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I’m Scared to Leave My Abusive Boyfriend

From the U.s.: My bf and I live together. We’ve been together for 10 months now and he has been consistently verbally, mentally abusing me and I can’t take it any longer. After explaining to him so many times there needs to be a change with his anger and attitude, I reconnected with a man I once used to date and still long to be with. I don’t know what to do and I really don’t know how to leave my boyfriend and be able to keep my job but start things back up with the man I used to see.

I’m Scared to Leave My Abusive Boyfriend

A.

You are right to leave a guy who has been abusing you. You don’t have to “take it”. But you should leave that relationship on its own merits, not because you are interested in someone else. You have some personal work to do before you are in any shape to start a new relationship. It’s unfair to yourself. It’s unfair to the new guy.

It’s important to figure out what drew you to a relationship where you were verbally and mentally abused so you can avoid such situations in the future. Unless and until you do that, you haven’t learned what you need to learn about yourself. You will continue to be vulnerable to accepting abusive treatment and won’t see it coming. You might even start to treat the new guy as a potential abuser even if he isn’t.

My advice is to leave the current relationship and get yourself into therapy to do your recovery work. Only then should you be starting up with someone new.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

I’m Scared to Leave My Abusive Boyfriend

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). I’m Scared to Leave My Abusive Boyfriend. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 19, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2018/01/08/im-scared-to-leave-my-abusive-boyfriend/

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 4 Jan 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 4 Jan 2018
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.