Leaving an abusive relationship is hard. Very hard. Statistically, as I mentioned earlier, it takes on average 7 attempts for a target of abuse to get out and stay out!
It’s a struggle that seems nearly impossible for outsiders to understand. It’s common to feel judged and shamed for not being able to cut those ties on our first attempt. Aubrey talks about four reasons you may have felt imprisoned. and they are all centred around fear.
If you’re experiencing any of these fears, relax in the knowledge that you’re absolutely normal. Maybe it’s okay to wonder what’s keeping you in the relationship. Perhaps there are some issues you need to confront within yourself or circumstances that you need to address in your escape plan. I’ve been thinking that perhaps we need to do some reframing and rewording around the issues that keep abuse targets who haven’t left the circumstances they’re in.
Maybe instead of asking people “Why don’t you leave?”, we should be asking “Why can’t you leave?”
On that note, if you’re trying to identify those reasons, the SwanWaters team and other fellow survivors in the SwanWaters Facebook Group are here to help you as you gain clarity. And to support you when you feel ready to make your escape. You’re not alone, even if you feel like it at times.
Escaping an abusive situation is difficult—if not full-on dangerous. Preparing your escape will make you more likely to get out and stay out. In this module, I’ll share some advice for you to consider as you equip yourself to make the first move; a series of starting points to help you remove yourself from an abusive situation.
Please always realise that abusers often escalate when their targets are trying to get out. For this part of your journey over-preparing is better than under-preparing!