, 2015 12:36pm

I needed this article! I am a spouse to an Iraq veteran and he was a part of the initial invasion into Iraq. He suffers with PTSD and for 12 years I have given all of me to our relationship. I have lied to myself; pepped talked myself; occupied myself with anything and everything to avoid facing the neglect in our relationship. I would tell myself for years, once he retires and puts his uniform away, he will get better, things will get better. That day came and went and in fact, it got worse. Now I was dealing with a retired soldier facing PTSD combined with a massive depression due to a career change. I take that back, 6 years later, he still does not have a career or has yet to decide what it is he would like to do with his life. I have supported him and followed him open and willing to do anything to make him happy, make him want to live. I have bounced from Christianity to Buddhism to Atheism and from corrections officer to pesticide to comic book clerk to student to car dealer. Each time, I have supported him and said ok this may be it. This might be what he needs to find himself, to be happy, to want to live this life to the fullest. I thought I was strong enough to fight his mental demons for him or tough enough to help him fight them; I thought I was fun enough to pep him up and motivate him; hell I thought I was pretty enough to lure him into spending time with me. I tried the crying, the threatening, the nagging, the positivity and support, the begging, the ignoring. And, finally, NOW 12 years later after reading an article about secondary PTSD, I realized there is NOTHING I can do. Life a drug addict, the person themselves has to want to change. There is absolutely nothing you can do to get the person to want to live their life. I used to think it was selfish of me to leave. I talked myself out of it so many times. I even made myself feel guilty by thinking that I am leaving a vet and not fulfilling my duty and obligation. For the first time ever in my life, I am strong enough to accept being judge by others; being viewed as selfish. I do deserve to be happy too in this one life. Hell, I might even deserve to feel what it is like to be truly loved and appreciated. Currently, I feel very alone and know the decision to leave will not be an easy one. However, at this point, it is the only decision left. TY for this article! TY for explaining exactly what I have been through for 12 years. TY for letting me know, their are other women out there fighting the same decision and road I am.

anonymous Jun 13, 2015 10:31am

wow, this article brought tears… I could identify with so much of it. I left a relationship after 17 years (the last 7 I knew things were not working any longer). I left and I’m in the stages of rebuilding my life (confidence) now. I started working with people to help them see their own “big decisions holding them back” and there is an emense amount of healing that happens every time I see someone step into their spirit. I have been a witness to some huge life changes for people and it’s so incredible. I’m sure that it’s helping me continue to step forward with courage (as I still have moments of insecurity)… It definitely makes it feel like we are never alone going through all ‘this’

Thanks for the wonderful article and the work you are doing! Much love!!!

anonymous Jun 13, 2015 1:55am

wow just wow i so needed this…. this is me and i have just started that journey of leaving behind a 19 plus year relationship that was litterly making me be nothing.. now the road is there yes i am scared but it is ok..

    anonymous Jul 19, 2015 6:10pm

    You can do it! Be strong! I'm so proud of you! Wishing you all the happiness you deserve to have!

anonymous Jun 12, 2015 9:25pm

I find this a decidedly incomplete article. We’ve put the “low self esteem” shoe on abused women for years. the old notion that all women who marry bad men think little of themselves is a topsy turvey politically correct way to blame the victim. In fact, recent research reveals that women often stay for financial reasons, and for the children, and for caring for the elderly parents.

I’ve known a lot of women who left when gramma died or the last child left for college. This article is all “She She She,” but women stay for a lot of reasons that include they: kids, parents, survival.

Again, the old notion that all women who marry bad men have low self esteem is a topsy turvey politically correct way to blame the victim.

anonymous Jun 12, 2015 9:10pm

I was unhappy for most of the first 26 years of my marriage. I wanted to leave. I felt that marrying him was the biggest mistake of my life. But I stayed. We had two children. Even after they were grown I was miserable but I stayed. Then a year ago I realized that it wasn't all his fault. I had blamed him for being cold, angry, distant, not giving me what I wanted. But I realized that I wasn't giving him what he needed, either. He needed love as much as I did. I reached out to him, began to love him unconditionally, and the last year has been the most wonderful year of my life. I look forward to many more. Don't just think of yourself. Think of your partner.

anonymous Jun 11, 2015 3:43pm

Wow.. just wow

I feel as though you wrote this article from the perception of my life. It brought tears to my eyes and sent a chill down my spine because it was so spot on. I was in a relationship for 7 and a half years and two kids. Addiction took over my partner for the last 3 and a half years of the relationship. I tried and tried with every ounce I had to make him better and try to bring us back from what he had put me through. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how much work you put into something, after enduring one dramatic event after another, you just can’t come back from it (sometimes). I had lost all trust in him. It had been too much that I knew I would never fully trust him again and that hurt like nothing else. I wasn’t the same person I had once been when we first got together. Finally I built of the courage to leave.. even with so much uncertainty ahead I new I would be better off. I had spent years worrying and focusing on him that I had forgot about myself and our children were suffering as a result. I am happy to say, it has been exactly 8 months to the day that I moved out. I feel like I have found myself again. My children and I are getting by better than I ever could have imagined! I am happy and content in my new, happy life!

Thank you so much for this article. I have never related to anything more than I have to this. ♡

anonymous Jun 10, 2015 9:22pm

i loved this…spoke to my heart like nothing else…came into my life at the perfect time.. …thank you for sharing this with all! being open honest and raw…xoxo

anonymous Jun 10, 2015 3:31am

"But finally, she left. The sadness became too much, the stress too overwhelming and the hurt enclosed her." Or maybe because there was no feeling left at all, it provoked nothing, no sadness, no joy, no warmth, nothing.

anonymous Jun 9, 2015 6:43am

wow. this sums up perfectly why i finally left my job. thank you so much for sharing!

anonymous Jun 8, 2015 3:21am

This is exactly my journey described.. I ended on the 21th may this year a 3 years reöationship with a man that has alcohol addiction.. Finaly now I have realised that I jave to care for my self and I expand and grow everyday now spiritually mentally and my body shines of joy now <3

anonymous Jun 7, 2015 7:18pm

wow. this sums up perfectly why i finally left my job. thank you so much for sharing!

anonymous Jun 7, 2015 8:11am

Such a beautiful read. This point in my life I am torn. So not happy currently with my life. Not even sure what happy is anymore. Im definitely not who I use to be. However contentment and the fear of change and starting over keeps me here. I so wish to become strong again… someday… maybe…..

anonymous Jun 7, 2015 4:43am

I appreciate the article. I remember the feelings of failure, insecurity, being unsure what would be best for my little son and l. He was emotionally abusive to me and both emotionally and physically abusive to our little boy. I received support from my friends and family and when l decided to leave thought that the system would make sure my son would never again have to endure his abuse.

