Being in a toxic relationship can destroy someone’s sense of identity and self. It’s awful because you never truly expect it to turn so ugly and not everyone manages to get out of it. So, in this article, I want to talk about how to help someone who got out of a toxic relationship.
Getting out of a toxic relationship may seem like the end of all their pain but it’s only the beginning of a long journey to self-love.
That person is going to need the support and help of their friends and family during this confusing time in their life.
You have to understand something – When a romantic partner destroys your life, it can change the way you look at life in general and not just yourself.
For this reason, it is imperative that you provide a gentle and non-judgmental support system for someone who got out of a toxic relationship.
I’ve been in my fair share of toxic relationships and I would be lying if I said that my friends and family did not save me from turning into someone ugly and defeated.
I remember feeling completely disillusioned by life and love for a long time.
I wanted to soak in misery and allow all the damage to my self-esteem to be an end-all of my journey in self-development.
Thankfully, I had my friends and family to remind me of two important things:
- Good people do exist.
- There’s a life outside of a romantic relationship.
When I finally had both of these realizations, it felt as if I had been awakened from a numb and dull slumber.
With renewed vigor, I was able to improve myself and craft a life that I like through the support of these people in my life.
Be that person for someone because you could be saving them from going down a dark and nasty path after exiting a toxic relationship.
With that being said, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of how to help someone who got out of a toxic relationship.
Related post: 20 Signs you are in a controlling relationship
1. Console them during breakdowns
Someone who got out of a toxic relationship is going to experience a great deal of emotions. One minute, they may seem to be boasting with hope and the next, they’re completely shattered and hopeless.
They have been through a great deal of pain that requires time, patience and affection to be healed.
This is where you step in.
Offer words of comfort, hug them, hold their hand, sit with them and be soft spoken as much as you can.
Let them feel your presence during these breakdowns because nothing drives someone back to a toxic relationship other than a lack of emotional support.
Related post: Why does it hurt to leave a toxic relationship?
2. Listen to them as much as possible
I can tell you with certainty that when someone is ready to talk about their toxic relationship, they won’t be able to stop for a while.
They will need to talk about this for a long time before most of their issues are resolved and they have made peace with the past.
At least for the first few weeks, this might be all that they speak about.
Understandably, it won’t be easy for either of you. But, do not feel like this person does not care about you because of how much they keep talking about their toxic relationship.
They simply cannot process all the baggage and wounds without talking about it.
These thoughts and memories are playing in their mind on a loop, just waiting to be processed, experienced and let go.
Practice infinite patience.
Once they start to find some normalcy and the healing process officially begins, they’ll carve out time to talk about other things and to serve the relationship or friendship with you in a better way.
3. Don’t judge them for having doubts
Believe it or not, the phase immediately after a toxic relationship is harder than the relationship itself.
Like most things in life, it gets harder before it gets better.
One of the reasons why it’s so difficult and full of anxiety and doubt is because you’re still left with the wounds of the relationship, except you’re single again and uncertain of what to do with your life.
Someone who has even dealt with a controlling partner will often miss them immediately after the breakup because they have been brainwashed and trained into submission by believing that they need that toxic partner to survive.
During this time, they will yo-yo between hating and missing their ex.
You may find that they even try to reflect on the relationships and recall a few brief moments of happiness.
This is normal.
If you judge them, it will only cause them to close up and feel rejected. Instead, it is far more comforting to offer them non-judgmental support while gently guiding them back towards the path of freedom.
Someone in this situation is desperately seeking to be understood.
Judging them will not facilitate a sense of rapport and understanding.
Instead, be considerate and compassionate but firm in assuring them that these doubts are normal but not reason enough to go back to their toxic relationship.
Being sympathetic is one of the best ways to learn how to help someone who got out of a toxic relationship
Related post: How to leave a toxic relationship with dignity
4. Remind them of the person they used to be
Toxic relationships tend to have a few commonalities in that they often make one or both partners become codependent, anxious, depressed, fearful, and withdrawn or chaotic.
They lose their identity and take on the persona that existed within the relationship even without the relationship.
What could serve them well is a reminder of the person they used to be.
- Talk to them about what you remember.
- Share the kind of characteristics they once possessed before the relationship that you admired and loved.
- Give them a reminder of how strong and compassionate they were.
Like driving a car again after a long sabbatical, once you get the gears turning, it’s only a matter of time before you’re gaining control of how to operate efficiently again.
Similarly, these reminders will trigger the person they have always been to gradually reappear, particularly the parts that still remain.
Related post: 10 Toxic relationships signs to look out for
5. Help them to have fun
I can’t begin to emphasize how important it is to experience life after a toxic breakup.
This person needs to be around those who can remind him or her that life goes on and there’s fun to be had even without their ex.
Ofcourse, you can’t forcefully have fun and be happy straight after a loss or trauma.
But, as time goes on and it becomes apparent that the shock and grief are starting to lift, it might be an appropriate time to encourage them to come out with you and experience a bit of life.
The only way to properly move on after a toxic relationship is to make new and better memories with good people.
This is definitely where you step in and be that source of fun, joy, happiness and sincerity.
When deciding what to do, I would advise you to opt for activities and events that will not overwhelm your friend or family member.
Build them up over time.
6. Be honest with them
Honesty is the best policy. And let’s be honest, toxic relationships are often closely linked with lies and deceit.
As such, someone who got out of a toxic relationship will have trust issues.
They won’t know who to listen to and believe.
That’s why it’s so important for you to be honest with them, even if that requires you to have some awkward conversations.
When you are honest with them, they will come to you and actually open up. In doing so, it should help them to seek your counsel as well as communicate their issues to you.
Trust me, this is one of the most effective tips on how to help someone who got out of a toxic relationship.
Helping someone who just got out of a toxic relationship is no easy feat but it’s a rewarding one. There’s something wholesome and genuine about being a source of support that helps lift someone out of a bad spot.
You’re essentially helping to heal a person’s heart while providing them with the support needed to start over at life and love.
You’re making a real difference in someone’s life and that is something to be respected.
A non-toxic but healthy relationship or friendship is all about what you can give someone without expectations.
Giving them your time, presence, affection and support are immeasurably valuable and a sign of your good nature.
And since we are all just the sum total of the five closest people to us, it’s only natural to expect that you would help this person become someone much like you.
Think about that – you could help someone climb out of a dark pit by simply being a good person in their life.
Isn’t that a breathtakingly beautiful sentiment?
With that being said, I hope this article on how to help someone who got out of a toxic relationship was insightful with practical advice. Please head over to the comment section below and share your experiences with this situation