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4/14 Interactive Board: Codependent Partners

3/23 Interactive Board: He's Changing... I'm Not...

3/1 Interactive Board: D/s Lifestyle

1/14 Interactive Board: My Purrrfect Husband

12/12 Interactive Board: What if He Could Have Changed?

10/23 Interactive Board: Quandary Revisited

8/24 Interactive Board: Quandary! What's Going On?

7/20: Dr. Irene on cognitive behavior therapy and mindfulness

6/12 Interactive Board: Unintentional Abuse

11/7 Interactive Board: Is This Abusive?

12/29 Interactive Board: There Goes the Wife...

11/4 Interactive Board: A New Me!

10/8 Interactive Board: Seeming Impossibility

9/8 Interactive Board: My Ex MisTreats Our Son

5/1 Interactive Board: I feel Dead - Towards Him

4/26 Interactive Board: Why is This So Hard?

4/19 Interactive Board: I Lost My Love...

4/7 Interactive Board: Too Guilty!

Doc@DrIrene.com

Comments for Journey

Comments for Journey

Material posted here is intended for educational purposes only, and must not be considered a substitute for informed advice from your own health care provider.

Courtesy of Dr. Irene Matiatos   Copyrightę 1998-2001. The material on this website may be distributed freely for non-commercial or educational purposes provided that author credit is given. For commercial distribution, please contact the author at Doc@drirene.com

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B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, December 27, 2000

S1

Sadheart, I agree with Dr Irene, lets call you courageousHeart. I know what you mean, my daughter is now 13 and I also feel like I missed so much. Looking back I realize he harrassed me when I nursed her, he wanted to know when I was gonna stop cause it was gross. The best times for us was when he had me all to himself, he would suggest family stuff, but it always turned out stressful for me, my daughter would misbehave and I would get all tense and angry with both of them, he would antagonize her until she would cry. Well I only left 3 months ago and she is a totally different child. I do have to say though he is working on himself and hopefully it will last. Stay strong and true to yourself. Nuts

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, December 27, 2000

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, December 28, 2000

S1

I am Sadheart for now, but yes, I am becoming CourageousHeart. I am Sadheart because this is not what I wanted from my marriage or my life at this point. My heart is also sad for my son who at 6 does not understand why Mommy and Daddy can't work out their problems. I also fear his actions when we are separated. Last time there were suicide threats, constant harassment, he was unable to be adult enough to parent his child during visitation. I have to be strong and try to survive the "Crazy-time" that is going to come. (My therapist will definitely earn her fee I am sure ;)

Nuts,

Boy do I understand the fun of family time! Whenever my H, son and I would go out to do something it always ended up with him silently angry and me on edge, usually taking it out on my poor son. It became very uncomfortable and too much energy to do "fun family time".

Sadheart, working on CourageousHeart.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, December 29, 2000

S1

Very inspiring. I am 33 years old also and have considered leaving my abusive husband many times. My age scares me, and I am glad to see that I am not the only one. Cheers.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, December 30, 2000

S1

I have a friend who is struggling with some verbal abuse issues stemming from her husband's behavior. She is 58 and has been married for nearly 30 years. During the last couple of years, she has gone through therapy and made changes to become more assertive, set boundaries, etc. She wonders why she spent so much time in this type of situation, but then she loves her husband and raised a son with him. The abuse-related problem with the husband is sometimes so vague. He has a generous and loving heart, but then he occasionally flares up at some seemingly insignifcant incident or puts her down. Lately, he has been tempering this a bit with a kind of trying to be understanding. She thinks it may be the result of her assertivness and setting up boundaries. But he does slip and sometimes enough to make her reconsider the marriage. A case in point: they were traveling by air and after arriving at the airport, he was anxious to make the phone call to the person who would pick them up, but she wanted to stop and purchase a hostess gift from a candy store that was on the way. He reacted angrily and told her the bags were heavy. She asked that he give her bag back. He reacted angrily and loudly in the middle of the airport terminal as he threw the bag at her feet. She was so humiliated, she picked up the bag without looking at anyone and walked to the nearest candy store. This incident gave her great distress. She wonders if another incident like this could be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, December 30, 2000

