Creative ways to help you cope with emotional abuse
Photo credit: philipp Wuthrich
If you have had enough of the emotional abuse, the fighting, the arguing, the never ending drama... then, this is for you and if, Iike me, you have had enough of your relationship but feel trapped in the measma of its "shit", then again this is for you.
When you love someone but they just keep hurting you and you feel so disempowered and almost stuck in a rut, chances are you would have tried everything. Having been there myself, I know how hard it is to get out. It takes courage and it takes time. It needs to be your decision. People will tell you to leave, to just up and go, to just "get out", and you feel emboldened by it all but then you go home and you're back to being scared again. You want to leave but you can't, you feel trapped and it's like being in a wormhole.
Your therapist, if you see one, will try to empower you and give you the tools to cope with it but you will go back to that same dark place again and again. You may even have left, once, twice... countless times but you kept going back again and again. It's like a fix and you're an addict. You're addicted to the pain.
You may even have developed some coping mechanisms over the years and you think you're ok and that's fine too. But if you find you're not and you may be struggling, there are creative ways to help you deal with emotional abuse and you may want to try one or a combination of these.
1. Invent a character, a fictional character, call it something, give it a name, befriend it and tell him or her everything that you want to say or talk about.
Being in an abusive relationship, means that you need someone to talk to because more often than not people in that situation are either scared, ashamed or find it hard to talk about the abuse. This could be your only friend, your confidente, someone you can trust and feel safe talking to. Someone who won't judge or look down on you. Someone in whom you can confide and with whom you feel free.
I have been there believe me. It is a very cold and lonely place. Studies have shown that most people in abusive situations, tend to shut themselves out from the world and end up being even more isolated and vulnerable.
2- Create an identity, it could be a secret identity, and start a blog or even a Twitter/Instagram account.
It could be a serious blog or it could be a fun blog. You could make it to good use and help people cope with their abuse or you could just have fun with it and write about whatever it is that takes your fancy. The main thing is that this is meant to be an outlet, a way to be heard or simply be free. This is by no means a way of getting back at life or people but rather a means to help you find who you really are it were before the abuse started.
3- start a diary, a personal diary. Now this is very common place advice when you are in an abusive relationship. You should write, diarise and possibly document all the abuse. Unfortunately, what experts seem to forget is that when you are in these types of situations, most often than not you are too scared or broken to do anything about it.
This diary is not to document the abuse. This diary is to find ways to express yourself. Write about yourself or others, about what you like or hate. Write about your dreams and aspirations maybe, anything that takes your mind off the abuse.
4- Write fiction. Create fictional characters and write about their stories and have fun doing that. If you can't have fun in real life, it doesn't mean you can't have fun in your stories. I created a mean twin sister and had a lot of fun imagining what she would say or do if she were in my shoes. She was so mean, everyone thought it was helarious. I had so much fun doing it, I started blogging under her identity and even created a Twitter account for her. If you choose to do this, please do it responsibily. Being funny or self-expressed does not mean we go around insulting people or hurting their feelings.
5- find your passion and persue it whether in art, photography, design or even fashion. This could be as big or as small as you want it. You could ask other people to join you or just do it alone. It could be as simple as just picking up your camera and starting to take pictures of the things you like and if you don’t have one, just use your phone. This will help get in touch with your inner self again and remember who you really were before all this started.
6- Get involved with community projects, start campaigning or become a volunteer. Find a cause that you think is worth fighting for and start campaigning. You could argue that this is not creative and yet there's so many ways it could be creative. You could campaign using creative arts or starting a sustainable fashion blog or writing about worthy causes and issues you care about.
The same goes for volunteering, there's so many government-backed initiatives to support young artists and community projects that you can get involved with. You just need to find the right one for you.
7- Tag some walls. Do it responsibily though. It is good to be creative and feel free again but you do not want to be going around vandalising public or private property. In most communities, there are spaces for people to get creative just find out where the nearest one in your area is.