Relational Health

Use Your Voice


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Last year during this time I was living in an abusive relationship. I’m usually the last person to keep quiet when I am angry or sad; if there’s an issue I’m the first to bring it up. But, somehow, when my boyfriend at the time was verbally abusing me, I kept quiet.

This silence was oppressive.

When someone asked me last year how everything was going in my relationship, I’d always reply with: “Awesome! We’re having so much fun!”

…Every time I heard myself say this out loud I wanted to kick myself so bad! I was dying to say out loud what was going on but for some reason I kept mute.

I stayed quiet until the month I found out he was cheating on me continuously. Then anger took control over me.

Yes, when I found out, I was extremely angry with him for both his verbal and emotional abuse. However, I was also angry at myself. I knew that what I was going through wasn’t right; a voice in my head always said get help, and yet I had still allowed him to treat me that way for so long.

Was it pride? Was it fear? Was it the hope of a better future?

I’ll never know what kept me quiet for so long, all I know is that all the anger I had built up inside began to be released after the truth was exposed.

I was so mad. I took out my anger on my parents, friends, the loved ones who wanted to support me. I took the anger out at myself: I ran for ridiculously long periods of time, I starved myself as punishment, and I began to verbally abuse myself.

Instead of seeking help when I should of – I waited till the boiling point to release the anger in me. I now see that this was incredibly unhealthy.

My hope for you is this: if you are going through verbal abuse, bullying, etc…, speak up! You have a weapon against your verbal abuse and it’s your voice!

The first step to get help is to ask for it – that’s right – use your voice to ask for help. It might be the most difficult, scary and uncomfortable thing you’ll have to do but it’s so much healthier than keeping the anger built up inside. Keeping all the anger inside will cause anxiety, resentment, and you may – as I did – verbally and physically begin to take it out on yourself and the ones you love. Don’t let that happen.

If you did what I did though, find healthy ways to vent your anger. I forced myself to write everything down about what happened; I ended up writing about 50 pages! I met with my best friend every day for weeks. I talked with my Mom and Dad about it. I even called my grandma in Poland!

And after all this venting?

The anger subsided. I stopped being angry at my self; verbal abuse is never your fault, and no one deserves to be verbally abused. It’s never OK. It’s never right.

So speak up. You have a voice and you have a reason to be heard. Don’t quiet yourself, instead stand up tall, and talk to someone.

 

Amie writes on relational health and eating disorder recovery.


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