S1

I have a friend who is struggling with some verbal abuse issues stemming from her husband's behavior. She is 58 and has been married for nearly 30 years. During the last couple of years, she has gone through therapy and made changes to become more assertive, set boundaries, etc. She wonders why she spent so much time in this type of situation, but then she loves her husband and raised a son with him. The abuse-related problem with the husband is sometimes so vague. He has a generous and loving heart, but then he occasionally flares up at some seemingly insignifcant incident or puts her down. Lately, he has been tempering this a bit with a kind of trying to be understanding. She thinks it may be the result of her assertivness and setting up boundaries. But he does slip and sometimes enough to make her reconsider the marriage. A case in point: they were traveling by air and after arriving at the airport, he was anxious to make the phone call to the person who would pick them up, but she wanted to stop and purchase a hostess gift from a candy store that was on the way. He reacted angrily and told her the bags were heavy. She asked that he give her bag back. He reacted angrily and loudly in the middle of the airport terminal as he threw the bag at her feet. She was so humiliated, she picked up the bag without looking at anyone and walked to the nearest candy store. This incident gave her great distress. She wonders if another incident like this could be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, January 01, 2001

S1

I understand where you are being there myself --only for 20 years

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, January 01, 2001

S1

I AM IN THE PROCESS OF LEAVING A VERBUALLY ABUSIVE HUSBAND OF 7 YRS ALSO. I DID THE SAME THING YOU DID, ALWAYS TRIED TO FIGURE OUT WHY HE WAS SO ANGRY. OF COURSE TO HIM, IT WAS ALWAYS SOMETHING I DID. I AM FINALLY TO THE POINT WHERE I JUST DON'T GIVE A DAMN WHY HE IS MAD, I JUST HAVE TO GET AWAY FROM HIM OR BECOME HIM!!! I CAN FEEL MYSELF BEING JUST LIKE HIM IN SO MANY WAYS, EVEN MY 6 YR OLD ALREADY HAS HIS ATTITUDE AND TEMPER. MY 3 YR OLD SAID TO ME TODAY-"MOMMY, DADDY SAID IF I TOUCHED HIS THINGS AGAIN, HE WOULD BREAK MY FINGERS, HE IS MEAN ISN'T HE?" HOW DO YOU THINK I FELT? ABOUT AN INCH TALL!!! I USED TO SAY I STAY FOR THE KIDS, NOW I SAY I AM LEAVING FOR THE KIDS AND ME!!!! YOUR A STRONG PERSON, YOU HAVE PROVED THAT,,JUST DON'T GIVE UP, KEEP GOING, GOD WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU AND YOUR SON!! GOOD LUCK!! WILLIAMSTeeka@aol.com

Shurll

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, January 03, 2001

S1

to read your story makes me so sad, I am living the life you are so brave to be leaving. I hope one day i find the strength and courage you have.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, January 05, 2001

S1

I had a similiar experience sadheart, but I have not made the strides you have made.I look forward to the day. courageless

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, January 05, 2001

S1

Dear Sadheart, I wish that I had your courage. I an going through all that you have wrote about. I really can't understand and am really tired of trying to understand why he is the way he is. I'm on the verge of a nervous breakdown and I don't know what to do. I don't have the resources to leave and I am afraid all of the time. Maybe I will benefit from your courage. Thank you for sharing! jlveness@hotmail.com

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, January 05, 2001

S1

I agree! Courageous is a much better fitting name for you! I am in a very similar situation, unfortunately, however, I am on my way out! It took me 10 years of marriage, and 2 physical episodes of abuse, coupled with the verbal, psychological, and anger of myself and others before I began to even question the relationship - you know, whether it was NORMAL or NOT! I wish you lots of courage, good thoughts and peace in your new life! You did the right thing for yourself AND for your son. Do not EVER feel the need to explain your actions or your decission to others . . . I found it's a feeling that you and you alone will be able to understand and live with. It will NEVER matter what others think. If it is something that you feel in your heart is good, than it usually is. Even if it makes you feel a litle sad, that's OK. Have a Wonderful New Year! Good for YOU!!! A friend :>)

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, January 07, 2001

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 09, 2001

S1

Your story sounds just like the one I live now. How do you find the strength?

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 09, 2001

S1

Sadheart; thank you for posting - I seem to be living the same kind of life! Have spent far too much time trying to stop him from being angry all the time, when it is not my problem - it is HIS! Now I am spending time working on me and changing the way I respond to him and examining my own reactions - Why am I scard - where did it come from??? Who am I still trying to please after all of these years - mother, father??? time to learn how to give myself approval and strokes for doing things right and not listening to what he has to say about what I do. time to change your name, you have done too much work to keep sadheart. How about happyheart??? Maybe too soon - but something to think about. I have read your posts on the message boards and you have helped me a lot - thank you! Kathy

