10 Reasons Why You’re Still Hurting
Everyone gets hurt in life at some point or another. Multiple times in different situations, for various reasons.
Some of us are able to just let it go, truly move on, and still live a fulfilling life.
Unfortunately for some of us, the pain of the past is like a shadow that continuously haunts us and it never actually goes away.
Many of us have not healed from past hurt and this affects our daily lives.
Does this sound like you? Are you someone who just can’t seem to shake the pain of the past? Has someone hurt you in a way the keeps you up at night even to this day? Maybe it was a friend, a family member, an ex, or even a coworker?
Regardless of who it was, if any of these are true for you:
- You are easily triggered
- A part of you secretly enjoys their discomfort
- You take things personally all the time (even when it’s not about you)
- You have trust issues
- You are afraid to let people get close to you
- You don’t drop things
- You don’t forgive easily
You could still be carrying around pain from your past without even knowing it.
I believe that in order for you to truly solve a problem, you must first understand it. Otherwise, you’ll only put a Band-Aid on it and that doesn’t actually make the issue go away. It just stays there and festers until it’s a rotten sore.
My goal with this blog is to help you grow as an individual so you can have meaningful relationships in your life so today I’m going to talk about reasons why you’re still hurting and what you can do to start healing.
I won’t bore you with my back story but if I can heal and learn to let go of the past so effectively that I can grow more in love with my partner every day without the past interfering, then I believe you can too if that’s something you want.
Let’s start with the reasons why you’re still hurting
1. You haven’t been honest with yourself to admit that you ARE still hurting
This is something that I’ve learned from past experiences. I was someone who would bury myself in my work to avoid dealing with any pain I was feeling. I also used to use sleep as a crutch to dodge the pain.
I grew up in an abusive home and there was a lot of manipulation so I was never really taught how to identify that I AM hurt. I learned to justify those feelings so much that I started to believe that the negative or toxic behaviors and habits I was displaying as a result of past pain, were “who I am”.
Have you allowed yourself an opportunity to ugly cry over the pain you are still feeling? Or have you locked those feelings away and bought into the fake “unbotheredness” perpetuated on social media these days?
Have you allowed yourself an opportunity to dwell on those feelings long enough to realize that there are still feelings of hurt present within you?
There is no shame in being hurt. Maybe you are overly sensitive, but that is rooted in something much deeper. Figure out what it is so you can begin the healing process.
2. You are holding on to the hurt of the past (you haven’t freed yourself)
Back to point number one, if you haven’t admitted to yourself that you are still hurting, then guess what? You are going to be holding on to that pain perpetually.
Let’s assume that you have admitted to yourself that what you’re feeling IS pain, you are still hurting because you have chosen to cling to the pain.
I can hear you thinking “what Lis? Who chooses to hold on to pain?”
The thing is, the choice doesn’t have to be a conscious one. Many people subconsciously hold on to the pain of the past because it’s “familiar”.
Think about it this way: have you ever been in conversations with someone and no matter what the topic is, they always seem to find a way to get offended or bring up the past?
How about this one: no matter how much you apologize to someone for something you did, even if they “say” they’ve forgiven you, the relationship going forward just feels heavy?
That person is clinging to the past.
3. You’re still holding yourself “accountable” for not knowing better (you haven’t given yourself permission to move on)
So many of us are still holding ourselves accountable for no knowing better in the past. “How could I have let him do that to me?” “I can’t believe I let her get away with that.” “I can’t believe I let them treat me that way.” “I wish I knew better”.
If you have any one of these thoughts lingering in your mind, you are holding your past self accountable for something only your current self knows.
You need to give yourself permission to move on. You must choose to accept that you didn’t know better then but now that you do, you can make better choices.
Holding your past self accountable is like punishing your teen for something he did when he was a toddler. Sounds silly when you put it into perspective doesn’t it?
4. You haven’t forgiven yourself
I should have probably led with this one because one of the biggest reasons why you’re still hurting is because you haven’t forgiven yourself yet. You are still punishing yourself for what you “allowed” to happen to you. You are still disappointed in yourself for not being able to better protect yourself.
After the biological father of my first son left us, I hated men so much that I had sworn off men completely. It took me two-plus years to even consider dating again. And when I did start dating, I wasn’t all in. I would treat every man as if they were all the same. But mostly I didn’t trust myself to be able to find a suitable mate.
After all, it was my naïveté that led to me being a single mom right? Wrong! That was just the story I fed myself because I just couldn’t forgive my younger self. You might be doing the same thing to yourself too.
5. You haven’t forgiven the person/people that caused you pain
Following up on point number four, you must identify that one of the reasons why you’re still hurting is that you have not yet forgiven the person(s) that hurt you in your past.
