• Ashleigh Hakes

Escaping the Toxic Web

Updated: Aug 19, 2018

I am cutting off a toxic end. I am gaining my strength and I'm earning my life back.

I kept the pain from everyone because I wasn’t ready to lose what I had.


This is my story.



When I was with my, soon to be, ex husband I was convinced that we were actually in love. I was convinced that he would protect me and cherish me for many years to come. I completely changed my life to revolve around him and our family. I did so much to support him and make him feel better on the tough days. He promised to never hurt me or use me, but he did.


I have always believed that a relationship is a partnership of equality, mutual love and respect. A relationship is not anger, it is not harsh words to bring someone down, nor is it an act of violence to get what we want. The more it happened, the more I began to think this is not what I signed up for, this is not the person I fell in love with, I am not the person I actively strive to be, and yet, I tried so hard to endure everything that was happening.


Over time the anger grew high, the trust grew thin, and the relationship fell apart. I felt as if I became a failure to not only our relationship, but to myself as well.


“Nothing I do is good enough. Nothing I can be is good enough. Nothing I can say is good enough. I am not good enough.”


Nobody could see the pain. I hid it for so long. I began to feel that it was all me, it was all my fault, and it was all my problem. I began to encourage the resentment, I wanted him to disrespect me, insult me, hate me. I was a victim of abuse.


I’ve been torn down. I’ve been ripped apart. I’ve been insulted in every possible way. I’ve been talked down over my career, intelligence, body, beliefs, and values. But, the damage wasn’t visible on the outside (most of the time). I kept it hidden and I didn’t seek help.


I didn’t want anyone to feel sorry for me. I began to fall asleep internally and I sunk down lower than I have ever sunk before. I can’t take full responsibility for being the only victim here, after a while I lowered myself to his level, and in turn, I hurt him in ways I never imagined I could. I tried to equally hurt him in the ways he hurt me, and I felt so disgusted the entire time. Nothing I did was actually equal in comparison, but nothing I did in turn was ever okay. I became an abuser.


After years of enduring and giving pain, after years of trying my best to swallow my feelings, I became fearful, afraid, and I knew I wasn’t in a good place. I started to awaken and ask myself, “why am I putting myself through this?”


For a long time I really believed the lies that things were going to change. I really wanted to make things work. I was completely dependent on him because I revolved my life around something meaningless. I thought I was going to lose my life. I was trying to keep the broken pieces of our relationship together for so long, but eventually I became shattered. I was left completely empty and no longer realized my worth.


I used whatever I had left in me to finally find my reason to leave. I was so caught up that my life became clouded with a white, sticky silk that held me against my conscious will. I never thought I would become so tangled in a toxic web that me and my, soon to be, ex husband created. During my entanglement the life in my being was completely sucked away from me. I held onto the pain for so many years. I didn’t want to be stuck and I couldn’t understand why I was not ready to fight for my freedom. It took years of trying to let go before I actually made the commitment to completely walk away.


Even after consciously and physically walking away, I still kept myself tangled. I still kept in contact. I still took his support. I still supported him. I wasn’t “with him” anymore, but I was still in his life. And even after walking away as a wife, the patterns of toxicity continued and I kept enduring the pain. I was still holding on to a few threads in the web.


But now, I have awakened the deepest parts of myself and I am choosing to let go of it all. I am releasing each thread I have stuck to me and I am becoming unstuck. I am tackling my problems head on and I am releasing all that I do not need.


I have gained my power back and I resist the old life that no longer served me.


I let my relationship define me, but I’ve realized that is wrong. My relationship does not define me. I define myself. I am the creator of my life and I am taking full responsibility from here on out. I’ve escaped the powerful grip of the web and I have taken my life back into my own hands. I have found a new strength inside of me that I never knew existed.

I am releasing this toxic “love” and I am choosing to cut all ends. I am taking the time to heal. I’m learning to forgive. I am learning to love.


This relationship has served me in ways I will always appreciate. I have a constant reminder of what I never want to experience again. Most importantly, I am opening my heart to divine love and I am manifesting my dreams into reality.

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