Have you ever remained in a toxic relationship because you felt you had to? You knew it was unhealthy. All the signs were there. In fact, nearly every time you were in the presence of a certain person confirmation constantly warned you. You knew it was unhealthy and more than likely would never improve. However, the expectations of others coupled by your own guilt and people pleasing ways, you continue to endure. The hurt, backstabbing, selfishness, conditional love, inconsistencies and lack of give and take; you accept it all, every time. Its all you have ever done and all you have ever known. You are the only one in the relationship truly trying and all for the sake of what’s expected. It’s a very heavy facade to bear long term. Exposed you appear strong, handling it well, smile and laugh on cue because others are certainly watching and judging. But behind closed doors you cry, ache, pray and long for change. For waiting for change is easier than considering the inevitable…Letting go.
I think we all experience situations like this at some point in our lives. Seasonal people come and go whether we release them or they walk away on their own. Accepting the process is easier with some people than others. Sometimes we recognize right away the unnecessary chaos a person is causing in our lives. The “Good Byes and Good Riddance” comes effortlessly. But what if this painful situation involves a loved one. A person you are connected to by D.N.A. 1st line blood born relation. What do you do then?
I have had to withstand this unfortunately a few times in my life. Not because I wanted to but because I had to. One situation involved my biological father. A man who walked out of my life as a toddler and remained excessively inconsistent for years. Out of my desperation of wanting to be “Daddy’s Little Girl” I chased after him in an effort to win his approval, affection and adoration. This failed pursuit lasted for nearly two decades. If I did not chase he would not bother. His words said that he loved me but his actions more than proved otherwise. Letting go was not easy by far. I was going to make him love and treat me the way I thought I deserved as his daughter. That was my will and far from his. After much hurt, countless tears, severe rejection and lack of support I finally let go. It wasn’t until my heart lined up with my spirit that peace in the decision took over me. Today, its been nearly 4 years and I continue to experience a calm with this matter that has been priceless. It is well with my soul for I am certain that I have done all I can. This type of serenity I only wish I had awarded myself in half the time versus 20 years. But feeling obligated by the urging of others (But That’s Your Father!) and the little wounded girl within me still longing for his approval, I suffered longer than I ever had to. I pray and wish nothing but the best for my Father, for he has missed out on the ultimate prize; the evolution of ME:-)
Unhealthy relationships can tear down the human spirit and cause one to lose focus on God’s infinite purpose for their life. Along the way depression, self loathing and a crushed esteem can be the ultimate result of staying in unprofitable relationships long term. We get so stuck on a person’s title in our lives that we feel that we can do nothing but actively deal with it. Just because someone is your Mother, Father, Brother, Sister, Aunt, Uncle or Cousin gives them no right to wreck havoc in your life. If these people are not working with you to improve the relationship in a give and take fashion a decision needs to be made to let them go.
The only obligation you have is towards yourself. If you don’t take care of you certainly no one else will. That’s a stark and painful reality when you consider family members for it is not politically correct to sever a relationship with certain people. Right? Well I’m no politician by far and dare to go against the grain!
If a person continues to cause you pain, let them go! if they are not working towards improving themselves or acknowledge their wrong doing in the relationship, let them go! If they have continuously shown that they are envious, spiteful, un-supportive, critical and simply don’t have your best interest at heart, LET THEM GO! This may be scary but depending on the person, this may not be permanent. Once they see how far away they have pushed you, they may come back around. But in your letting go, have no expectations for this will only lead to more of a broken heart.
If you are reading this, can relate and are considering a situation like this in your life, ask yourself “What am I truly holding on to?” As painful as it may be, loosen up your grips, close your eyes, open your hands and let go. Without guilt, without regret, without fear, heal and be free…..
“At some point you have to realize that some people can stay in your heart, but not in your life” – Sandi Lynn