I was wrong, terribly wrong.

I warn you that the family courts in the United States have become terribly misguided. This is a consideration you must keep in mind if you have children. You can not be your first consideration. Your children must come first. If you leave a marriage there is no guarantee that it will be better for your children. Though l tried to protect my child the courts decided that l was an abuser because my body language changed when my son or l were being berated by this abusive man. He abused but because our son may have seen me stiffen, have a look on my face that was not supportive of his father, see me cry, l was marked as the abuser.

This is real. This is happening in courts all over our country. My son is older now and the physical abuse has subsided but the emotional toll of years of psychological abuse is apparant in his relationships as a youth. Certianlly his adult relationships will suffer.

Because our son is still a minor my former husband sees the term coparenting in a very different way than a decent human being would. Coparenting to him means maintaining an abusive relationship with me sending countless aggressive and threatening email and text messages. The abuse continues. The difference is, l am no longer there to protect my child.

Before you decide to leave an abusive relationship think about what l shared. There are scores of children in the same position because of our legal system. For further information look at divorcecorp.com and really consider which hell you prefer for your children.

anonymous Jun 6, 2015 10:59am

I just left and am now full of fear. Thank you for the hope that I will again find happiness

    anonymous Jul 14, 2015 10:13pm

    you will… give it time

    anonymous Sep 1, 2015 10:30pm

    a few years ago I left a long term marriage. I had stayed in an emotionally abusive relationship that to all outward appearances was all right. I was so tired its just too much to live day after day in a situation you can still find some good in but you know isn't right. I finally – it took me 5 years from realization that there wasn't anything worth saving to build up the courage and strength to leave. I was very much afraid for a long time after I left. I understand how you are feeling. there is so much happiness waiting for you. Don't wait for someone to bring it to you. You are enough find things you once enjoyed and reconnect with your old self. prayers are sent your way

anonymous Jun 6, 2015 8:28am

Thank you, this is beautifully put and the first thing I've read that puts into words what I have not been able to do. I filed for divorce 9-13-13, and he won't leave the house that I own until the contested mandatory two years have passed. I have three more months and then I'm free. I anticipate feeling all of the feelings, but am looking forward to it all with eagerness that I haven't felt in many, many years!

anonymous Jun 5, 2015 6:11pm

This is everything I needed to hear right now. I feel I have finally found the strength to leave, but I can’t seem to find the heart to hurt my partner. For him, nothing has changed. He is just as happy, if not even more so.

anonymous Jun 5, 2015 9:36am

This is a wonderful depiction of life and came at just the time I needed it! Thank you for your wise words and your ability to put into words what so many women are feeling. This is an empowering post, and has given me strength to back my choice to walk away from an unhealthy relationship I have been battling with. I will not forget this post! My favorite part: “She remembered how much potential she had and how the choice to stay was hurting her.” What a wonderful line that so many women need to hear! You have been given a gift with words! God bless!

anonymous Jun 2, 2015 12:45pm

As an adult child of divorce I find this article not only misleading but infuriating. To know that my mother decided to leave my dad and abandon her entire family and friends after almost 35 years of marriage simply because she wanted something different is heartbreaking. But for someone to write an article encouraging people to walk out of marriages because of lack of happiness is the exact opposite of courageous. It is cowardly. It is easy. It is the low road. How dare anyone offer this kind of selfish advice. If every married person adopted this mindset, there would be no more marriage. I’m glad our society isn’t entirely made up of this kind of self-serving, manipulative, gratification-driven lifestyle. What a sad world it would be! There is a significant difference between leaving because of real abuse or infidelity; leaving because of a mythical belief that something/someone else will make you happier is not a justifiable reason, let alone a courageous one. Believing this lie breaks families. I hope and pray this article and others like it don’t intice vulnerable people to make the wrong decision.

    anonymous Jun 3, 2015 1:22am

    Agree. This country has a 57.7% divorce rate because of encouragement to break vows/commitments and ditch their life partner.

    How soft, lost, and self centered we have become and this type of encouragement is destructive to relationships not constructive.

      anonymous Jul 23, 2015 7:13pm

      I agree that it is sad to see so much divorce, but on the other hand a person's individual happiness and self worth is important. This should not mean that the person leaving should abandon all their responsibilities to their past. They should maintain strong ties to their children and be financially responsible with their new found life.
      This article does not mention whether or not the woman found her happiness through large sums of alimony or not, in which case she probably found her happiness at the expense of another. Her ex may be suffering because it took her so long to realize that she was not happy and led him away from pursuing his own dreams. This article could apply to either person in a relationship, and not only to heterosexual relationships.

    anonymous Jun 3, 2015 9:43pm

    So you think your mother should not have chosen to leave and follow her own dreams after serving all of you for 35 years?
    In some countries it is very common and accepted that when the children are reared then this is a time for your own needs to be fulfilled. Sounds like some forgiveness and acceptance of your mothers choices would free you to love and appreciate her for all that she will have put on hold in order to be a mother to you.
    Clearly you have some strong values about family and how families should exist. I wonder where you get the idea that someone leaving breaks families, it doesn't have to. Love and family live in your heart, just because someone lives in a different location or is making different choices than they were before, doesn't mean that you have to experience it as a broken family. Open your heart and accept that your mother is intelligent enough to make the right choice, it is her life and she can do with it whatever she wants, regardless of your values or needs. Release the judgement you have about her actions so that you can heal the break you are causing in your own heart.

      anonymous Jun 10, 2015 12:39am

      Wow. I just really have to reply on this…thank you for the wonderful advice, Arteshar. I think some people leaving comments are missing the title of the article which is written at the bottom – how to leave a sociopath. What the author talked about is definitely not leaving a relationship/ breaking a family for selfish reasons, it is choosing to face/accept the situation and move on. That kind of relatioship is not a two-way but a dead-end street.
      Anyway, the most encouraging thing you shared is about forgiveness and not forgetting that love exists and will continue to exist despite the distance or separation. I hope more eyes are opened by your wise words.

