Why you are the only one who can write your formula for success.
Written by SUSAN SPARKS
I wrote something this morning for a media interview and I immediately thought to myself, “Wow, I have to write about this and I have to talk about this, like RIGHT NOW.” So many of us, like me, are serious romantics in life. We think about things like love, soulmates, and chemistry. When I fell in love with my husband at age 21, I was sure that he was my soulmate. In fact I had no doubt.
So this morning I’m writing up some notes for a media interview and I am being asked to give advice to young adults about avoiding domestic abuse and I write this: This person is not your soulmate if they are making you unhappy. This person is blocking you from meeting your soulmate if they are making you unhappy.
And I literally stopped writing and thought: Oh my gosh, this is so true! Why did I never see it like this before?
As young adults, as older adults, at any age, I think we get so caught up in meeting our soulmates that we assume that it is a one-time chance. But I think the point that we may be missing is this: how can they be our soulmates if they are making us miserable? If they are abusing us? If they are changing us into someone else? That really wouldn’t be a soulmate right? In fact, that would be a person taking time up out of your life while you could actually be happy, be living a life free of abuse, and being the person that you were actually meant to be, right?
So, who is this person that felt like your soulmate? I’ve said many times that abusers seem to have a trait in common, and that is extraordinary charisma. So, there’s no doubt in my mind now that what I felt for my then-husband was a whole lot of chemistry. He was attractive, exciting, and seemed like a great guy! And I felt that chemistry for a long time. Over time, that electric energy went from something that thrilled me in the early years to something that felt like a shock collar in the end. But, the energy never left the situation. I was trapped like a lab rat in an experiment gone wrong. Oh yes, the chemistry.
And I wouldn’t be surprised at all if you are reading this and nodding your head in agreement, right? He was so great, so exciting, so everything. Now he is scary, and larger than life, and you’re probably thinking: this energy is bigger than I am, now what the hell do I do? And you’re right. It most oftentimes is bigger than you are. But that does not mean that you are trapped, it just means that you need help getting out. That’s why the experts are here. That’s why I write what I write. Because you need to know that help is right here in front of you.
Are you in love with your abuser? Of course, you probably are. I was. We fall in love with people who seem amazing, seem like our soulmates, and we can feel the chemistry from across the room. But then, over time, things change right in front of our eyes and we are in a new situation that we never saw coming. So how could it possibly be our faults? It’s not. Not yours, not mine, it’s just not. But it does help to understand that we are not in love with our soulmates. We are in love with someone who is taking time out of our lives and who is getting in the way of us meeting someone who, one day, we will learn is our actual soulmate and will make us happier than we have ever been before. Ever.
I know you might not see that today. If someone had told me all this when I was still inside my destructive relationship, I would have felt like slamming a door in their face. In fact, when I left I swore I would never date again. Now, it’s one of my favorite things to do. Because every time I meet a new man I get to decide if he is going to bring me joy, or chemistry, or be someone that I do not want to share my time with. Then I react accordingly, and I stay or I walk away. All my decisions are mine to make now. In every aspect of my life. And you have the right to make those decisions for yourself, too.
For more information on surviving domestic abuse visit www.TheSoda-Pop.com.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse or domestic violence PLEASE call THE NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOTLINE at: 1-800-799-7233 or visit for more information, help, and to make a plan for your safety.
Susan Sparks is a twenty year victim and six year survivor of domestic abuse (SODA™). Her reporting has been seen on national network news and her writing has been featured on national media. She is an expert on YourTang.com and has been featured on The National Domestic Violence Hotline (thehotline.org). She has written a book about her experiences with domestic abuse, Sparks in Love, which she hopes will serve as both an educational and cautionary tale to everyone who reads it. Susan is currently working on three other books to further the cause and hopes to bring Sparks in Love to television this year. www.thesoda-pop.com