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, January 10, 2001

S1

I would definitely use the word "Courageous" although I can understand the feeling of sadness as well and I don't think we need to REPLACE it with anything. I am going through a grieving process after 19 years of marriage to an abuser and I have to tell you it takes a ton of courage to recognize and live with the sadness! I had tears in my eyes while reading your letter. Particularly I appreciate your sharing the story about your brother. My family lives many miles away except for one sister. Wouldn't you know it that this is the sister that has been the one I most learned the patterns I now have with my spouse? I find that I cannot change for one person and remain the same old "dormat" to another. Initially I had hoped that I could get through this by depending on my sister. Not so, she stood up for my husband!!!!!! I couldn't believe it! At the same time she would tell me how welcome I was to stay with her anytime I needed help, etc. etc. Srry to keep going on like this but I can't seem to stop. It is worth it even though it is painful and I'm sure I'll run into many more people who "click' with me in this dysfunctional way. I can and will learn to deal with these people but sometimes I just need to separate from them, too. Good luck and thank you for your comments.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, January 10, 2001

S1

Sadheart- I pray you read this. You just told my story. I mean it's scary. I grew up with an abusive older brother. Everything I did was wrong. He was in complete control, and let me know with verbal and physical abuse. in his teens he got into alcohol, which I think for him was an escape from all his anxiety and pain (we come from divorce-enough said). I was physically beaten and broken for years, and (should I say allowed myself to be?) verbally abused by him for several more. But he had broken my heart very early on. Broken my trust in people. My parents?- they still say I should have told someone. Basically, they are saying it was my fault. I have a question- if all a five year old knows is getting beaten up, who the heck is he supposed to tell? How the heck is he supposed to know that life could possibly be different? All he's known is family strife, pain, and weak willed parents, and stepparents who were seemingly stronger willed, but enmeshed in their own situations. I didn't have a chance. I have finally learned to stop blaming myself for my too often wretched childhood. I blamed myself for everything. Unless I was the best at everything, I was nothing. I thought I was crap unless I had someone to love me. I hated myself all through my teen years, I mean really hated myself. I didn't think a girl would ever want to be with me. When I finally "got" a girlfriend, it was a disaster. I was completely codependent, she was completely messed up, I was constantly hurt and confused, or else ecstatic, because my whole life goal, to be loved by someone, I thought had been accomplished. When she broke with me (I never would have broken up with her, I probably would have stayed with her for years and become a verbal (physical?) abuser myself, so she did me a favor) I slumped into a horrible, horrible depression. I went through years of therapy, with many different therapists, but could never "figure out" what was wrong. My relationships were completely codependent. Nothing worked at all. Nothing ever worked. Everything I did, every move, every action, was meant to impress someone, to show I was worthy, to prove that I was big and powerful and smarter and more righteous than everyone around me. Everything I did stemmed from the horror of my powerlessness over my parents not liking each other and my brother hitting me really hard for years, and yelling at me, and having all sorts of weird rules for me to follow. I got really, really weird. I would write long papers for school, and never hand them in, i was in such terror. Or i just wouldn't write the papers at all, just to see if the teacher would spare me from what I imagined what was going to happen. All I knew was abuse. It has been so much therapy, hundreds of self-help books, hundreds of hours of praying, and maybe even a few cool people along the way who wanted to help this lost sheep in the desert. My god, my whole life has basically been a lie. Such a lie, that I don't even have the tools to pick up the pieces. All I have are the old instincts. That is all i have. And the few glimmers of hope that occur to me each do. I try to keep busy now, read the website, and write ferociously. Sometimes I find that writing is my only outlet. I just want to write and write and write, because noone can hurt me when I'm writing. I don't really live in hope of anything, because in my case, hope is false, it is a delusion. I wouldn't even say I'm living right now, just existing. I have bottomed out, as they say in AA terminology. But I have to keep writing. It is the one thing I enjoy. I enjoy playing the piano somewhat, but that is still imbued with the pain of having to live up to someone's demanding standards for me. It is only as I type, now, that I feel the most fully alive. It is probably a waste of time for anyone to read this, because i am writing it for me. I am embarassed even to be posting it, because I am posting it for me. I am going to be posting anonymously, because I am too embarassed that anyone should know me, even my name. After I post this, I will nervously read it several times, and hope somebody responds to it positively so that I get my craved for validation. And this is me after years of therapy, after years of medication, after years of healing. This is really, really hard. Change takes years, it can take decades. I am truly happy for people for whom, once they are three months divorced, are "living a whole new life", but I have no one to get divorced from, all I have is myself, and that doesn't always feel so great. What really sucks is that I am not a verbal abuser, I'm just not, and yet I have the same fears that Dr. Irene describes that abusers have, so I wonder if I am a verbal abuser after all. It just all seems so unfair, and I wonder how easy it is to make scapegoats of people, and I wonder if abusers are the ones who got the most screwed as children. Maybe they were beaten so badly, screamed at so badly, that they have lost all shreds of self. Maybe they live in absolute terror. Maybe they need to be treated as sick people, and not demonized as evil people, because when we demonize, do not we ourselves become the abusers? Something to think about- what's past is past, we've all been through it, and blame is blame, when you get to the nitty gritty. My brother felt perfectly justified in beating me, when I was in "victim" mode, I felt perfectly justified in blaming the entire world, and boy did I let my mother, my father, my brother, know it! But I was no different from my brother in kind, only in degree, and in my self-righteousness. Ultimately, I have to forgive, I have to do it for me, for noone else. I have to forgive my brother, otherwise his previous actions will have power over me for the rest of my life. I am trying, I am trying really hard, but it is so hard. The instinct is to answer anger with anger, "an eye for an eye". So here I am. This is my story, I don't know if anyone will read it, but I do care what people read it and I do care what people think. But I also think I represent a larger movement, I have to, a movement toward taking control of myself, and I truly hope that everyone heads in this direction. I believe it is the only hope for humanity, I truly do. Otherwise we will be chasing our tails forever, and will never become part of any larger plan which may be beckoning us. For all of us- this site is a large part of the plan, and not just a means to an end. It has become a community in and of itself, and could serve as a model for future community making. It is not just about our skilled and wonderful Dr. Irene anymore. It is far, far larger than that. I hope you all understand.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, January 11, 2001

