Today I am back with another story time/personal post about my past. I do want to highlight the following trigger warnings for sensitive viewers: abusive relationships, manipulation, slut shaming and toxic behaviour. If you aren’t sure what ‘love bombing’ is, it is described online as: ‘the practice of showering a person with excessive affection and attention in order to gain control or significantly influence their behavior. The love bomber’s attention might feel good, but the motive is all about manipulation. What separates love bombing from just regular honeymoon feelings is an abrupt switch—one moment they may be totally idealizing their partner, and the next, they’ll cut them down to size in an effort to control them.’ Click here to read original article.
This relationship happened almost 10 years ago and yet, I hadn’t realised I had been ‘love bombed’ until this month when I watched one of Carrie Dayton’s latest videos. You can check it out here. Listening to her experience made me pause the clip in shock. What she was describing had happened to me as well. Finally, there was a term to define a very dark time in my life. Without further ado, here is my story…
The beginning of Carrie’s relationship was identical to mine. A person popped up in her life that showed immediate interest. She wasn’t into him but over time, her curiosity got the better of her and she gave him a chance. I was not interested in (let’s call him Rupert) this person in the slightest. Rupert would follow me around my University campus declaring that we were soulmates and would inevitably be together someday. I would laugh him off and continue on my merry way. His persistence and constant flattery won over my low self-esteem in the end and we began dating. I remember thinking that everything was moving way too fast. In just one week of seeing each other, he told me that he loved me. However, the declaration was a negative experience. One evening, he decided to go on a pub crawl with a friend. I was at home enjoying his regular message updates. After about an hour, I received a text that said: ‘is kissing cheating?’ My heart stopped. This guy who had done everything in his power to win my heart had just admitted to cheating on me. I called him, yelled that it was over and hung up. He immediately called back sobbing and said it was just a joke. I couldn’t understand why somebody would joke about that. He caught a taxi back to his dorm and called me again, drunk and crying. He told me he loved me and I forgave him by saying it back (although at the time I knew I didn’t mean it.) To this day, I’m still convinced he was unfaithful. He swore black and blue that he was just trying to keep me interested by playing it cool. Nuh-uh! Big red flags!
As we continued our relationship, things started to turn dramatically. He would make over the top gestures one day and call me a slut the next. He became obsessively jealous of anybody that wanted my time and screamed at me when I texted a girlfriend during a weekend getaway together. He told me he hated all of my friends because they took me away from him. I began having panic attacks daily and isolating myself from everybody. I moved in with him to try and repair the relationship; telling myself stupidly that we fought so often because we missed one another. Nothing worked. He demanded I do things I wasn’t comfortable with (not sexual) and openly flirted with other girls in front of me. Looking at the chart below, Rupert met every single one of those points. He even told me I wasn’t the girl he thought I was when I revealed I had slept with other people before meeting him. He lied constantly and visibly shook with anger. Everyone he came into contact with would hear how wonderful and incredible his girlfriend was but behind closed doors, I felt like a mouse in a cage. I wanted to share this because I literally only learned about ‘love bombing’ this year.
Our relationship eventually ended on our two year anniversary when I decided enough was enough. He cried and screamed and told me that he hated the idea of somebody else getting to be with me someday. From what I’ve heard, he hasn’t really changed but we do not see or hear from one another. It is a part of my life I honestly wish I could take back no matter how many lessons I learned or how it shaped who I am today. It went on for far too long and it wasn’t even with somebody that I loved but rather tolerated for the sake of having company/attention. I hope if you’re reading this and can relate, you find solace in knowing you’re not alone.
Thank you for reading. Please leave any comments below and go gently on yourself.
Peace & Love xoxo