Few things are more painful than realizing you’ve been manipulated by someone you trust. The ramifications can bring some of the toughest of emotions to the surface like betrayal, guilt, anger, depression and sadness. Though healing from this sort of pain is not impossible, it does take some serious work. But with these three tips below, you can get a jumpstart the process.
Recognize that hurt people hurt people
In her 2012 song, Empty Words, Christina Aguilera sings this little nugget of wisdom: The funny thing about hurt people is they tend to hurt people. If you are dealing with a manipulative person, you gotta know you are dealing with someone who has open wounds. Wounds that must scare the bejesus out of them, cause they would rather do anything else in this world than heal them up — including manipulate you. And it’s really effed up.
One way to heal from this inversion in your relationship is to flip open the history books and make some edits to your story. We can find the places where a negative or manipulative influence has made changes to your life and stop it from doing any more damage. For instance, has someone make you feel like you weren’t good enough and therefore you never tried any harder? Or maybe that you only accomplish so much without them? Or that you were only sorta pretty, but they loved you anyway? Control-Alt-Delete.
Now you know these were sick words from a hurt individual — not the strong and sincere individual you looked up to. You’ve been convinced of some things about yourself that just aren’t true — by someone who probably doesn’t deserve the respect you’ve been giving them. Begin to take their power out of your story, so it no longer informs the pages to come. The only influences you need to follow in this life are the best ones, not the hurt ones.
Do Not Judge Yourself For Believing
So, you left the gate open to your garden and a snake came in and tore up the petunias. Well, now you know better — so let it be known: that was a dumb ass snake. He picked the wrong motherf*ckin garden. And when you find it, you’re gonna pick it up by its mouth, pluck out its fangs, look it in the eye and say “Not in my garden, bitch!” Then you’ll sling it far over the fence, return back to your garden and plant some new petunias. Brighter petunias. Better petunias. Ones that shine like glitter and rise high enough to high five the sun every morning. And you’ll take better care of these flowers and never leave the gate open for that dumb ass snake again. This is living and learning.
What’s super important here is this: don’t judge yourself. Everyone get’s a snake in their garden here and there. It’s just part of nature. But know that you can rebound and recover. You’re not the world’s biggest fool — you’re human. Stay strong and move yourself forward. It will take some time to heal the wounds, but from the efforts something amazing will bloom again soon. Whatever is good will always bloom again.
Using Your Gut
Sometimes these damn snakes just can’t leave our lives. Albeit family, friends, coworkers or whatever — their bobble heads will be watching us (over our new electric fences), just staring at our blessings and looking for a way in again. The only thing I can prescriptively say in this scenario, with full confidence, is that the way to survive this situation is already innate. You already know what you have to do here. Whether it’s ignore the person, confront them, get a therapist, rearrange the time you spend with them, etc. — in your gut, you know what to do.
So do it. Do it without fear and with love for your inner petunias. Your life story was meant to have pages filled with blossomings — not chapters casted under other people’s shadows. Using your inner voice to guide your actions will give you enough energy to sustain whatever challenges may occur. To find it, try journaling, or meditation, or guidance with a trusted friend. But find it, believe in it and then let it bloom.