S1

Hi all!

Well, my H. moved out the weekend after NewYears. It was of course sad in a way, but the house seems so much lighter, the air is more breathable! I am taking it one day at a time, taking care of my son and enjoying the peace.

Someone in the posts asked me how I got the courage to leave. Years of therapy and self-introspection. Also, I will share a visualization that my therapist had me do:

She got me into a very relaxed state (almost self-hypnosis)...She had me visualize myself and my husband sitting in the place where we usually had our "discussions" (sitting on the couch, me facing him, him facing the TV). She told me to visualize him reaching over, picking up the remote, turning OFF the TV and turning to look me straight in the eyes. She had me picture him saying "Sadheart, I will NEVER love you." For some reason, it seemed to finally cement that in my mind and allowed me to let go. For seven years I clung to the hope that Somehow, someway, I could get him to love me. That little girl inside that so desparately wanted some shred of love was finally able to let go.

To the last poster. I have forgiven my parents in the sense that they did the best they could with what they knew. That is not to say that there are not days that I don't wonder "WHY" did they have me if I was to be treated that way. I do not forgive my brother, however. Mostly because he continues to abuse. He has 2 beautiful daughters and a wife all have suffered from his insanity. He continues to run through life hurting people and sucking the life out of anyone he can. When I go *home* to visit, I ask my mother to please not have my brother to the house. She still does not respect my wishes. Last time I saw him he threatened to kill me, and also tried to woo my little boy with money and gifts. YUCK!

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, January 12, 2001

S1

"To the last poster. I have forgiven my parents in the sense that they did the best they could with what they knew. That is not to say that there are not days that I don't wonder "WHY" did they have me if I was to be treated that way. I do not forgive my brother, however. Mostly because he continues to abuse. He has 2 beautiful daughters and a wife all have suffered from his insanity. He continues to run through life hurting people and sucking the life out of anyone he can. When I go *home* to visit, I ask my mother to please not have my brother to the house. She still does not respect my wishes. Last time I saw him he threatened to kill me, and also tried to woo my little boy with money and gifts. YUCK!"