        anonymous Jul 23, 2015 6:55pm

        Actually, the premise of the article is that she is leaving because she feels unfulfilled and is looking to rediscover herself. It's mentioned in the first couple paragraphs. The title at the bottom is a cross link to a similar topic, not the title of this article.
        Therefore it is for more or less selfish reasons, which is good choice for her as long as the woman maintains responsibility to her children, and financial obligation. I think they failed to mention that part.

        anonymous Jul 24, 2015 1:41am

        No. Marianne. Nowhere is it mentioned that her partner was a socio-path.
        The first line clearly states 'the women who gather the courage to leave what no longer serves them.'
        What a selfish thought. Yes.
        Human beings thrive on not just self development but also on having people depend on one – it's a give and take.
        Women are creatures of love, emotions, sentiments, expectations – which then result in complicated analogies, maddening thoughts and relationship anxieties. Men are not. They are oblivious of what's happening in our brains – coz meanwhile they are wondering on how to get through the next level of the video game they're playing..
        Now that can be a issue or a wonder. When it's an issue, the article summarises it. When it's a wonder it should work like yin and yang.
        I also have a problem with the above quoted line, because, say, you are in the process of giving everything that you have into the relationship. And meanwhile the other walks away? would you able to bear it? Like in the case on those old parents who are left alone or abandoned. Like all those children in the orphanages. It is truly a strange generation.

    anonymous Jul 10, 2015 4:51am

    I agree wholeheartedly!

    anonymous Jul 25, 2015 10:41pm

    So, individuals should stay even when their *own personal evolution* is calling them to do something that OTHERS won't approve of? So a parent is obligated forever to stay in a situation that isn't sustaining them on their deepest level because their *adult children* will have an issue with their choice? Marriage isn't concrete that one needs to set one's feet in for life *regardless of the ways individuals grow in later years*- things change! As a child I observed individuals who had well and truly grown out of the relationship they had formed in their early twenties but who, because of precisely this kind of external pressure, didn't leave to give themselves the air they so desperately needed. Who was served by this behaviour? Your perspective says that *your* feelings are more important than those of the individuals concerned- at some point you are grown up and your parents get to be the *individuals* that they actually are. What an arcane belief system.

      anonymous Jul 28, 2015 8:23pm

      I didn't know that marriage was not a life commitment??? Why bother getting married in the first place?

    anonymous Jul 28, 2015 2:26am

    Mrs. P, Kudos for your perspective & insight!
    It seems in society today, everything is disposable, both material possessions & relationships.
    In the case of abuse it is completely understandable if it cannot be stopped, and the relationship repaired, a split may be the best thing.
    That said, there are vows to marriage, that are said and meant to be honored. "For better or worse", " In good times and bad", "In sickness and in health". If one can't honor those vows, then don't commit to the person or the marriage. Marriage is not a disposable thing, that when you get tired of it, and don't feel like putting in the effort, that you just disregard it and move on to the grass that is greener on the other side.
    To leave simply for selfish, self centered reasons, is not excusable. It is the lazy way out.
    Empowerment is truly great, when it is for the right reasons, and not selfish ones that break commitments made to yourself &/or other, simply for the fact that one does not feel like putting in the work, or later deciding to find something better than what was the best thing at one time. I'll call that the "Wanting the newest Iphone syndrome".
    Although the original post was more general and not zeroed in a marriage or romantic relationship. It is plain to see how those exact relationships are coming to front by many posters. And many are looking for just the right words to read/hear, to justify a decision they contemplate, but maybe don't have the right reasons to.
    Everyone can find the answer they wish to hear if they search hard enough. It may not be the best to lay such generalities and easily misused advice so readily.
    Yes in some situations, this is great insight offered by the original post, but in many more it is that same insight that gives others the notion it is okay to just do it because. Selfishness, will create a life of loneliness, long after the initial great feelings have worn off, in any situation.Do the work, together, an there will be no need to seek such advice. But it does take both parties involved to make the effort, and then maintain. It is not that hard, nor a chore, but the mutual love, respect, compassion and most importantly connection for/with each other, that makes it easy, and full of growth and reward.
    Sad to see so many so willing to grab internet therapy and make major life changes that may or may not be truly the right thing, or beneficial. God bless, and good luck to all.

anonymous Jun 2, 2015 8:33am

Dear Elle, It sounds he is playing mind games with you. You say you are searching for the problem with you as he has tole you, you are the problem. the bottom line is: is there love, kindness, compassion in this relationship? is there shared joy, happiness? If this man never changed could you love him and stay with him forever? You can not change him. The only one you can change is yourself and that is hard enough. Choose kindness to yourself daily. There are a million choices we make all day long. Start to notice did I just choose something that was kind and loving to me or did I choose something that brought confusion, brought hate, brought fear etc etc It also sounds like you are angry with yourself for not creating a loving relationship – let the anger pass through you – and then start loving yourself. Much love to you. xxx

anonymous May 28, 2015 3:07pm

Wonderful words, I found the strength last august to leave after 20yrs. There are still days when I wonder what the future has in store for me but I know I can weather any storm………..

    anonymous Aug 16, 2015 3:52pm

    How powerful I was very moved!…

anonymous May 28, 2015 3:47am

I am in the middle stage of what has been described in the article. Exactly at the point “she wondered what she was waiting for”. Almost 7 years relationship, first 4.5 were fine but moving nowhere, then accidental pregnancy and a lot of revelations that followed. I did get to wear an engagement ring for 2 weeks, when my baby was 1 year old but i ‘kicked him out’ because he turned into a rude, hateful person who was creating problems, completely not understanding that i’m sleep deprived and need support, rather than moaning and complaining that i’m not giving him enough attention, that i’ve changed, that i was so different and it’s that different person that he loved (never mind how he behaved to that loving person when that person got pregnant).

Why am i still staying attached? I’m afraid to be a single mother of two children “from 2 different men” – his quote, especially that i’m the kind of girl who only had 3 men in my 33 yo life. Supposedly i am intelligent, and financially independent. So why i can’t gather that strength still to leave? Becuase there’s a baby, because allegedly he says all the time that he loves me, that if I become “that” person he fell in love with, that I have ruined it because “i kicked him out” – after a severe insult… And he got me so insecure that i am searching a problem within myself. What if he has a point? what if i’m really so destructive and that’s why till 33 i didn’t manage to build a happy full family? What if i was not so selfish as he says, and met his conditions (before- my son’s schedule and him not wanting to live in the same house with him – which he proudly “overpassed”. But my son still can’t visit his parents when we were going there.; currently – i’ve rented and wanted to buy a house he did not approve – rent too high, location too wrong, so he doesn’t want to live in my house, but neither to participate”). But he is all the time around, claiming if I become NORMAL, i will be happy. Is that so?