Maybe it was your parents. Maybe it was your sibling. Maybe it was another family member. Maybe it was your spouse, your ex, your friend.
Whomever it was, you CANNOT completely heal until you have forgiven them.
The pain will always linger for as long as you choose to be unforgiving.
6. You’re still trying to make them feel what they made you feel (revenge)
How do you expect to ever heal and be able to move on from the past if you are still trying to get back at them? You’re still trying to make them pay for what they did to you? If you’re still wishing they would suffer for what they did to you?
Let me break the news to you, honey, you will not. For as long as you’re stuck in payback mode, you’ll continue to hurt.
I remember when I wanted to get back at my ex. I would spend hours thinking about what I’d do to him if I ever saw him again. I would look him up on social media, try to find him through mutual friends or acquaintances. I would try to get in touch with him through his family members.
This affected my ability to love someone else. It prevented me from being able to be fully present in a new relationship. It even affected my ability to be friends with men.
Don’t do that to yourself.
7. You’re still trying to show them that you don’t need them
Your bestfriend – or “ex-bestfriend” in this case – did you wrong. So now you try to replace them with a “better” best friend.
You date someone new – before you’re fully ready to move on – to prove to your ex you don’t need them anymore.
You won’t ask your family – or parents – for help because you have to prove you don’t need them.
If you are making decisions like these, going places or doing things to prove to the person that caused you pain that you don’t need them – as much as you think you’re moving on – you’re actually trapping yourself in the past.
And that’s a part of the reason why you’re still hurting.
8. You’re still waiting for them to apologize (show remorse)
I get it. They hurt you. They ruined your life. They’re the reason you’re broken right now. And I would never trivialize your pain. But sometimes you have to just put on your big girl panties and accept that people are who they are.
Sitting around, and waiting for them to apologize or show some kind of remorse – especially if they haven’t attempted to – is only burdening you. Not them.
They are not the ones hurt, you are. They have moved on with their lives, you haven’t. That is why you are still hurting.
The more you cling to the hope that they will apologize or be remorseful, the more control you are giving them over your emotions. The more you wait for them to come to their senses and realize how much hurt they’ve caused you, the more power you are giving them over you.
And the more you are trapping yourself in the pain of the past.
9. You’re still comparing their behavior with others to their behavior with you (you think it’s unfair)
Yes, they hurt you. I know.
Yes, they were awful to you. I know.
Yes, they were complete pricks when they were interacting with you and now suddenly it’s like they’ve been touched by angels and now they’re all saint-like. And that pisses you off.
And you know what sis? I completely understand that.
But dwelling on that is keeping YOU trapped in the past. It’s keeping you in the fantasy of “what could have been”. And it’s a part of the reason you are still hurting.
You also need to ask yourself why are you comparing their behavior? Would you be satisfied if they were assholes to everyone else too? If yes, why? Why would you want someone else to endure what you did? Why aren’t you glad that they are “better”? If they were pricks to everyone else too, would it make you feel better? If yes, why?
Let me answer that last one for you: because subconsciously it tells you that nothing is wrong with you. Subconsciously you are looking for validation and if they treat everyone else the same way, you see that as “they’re the problem, not me”.
10. You’re still waiting for them to repair (or attempt to repair) the relationship
This is something I know from personal experience. My mom was abusive to me growing up so needless to say, we didn’t have the best relationship. But she wasn’t always like that. The abuse actually started after the death of my brother.
My first experience of abuse with her was when I was about 10 and it got worse as the year went on. So much that it completely destroyed my self-esteem, sense of self-worth and just my sense of self in general. I attempted suicide twice as a way to “punish” her.
Before age 10 though she was the most amazing mother a girl could ask for. We were like besties.
When I began working on myself and began my healing process, through self-reflection, I realized that I was still clinging to that relationship we had before the abuse. I was still hopeful. I was still waiting for the day to come when we would go back to being besties. I was still waiting for her to actively try to “fix” what was broken.
That day would never come but that hope kept me trapped in the pain of the past. So every time I would see her being kind, sweet, and gentle towards others it would remind me of the pain. Every time I would reach out and the interaction didn’t go the way I planned it in my mind, it would remind me of the pain.
I had to release that expectation in order to heal. I had to realize that she was also hurting from her past too. I had to choose to focus on my healing instead of what could have been. That freed me from the shackles of expectations that would never be met and that allowed me to heal. Learn from my experience.
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How to begin the healing process:
Healing is not easy. But it is possible. It is something that you must make a conscious choice to do and it is something that you must work on every single day until you are fully healed. It is a process and it takes time, but if you are ready to heal, here’s how to begin the process.
1. Forgive yourself
Healing begins with forgiveness. Forgiveness is a part of growth. A part of this growth is forgiving yourself. You must forgive your younger self for not knowing better. You must understand that your younger self did the best she could have done with the knowledge she had at the time.
