Hey there. So since the day I’ve met my best friend, I’ve dreamed of being in their relationship with him and his boyfriend. That chance finally opened up, but within those two years, I’ve had one relationship that was abusive and absolutely destroyed me. I want it, but I am absolutely afraid still. What should I do? They said they’re ready to wait for me and that they’ll wait for me to be 1000% and even allow me to leave if things go bad, but what’s the next step?

Therapy!!! If you’re not already, please get some help with healing after that abusive relationship.

Please know that while you might have been terribly hurt by the abusive relationship, you were not “destroyed” - you are still you, you are still valuable and worthy and awesome and completely whole, totally deserving and capable of a happy, healthy relationship. Let yourself be open to this relationship that seems like it would be really positive for you. The person who hurt you is in the past - they cannot take away anything from you in the future.

You say you’re still very afraid. Try to identify what you’re afraid of so you can talk it out with the two people you want to date. You say they will “even allow you to leave” which makes me think you’re afraid of getting trapped, of them trying to control you, of them acting like your decision to date them at one point in time indebts you to them forever. Remind yourself that the abusive person who acted like that was not normal, not healthy, and not okay. That is not how relationships are supposed to be.

The variable that created the abuse was the abuser, not you. Nothing about you invites or allows abuse. Nothing about relationships is inherently dangerous or controlling. If the two men you’re thinking about dating haven’t shown any red flags of abusive or controlling behavior, let yourself trust them. Be open with them about your fear and let them do their best to alleviate it. Let them know that you might need some extra patience, some more explicit reassurances than they may be used to giving partners - then let them give it to you.

If you want this, let yourself have it. Be gentle with yourself and accept gentleness from others. Don’t hold yourself back because you’re afraid. You deserve a happy, new, loving relationship. Good luck! <3