I really want to find peace with myself, peace in my life too, stop being so angry all the time, defending myself and fighting back. I’m so scared if something happens to me, what will happen to my children “from two different men”??

Where is the balance between proper boundaries and necessity to be working on it?

    anonymous Jun 1, 2015 1:30am

    Hello. I left my ex four months ago. Been exactly through what you described, but held on for almost four years for the sake of my son. Knew from The beginning it wasn't going to work. Became hateful and resented The lack of support. To this day, even though he is with another person, he still blames me for everything that went wrong with The relathionship and my son's upbringing. And I fins myself desperately trying to catch up with the mother I should havê been. So if you can relate and fins an Itsy Bitty of strength… Leave. Bond with your child for that is The only unconditional love you really need to give. Best of luck.
    PS, I livre with my mim and unemployed and chronically ill. But this is By far The best decision I've made.

    anonymous Jun 3, 2015 9:23pm

    If someone loves you their behaviour reflects that love and care. A person who loves you does not put you down but accepts you and if there are things out of balance they support you to change what you are doing and are also willing to make changes in themselves to support the health of the relationship. Sounds like you need to do a training in creating adequate boundaries for yourself and maybe some work on learning to love and trust yourself more. My suggestion is you find an NLP trainer who sees clients and is not the marketing business type of trainer but is focused on personal work. That person will also need to have experience of doing past life clearing, (by that I mean that any time before now is past life) so that you can clean up the anger. Anger is energy with the thought 'I am not getting what I want" So unconsciously you know you are not getting what you really want and reacting to the situation. When you clean up the anger emotion, things will certainly become clearer for you.

    anonymous Jun 11, 2015 11:27pm

    You are taking abuse from a narcissistic bully. Get out! You are fine. Look up NPD.

    anonymous Jun 16, 2015 9:15pm

    I fight with my boyfriend almost every week and it used to be everyday. I am not in a situation like yours but I can tell you honestly what a relationship will look like when both parties are in love and working on improving the relationship. It's tiring to get into fights but it was never really about one of us 'working on ourselves'. If we work on an issue, it must be worked on TOGETHER. I also had an unwanted pregnancy, but he sticked with me through the operation, made sure I got enough rest and paid for it too. He talks to me calmly when he can manage and when he tells me to change myself he does the changing too. You don't tell a person "I like who you were before, change back into that.' If you don't feel like he is helping you and only offering his own opinion, it is not 'working on a relationship'. He's not there to support you but get himself supported. What he needs is a mother not a wife.

    anonymous Jun 17, 2015 12:05pm

    I feel your pain. I know exactly the place you are in. Also children with 2 different fathers, and for all this time I have fekt ashamed. To make things worse I got pregnant 5 times by my recent partner, the third of which I carried to term. He always maintained he wanted all these children with me and that's why he had no desire to use contraception (did he ask me if I wanted that many children…with him? no, and I don't refute responsibility for allowing myself to get pregnant, failing to ensure that contraception was used, but the fact that he took no responsibility to ensure that an unwanted pregnancy came about…?). So many put-downs, so much questioning of myself. I can't say I've reached a place where I have stopped doing this and have full confidence in myself, but I do know this – that life shouldn't be so unhappy; that if you beg someone to hear your pain, to listen to you and hear you out, even when it takes so much courage because of past experiences of being yelled at and called all sorts of names, and they don't; when they make all sorts of promises to help that communication to come about that is so needed and it always amounts to nothing; and in the meantime, if you say you want to have space, and they insist that they can't possibly 'work' on a relationship if the 2 of you aren't spending time together, so you try to be present for the sake of the relationship, or perhaps simply because you know it will be his ammunition to then throw all the blame at you for not wanting him around, and because nothing progresses, when you next raise your unhappiness he claims you've been leading him on all this time by pretending that everything is ok, or simply claims that everything has been fine so there is a reason for you to suddenly decide that it's not, and it's probably that you're planning something that he can't be involved in, or that you're seeing someone else…then you know that something is wrong… When I moved to this home with him nearly 4 years ago I was happy, energetic, walked the countryside around, worked in the gardens. Now I can't say I'm happy, I'm tired and struggle to keep on top of the work here. I am doing my best to walk away, but it's very hard. When he is the one who pushes me away, after I've fought him hard enough, he regrets it and the texts/phonecalls begin again. He always has some reason to haul me back, and I know I will be seen as unkind, hurtful, uncaring if I just ignore him, and fall for it every time.

anonymous May 27, 2015 4:44pm

THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS AND THE MISTAKE OF NOT WORKING AT IT

