Parting ways with someone you once cared about is never easy. But when it comes to leaving an unhealthy relationship, it can feel even more difficult. That's because, apart from the typical sadness associated with breaking up, there tends to be other things going on, including issues with self-esteem, baggage from the past, and so on.
It can all add up to create a super confusing situation. "It is very common to struggle with deciding to leave any relationship, especially an unhealthy one," therapist Jordan Madison, LGMFT, tells Bustle. "There [are] so many factors to consider when leaving a relationship that it can become very overwhelming." And when you add in toxic factors, it can start to feel impossible.
It isn't, however, necessary to remain stuck forever. Therapy can be a big help, as it can help you recognize an unhealthy situation, and learn ways to move on. Speaking with loved ones can also be another way out. But building your self-esteem up, all on your own, can make a difference, too.
"The trick to breaking the loop is identifying the self-beliefs that hold you back and taking steps to challenge those core beliefs," therapist Matt Smith, tells Bustle. "Developing daily habits of self-love — even something small like going the gym or making time for a hobby that brings you joy — can slowly begin to shift your limiting self-beliefs and empower you to pursue the healthy relationships you deserve."