The Right To Walk Away

Sometimes walking away has nothing to do with weakness, and everything to do with strength.  We walk away not because we want others to realize our worth and value, but because we finally realize our own.

I have written about walking away from a few relationships in my life. I didn’t make any of these breaks lightly with any of the people. I felt the leading to do so from God over long periods of time and, after much prayer and consulting with several people, I broke ties with them.

Although the purpose of walking away was for health and healing, unfortunately, these choices have proven to be very painful. There were (are) a lot of hurtful words, loss of other relationships and backlash from these breaks. Some of the people or ones associated with them have told me that I was being hateful, that I never loved them, wasn’t being a good Christian and so on. But these accusations are not true. I didn’t want to break off from these relationships if things could have been different. And I still wouldn’t be hurting and occasionally struggling with these choices if there was no love on my part.

In the end, what it comes down to is that I just wanted to be loved and accepted for who I was. I never felt this in their presence. Maybe they did love me but how they loved was way too painful for me to live under. It is because of these relationships that I am very protective of my heart and very slow to let someone in. To do so and be rejected at some point is just way too painful. These relationships had such negative influences on my life that I changed the way I approach anyone. That is an indicator of a big problem.

Since I have broken away from these relationships, I have finally started to let down some of my protective walls so I can get closer to healing. However, since I was told by so many that to stand up for myself in any way was selfish or not Christian, I struggle with the freedom. What hurts me or what I think and am interested in means nothing to the people I have broken away from. It’s been a lifetime of being told in various ways that I counted for nothing. I know God doesn’t share this view because every person has value in His eyes. Knowing this is the only reason I was able to finally say “enough”.

Knowing when to walk way, is Wisdom.  Being able to, is Courage, Walking away with your head held high, is Dignity.

But I was shocked when there was an attempt at some contact with me recently. The contact that really bothered me was when one, in essence, asked me to open up my life to them. What shocked me so much about the one contact was that there had never been a real desire to communicate with me when I still was in the relationship. I don’t understand the point of attempting to reconnect when I felt there was no desire to connect to begin with.

I feel like I’m a playing piece in some game I don’t know I’m even playing.  Why is it that after I finally took wise steps to protect myself and walked away from the relationship, as I’ve always felt would make them happy, they contact me?

The most difficult outcome with receiving the communications is that I feel like my feelings and life aren’t respected at all. So many emotions and thoughts bubble to the surface when I see or hear their names. When it happens, all of my defenses rise to the top to defend from whatever may come. This is a big problem because since the contact I referenced above came to me I have had horrible dreams every night. Even if I can’t remember them, the horrible feelings stay with me all day. Every insecurity built around the relationships and all the ugly interactions rise to the forefront of my memory and, while I can push them back during the day, they have full reign when I’m sleeping.

I am a person with real feelings and a lot to offer those who want to know me and be a part of my life. To accept people into my life who don’t want to know me and actually give them some degree of control of my feelings is foolish and detrimental to the healing I am seeking and desire so much. I want to be whole someday. I want to rest completely in the knowledge that no matter what others have spoken into my life, I was created by God Himself. He loves me with an everlasting, unconditional love and He has plans that only I can do in the way He made me especially to do them. He wants me to have an abundant life to live to the full. That doesn’t include having people in my life who only want me there for appearances. I deserve to be loved by those closest to me. That hasn’t been reality with some major players in my past, but God showed me it can be now. The people who chose to not love or care about me in the past have rights as well not to like me. There are some people who will never be friends. It’s ok. I can’t do anything about what they think about me. However, that also means that I have the right to move on and ask that my choice to walk away be respected.

~ Joanna Lynn

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