Dear Sadheart,

This is the last poster, call me Scared. My brother is getting married this, I am going to be the best man. He really seems to have changed, but I am still afraid for his children. I feel like, how can I trust him after what he did to me? I am afraid that he is going to make the same mistakes my parents made, and not do things out of love, but out of duty, and then steam under the collar. But what can I do? He really seems to have changed. Now I have to learn how to trust. It sounds like your brother has never changed his ways. I couldn't imagine my brother threatening to kill me now. We'd probably have a fight- is this all different because I'm a guy? I admire your bravery in laying your ground rules with your parents, it sounds like you are making the best of a truly difficult situation. I know what you mean about not changing your nickname-sometimes you have to be sad. What has been hardest for me is enduring the existential loneliness the last few months, realizing that I truly have to rely on myself, that I can't lose myself in anyone else, or allow someone else to lose themselves in me, that leads to disaster. I guess I came off a little weird in my last post, but I am still agonizing over the fact that I have verbal abuser potential in me, potential if not reality. The way Dr. Irene describes the insecurities of verbal abusers, I fit a lot of those. The only difference is that I check myself- because I realize how much my comments would hurt people. The scary thing is that I have the instincts there, to verbally abuse. I feel like I have this loaded gun inside of me, and I have to keep unloading it. I just wish I were "normal", a person who just went out with friends, and had a good time. But that's not me. I have become very narcississtic over the years, concerned only with me. What an awful realization. I have put my faith in Jesus Christ- basically because I am all wrong, I think all wrong. I don't go to church or anything like that, but I try to say the Lord's Prayer (our father, etc.) to myself quite a bit. Then I'm like, so are people who don't follow Christ wrong? Then that leads to another debate. It's just so hard, being tolerant yet having my own faith at the same time. I guess since my mother remarried a Jew, and my father a Catholic, and I was initially raised Protestant Episcopalian accounts for most of my confusion. I have been reading the Koran recently, and I feel like that book is incredible, but so many people do horrible things who are supposedly following that book. It's all so confusing. I've also been reading the Bhagavad Gita, a Hindu text, and drawing courage from that. I just can't label myself. I find truth in so many religions, and I can't choose one tradition. I feel like God expresses himself everywhere, but this idea probably makes me very unpopular amongst people, I guess. I just don't know. I just think people ought to be accepting. But if they're not, so what? Should that affect my reality? Do I really need to go there? Jesus says, "Blessed are you when people persecute you for my sake". So I guess people don't have to be accepting, it's their choice. And everytime I am insulted, I am actually blessed. Very confusing. I am not quite sure how to deal with the whole situation. I don't want to be a priest or anything like that, but I would like for life to make sense, for once. Does anyone who reads this happen to have any advice for me? What sort of job should someone like me get? How should I live my life? Do people think I'm just obsessive about religion? Do people think i have deep insecurities, that I am unaware of? Am I answering my own questions? Help!

Confused

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, January 14, 2001

S1

SADHEART, GOOD FOR YOU. I ALSO HAVE LIVED ALL MY LIFE WITH ABUSE STARTING WITH MY DAD,THEN MY HUSBAND.I WISH THAT MY SELF ESTEEM WAS NOT SO LOW THAT I COULD HAVE GOTTEN OUT EARLIER,BEFORE I BECAME WORSE,BUT STAYED TRYING TO MAKE MY FAMILY WORK.NO MATTER WHAT I DID IT WAS NOT ENOUGH,HE EVEN QUIT HIS JOB,THAT LEFT ME TO SUPPORT HIM, KIDS,& HOUSE PAYMENTS.WELL I DID FOR A YEAR,THEN IT GOT WORSE.HE HIT ME IN MY FACE & BROKE 3 BONES. I'M STILL TRYING TO GET OVER IT A YEAR LATER.BUT MY KIDS & I ARE JUST FINE,IT TOOK ALOT OF SOUL SEARCHING TO FIGURE OUT THAT I AM GOOD ENOUGH.NOBODY DESERVES THAT KIND OF ABUSE.SO I WOULD LIKE TO TELL WHOEVER READS THIS,YOU MAY NOT THINK YOU HAVE THE COURAGE OR STRENGTH TO LEAVE, BUT YOU DO.JUST BE STRONG,HOLD YOUR HEAD UP.MOST OF ALL DONT LET THEM GET YOU DOWN ITS JUST WORDS,YOU DONT HAVE TO BELIEVE THEM,I GUESS I HAD TO GO THROUGH ALL THAT TO BE THE STRONG PERSON THAT I AM.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 16, 2001

S1

God Bless YOU!!!!!

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, January 22, 2001

S1

I am in an abusive relationship now. It seems the uglier my husband is to me the more that I love him. I still look at him and feel the love that I felt when I married him. But I no longer have the respect or trust that is needed to maintain a relationship. Right now I am trying to get up the nerve to divorce him. I feel stronger after reading your couragouse story. Please pray for me.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

i am just beginning to learn about codependency-- although I have degrees in psychology, what I am learning is that I myself am codependent and have been in verbally and emotionally abusive relationships since I was 16. I now have 4 children and am in the worst situation that I can imagine in this marriage -- yet in my heart for so many years I believed I was just selfish for wanting the "abuse" to end and just to be loved.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

i am just beginning to learn about codependency-- although I have degrees in psychology, what I am learning is that I myself am codependent and have been in verbally and emotionally abusive relationships since I was 16. I now have 4 children and am in the worst situation that I can imagine in this marriage -- yet in my heart for so many years I believed I was just selfish for wanting the "abuse" to end and just to be loved.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

i am just beginning to learn about codependency-- although I have degrees in psychology, what I am learning is that I myself am codependent and have been in verbally and emotionally abusive relationships since I was 16. I now have 4 children and am in the worst situation that I can imagine in this marriage -- yet in my heart for so many years I believed I was just selfish for wanting the "abuse" to end and just to be loved.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

i am just beginning to learn about codependency-- although I have degrees in psychology, what I am learning is that I myself am codependent and have been in verbally and emotionally abusive relationships since I was 16. I now have 4 children and am in the worst situation that I can imagine in this marriage -- yet in my heart for so many years I believed I was just selfish for wanting the "abuse" to end and just to be loved.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

