5 Facts To Know When Dating Someone Who’s Been Emotionally Abused

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They take things slowly.

A woman embracing herself, looking down towards her shoulder.
Unsplash / Ernest Brillo
Unsplash / Ernest Brillo

When someone has been emotionally abused, they do not jump quickly into relationships. They take things slowly and move gingerly.

They want to get to know you and they want you to get to know them before any significant moves are made.

They are suspicious.

For the emotionally abused, suspicion is natural. They don’t take anything for granted and, while they might not assume the worst about you, they have a good reason to consider your true motives.

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They keep some distance.

Especially early on in dating, they keep their partners at an arm’s length. They stay in touch but the dates are well spaced out and at the end of them, they go home.

And you go back to your home. They don’t leap into any big decisions very quickly. They like their space. Which leads me to my next point:

They are independent.

For many emotionally abused people, they’ve had to learn how to be a whole person on their own.

That abuse is hard to reconcile, so being alone again is even more difficult. But once they’ve learned those life skills again, they’re going to be hard pressed to give them up.

And they don’t have to. You can be in a relationship and be independent too.

They hope for the best but plan for the worst.

When you’ve been emotionally abused, you can try to be optimistic about future relationships but there’s always going to be that nagging feeling in the back of your mind.

Emotionally abused people hope for the best, but they always have a backup plan.

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Higher Perspectives Author

Higher Perspectives Author is one of the authors writing for Higher Perspectives