Being Single After Abuse Just Hits Different

I’ve never enjoyed myself more

Suzanna Quintana
The Virago

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I’m not off men.

I’m not anti-relationship. I don’t hate the male species. I haven’t taken a vow of chastity or sworn off intimacy.

I’m not against dual bathroom sinks nor am I hoarding cats to keep me company.

But I sure like being single.

Because I can finally breathe.

During my marriage to a man who would at the end of it be clinically diagnosed a narcissist, I often fantasized about what it would be like to live alone. To not be married.

Then I wouldn’t have to do that dance — the one any abuse victim knows how to do all too well.

I didn’t just walk on eggshells, I slept on them. Every move of every muscle down to the smallest facial expression worked overtime. Every moment in his presence put me on sensory overload.

He took up my physical, emotional, and mental space to the point where there wasn’t room for me in my own body and head. Everything I said or did was in either reaction or preparation for whatever he would say or do.

So by the time I left him, not only was I exhausted, my energy depleted, but I felt like my lungs had shrunk since I barely used them after holding my breath…

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Suzanna Quintana
The Virago

My voice is my superpower. Editor-in-Chief of The Virago. Founder of The Online Sanctuary for Healing After Narcissistic Abuse. www.suzannaquintana.com