A New Reason Why You’re Allowing Your Partners Abuse

Allowing someone to treat you poorly isn’t always about your lack of self-worth

Michelle Love
6 min readSep 2, 2021


I just got off a really long phone call with a friend and she caused me to have the biggest “A-Ha” moment I’ve had in ages.

We were talking about abusive relationships and why people allow themselves to be abused. In both of our dating lives, we’ve found ourselves in partnership with people who don’t treat us well – and yet we accept that and put up with it for a long time….maybe longer than we “should”.

For example, she has been in a long term relationship with each man for the last 9 years who is engaged to his “high school sweetheart” but doesn’t want to be (she bought the ring for herself).

My friend wants them to be fully exclusive, as does he, but he won’t do it yet because his fiancé’s mom is dying and he feels like he can’t stomach leaving her when she’s going through such a hard time. So, although it aches her to be a secret – She accepts that because they spend most of the time together and it’s a fantastic relationship.

My friend has never given him an ultimatum about it because she wants him to come to the decision on his own. She doesn’t want to pressure him and have him resent her. So, I asked her – but doesn’t it hurt to be a secret? When will it end? What happens if the mom dies and he still doesn’t leave?

I then opened up to her about the abusive relationships I’ve been in and how I put up with those people for so long. Therapists often claim that you’re the one attracting that abuse. How? Because when you were young, that’s what you were used to – So, sadly enough the can be a sense of comfort that comes from being in a similar environment.

We talked more about this because – how could we still be allowing abusive or disrespectful behaviour, after knowing all this eye-opening information? After all the therapy, meditation and self work — you’d think we would just easily leave!

I then said to her — I think it doesn’t quite line up for me – therapists have said it’s because I have low self-worth and am therefore allowing my partners to treat me poorly. Once they get away with it once or twice, they know they can continue to get away with it. I’m apparently over here thinking that I don’t deserve better, so I’m putting up with the abuse.



Michelle Love

My public journal about all the things I’ve been through & I’m interested in—with the hope that it benefits you. 🤍 Love is the answer