In reading this article, one realization I have is that there can’t be many truly happy women (or men) in society. The explanations in this article are certainly valid and the reality is that a huge percentage of both women and men experience these feelings during the course of their marriages or relationships. It’s just about impossible to not experience these feelings over the course of any meaningful relationship. And while I applaud some for leaving their situation in the face of true abuse or a hostile environment, I stand in sadness as others walk away from something that was once great but they never worked on.
We all married/started dating for the same reason. It was new, exciting, and it made us happy. In my case it was all the above and the fact that the girl I met was my total opposite. Against all odds, we ended up together and eventually married. We found our occupations, built a home, and of course we got a dog. Several years later we welcomed a beautiful boy followed shortly thereafter by a precious girl. During the next few years, we worked, raised children, and got lost in the mix of responsibilities and routine. Ironically, we were the couple everyone looked at, the couple everyone envied. Most came to us for help and we were always good at providing that help.
As is the case mostly in men, I felt my wife was happy as I led an honest life, working, spending time with our family, and even doing a large majority of housework. I thought we had it all. She always had wonderful things to say about me, our relationship and situation. She never spoke with me, friends, or family about any issues that would fracture our marriage and family. Just as our daughter reached an age where we would be able to find capable sitters and get out on dates some more, I was hit out of nowhere as my wife explained she was done. She further explained this was a problem that had been ongoing for 10 years, 4 years before or first child was born. Not understanding, I grasped for anything trying to understand how she could leave the life we’d created. I explained I’d had similar issues on three separate occasions and I had talked to her about each. In talking to her, we were able to fix some of the lacking areas I had and continued on our quest to grow old together. As I thought back, we’d never had any life altering discussions concerning her happiness other than me helping more with the kids and around the house. I did both when she asked, quitting a business I had on the side and started doing the majority of housework. I did these because I loved her and wanted her to be happy and less stressed.
When asked, she explained to me the many ways she felt she was lacking love, happiness, ect. Long nights alone in bed, me getting mad over silly things, and a lack of adventure were the nails in my coffin. When asked why she never said anything, she said she was afraid if she did I would leave her because at that time she lacked self confidence. The sad reality is that I would’ve never left her, I loved her unconditionally. The trigger for my wife was weight loss. She did a great job of disciplining herself and losing the weight that had held her down for most of the nearly 20 years we were together. To see her shed the weight and come out of her shell was amazing, I thought we’d broken through to another level in our marriage. I was wrong. With the weight loss came a new voice, a new beginning. It was all downhill after that.
The point of the above is this. We fell in love, got married, had children. During the course of those events, we experienced highs and lows just like anyone. Happiness is fleeting and must be worked on and nurtured just like anything meaningful in this world. Communication and forgiveness are musts and if both are exercised, many marriages and relationships would survive. In many cases, especially mine, I didn’t realize she was unhappy because she never said a word to anyone. And ironically, I’m one of those guys that would’ve never needed more than a second chance to meet her needs since I loved her enough to do just that. We can’t just move on to look for happiness. That happiness only lasts so long before you find yourself in the same situation all over again. This is a throw away generation, a generation that looks for easy gratification without wanting the burden of working on it.
The result of these situations are devastating not only to the woman/man initiating it but also the many surrounding the couple. Many good partners are shoved away only to wonder for years how the love of their life could simply walk away from the relationship they started. Again, I applaud those who leave their unhappy situations in the face of abuses. However, no relationship will ever be perfect and all must be worked on. Communicate, forgive, and love one another. Don’t turn away from commitment to your marriage, children, ect. if you never made an effort to truly work on it. Don’t forget that something brought you together and can always be found again.

    anonymous Jun 2, 2015 9:10pm

    Devoted, thank you so much for sharing your story and opening up. It saddens my heart to hear the pain in your voice and I applaud your loyalty and love for your wife. Obviously I can't speak for your wife or know at all what she was going through and I hope that you find it in your heart to heal and forgive. I agree that sometimes people do give up too early, but when I wrote this post I wasn't referring to those people but more about those that have worked and tried, but simply have nothing left to give. There will always need to be some balance and compromise, and I don't meant to imply that it's going to be perfect all of the time, but sometimes when we have tried all we can, it's time to move on and be happy.

    Wishing you nothing but love and light.

    anonymous Jun 3, 2015 9:08pm

    You say she told you she had the problem 4 years before your 1st child, I think you were not the problem, but lack of self esteem was the real problem. From your comments it seems that losing the weight was part of her being confident enough to explore a new way of being herself. She probably needed to leave her past choices behind to grow in a new way, she could not do that with you because you were the choice from her past self so my guess is that the old ways of being in the relationship would be too restrictive.
    Finally she got honest enough with herself to make a change and even though it may have been really painful and probably confusing for you who was loving her unconditionally, you may find that in some way she has freed you as well to explore something even more forfilling on your life path.
    I of course speak from my own experience, where my partner whom I totally loved and would have laid down my life for, suddenly changed personality and life direction. I was devastated at the time, how could he walk away from someone who completely loved and supported him. It took time to realize that I could not grow to who I needed to be to fullfil my life mission if all my attention and energy was wrapped up in what I perceived to be a wonderful relationship.
    The relationship had run its course and I am eternally thankful to have experienced the love I felt for him.
    However from where I stand now, that love for him was small in comparison to the love I experience now. That unconditional love has grown to encompass not one person, but many. This could not have developed had he stayed as I could not see anything beyond our life relationship. Thank God he left me and my soul path could flourish.

    anonymous Jun 6, 2015 1:37pm

    I cant help my tears…. I am so stuck to the fact whether I should leave or not… he is like everything to me and can’t imagine I could ever survive without him…..

    After reading your comment and that how devoted you have been to your love I am determined to work on my relationship and make it work as the it did at the beginning because I love him unconditionally.

    Thanks for such inspiring words.

    anonymous Jun 23, 2015 12:18pm

    Thank you for that. I’ve been in tears reading this entire article and all the comments, and you’re right, this is a throw away generation. I’m going through some things with my significant other, we aren’t married yet but he’s the father of my twin daughters even though he didn’t have to be. When we first started seeing each other, the girls weren’t even 2 yet and everything was so perfect, I had friends and family envy me BC of what we had, when I noticed things starting to slip, I always tried to warn him, love making used to be every night, we quit our careers to open a business together BC we couldn’t stand the thought of working away from each other all day, and we decided to move. When we moved our business went to crap, we haven’t paid a single mortgage note on the house we’ve been living in for 7 mos, I’m scared they’re going to knock on the door and kick us out any day now. When I saw this article and read it in whole, I took it as God speaking to me, telling me its time to make a decision and I sat in the bathroom and cried “Why God? Why?” I love him still, I don’t know why he’s so OK with us losing everything but I don’t know what to do about it. He’s the only father my daughters have ever known, my youngest has cerebral palsy and he has been a huge supporter for her, she looks to him as her hero, and every single night before we go to sleep he kisses my forehead 4 times and tells me that I’m his world and he will love me forever and always. Thank you for your comment, because I’m not giving up. There’s something going on, something’s wrong with him, and what kind of woman would I be if I just gave up and fended for myself? No, we aren’t married, but we’ve been together for years, we’ve committed to each other, and I’m not going to quit that easily. Thank you so much for your side of the story. I’m going to talk to him about everything today, BC we’re worth more than just turning my back.

      anonymous Aug 10, 2015 7:57am

      Amy,
      I hope this helped you… Chivalry Needs CPR terribly in this generation. Alienation through technology is Poison to our body, mind, and relationships with those who reside beside us and within us…. Be there for the ones who care the most!!

    anonymous Jun 28, 2015 2:07pm

    My heart aches for u! I hope that ur wife has found it in her heart to work through her issues and realize the love u have for her and stay together. If only I could find a genuine love like this where I was secure in knowing I was unconditionally loved the way u love ur wife. I have been in a relationship for 18 years now and have given my all, unfortunately it's time to walk away since the feeling clearly are not the same. My heart aches and I truly thought and wanted this to be the man I grew old with. We r not married have no children together but he has raised my son as his own and I will forever be grateful to him for that, but he just has no interest in me and we have no conectiton or anything in common. Haven't shared the same bedroom in over 7 years. It's so sad that people in this generation expect results "Now", like a smartphone or microwave I don't now it's crazy!! I sure hope u find peace love & happiness as u truly deserve it!!!

