Relationships as a whole are not always easy to acquire. When you add layers like classism, racism, ableism, sexism, and more - it can be even more difficult to find reasonable matches.
And, of course, being non-monogamous, finding ideal relationship structures can be even more taxing and time-consuming.
This is why it should come as no surprise that, just like in monogamous relationships, non-monogamous people get abused and stay around, sometimes just for the sake of the relationship and fear of starting the search again.
Sometimes, we know that our relationship(s) have taken a toll on us physically and mentally.
We may be fully aware that we are a victim of abuse, not living or loving the way we want, or just simply dissatisfied with our relationship - and we still stick around.
There may be various red flags in cases of abuse, and we may still stick around, hoping it will improve. Our trauma bond or codependence becomes almost addictive.
How do I know I've had enough to leave?
It may come as a wave of resentment, building up over time. It may come after some time alone in peace while a partner(s) is away. One singular event could be the catalyst.
Your loved ones could have been telling you for months or years that your relationship was not right for you, and even if you believed them, you may have kept pushing through it.
You may have even attempted to leave a few times before - serious about separation, but circumstances (like living arrangements, children, finances), fear of retaliation (violence, stalking), codependency, guilt (caretakers), and promises of improvement brought you back.
Regardless, when you get that feeling of absolute - you will know. It will be stronger than the feeling of staying.
...but just because you’ve had enough, doesn’t mean you’ll be able to go.
Again, circumstances (like an abusive relationship) can affect one’s ability to leave at the drop of a dime.
During this time, have empathy for yourself. Having the feeling alone will be a good initiative to leave.
If you are a loved one to someone who has had enough and is ready to leave...
They need your help.
It is easy to say what you would have done differently or even to feel slighted because they did not consider your advice about the situation before.
This isn’t the time for your ego.
You can’t make someone leave a bad relationship until they are ready, but you can help support them out of it safely.
Things to consider:
your safety is equally as important as theirs. if they are in a tumultuous and violent relationship, be considerate of all factors. many abusers do not take well to someone assisting their victim to leave.
if something is above your “paygrade,” aka your expertise, ask if you can get help from outside. don’t overload yourself if you are unable to follow through. sometimes, the support needed may bypass your ability.
during and after the process, your loved one may need constant reassurance that they made the right decision. and this may be frustrating. leaving a relationship does not automatically mean relief. sometimes, it takes days, weeks, or months for someone to see the benefits of leaving.
support looks different for every situation. some loved ones want your help step by step, and others want to know you are there if they need it. give suggestions if the time calls for it.
for those in polycules with their loved one who is leaving a relationship - keep their business private. don't tell metamours or other members of the polycule. you may endanger this person if you speak about it to others.