When I first separated from my ex, I would watch the movie, "Safe Haven," and the television show "Big Little Lies," over and over. My relationship was never physically abusive, thank God, but it was abusive in other ways. I felt like I didn't have many people to talk to about my trauma, and I found comfort in these shows. I found comfort in the experience of fictional characters who had experienced abusive relationships because it helped me feel not so alone.
I was looking at my Instagram lately and I noticed that It's shifted. Posts are more positive and uplifting. Smiling selfies. Dreams. Hope for the future. It's actually a far cry from what it was just over a year ago. This make me so happy because it shows me that I am healing and I am so much better now than I was a year ago.
On Christmas day, 2016, my grief was so enormous that I needed an outlet. That's why I started my Instagram. My pain was so deep, I couldn't manage. The trauma from being the victim of verbal abuse was so all-encompassing, I had no idea how I could continue on. The depression I felt following the destruction of my marriage was heart-breaking. The loneliness was suffocating.
I was so nervous telling people in my life about my true experience because I feared they wouldn't believe me. Even if they did believe me, I feared they would think I was being "over-dramatic" or I was inflating the truth about what happened. I feared they would judge me, or worse yet, blame me for what happened. I was embarrassed by what had happened.
Looking at these words, it is so clear to me now that these were the beliefs of someone who had been victimized by abuse. I had been torn down and didn't trust myself or feel any confidence in myself at all. It is a classic pattern of victims to feel embarrassed by the abuse they suffered. Can you imagine? Being embarrassed by how someone else treated you?
Because I felt like I couldn't be open with people in my life, I so desperately needed to connect with others who had lived a similar experience. I needed to find comfort in the kind words and love of strangers, who had experienced trauma themselves, and could empathize.
More importantly than that, I needed to speak my truth.
Instagram opened these doors. I could post honestly about trauma. I could be real about verbal abuse. I could 100% speak my truth. Those people I connected with in the early days are still so near and dear to my heart, because they gave me the strength to be honest and not lose myself to the trauma. I will be forever thankful! If you don't know who you are, I promise to reach out soon and touch base with you.
The love and support I received from others during those early days inspired me to start this blog. I felt like I could be 100% honest and people would accept it as truth. Once I started this blog, I could really speak my truth and detail my experience. Speaking out loud about tough issues like depression, verbal abuse, triggers, and loneliness is exactly what I needed to do to help heal myself.
For those of you out there who haven't yet shared your experience, I encourage you to start speaking your truth. If you can't share with your loved ones, please get in touch with me.
After all, Oprah truly does know best: Your truth is the most powerful tool you have.
Sending you only peace and light.
Founder of the site Divorced at 30, Alexandra is a blogger who is passionate about speaking her truth. She is on a healing journey as she enters this new chapter in her life. A mental health advocate, she is passionate about motivating others to find “the light” and attain peace.