Stories of Resilience: Sara Langly

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“I am really proud of myself for being the girl who took care of herself and got out of the bad relationship, no matter how long it took.”

I am a psychological abuse survivor. I was 19 years old when I met my ex. I fell for him quickly and genuinely thought he was the one for me. However, it became obvious within the first 6 months of our relationship that things were not right. He was jealous, controlling, and would say things that really hurt me. At the time I didn’t know that I was suffering from anxiety and depression, but he really knew what buttons to push to make my self-loathing spike. 

We worked at the same place together and he would constantly flirt with other women who worked with us, but then told me I was crazy for thinking he was flirting. He would then threaten me that if I didn’t have sex with him he would cheat on me (I am convinced he cheated on me regardless). He told me that I was unlovable and that I was lucky to have found him because no one would ever love me. I was “easy” for having guy friends and having a flirty personality (even though that was never my intention). He would ghost me for hours and even days at a time, and when he would return to talking to me he would blame me for his disappearance. He would scream at me in front of our friends, one time even calling me the “C-word.” 

A little less than a year into the relationship it boiled over. We were partying with friends for the weekend and I was pretty drunk so I don’t remember exactly what I said or did that made him so angry, but we got into an argument. As we were talking he had his back to me. He suddenly turned around with his fist in the air and started swinging to punch me, but he didn’t. We ended up making up the next day, but then a couple of days later when I tried to hold his hand, he told me to never touch him in public because he was embarrassed to be seen with me. Three days later I finally broke up with him.

To cope, I created a wall with everyone I came into contact with. I became obsessed with being perfect and well-liked, especially since the breakup was awful and I lost a lot of friends and respect. I never showed pain or any negative emotion. I was always happy, selfless and caring. All I heard for a year of my life was how horrible I was – I didn’t want to ever feel that again.

Now almost 10 years later, I am starting to break down those walls. I protected myself and did what I needed to do to heal the wounds, but now I am ready to embrace my emotional scars and love them. I have realized that his abuse was not my fault. I hated myself for years because I always thought it was my fault for being with him, but that isn’t the case. Now, I am really proud of myself for being the girl who took care of herself and got out of the bad relationship, no matter how long it took.

I practiced resilience by never giving up. I relied on myself to get through the pain and to heal. A lot of people in my life didn’t believe my story, but I kept honest with myself, never faltered, and became my biggest protector. Do not blame yourself. Your experience will never go away, but love yourself for it. Embrace the strength this situation will cultivate in you.

Are you ready to share your story of RESILIENCE? You can do that HERE.

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