Valentines Day is difficult for me.
I mentioned a couple of times on my Twitter that about a year ago, I came out of an abusive friendship/relationship. 18 months on and off. He told me he’d loved me.
Valentines Day is one of those days we associate with love and relationships and even though last year I was with my ex, he can vouch for the fact I was not happy. I broke the day after and that’s when I opened up to him a bit more about the abuse I suffered.
It’s difficult to see happy couples all over my social media, see promotions in shops. It screams happiness in relationships and love. Something I thought I felt and was manipulated into believing I had.
So I’ve blocked all words relating to Valentines Day on my Twitter.
This year, I can’t cope with the thoughts and connotations I have with Valentines Day. The feelings surrounding my abuse are too raw right now to want to see all the happiness.
It reminds me of what I was lead to believe love was.
And I know I won’t be the only abuse survivor who feels this way about Valentines Day.
He damaged my view on many things and no matter the fact its been over a year since my last contact with him, I still can’t hear things or see things that remind me of what happened.
To the people that get annoyed at my negativity around Valentines Day, perhaps be a little more understanding as to the fact there could be a reason I despise the day
I know damn well that I’ll never get any feeling of positivity back where Valentines Day is concerned- it hurts too much to even try to come to peace with the day. In a relationship or not, after last year I don’t want to celebrate anymore. Even being happy with my ex couldn’t take away from the pain I felt that day.
I won’t rain on anyone else’s parade- I’m not the type of person. But I think I need people to understand that sometimes, it’s difficult for abuse survivors to see this everywhere.
Abuse survivors can’t help the things they are triggered by. And we don’t mean our triggers to infringe on others or come across that we’re guilt tripping people. If I ask for a little consideration surrounding my triggers, I am purely trying to avoid a panic attack.
To anyone who is an abuse survivor you are not selfish or in the wrong to ask people to be considerate of your triggers. You are not selfish or in the wrong to remove yourself from a situation where you are triggered. Your health is important and so is your comfort. Being comfortable with your situation and looking after your mental health is not a luxury.
Anyone who is a good friend will understand that your happiness is priority. If they refuse to take you into consideration, then they may not be the best friend to have around
So this Valentines Day, when you feel the urge to call someone a negative Nancy… don’t. They may genuinely have a reason to feel uncomfortable or upset on Valentines Day.
To abuse survivors, if it gets too much, don’t feel bad for blocking words on social media or removing yourself from situations where it’s all you can see and think about. And don’t feel you need to explain yourself to others either.
I was meant to be working on Valentine’s Day but I took annual leave for the whole week. I love my job too much to have a day where what happened to me taints my mood at work. My work is my escape and my passion – I want it to stay that way.
I will likely cry and it’ll be a triggering day. That’s OK. I suffered a trauma and that’s a natural reaction. I just have to remind myself that what he showed me wasn’t love and I didn’t truly love him. I have to remind myself that I’m free from it- he can’t hurt me and affect any more of my life.
Unless I let him.
Which I will never, ever do again.