There are days when he holds her hand through grocery store aisles and tosses her favorite snacks into the cart. There are nights when he wraps his arm around her and nuzzles his face against her neck, leaving kisses on the skin. There are moments when their relationship seems perfect, when it seems like there aren’t any problems, when it feels like they are in paradise.
Then there are days when he tries to control her. There are nights when he drinks until his temper reaches an all-time high. There are moments when it feels like the love is gone, like she should leave, like he cannot be trusted with her heart for any longer.
Even though there are nights when she swears she is going to leave in the morning, even though there are moments when she realizes her best option is walking away because she is never going to convince him to change, she always changes her mind because the good times make her forget about the bad ones.
When everything is going well, when they are getting along, when she looks him in the eyes and sees the person she first fell in love with, her anger disappears. She has trouble staying mad at him for the way he acted earlier when he switches back into a good mood.
She forgives him every single time because he feels like two completely different people. It’s difficult for her to accept the fact that the person who kisses her forehead before bed is the same person who screams at her in the middle of the night.
She stays in such a toxic relationship because he feels like two completely different people, depending on the day. She loves one side of him. She could not imagine living without that side of him. She feels like it is the real him and the one who treats her terribly is only an imposter.
Whenever the mean side comes out, she holds onto the hope it will not last long. She hopes the person she loves will return soon. And he always does, which makes her feel like the wait is worth it.
She stays in such a toxic relationship because half of the time she is dating the love of her life and the other half of the time she is dating a monster. Instead of hating him for everything he has put her through, she focuses on the nice things he has done. She makes excuses for his bad behavior because she believes he is a good person deep down. He just has baggage. No one is perfect. Every couple argues. Those are the lies she tells herself.
She stays in such a toxic relationship because she has convinced herself that getting treated well half of the time is enough, when really, she should be out searching for someone who treats her well all the time, no matter what mood he is in or how much he has had to drink.