I read a friend's (quite properly: very personal stuff) locked post, and found myself answering (a) at too-great length for a comment, and (b) with some advice that might interest a broader audience...hence this post. The friend is (like so many have!) walking away from a destructive relationship which proved not only highly unpleasant, but a distraction from the Path. Herewith, some initiatory advice.
1. First priority: Disengage.
Let's start with the bottom line: what you're really wrestling with is something in you, not in them: specifically, the part of you which either fears this situation, finds it attractive, or both. Here's how to proceed.
Banishings work by diminishing the unwanted element in our thought: from a problem, to an annoyance, to an irrelevance, to something we literally don't think about any more. Ideally, this should be done at once, and for all, with an actual banishing, followed by resolute dismissal and our moving on with our lives. If (as everyone does, sometimes) you find this a little tricky, keep reading.
However awful the former partner, our key vulnerability is internal, not external: that is, our own tendency to feed power to the external element by our internal attitudes: fear, awe, the tendency to melodramatize, and so forth. The problem person is not Satan Incarnate, before whom all must tremble and in whose might they find themselves helpless – the problem person is a nasty little assbite without whom we are much better off, and the sooner we dismiss the whole thing and move on, the better. (The same, btw, would go for an actual "Satan Incarnate," and demons, and all other forms of projected obsession: when we stop feeding these tulpas, the mofos go away.)
Obsessive thought can be like an addiction. We need some vigilance to escape it: banishing requires that our thought dispose of the unhealthy element, not dwell on it. Again: destructive energy goes where it's fed, worshiped, obsessed over: its only backbone is hypnotic. Stop talking and thinking about it: fill your thought with what you want to see expressed, not what you're happy to be freed from. I have an exercise to help with this in my "memories" section, posted here:
2. "How could this happen?"
...can be the least helpful question of all, as it can become an excuse to feed the very obsession we're trying to escape. This happened because the world has within it a goodly number of assbites who try to persuade people to be their victims. You picked up the victim script, found something in it seductive, and played along for a time. You're done with that. Burn the script, walk away, stop thinking about it. Find better uses for your time.
"How could this happen to someone so full of light?" Easy: that's who such assbites seek out. Light-filled people look like suckers to assbites, may be slow to detect danger, are so much fun (for assbites) to hurt. This whole cheesy merry-go-round STOPS DEAD when "light" stops meaning a sort of poignant gossamer of idealistic dreams -- is instead recognized as a POWER, an actual force, within which "darkness" cannot operate. (Sooner or later our understanding of this issue grows deeper, IMO, "light" and "darkness" being only names for various forms of energy: like a paintbox includes "black" and "white" and "lots of other colors"...and when we see this, we can PAINT THE PICTURE WE LIKE in a healthy way, instead of trembling before certain colors.)
3. Distractions from the Path
There are many of them, but really only one: "I believe I'll do this destructive thing for a while, rather than the healthy one" (or, as a Thelemite would see it, "I believe I'll indulge this thing here for a bit, rather than find and perform my True Will"). The usual hook is ego-gratification: the crappy thing somehow makes us feel intense, important, alive. It is RIGHT to feel intense, important, and alive, but NOT in a way likely to hurt us, yes? – only we'll never find the healthy intensity until we get its unhealthy counterfeit out of the way.
4. "Damaged goods."
You are not damaged goods: NOBODY is damaged goods: people just let themselves get distracted, pick the wrong colors, paint a picture they don't like. Lose all of these victim images: you are not "picking up the pieces," your life is not "shattered," you are not "broken": you just let yourself get distracted. It's no biggie, it happens all the time, and we can walk away from it, the sooner the better.
Like the old R.E.M. song says, "everybody hurts," and sooner or later most of us take one or more really hard punches in the chops. There are only two ways people can react to such situations: either they sink repeatedly into the suffering of it like a warm bath, like a guilty pleasure, or sooner or later they say, Okay, that's it, time to move on – and, having said it, proceed to make good on that resolve.
I'm not minimizing the difficulty of any of this, nor speaking in airy theory: been there, done that, remember the scars. But I also learned from such valuable initiatory experiences the lesson that the sooner I learned to hate my own slavery, and the more deeply I came to hate it, the sooner I moved from being a slave to being a King.
Rejoice, O King! Through just such bitter waters waded all who ascended the throne before you. :D
Yours in Love and Freedom,
93 93/93 – AJ