Toxic Person? Relationship? Detach, Dear One
Detach From The Narcissist/Addict/Emotional Abuser In A Loving Way
Codependents sure know how to attach. In fact, some attach like a famished blood-sucking leech. It’s easier than you think to become obsessed with another person, such as your children or your partner, especially if you struggle with low self-worth.
Not much else matters except pleasing your object of attachment because you get affirmation there. You lean on them to help you to feel like you matter. In fact, you oftentimes forget to take care of yourself because you are so busy taking care of others to get what you want: love.
The problem is that you have a hard time receiving the love that may come because deep down you loathe yourself or at the very least, dislike who you are.
“I love you, but me? Eh, there’s so much I can’t stand about myself.”
Here, Take My Power
The attachment is unhealthy. The longer you stay in the toxic relationship, the more you give away of yourself, you power, your self-esteem, and your self-worth.
You back yourself into a corner. You imprison your spirit. Their approval of you is pretty much the only thing that matters. When you don’t get it, you’re extra sad, you self-sabotage, you resolve to try harder. It’s a hellish cycle.
Detach, dear one.
In order for you to continue to heal and recover, you must learn how to detach in a loving way. I say loving because you’re learning how to step into YOUR POWER. And, in doing so, you’re not taking his or her behavior personal. It is what it is, and you’re not willing to put up with it anymore or react harshly.
Now detaching can mean different things to different people and the thought of it can produce much anxiety. Like peeling a leech off of its tasty host, some pain will occur, but I assure you it is vital for your recovery and your potential to live life in freedom and joy.
Detaching can play out in different ways. For one it may mean completely cutting off all contact for a while. For another, it could mean limiting time spent and time thinking about that person.
The best approach is to sit down and discuss your issue with a good therapist and your partner. Be honest about your unhealthy attachment and come up with a solution that works for both of you.
Keep in mind that detaching does not mean “breaking up” (though some do); it simply means to lovingly let go of your obsessive thoughts and behaviors when it comes to your partner. It means taking time to take care of your needs, time to find yourself and begin to learn how to love yourself.
You are responsible for you first. Self-care can become a wonderful friend. You deserve to have a life of your own and not be enmeshed with another.
Reach Out For Help
You can attend individual or couples therapy if you find you need help. The process of detaching in a healthy way and unlearning some of the negative skills you’ve been employing takes dedication, time, and a good therapist can help.
You want to detach from the unhealthy attachment and not detach completely or in a rude way. I’ve known some that just shut down and completely detach, which does not help in any way. It actually makes matters worse.
Once you’ve lovingly detached so you can have ample space to work on your own issues, you will then be more apt to reattach in a healthy way. After I detached, which I did find to be challenging, my head began to clear and I saw things that I hadn’t seen when I was so caught up in the relationship. I saw how immaturely I had acted at times and how I repelled my partner by my neediness and low self-worth. Having some time to yourself unattached to your partner may be super good for your soul.
–Is my world wrapped up in my partner/children?
–Who am I without my partner?
–How can I lovingly detach and work on me?
Dominica Applegate is an author, writer, and transpersonal spiritual teacher. Her teachings have helped millions of people experience emotional healing, relationship repair, and spiritual awakening. Earning her BA in Psychology and MA in Counseling, she worked 12 years in the mental health field before diving full-time into writing.
She runs Rediscovering Sacredness, an online portal that offers inspiration, essays, resources, and tools to help heal inner pain and experience more peace and joy.
Her books include Recycle Your Pain: It Has a Purpose, Into The Wild Shadow Work Journal, and a collection of poetry entitled, The Pain, It Shapes Her World.