This post is written with caution and to highlight the stark contrast between psychologically abusive relationships and healthy relationships. I don’t want this post to be a guide to choosing a new partner because if you are reading this blog it means you are likely still in a state of emotional injury. You require healing and time in order to even be open to attracting a healthy life partner.
This section is merely an abbreviated set of markers to demonstrate the difference between what you’ve been living with an abusive person and what you could be living with a healthy partner.
Emotionally mature, responsible and healthy partners are much different than abusive people. They demonstrate considerate behavior, which speaks to their compassion. There are many, many healthy people available to you, even though at this point in your recovery it may seem as though every human you meet is abusive.
If you jump into re-partnering too soon you have a very good chance of drawing a toxic person to you because you haven’t yet recovered from the abuse and healed the deep-rooted parts of you that made you susceptible to the abuser in the first place. I can’t stress this point enough. Give yourself time. It will be difficult and painful to be alone with your torturous thoughts. Healing is an active process and I would be honored to guide you through your healing journey.
When you commit to healing you commit to ensuring you have a healthy, happy life and create the opportunity to attract a decent partner with a moral internal compass and a conscience. There are fundamental basics that you need to look for in order to confirm that an individual is emotionally stable.
This individual is transparent in all interactions and consistently tells the truth. They wish to be honest and they do not lie, try to trick you, omit or spin information for their own gain.
They take ownership for what they say and do. They follow through with promises. They take responsibility for their own emotions and their behavior. If they make a mistake they own it and make amends.
They respect other people, and, most importantly, respect you enough to be considerate of how they choose their words and how they behave. There is no intention to hurt, humiliate or demean you.
This person will state their thoughts, feelings and opinions and expect the same from you. They will be assertive in their communication style and strive toward a win/win outcome where both parties are satisfied with the solution. Revenge is not in their sights. They can ask for what they need in a direct, honest, respectful way, where everyone’s dignity remains intact.
They are reasonable and rational in their interactions. They do not allow emotions to govern their behavior and you feel safe approaching them with concerns.
They want to support you in a healthy way, where both parties take ownership of their lives and emotions but support one another throughout the ups and downs. They have no interest in tearing you apart to get what they want. They want you to be emotionally intact and healthy.
They want an emotionally safe, healthy, loving relationship based on the fundamentals of mutual respect, decency and commitment. They are open to true intimacy.
Entire books are written on the topic of healthy relationships and this is not a post that should be taken as a guide, as it is only a quick snapshot of what the baseline should look like. If you’ve been in a relationship with a psychological abuser you know that any baseline you used to have is long gone and you no longer even know what a healthy relationship looks like.
These seven points should be your new baseline. This is the standard by which you judge all potential suitors and assess the health of the relationship. Do not deviate.
Here are some fabulous links for more on healthy relationships:
The Gottman Institute
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work
The Relationship Cure