    anonymous Jul 15, 2015 9:37am

    Devoted, I had hoped someone would reply and address the everyday issues of a committed relationship. You were blessed with elegance when you posted your letter. Every word you used and each idea you expressed was full of truth, love and understanding of both yourself and others. I will carry your message in my heart and soul and extend my gratitude. May the blessing of abundance be yours forever more.

    anonymous Jul 17, 2015 7:51am

    I cant say anything more than what has been said to you but I just wanted you to know that I agree and it is a shame she couldn't speak her feelings and changes as they were occurring. I wish you happiness in the future.

    anonymous Jul 26, 2015 3:58am

    Hi just read your story and was very touched by your honesty.I left my husband who i was with for over 30 years married 28. it was alot like you have explained god and bad, but the last few years were not so good, my husband told me that I didnt tell him we were having propblems, but I did in the best way I could to keep the peace and not hurt anyones feeling as my husband was a great worker and provider and my kids adored him as well. I guess the bottom line was I didnt want to hurt my husband or kids and didnt say to much but enough to let him know things were not right. My husband had a accident about 10 yrs ago where he got a frontal lobe brain damage, this effected his mood, personality , his verbal aggression which he always apologised for afterwards, but I guess the years of hearing it and the apologies didnt mean anything anymore , where it got to the stage where i think i was only staying so my kids were not hurt or in fact my husband either. But i think the final straw came nearly 2 christmas ago when my son and daughter wanted to have a surprise 50th birthday for their day at our home nothing big just a few family and friends just to mark the occassion, it was like a covert operation for a few weeks but the day came and my husband never found out and was very surprised when he came home to have his day remembered, he smiled and thanked everyone, but turned to me and clinched his teeth and made facial jestures and i just though there and then im done here no more, his accident changed him not for the better even though he was a very loving caring man also, but i think the final stone on the wall was laid that night and the switch turned fully out. He again apologised the following days but his apologies meant nothing anymore as was his verbal abuse i didnt care nothing he said hurt me anymore. I Moved onto the couch for the next couple of months as i had planned on going on a holiday with frienfds to usa for a month a reunion we had planned a year before which he was also moaning about on and off the whole year. But i stuck to my guns and would not give in to him by cancelling my trip as beofre i would have just to avoid any tension in the home and around my kids but not this time , i guess i just didnt care anymore My husband knew i was going to usa but thought i was going on a later date but something came up and i had to change my flight to an earlier time just by a few days, the day he killed himself was the day before he though i was going to usa, and i have though about did he do this to stop me going, as he knew i was thinking about moving there, and he did say i will make sure u never move there, i just wonder now out of anger did he say to himself i will show her , i will make sure she dont ever move to usa, i guess its something that i will never know the true answer too but something i do think about. and always will. He death has left nothing but devastation and heartbreak for me as the man i spend 30 yrs with and my kids who loved and adored their dad and so they should he was a great dad and loved them dearly and out of all the manipulation and stress and drama i do believe he never went out to hurt any of us but out of pure desperation he didnt seem to care about his actions and their consequences. Well it 5 months now since his death and we are left to pick up the pieces , we are going to councelling , my son is trying to cope finding his dad hanging from a rafter in the shed something he will never get over and my daughter is doing all she can to complete her maters degree which i pray she finished in sept, life has been hard , sad, painful but feel why , was it a fleeting moment of anger or was he really that far gone that he saw no way out. Im not sure anymore because of the way he was acting , but all I know is my kids lost their dad in tragic circumstance, do I feel to blame no i dont I feel he made that decision, but his family do blame me and thats hard to swallow .But hopefully my kids will get on with their lives and find the happiness they deserve, and I hope he is looking down on us all and helping where he can .I always loved my husband but was not in love with him anymore, something he could not understand, i guess it was an accumulation of things from both of us no ones fault just wish the outcome was different. R.I.P Maurice may the sod lie gently upon you xx

anonymous May 26, 2015 10:35pm

Beautiful words!. Perfect timing. Just love synchronicities 🙂

    anonymous May 27, 2015 2:24pm

    Thank you Jill! The universe shows us exactly what we need when we pay attention. 🙂

anonymous May 26, 2015 9:21am

Beautifully said. The final push or straw is different for everyone, but you covered so many beautiful reasons (I recognized) on both the staying and leaving. Thank you.

    anonymous May 26, 2015 8:08pm

    Thank you Adrienne. I hope it leaves others inspired and hopefully give help them realize that they aren't alone.

anonymous May 26, 2015 3:45am

Oh my… Tears… She left because she couldn’t live with the emotional, verbal and mental abuse anymore. She left because she respects herself and requires respect from a partner. She left by making him leave her life. She didn’t left earlier because she kept believing and hoping and forgiving. She left but she is still working on forgiving herself of letting him mistreated her so much. But I left!

    anonymous May 26, 2015 8:07pm

    Thank you for opening up Elsa, and you are so strong for leaving when you did. I hope you are now able to release the guilt so that you can fully live your life with joy and happiness. Stay strong!

    anonymous Jun 10, 2015 2:27pm

    I am with you Elsa, working on myself as well!!

    anonymous Jul 10, 2015 5:21am

    I was in this situation 15years ago and when I did finally leave it almost cost me my life. I too had stayed for the wrong reasons telling myself that while my children were young and at my job I was getting laid off a lot and he had been the constant livelihood for me and my children and years later when I had a great job and was financially able to leave and take care of myself and my children, I felt that I owed him for being there for us. I still have trouble forgiving myself for keeping my children there in that kind of conditions. It has taken some time to pick myself up and learn to love myself but I think I always will have trust issues.

    anonymous Jul 24, 2015 3:40am

    Good on you! Happiness is a duty for each of us, what doesn't serve us, must be left behind. Love and light

anonymous May 25, 2015 6:29pm

This was definitely something I needed to read. I walked out of a bad marriage after 25 years. I found strengh in myself that I never realized was there. This really hit home.

    anonymous May 26, 2015 8:05pm

    Thanks Michele. I'm glad this resonated for you and you are one of the inspiring one's. I'm so happy you found your strength.

    anonymous Jul 11, 2015 4:32pm

    I too left after 25 years. I fin a lot realized he was not the morally honest or ethical person I deserved. You deserve to be happy and you will be.

anonymous May 25, 2015 10:13am

Wow. Thank you.

