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“I’ve been heartbroken. I’ve broken hearts. That’s part of life, and it’s part of figuring out who you are so you can find the right partner” Heidi Klum ( Quot from A Man for Every Purpose, My Naked Journey Searching for Love”

The feeling bubbles up in me years later, unwelcome. I don’t want to respond in fear of being judged, criticized, or silenced. There it is showing up, I know the anxious feeling all too well. I become still absorbing the awful coming at me.

Long ago: From him, a negative insult to keep me down in the place he thinks I belong. A clever slight for my ears only, to set me in the designated proverbial corner. I tolerated the bad words guy for far too long.

I have to work on expressing myself in a free and honest way. It does not come naturally. I think I may have become a writer to allow my feelings out without  subjugation. Words that landed on pages were safe. Words outside of that were not always. I spent many tearful nights feeling bad about myself realizing I was compromising who I was as a human.

Compromising is never good. One cannot strive, create, succeed in such damning abuse. I was kept down, curled up, and shut up. Gross, awful, I learned to find my voice outside of the words I wrote. I learned to stand up and keep my shoulders back. I no longer would be with a man that could bite me with words like an angry dog, causing me to wither into an infinitesimal less-than.

My words slowly became powerful. I liked the empowered me, she had potential, confidence, a stance. I found a stance. It was not easy because I had rooted fear and that those shame feelings of abuse would show up, years after he was long gone. That part is ongoing rather tricky. However, it is recognizable, I see it now, I know what those feelings are. I now know self-grace, I know self-care, I understand self-respect. I rather like strong me, she has direction, she gives a hand up to others, she can coach with a confident voice. She can trust love with a very kind man.

I still let words land on pages. That is who I am helping others through words. I can remain calm and stand up for myself, like a kind tiger. No one messes with a tiger; a tiger allows respect to follow her. She’s earned it she’s a tiger.

If you are in a relationship that makes you feel bad about yourself check-in and find out why? Is the compromise worth it for you or is the price of self-higher? If you are ready to step away and find your voice, do it one foot in front of the next. Find help if you need to, a professional consoler, a friend.

For me it took a while to heal, then to understand why I allowed myself to continue with the brutal hold he had on me. I had the ability to leave years before and chose not to. Understanding why I did not leave sooner took healing and self-forgiveness.

I never dated mean-mouthed-men again. My heart was only drawn to kind men, my eyes were attracted to sweet guys. It took a while but it happened.

You can read about my journey searching for love and inevitably finding myself “A Man for Every Purpose, My Naked Journey Searching for Love”