I HAVE HAD ENOUGH.
Sweeping things under the rug for all these years has taught me two things:
A) Things will never get better if you do.
B) Searching for answers and speaking with other folks has shocked me to learn there are countless others suffering domestic abuse just like me!
Google the word abuse and a myriad of websites will inform you how Abuse can come in many forms, such as: physical or verbal maltreatment, injury, sexual, and so on. Even in marriage! How outrageous, but its true.
Why does it happen in a marriage? In a couple that supposedly loves each other?
Signs of physical abuse can be witnessed by many, including neighbors who overhear fights, children who hide under beds and closets, and who eventually run away, family members who turn a blind eye… And this is all bad. I pray for you as I, too, was a victim of abuse. But physical abuse. I felt the pain instantly as I was slapped for the first time as a teenager. Even more was the humiliation and pain I felt in my soul.
But what about the ones that silently suffer, with no physical evidence of torture and pain?? Never would I have imagined I’d marry someone abusive to me. Although never physically abused me, it has taken me all these years to figure out how much damage (hence abuse) he has done to me psychologically/emotionally.
Think this can’t happen? Think again.
About.com has a great article on verbal abuse. How can Someone Identify and Respond to Verbal Abuse? Found here: http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/abusiverelationships/f/verba_abuse.htm
If you can get through the end without feeling nauseous, read the hundreds of responses!!
I could’ve written any one of them….
WHAT IS VERBAL ABUSE?
Well, for starters, it involves the use of language. When words are used to mistreat someone again and again, its considered abuse.
I came to the conclusion that my marriage suffered plenty of abuse as I did some research for class once. The hidden aggression, the blaming, the accusations, etc. was all listed as signs of mental abuse. The victim however, (in this case me), will feel that they are the source of the problem! So, during all those years I stood silent at his angry outbursts, his accusations of infidelity, his subtle control and manipulation of what I could or could not say/do, I never realized I wasn’t the cause nor the problem!!
Here is what http://www.nancyscounselingcorner.com/ has to say about verbal abuse:
She also adds:
“To escape it, you can take control of your own feelings and the way you communicate without trying to control the other person.”
Well, if it were only that easy.
She writes something I have discovered, something I have always guessed but was too afraid to admit:
“Love should not hurt.”
I can finally say I have gained control of my life again. And, I will not put up with MY HUSBAND’S ABUSE any longer.
I cannot wait to get out of this mess (called marriage) with this man. He convinced me over 15 years ago that our marriage was ordained from heaven. I’d say his message came straight from hell.
I have believed every word this man has said to me. Every instruction I have followed (down to how to cook everything from scratch and be forbidden to reheat, and not speak with anyone anywhere at any time if he is not nearby, and woe to me if I spoke with the opposite sex!).
I have trembled enough times, walked on egg shells enough, and for the silliest mistakes done, and cried enough painful tears.
LOVE ≠ HURT
You know what? I discovered that love DOES NOT HAVE TO HURT.
If it hurts you, it is wrong.
Ever seen the movie the Phantom of the Opera?
Why is it that we first feel sorry for the “Angel of Music” (the disfigured musical genius that falls “in love” with a girl in the opera house) when all he did was show his love in the worst way?
He was obsessed with Christine. He idolized her. He controlled her. He also got angry at her, cursed her, and pushed her, as she discovered what he now looked like under the mask. He forced her to go with him. And was willing to cage her up, all to “love” her…. That, my friend, is exactly how I felt, but will live with it no more. I am empowered to break those chains that once bound me.
I have come to the conclusion that these verses MUST hold true in a relationship (or else):
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast,
it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil
but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
from 1st Corinthians 13:4
If this is what love is supposed to be, then what WE ARE experiencing in our abusive relationships is wrong and not TRUE LOVE.
As I get out of this once and for all, I hope to one day be an advocate for battered women, the psychologically abused ones. We DO NOT HAVE TO live with the pain inflicted from someone that “loves” us or that we attempt to love.
- Spotting the Signs of Emotional Abuse (everydayhealth.com)
- The sad truth about domestic abuse (simplysingleurbanmom.wordpress.com)
- How Do I Stop Verbal Abuse? (Pt 1) | Verbal Abuse in Relationships – Kellie Holly (pooks82.wordpress.com)
- Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes Divorce: Did He Abuse and Humiliate Her? (celebs.gather.com)