Some relationships are much more difficult to walk away from than others.
There's always that one relationship you know you should end, but you just can't bring yourself to actually do it.
My last relationship was one of those.
At the time, it was the hardest decision I had to make.
Now, looking back, I couldn't have made a better choice.
When my ex and I were together, very few people knew what was actually happening. They were so surprised when they heard it was over.
"But, you guys looked so happy in all of your pictures," they would say. "You guys were perfect for each other."
Little did they know, it was the complete opposite.
We were miserable, a terrible match.
A lot of emotional and verbal abuse also took place.
"Why didn't you leave sooner?" they would ask. "You were together almost four years. How did you stick it out that long?"
Here are the reasons why it took so long:
1. Love is subjective.
Love is like art; there are no right or wrong answers when it comes to it.
The things that make up that love are also abstract, like thoughts, feelings, words said, etc.
How do you know when it's the right time to leave?
When you love someone so much, those emotions can really work against you.
It's not that you've stopped loving that person; it's just that you love yourself more.
You need to get out before it's too late.
2. You can't imagine your life without that person.
When you're together for so long and do basically everything together, it's hard to imagine living even one day without that person.
How are you supposed to wake up and know you'll never see that person again?
It's unimaginable and completely terrifying.
What will life be like alone? Overcoming the fear of moving on solo is a huge piece of the walking away puzzle.
3. You constantly question your decision to leave.
You fight, he leaves, and you decide this is the end.
He shows up with flowers and a cupcake, tells you how much he loves you and promises things will be different.
I've been there, and I've eaten that cupcake.
This is most likely a regular occurrence, and eventually, you fall into the pattern.
"He will change. Things will be better."
Regardless of what you logically know, you have such high hopes things will actually be different.
But, you find yourself in the same place over and over again.
4. You don't want to have any regrets.
If you're going to walk away for good, you need to know you won't regret your decision.
The worst thing is wondering, "what if?"
Of all of those subjective feelings, this becomes an impossible task.
This is why you must put your all into the relationship one final time.
5. You want to do everything possible.
You put forth every single effort possible to try to make the relationship work.
This can take a lot of time, however, and it will push you to a breaking point.
You'll eventually learn there are no other options, and it just isn't working.
This is especially difficult when it's a one-man show, and you're doing all of the heavy lifting.
If your partner isn't willing to participate in making it work, that's also a pretty drastic indicator you should part ways.
6. You need something concrete.
Having something concrete to give you a yes or no answer is what you need.
All of the emotions and thoughts will only keep you around longer.
Those black and white answers will make everything crystal clear.
If you're not on the same page — about your future, communication, respect, etc. — you'll know it's time to say goodbye.
This was my saving grace.
It was the straw that broke the camel's back.
I stood firm by my decision, and I knew I was doing the right thing.
I have no regrets.
7. There's no turning back.
When walking away from a bad relationship that has literally consumed you and stolen your heart, soul and joy, there's no turning back.
Once you walk away, it will be the end.
This thought will initially hinder you from throwing up those two fingers and peacing out.
Yes, it's frightening, but you'll eventually gain everything you lost, plus some.
People get lost in relationships. There's plenty of compromise, the merging of lives and social circles and being known as a couple instead of two separate people.
Having the ability to learn about yourself as an individual in order to rebuild your life is an absolute blessing.
You will learn so much about who you are, what you want and where you're going.
The only person you need is yourself.
It's important to remember you are strong, and you will overcome the loss.
Yes, it is difficult to walk away, but the aftermath is so worth the struggle.