I see myself in your story-I don't know how old your son is, but it is easier to make that break when they are younger. There is a point where children are in the middle years and it is hard to leave for one reason or another. It will become easier again when the children are older, because they see what is going on. The negative part of that is that the control oftentimes extends to the children, especially as they enter the teenage years. Hang in there-keep on track in your journey.-twenty years

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

i am just beginning to learn about codependency-- although I have degrees in psychology, what I am learning is that I myself am codependent and have been in verbally and emotionally abusive relationships since I was 16. I now have 4 children and am in the worst situation that I can imagine in this marriage -- yet in my heart for so many years I believed I was just selfish for wanting the "abuse" to end and just to be loved. (10 minutes later) I was just attacked verbally and severely by my much larger stepdaughter who used to punch me. i need to decide it's time to get out with my small baby but I feel I need to make sure that it's not all my fault. i have too much fear to leave and need to have the courage thta you have exhibited to go to counseling and reveal the very bizarre stuff that has been occurring in this home. thanks for sharing your experience and keep pushing forward to growth and healing sweetie.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

S1

I have a copy of Dr. Irene's "Take your power:Tips for the Abused" taped on the wall at my desk, also in my purse and in my nightstand. It helps immensely when you feel yourself slipping into old habits. Remember that your son will tend to be like his father if you keep allowing him to mistreat you. You deserve much better than you've had. Your son needs to see a better role model.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, January 26, 2001

S1

Please do EMDR therapy. It will be a positive reinforcement that wil empower you and enable you to stop the voices and to never let the past happen again in another relationship. Willie (female)

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, January 28, 2001

S1

Thank you for this story, I'm searching for a way out, I can't figure out why I stay. You're so strong. I feel so weak.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, January 31, 2001

S1

Couragegeous heart- Keep speaking out as part of your road to recovery! Reading your story has helped me. I am the poster girl for "codependency". haha :) You are a brave woman. You can say that you tried. Breaking the cycle is the best thing you can do for your child. Tell yourself everyday that you are helping others by sharing your pain. Thank you! Your son is worth it! I know.. breaking the cycle of abuse is very difficult. Though every child should love each parent that doesn't mean that they have to act like them. You are showing your son that you truly love him! Good luck and keep your head up. Start to Live & love life again. YOu have "online" friends! DoNA (do not abdicate)

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, February 01, 2001

S1

Good for you. If it feels good to you, then you know you are on the right track. It is scary to doubt yourself, I do sometimes too. I just "lost" my whole family because I chose to get out of the negative abusive dysfunctional family cycle. It took years and a lot of courage and every day I feel stronger. I guess it took having a son to see them for the vultures they really are. I am looking forward to my new life. Look forward to yours too.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, February 03, 2001

S1

Yeah, change the name, girlfriend. I escaped from my verbally abusive husband of 22 years. It's been 5 months of freedom now, and I can't hardly believe how good it feels to feel so good after feeling so bad for so long.

I've used the screen name "hopeful" for several years, because I wanted to be hopeful, even though I wasn't. Now I am hopeful . You can have my old name if you want. I think I'm moving on to "successful."

Successful, formerly known as Hopeful.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, February 03, 2001

S1

Hi my name is Sheri. your story brang tears to my eyes. sound just like my marrage, my Husband has been sober for 7 years, and is a dry drunk, we have a son who is now 3. I feel I cant do anything right. I cater to him thinking it makes him happy, but he still rages at me, not ever thinking how good i am to him. he says terrible things to me That leaves me hurt, scared and scared for weeks, yet he never thinks about the fact that his wife who he hurt so badly has to take care of his son. It is hard to do when all i can do is cry and try not to be to depresed, so i can enjoy him. DAM That hurts me!!! I want him to stop!! why cant he see what he is doing to me and taking from our son??? I to can not go any whre with out some thing happing while iam gone, He blames me for all the things that my 15 year old son does on me ANYTHING! and his 17 daughter can tell him FUC- YOU to his face and he does nothing. yet when he is mad at me for some thing that i have ni idea what it is he will tell me not to talk to him or elce, and if i do he says mean things to me. i cry in front of him and our son because i hurt so much YET he Wont even look at me or say any thing. I dont know what to do, Iam afraid to even try to leave him He will do some thing crazy or hurt me. I know it rong to think he will change and see what he is doing to me and tell me he loves me, but i cant help to hope. I pray all the time! Some times I think about dieing. Sincerly Lost Sheri OURHOMER@aol.com

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Date: Sunday, February 04, 2001

S1

SadHeart/CautiousHeart here! It is Feb 4th, 2001. It has been one month since he moved out.