Even if you did know better and you actively made bad choices, you are here now. You are trying to grow now. You are trying to heal now. Forgive your past self for not making better choices and make better ones NOW.
Release yourself so you can be free to step into your happiness. Write a letter to your past self and tell her how much her choices have hurt you. But close the letter with an assurance that you will not cling to her anymore. In that letter, tell her that you are choosing to be free and that you are letting her go.
Then let go. Forgive yourself. It will take time. But it is possible if you consciously work on it. Speak positively to your present self so you can breathe life into your future self. Give yourself permission to enjoy now. Give yourself permission to be happy now. Give yourself permission to start healing now.
2. Forgive your offender
As I’ve mentioned before, forgiveness is a part of the healing process. Just as you need to forgive yourself in order to heal and truly move on, you must also forgive your offender.
What? I can never forgive him for what he did to me. I can never forgive her for what she did to me. I can never forgive them for what they did to me.
Yes, you can. There is a difference between “I CAN never” and “I WILL never”. You can forgive and begin to heal. Whether or not you will, that is a choice entirely up to you.
Forgiving someone does not absolve them of their wrong and it does not excuse them for what they did. What it does is that it frees you. It frees you from the pain of the past. It frees you from the shackles around your heart and it frees you up to grow in so many positive ways.
Contrary to popular belief, you can forgive someone without inviting or allowing them to repeat their offense. It’s called boundaries.
3. Understand that they’re actions towards you is not a reflection of your worth or value
I know from personal experience that being hurt by someone you deeply cared about can really make you question your self-worth. But you must understand that their choices are exactly that: THEIR CHOICES.
What defines your worth are YOUR actions. Not theirs.
I spent years thinking something was wrong with me because my mom didn’t accept me. Then I agonized over being abandoned by my son’s biological father. I kept thinking it’s me. Something is wrong with me.
But what was wrong, was that I didn’t see my own value. I relied on others to feel worthy. My sense of self-worth came from outside sources. I sought validation from outside.
When I began my healing process, I started to look inside. That’s where I found my worth. That’s where I found my happiness. That’s where I found healing. That’s where you will find yours.
4. You have the power of choice
Healing is a difficult and sometimes painful process. But remaining trapped in the turmoil of the past is also painful. You have the power to choose which pain you want to endure.
The former will free you and lead you to happiness. The latter will keep you in darkness and only grow more intense with time. It’s your choice.
You can choose to be happy. You can choose to forgive. You can choose to let go.
It’s not an easy choice. I know. But it is a choice you can make nonetheless. A choice you will have to make if you want to heal.
You can choose the people you allow to be an integral part of your life. You can choose what you surround yourself with (positive or negative energies).
There are some choices you don’t get to make. That’s true. For example, you don’t get to choose where you start out in life. But there are choices that you DO get to make, such as what your story will be and how your story ends.
5. Stop punishing present people for things you endured in the past
You must make a decision today to stop punishing the people in your life today for what the people in your past did to you. Your current partner should not have to suffer for what your ex did because guess what? Your ex did it. Not your current partner.
Yes, I know there is fear that maybe the Present People will do you wrong just like Past People did. And the truth is, that possibility does exists.
But again, that’s where boundaries come in. That’s where the power of choice comes in.
And in the worst-case scenario, let’s say Present People hurt you the way Past People did, do you know what you do? Return to step one on this list and work your way through.
Related read: 6 Reasons Why You Keep Hurting Years After Your Breakup
Being hurt, pain and disappointments are a natural part of life. You are not always able to avoid them. But you can always come out of a bad situation stronger and wiser than you went in.
Thanks for reading. Be sure to connect with me on Instagram and leave your thoughts in the comments below.
-Love, Lis xoxo
Love your point about forgiving ourselves and forgiving others. Each is just as important as the other! When we forgive, we open ourselves for so much personal growth 🙂
So true. And the truth is, the longer we refuse to forgive, the longer we hold on to the hurt. The longer we hold on to the hurt, the more pain we cause ourselves.
[…] 10 Reasons Why You’re Still Hurting And What To Do About It […]
What an insightful, eye opening, self reflective post. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for reading and leaving a comment. I’m glad you think so
Wow. I see so much value in your post, Alicia. I agree with all this. Realizing that your still hurting is important. Know that time heals and acknowledge your pain. Be true to yourself and it’s okay to show that you’re still hurting
Most definitely! Time does heal if you allow it. But first you have to acknowledge that you need healing
So true about someone’s value not being based on how one is treated by others. It is so crucial not to punish those around us for the pain we endured in the past, that they are not responsible for. So many great points.
Exactly! I couldn’t agree more!