It’s a different, fragile kind of love.
If you’ve suffered from emotional manipulation in your past relationships, then you already know how devastating it can be. For years afterwards, it can be very hard to actually feel like your own feelings, opinions, and thoughts are valid.
And if you’re dating a woman who has experienced emotional manipulation, you’ll also notice that she’ll be different from most other women you’ve been with.
Long-Term Effects of Emotional Manipulation
Even after an emotionally manipulative relationship ends, the effects may linger and creep into new relationships — even ones that are healthy.
Here’s what you can expect from her and your relationship with her.
1. She won’t trust herself easily.
She may need you to actually validate what she’s seeing with her own eyes. She may look to you for guidance, simply because she’s been gaslighted for so long that she doesn’t know what to believe anymore. As a result, you may need to help her believe in herself.
2. She also might not trust you for a very long time.
Once you’re manipulated, it’s easy to really feel like you can’t trust guys for a while. In fact, she might actually think that you’re lying to her, too. You need to be patient with her. It will take a long time to reestablish trust with her.
3. She will do what she can to keep you
but might feel like she’s “waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Many women who were manipulated by their exes get paranoid about their love life. They may assume that you’re only going to use her, that you’re going to abuse her, or that you’ll just up and leave. So, while she’ll work to keep you, she may be pessimistic about you for a very long time.
4. She craves commitment and security.
The last guy really hurt her on a foundational level. He made her feel unsafe, insane, and unstable. What she wants is to feel is secure, happy, and sane again. So, she’ll flock to the commitment and security like a moth to alight.
5. Disbelief of the relationship
There will be moments where she’ll be in disbelief of the relationship in general.
She might not believe you really love her. Or, she might not believe that she’s in a happy relationship. But, nevertheless, she’ll be amazed by the kindness that you show her every time that you are good to her.
6. She will be very grateful for every little thing you do.
After years of often having to beg for basic human decency, showing her actual kindness and love will rock her world. She’ll always show her thankfulness to you, and she will make a point to make sure you know how much she treasures you. After all, she knows what a bad relationship looks like.
7. No one will be more loyal to you than she will.
Women who have been manipulated emotionally tend to be extremely loyal to men who actually restore their faith in love. Don’t be surprised if she ends up becoming the best girlfriend that you could ever wish for.
If you have had suffered emotional manipulation and could relate to this article, then let us know in comments.
Originally appeared on Your Tango
Republished with permission