Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
Did you ever have a friend that kept returning to a terrible boyfriend? For the life of you, you couldn’t see what it was in this no good guy that your friend just couldn’t resist. You’d gather your courage and try to approach her, she’d admit that he really was no good, and then you’d watch in disbelief and disgust as she ran right back into his arms. You were flabbergasted at her seeming blindness to this man, and how she couldn’t see that he was totally dragging her down. You wondered at her sanity, that she could repeatedly align herself with such a monster.
Sadly, I’ve done the very same thing in my life, with a relationship that far overstayed a healthy duration. His name was fear. He also went by anxiety, worry, and panic, depending on the day. I hated him, oh, how I did. And yet, somehow, I kept running back to him over and over, unknowingly clinging to him like a friend, when he was really killing me slowly from the inside out. It was the definition of an abusive relationship. I knew he was no good, but instead of doing what was necessary to get him out of my life, I kept inviting him back in by feeding him (hey, they do say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, right?).
Why would I do this? Why would any of us keep someone around that is abusive? I’m no expert, but in hearing from several women who have endured similar bondage, the constant thread from each of them seemed to be the feeling of being trapped. It’s easier to stay, even though staying is figuratively and sometimes literally killing them. Leaving, would be painful, because leaving would be scary and leaving would require facing some truth that they may not have been ready to face.
For me, I would be the first tell you how much I hated my “relationship.” It stole my happiness, robbed my joy, and literally ruined more days than I have the stomach to add up. Still, I couldn’t seem to initiate a break up. Why? Could it be that I was literally addicted to my oppressive relationship with fear?
“…you have rejected this message, relied on oppression and depended on deceit…”
– Isaiah 30:12
Relying on oppression? Depending on deceit? Admittedly? Never! But take a closer look. Are you? Am I? Are we so far gone in our oppressive habits and tendencies that we are clinging to them? Relying on them? If you find that you can’t get free from something that’s been bothering you for years, this may be the case. You may be unknowingly living in “peaceful” co-existence with your problems, too worn down, lazy, or blinded to get rid of them entirely. Until the pain of not changing becomes greater than the pain of changing, we may just find ourselves trapped.
Do yourself a favor today: initiate the breakup. This is one breakup where the momentary pain of separation will be immeasurably overshadowed by the joy of finally being free from oppression.