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15 months ago, I walked away from a toxic, draining, exhausting relationship. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. 8 yrs together, 5 under the same roof, 2 engaged, and plenty time in between planning our future. But like many relationships, things took a turn. And it continued to turn to turn and turn. 2 yrs prior to leaving, we became “roommates.” Not by my choice, but his. Yet, I stuck around. I waited for him to change, maybe if I just didn’t cry or wine so much, he’d love me more, so I thought. 2 yrs, 24 months, my self-esteem deteriorated slowly. I became depressed. I began to ask him for affection. What woman walks to a man and asks him “can I have a kiss” or “can I have a hug.” My soul, my heart, my love, my knowingly worth, shattered. Yet, I still hung on a little longer. Why do we do that to ourselves? Why do we hang into these toxic relationships, all the while knowing that they’re completely unhealthy for us? He showed plenty signs, I ignored them, I made up excuses. “Girl, why are you guys ROOMMATES?” “Well, he just needs time.” Man! Looking back, I was really a fool, but I was so IN that I didn’t see myself with anyone else. I was afraid to leave. I was afraid to be alone. I was afraid of the unknown.

He didn’t want the relationship anymore and as time dragged along, neither did I. But, neither of us made the effort to move. We fought, we fought, yes we fought. I would scream at him if he wasn’t happy, why wouldn’t he leave, all the time feeling exactly the same inside. It took 2 yrs of such a detrimental relationship for me to get the courage to leave. Honestly, I’m not sure how I did it, because all the time, through that process I was afraid. And prior to moving I cried for months straight, after I left I cried plenty more. He didn’t come after me. He didn’t cry for me to come back, what did that mean? Why do we hang onto something that’s just no longer meant for us to be there? I walked away, trust me, it wasn’t easy, but I walked away. Today, 15 months later, I’m happier than I was 8 yrs ago. I can’t believe it, words cannot describe it. But I had to walk away from the toxic relationship. I had to find the strength to love me more.

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