I’ve created the boundaries I need, but didn’t think I ever could. I’ve learned the courage to say no, without fear of the consequences. I never knew what these things meant before. After so long of pain misery you go inside yourself to for protection & much needed rest from the hurt. There I found that I am worthy and deserving. These thoughts got bigger, & more & more frequent, which aligned everything in time for me to be able to decide truthfully for myself what is best. It is magic! I left the situation. Not a physical location, but mentally & soulfully I left letting what didn’t positively affect me behind. For my being I can’t and won’t let it around me. I have an hear to hear now and reading this concretes me in my path. Thank you.

    anonymous May 25, 2015 3:32pm

    You said it so perfectly McKenzie "after so long of pain misery you go inside yourself for protection & much needed rest from the hurt".

    Going inside is where you will find the true strength and answers as to what you need to do.

    I'm so glad you found that for yourself. You too are an inspiration!

anonymous May 25, 2015 7:20am

I like this article, but it also provoked a question: why should it be the woman who leaves? Especially if it is a mother with a child, the familiar home base provides continuity for the child whose world is about to change.
In a case of regaining freedom and safety from domestic abuse, and freedom from fear of abuse, it does take even more courage to stay and ask the partner or father-husband to leave. She needs a safe plan. Friends and shelters are usually temporary stop gaps.
In the case of physical abuse, the woman may have Post Traumatic Stress, PTS, which leads to some emotional paralysis. There is fear of confronting because of further fear of being hurt. So it takes greater courage, and the love of the child is a great motivator, to ask the partner to leave. But rousing confidence, this can stun him, and that is the time to put the plan into swift action.
Getting the courage to ask an abusive partner to leave is worth it. It is also a way to show the child or children that we are not stuck, that the choices we make in life are not inherited, that a son is not predestined to act like his abusive father. Asking the partner to leave creates space, harmony, room to breathe and explore life again.
In the USA there is now a National Network to End Domestic Abuse, but still only 1 in 4 women report domestic abuse.

    anonymous May 25, 2015 3:30pm

    You bring up some very valid points Linda, and I appreciate your insights. It certainly can work both ways, and there can definitely be greater gains from asking her partner to leave. When I originally wrote this post I wasn't just referring to relationships, but also to leaving a job or even a friendship that wasn't healthy or fulfilling. But certainly when an abusive situation is at hand, it can take even greater courage and confidence to ask their partner to leave.

    Thank you for bringing that part of it all to light.

      anonymous Jun 9, 2015 4:15pm

      Myquestion about this article which is short and does seem kind of generic as far as to background, where is the accountability. I don't believe that people should just stay especially if the relationship is toxic. Because of abus or addiction, however this seems like we are setting up a life of heartache. The article does not seem to address the fact that even in a relationship, if there was happiness there can be again but that it takes work. You can never just sit back and hope it returns. You have to work and communicate. No relationship is always bliss and happiness as it feels when it is new. Seems almost bad advice with so much context and full advice missing.

    anonymous Jun 10, 2015 4:29am

    Why would he leave? He doesn't see anything wrong, She is the unhappy one that has tried and tried. She tries up until the very end and he is content living like that because by this point, he is very well taken care of. He has overlooked her unhappiness,, This was my life. Married 22 years and I did it all trying to get that happiness back, Five months and one day ago, I finally had the courage to leave him. He will still tell you that he was happy and this is all my fault. Every time I tried to leave before,, he would manipulate the situation and make me believe it was my fault. Sure, she can get the courage to ask him to leave, but he's not going to and he's going to now make sure she can't leave him . If he was someone that was willing to compromise, they wouldn't have been in this situation to begin with. I wasn't gong to risk him manipulating me into staying,. I can't even file for a divorce (financially). And he certainly won't, in a perfect world, he would have left, but I lived an emotionally abusive relationship and my happinesss was now to be determined by ME. So I left.

      anonymous Jun 20, 2015 8:45pm

      Bravo to you Cindy and I hope you are finding true happiness in yourself! One day I will find myself in your shoes. I accuse my husband of emotional and verbal abuse. He also ignores me (in many ways). He basically bullies me. He “jokes” until I am at the point of tears/fighting back. When I do call him out he says I’m too sensitive. I know I am wasting my potential and the best years of my life but I am truly stuck, for now. How did you finally break free? And what was your breaking point? (If I may ask)?

      anonymous Jun 30, 2015 4:43pm

      Your story is similar to mine. I stayed 27 years with a man who lied to me and thought I believed him. When I did confront him, he manipulated what I said. When I finally got the courage to leave; my children did not understand and blamed me for "ruining their family." Little by little, they are seeing the real person he is and seeking relationship with me.

      anonymous Jul 13, 2015 9:45pm

      This is true, was my story as well. I did however ask him to agree to get marriage counseling or get out till he would agree to do so, I was the one that left the first time a month later. Moved back in 5 weeks later only to have to call 911 a few months later because he put his hands around my neck. He says to this day that I was the one that betrayed him by involving the police . It will be 3 years ago now the end of this month.

    anonymous Jul 11, 2015 5:35am

    1st,what is a Sociopath,2nd it Did'nt Explain in depth what Happened in the Relationship,
    Sorry for Being Thick

    anonymous Jul 13, 2015 3:47am

    Dang, this article hit so close to home and yes, I was the brave survivor that left him….and our daughter behind, the only reason I ever stayed and sacrificed for so long. Such debate still exists in my mind and heart, whether or not leaving my baby girl behind was the right decision. By that time my once full of confidence, successful self had been reduced to an unemployed, depressed, alcohol dependent shell of a woman who had moved to his town to fulfill the fairy tale life I had so been promised. Removing myself from a bad situation was the Only option in this case! I had to go back to my roots in order to get my head right again from his evil words of twist and spite, to get healthy and stable, therefore taking a preschooler away from her school, friends and very own bedroom felt worse than actually leaving her in the hands of the man who would do his best to turn her against her own mother. Yes, there had been times previously where the cops were involved, but the one who smells of alcohol is "always first to blame" so police reports or women's shelter were not even an option! Everyone told me to get a restraining order, but I was so scared that would affect my changes to see our daughter. Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda…. DIDN'T! Story of my life!
    Two years later, I remain sober and strong (mentally/physically), however the fight just to get my court ordered visitation time and now not even getting to speak to her in 2 months has been the biggest struggle and sacrifice I can ever imagine and I just have to pray everyday that her Lil brilliant mind hasn't been completely trashed by hatred and resentfulness as she's being used as a tool, a weapon for punishment. Had I stayed, one of us would have ended up either dead or in prison….or both! Today I have my mental health physical freedom and with that I am working harder and smarter than ever to rebuld my life and most of all, regain that special loving bond between a mother and her child.

