Part II: Never Get Involved in Abusive Relationships Again
"I think many survivors feel as if they have lived in a war zone, and after it is all over, they feel as though they are thrown into a cold desert as well. It is not an easy ride, and is quite painful for most of us."
Lise posted a good article, on dealing with the "cold desert" after leaving all your abusers and avoiding new ones. This is great advice. We must look for people who have feelings, and are not Cluster B. Sometimes it scares me how I had to go "scorched earth" to remove abusers from my life. Every relationship that I held in common with my mother was tainted beyond repair. There was so many people. I do have relief being away from them all. As I meet new people, I do ponder many things. I want nice people with emotions, not people out to fix me. I have met many new great friends online, and met one and her husband in real life that lives long distance. I also met someone who lives closer online as well. My body keeps getting in the way of social things locally but I have met some new nice acquaintances and kept contact with other friends who are kind.
It can hurt when you suspect "friends" see you the same way as your family did, and even as you remove yourself from the relationships, you do think of the "sunk costs" into friends who never cared. Even then the only solution is to walk. You are never going to get emotion from a stone. You are fixing the training of decades that set you up with toxic people.
At least now, I am getting smarter about what to look for in people. Since leaving fundamentalism, I do feel more open to other people and not stuck with such a rigid world view, that only served to freeze people out. I never was a prig, but the whole religious wall thing was always there. I have been able to examine myself more too. I want "empaths" and people who have feelings, love, care and compassion. I have found some, and what a world of difference there is.
Lise links to an article, where it points out the main two qualities of toxic people, "They lack empathy and they are manipulative". It serves as a guide to help people to know what to look for when they are back out in the world trying to rebuild their lives after abuse recovery. We have to be cautious not to let any new narcissists, sociopaths or Cluster Bs back into our lives.