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Is There Hope for a Better Future in My Relationship?

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From the U.S.: After 5 years of unhappiness, is there hope for a better future in my relationship?

My boyfriend and I have been together for 5 years now. The first day we met, he and I had the opportunity to interact a lot and instantly sparked a deep connection with one another. That same night he stayed over and we kissed. The next two days were a repetition of the first day. On the third night, my mother finally caught us and I was kicked out of my house. I left with him and we went from being strangers to being like a married couple.

It was very hard for us. He was also kicked out of his home and we were staying at cheap hotels and friend’s houses. I quit my job and dropped out of school because it was hard to do anything without a stable home. There were times when we had nowhere else to go, but sleep in the car outside a Walmart parking lot.

Our honeymoon stage, as they call it, probably only lasted one month. After that it was a downward spiral. We were constantly arguing about money, food, our family, and the famous “you’re doing it wrong — do it this way” argument. After 6 months, we moved across the country only to live the same thing and that’s when the violence started. One afternoon, after a serious argument, he got into his truck and threatened to leave me. He told me to let him leave or else.. He had promised me once that he would never hit me so I didn’t think he’d do it…but he did.

Ever since then, when we have serious fights, he loses control and hurts me. I haven’t had the courage to leave him and there’s really nothing stopping me now. I don’t live with him, I don’t depend on him, and we don’t have children. Despite that, we both haven’t been able to let go because of the deep connection that we still have and that has been damaged so badly. He always apologizes and says he has to live with himself after what he’s done me.

He’s thought about leaving many times to avoid us having this problematic relationship, but I still feel like we haven’t tried everything in our power to change this situation. I just want to know if there’s anyone who has gone through this and been able to make it work? Is there hope for a better future together?

Is There Hope for a Better Future in My Relationship?

Answered by on -

A.

The simple answer is “probably not”. You are in a very typical cycle of abuse. If you could solve it, you and your boyfriend would have done so long ago. Your relationship didn’t have a good foundation to start with and it hasn’t stabilized despite being together for over 5 years! It’s of great concern to me that in that amount of time you haven’t been able to find jobs and support each other enough to make a home of some kind.

I encourage you to contact your mother and see if you can heal that relationship. Will she give you a chance to leave this guy, come home, get back into school and start making something of your life? If that’s really impossible (and you won’t know unless you talk to her), please contact one of the seven women’s shelters in your city. Such shelters offer counseling, housing, job training and advice for extricating yourself from an abusive relationship and getting on your feet.

Don’t wait. It isn’t going to get better unless you do something different from what you’ve already done. At least talk to the shelter’s staff and see what your options are.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Is There Hope for a Better Future in My Relationship?

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). Is There Hope for a Better Future in My Relationship?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 11, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2016/02/09/is-there-hope-for-a-better-future-in-my-relationship/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.