    anonymous Jul 14, 2015 10:05pm

    Wow its all true… I did it after 27 yrs, I finally left!!! Frustrated at first that I was so unhappy for so long but you know what…. Life's to short, no looking back so happy to be me again!!!

    anonymous Jul 26, 2015 6:43am

    Many of the reasons I stayed. it took losing my children and the beating of a lifetime to wake me up. That's sad to say but at least I can say it! I open my door to people in need of a safe place to go.

    anonymous Aug 3, 2015 9:40am

    It is difficult to get well in a place where you were sick. It is as if you are entrained to remain sick in that environment. – See more at: http://www.betterhealthguy.com/klinghardt-confere

Benjamin Lincoln Jan 5, 2018 9:07pm

Deborah Ceora Pack What about she lives for his happiness as well? No, women should not be the center of a marriage. It's about the 2 of them. Society makes us believe that women are entitled and yet they are not. This is where it fails...

Benjamin Lincoln Jan 5, 2018 9:02pm

Butch Jackson And you say it right: disposable. I now tend to understand the men who leave without any sort of regret. I used to blame them. Now I don't and I feel like the women left have to find someone else. As simple as this :)

Briena Murray Jul 12, 2017 9:41am

Thank you I lived every word, as I was reading I saw the strength in my own actions, thank you x

Kathryn Hanson Jun 7, 2017 9:07pm

Erin Boone You are so very wrong.

Fionnuala Mc Kernan Mar 3, 2017 3:25pm

He will help you get out if that's what's best for you too.

Jeanie Foster Feb 11, 2017 12:43am

My lover returned back to me I'd like to say that i got a positive result from ([email protected]) ever since i used his love spell, my lover have learned to appreciate me more and more day by day, and he doesn't take me for granted.

Mariana Rios Cascos Jan 13, 2017 9:40pm

THANK YOU! It's totally me...now, Life starts unfolding around me and happiness pursues me :D

Butch Jackson Dec 15, 2016 12:36pm

Thanks Paul,This article reminded me how disposable some people see their relationships.

Erin Boone Dec 8, 2016 8:09pm

There is no way that a partner was this unhappy and her partner wasn't unhappy as well. There is no chance that the connection between them was so strong that he was broken by her leaving but couldn't focus on her when she was there. One of the two parts of the narrative is untrue, they cannot coexist...

Joy Elle Boulanger Oct 15, 2016 1:12am

Couldn't read much of first few paragraphs. Ads covered the words. :(

Chelsea Floro Sep 14, 2016 3:09pm

Unless the relationship is abusive, physically or mentally, you can work through it. God does not want you to give up on your marriage. You vowed in his presence that you would love and cherish this person and your marriage for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, until death do you part. I do not take these vows lightly, and neither should anyone who enters into a marriage under God. He will help you be happy in your marriage if you look to him first.

Stephanie Kassel Sep 13, 2016 3:51am

I read this article when you first wrote it. It has such an inspiration on my life. Thank you so much for these very wise and well written words it helped and continues to help me get through my toughest times. And I left..and I am much better!

Kathy Harrison Sep 6, 2016 1:30pm

I honestly felt the same way...But realized I was the only one fighting. I was hurting myself by not putting myself first. This didn't happen overnight and with help from a counselor. I never thought I would love and trust again. They say it’s a grieving process. Best of luck and you’re not alone.

Andrea Britton Jun 21, 2016 1:13pm

Wonderful article. And timely :) XXX

Deborah Ceora Pack Jun 19, 2016 7:16am

If he lived for her happiness, it would never get to this point of feeling the need to leave

Paula Henley Jun 16, 2016 4:27am

Very sad. Maybe, he should have spoken to her when he had the chance. Maybe, she was never in a place to work it through. Maybe, she wasn't really 'the one' and 'the one' is still out there. Maybe, if he says thank you for the good times of the past just Maybe, there will also be some good times in his future.

Paula Henley Jun 16, 2016 4:19am

I cried and cried and I am still crying, big silent heavy teardrops which are soaking into my pillow. Why? I ask myself, ah because of who you are now, I quickly reply. Because of all those things you went through to get her and because of all the people, both men and women, who have yet to find the strength to make that step for themselves and the ones who have yet to even realise they can take the steps for themselves. I cry because I hope they realise soon that each and everyone of us is worth that step for OURSELVES. xx

Marwa S. Mustafa Jun 15, 2016 7:56am

I also left and it was the it was the best decision of my life, as you said I realized I didn't have to reach for happiness with out-streched arms, I created my own happiness and even though many people blamed me, I never felt more at peace with myself

Lisa Henkel Jun 11, 2016 1:22pm

I agree that it should be worked through, but how many discussions do you have about 1 thing that continues? Apologies don't mean anything unless there is an action behind it. Obviously I don't know your story, and maybe it's different because you were the one that was wronged and not doing anything wrong. And for that, I feel for you.My ex had many, many, many more chances than he deserved. Someday, you will be happy again.

Lisa Henkel Jun 11, 2016 1:17pm

LOVE this! It's like you know MY STORY. Thank you! :-)

Kathy Harrison May 26, 2016 3:50pm

When my life fell apart, I read this arcticle from my niece and cried because it was my life. Over a year later. the last part is me today I survived and I proved my strength. Not to anyone else, but to myself. I became aware of how much I had sacrificed and how unhappy I had been. Life started to unfold around me and happiness began to pursue me. I didn’t need to reach for it with outstretched arms like I thought. Happiness found me.

Francis Fontaine May 20, 2016 10:15am

I feel for you.

Paul Surber May 2, 2016 11:18am

But when she left, she broke him. Broke him because he lived for her happiness. Now the broken man is left with trust issues and fears that he will never love again. Obviously the vows mean nothing here, but to him they were everything. When the going gets tough, you work through it. Not leave.

Emma Sharp Apr 18, 2016 5:59pm

I really needed to read this today. Thank you for reminding me of what I already knew.

Terri 'Mon-tone Apr 16, 2016 6:05am

I love how these articles assume she has a tribe, when she never has... And yet, she can still rise above....