I cannot believe how different my life is. When I drive up the street at night on my way home from work, I no longer get that SICK feeling because his truck is in the drive. I know when I walk in, it will be peaceful...I may be stressed and have 50 things to do, but it is still easier.

My son is sad and confused when he gets home from dads. He says hurtful thing to me, like "Your stupid, I don't love you." I just hug him and hold him and tell him, "But mommy will ALWAYS love you."

I know it hurts my son to say these things to me, but at least he feels safe enough TO say them! He is not safe expressing things with Dad. He knows his dads love is fragile. And a day later it is like he has never said it and he is back to normal.

To all who have written that I am so brave. Remember, it has taken me YEARS of therapy to realize that the way I was living is NOT how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. It took years of daily affirmations for me to BELIEVE that I was truely worth MORE than this.

Saying the words, "I WANT A DIVORCE" were the hardest, most painful things I had ever said. I truely felt terrified and that I was going to DIE if I said them. So, I wrote letters to myself about how I felt. I wrote journals about how I was being treated and how awful I felt. I did this for 3 years. I read and read those journal. If I was reading someone ELSES journals that said those things, I would have wondered WHY didn't they leave? I finally got to the point where I cared about mySELF enough to listen to my own advice.

Please, care about yourSelves!! Hugs to those who need them!

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Date: Sunday, February 11, 2001

S1

Dear sadheart you have changed.. You are Courageous heart and can hold your head up high. You did what you could and in the end, you did what you had to. The voices will fade in time and the new thoughts and felings will be good and strong. I hope yu find the love you deserve. Jay

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Date: Wednesday, February 14, 2001

S1

Dear CourageousHeart! I know your feelingsi to live in a very verbal abusive marriage.I have 4 girls and have been married 19 yrs.I`m tired! I know wha you are saying ..Everything is always my fault..if it rains its my fault... hope u the best you deserve it! :)

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Date: Saturday, February 17, 2001

S1

Dear Sadheart, Thankyou for taking the time to share. I am wondering aimlously on the net. I found out on Valentine's Day that again my husband of 24 years is having another affair. We to have gone to numerous years of counceling. Yesterday in his fit of rage he told me things would never change because I don't change. I only want him to change. I was starting to believe that. Then I read this and you reminded me of what my councelor and numerous other have told me. I can't change him. Thank you for your help.

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Date: Monday, February 19, 2001

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, February 19, 2001

S1

Hi There Heart! I am really excited for you and your new life. Your family (you and your son) will now be able to relax and enjoy each others company without walking on egg shells. Not to mention the Awesome Life Lesson you are teaching your son: If someone is treating you badly walk away and make friends with people that will treat you well! Congrats on stopping the cycle of abuse! Light and Love!!!

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Date: Wednesday, February 21, 2001

S1

Sadheart,

Thanks for sharing your story, I think it is always easier to put things into perspective when you can relate to someone else's story. I can relate to parts of your story (especially the part about making him mad and then thinking it is my fault), however I am not married nor do I live with the person I have been with for almost 4 years. I was wondering if you could tell me what it was like prior to you getting married, what were some signs that you probably realize now, but didn't then. ALL of my friends and family want me to completely leave him, but I am having a difficult time doing this. Do you have any suggestions and once again what was it like before you got married?

