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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Toxic relationships can be different for everyone. It is not like they have an exact definition, so it can be tricky to realize if you are in an unhealthy relationship. I was in a toxic relationship before, and I did not realize it until I met my new partner. Today, I want to share some steps that helped me and would help people going through the healing process of a toxic relationship.

Listen to Your Emotions

Giving yourself space to feel and process your feelings is the first step to recovering from the relationship. An unhealthy relationship can summon complicated feelings. It may give you a sense of freedom; however, it can also be tough at times. Letting go of a relationship is not always easy. You can allow yourself to be upset and feel your emotions when you need to. After giving yourself the time, try to stifle the feelings you think can elongate your healing.

You Can Admit What You Went Through

Toxic relationships can feel very isolating from others. If you are not ready to share your story with others, you may start by writing your experience in a private journal as a way to process everything you’ve been through. If you feel comfortable sharing, you may talk with trusted friends, family members, or therapists. Your story is essential, but it is often so important to be ready and willing to open up about it with others.

Try Not to Contact Your Old Partner to “Check-In”

After enduring a toxic relationship (especially a long-term toxic relationship), it can be tempting to want to reach out to your former partner. However, it is often best to give yourself some time alone and go completely no contact. If you communicate with the old partner, you may find yourself drawn back into the toxic tango. Despite what they may say, you do not have to stay friends or have any connection with this person.

Do Not Expect a Closure 

Perhaps you want to keep an open line of communication with your ex-partner because you are hoping for some closure or sign to know the relationship is over for good. The closure is not up to them, but it is up to you, and closure often comes within themselves from the healing processes.

Spend Time with Positive People

Make sure that you are surrounded by positive people. Spending time with people you have a healthy relationship with and can trust can be beneficial. Toxic relationships have a way of keeping people alone. So now is the time to make new friends or reconnect with your inner circle who would make you feel comfortable to be with. 

Reconnect with Your True Self

Toxic relationships can take a massive toll on your emotional and physical well-being. Many people find that they stop taking care of themselves while they are in a toxic relationship. After a breakup, try making extra time for yourself and do things you genuinely want to do. This may be reading a book, listening to or singing a song, taking a nice hot bath, cooking your favorite meal, watching your favorite movie or show. Instead of judging yourself and speaking harshly, try to talk to yourself as you would someone you care about. Speaking to yourself with kindness and forgiveness can be one of the best forms of self-care. 

Focus on Your Resilience

Coming out of a toxic relationship, try not to think about yourself as a victim but rather as a strong individual who can now focus on yourself and your own needs. You are a survivor, and this relationship does not need to define you or your life. Even though it may be challenging to see yourself as a fighter, you are more resilient than you know.

Do Not Blame Yourself

It is not your fault that someone treated you poorly. As I mentioned earlier, sometimes, you do not even realize that you are in a toxic relationship. If you think you are hard on yourself, please learn to forgive yourself; it is a critical step in recovering from an unhealthy relationship.

Focus on the Present

Last but not least, you must be focused on the present. Coming out of a toxic relationship, you may be tempted to look into the past or even try to plan everything out for the future. Instead of trying to plan the future or dwelling on the past, focus on your current situation.

Ask yourself:
  • Are you happy at this moment?
  • Are you surrounded by positive people who genuinely care about you?

Now that you’ve read these tips to heal from a toxic relationship, There are many other options for reclaiming your life and thriving. Everyone’s recovery will look different, and there’s no right or wrong way to heal and recover. Nothing is better than no one having to go through a toxic relationship, but if you did/are in one at this moment, I hope this article helped you a little. We are in this together. 

Ayaka Kuroki

ICU Japan '22

Hi! I am Ayaka and am currently a junior at International Christian University, majoring in sociology. I was born in Japan, grew up in Singapore, Taiwan, and UAE-Dubai. I simply love nature, traveling, eating, and singing.
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