Thanks, Samantha

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Date: Thursday, February 22, 2001

S1

I applaud you and want to be as strong as you, but, I am still working through it all and have not decided that leaving is the best for me. I have been married for 17 years, ten of which have been up and down with verbal abuse. I didn't even know what verbal abuse was until two years ago, after already enduring abuse for eight years, ignorantly. I did not come from a home of abuse or strong words, yelling, accusing, name calling, belittling or silence sooooo I thought is was ME that caused my husband to be so angry and be so abusive. I have used every thing I have read about to try to reteach him how to treat me---to learn myself how to react to him so that he will know that I WILL NOT STAND FOR IT? But it has been alot of work. I have to admit that he has stopped most of the abuse that he was doing, just because I won't let him anymore, but again, it has taken alot of work on my part. I am now at a cross roads and not sure what to do. He IS getting better. I am hoping that he will return to the man I met and originally married, but I know that he needs to still work out some issues that have brought him to this point. I can't help him, he has to want to help himself to be a better person. BUT the biggest thing is that I don't feel connected anymore. I am trying, but since I am not connected to his control anymore, I have disconnected from him, I think all the way. I need to feel his spirit; I so not. I still only receive his ego remarks, although tempered. I have communicated this to him and hope that he continues to listen, BUT will I be there in my heart if he does come all the way around. He has done a lot of damage to my soul. I have been rebuilding it for quite some time, which has also taken great effort. A part of me feels the need to let go even though he has tried to be nice, but the other side of me feels I have and do deserve better, even better than his "better" could ever be. I guess I'm just troubled about being on my own and giving up on something I have been working so hard on. I am afraid I will regret leaving. Fear pushes or henders our growth----I just don't know what to do? Things are better, but they still don't feel right??? But who am I to know what is right????? FROM "STILL HANGING ON, TBT".

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Date: Monday, February 26, 2001

S1

Dear Sadheart, I just came to the internet fo the first time, I can't believe that I found somebody else that has had the exact feelings as I do, I also am married to an alcoholic, verbally abusive man, I don't have children but I always try to keep my dogs from barking, so he will not get angry, when they bark, my stomach actually turns, I get so upset, I blame myself because they bark! Unbelievable! But I still keep doing it over and over again. I cannot belive that I am trying t control an every day occurrance as NOISE, but I keep on doing it. At least you are young enough to startover again, I, myself an 51 years old, and I am so depressed , devastated and scared to death, God bless you sadheart, Susan brokenhearted

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Date: Monday, February 26, 2001

S1

Dear Sadheart, I just came to the internet fo the first time, I can't believe that I found somebody else that has had the exact feelings as I do, I also am married to an alcoholic, verbally abusive man, I don't have children but I always try to keep my dogs from barking, so he will not get angry, when they bark, my stomach actually turns, I get so upset, I blame myself because they bark! Unbelievable! But I still keep doing it over and over again. I cannot belive that I am trying t control an every day occurrance as NOISE, but I keep on doing it. At least you are young enough to startover again, I, myself an 51 years old, and I am so depressed , devastated and scared to death, God bless you sadheart, Susan brokenhearted

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Date: Monday, February 26, 2001

S1

Dear Sadheart, I just came to the internet fo the first time, I can't believe that I found somebody else that has had the exact feelings as I do, I also am married to an alcoholic, verbally abusive man, I don't have children but I always try to keep my dogs from barking, so he will not get angry, when they bark, my stomach actually turns, I get so upset, I blame myself because they bark! Unbelievable! But I still keep doing it over and over again. I cannot belive that I am trying t control an every day occurrance as NOISE, but I keep on doing it. At least you are young enough to startover again, I, myself an 51 years old, and I am so depressed , devastated and scared to death, God bless you sadheart, Susan brokenhearted

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Date: Thursday, June 06, 2002

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, June 06, 2002

S1

June 6, 2002

I have been married for 5yrs seperated by 1yr divorced by 2ys. We both are from Illinois, we have very sucessful careers, mines in Medicine (insurance for him and his daughter as well myself) his career enables us to have a wonderful enviorment with a lovely place to live w/o costing the average high price in rent. What seemed a beautiful life turned , adultry, no respect and other s..women and one particular male becme interest in myself.. Now I am living with this man whom says loves me, he is jobless, with 3 strikes on his DMV not in any college and makes his living right now by placing upholrty and carpet by referrals f others.. His hair now grown out sholder lenght, with wavy hair..he keeps braided.. and hopes we can get married.

My X husband, states the last person he tried to be with seemed aloof.. and was not loving toward his female daughter age 10.This story has so many spins you would become dizzy..We have since almost lost our place, employment and vechical.. all in which we still have .. We have been seeing one another and he was talking an engagement ring and starting over..We were last seen.. driving down the Northern california highway.. smiling!

I feel insecure being with this person now.. yes because he has no steady .. Atlas, since My X has verbalized his apologies and interference of half sisters being invited over and only speaking with him and the child, with no more than a hello, He decided.. Neve will others influence him.. nor I to go astry.. Now.. I am with this man.. not working.. and I have prepared him several resumes.. He goes fishing and ... does odd jobs .. comming in just as late s I do each day.. In hopes for myself to fix em a bite.. to eat. I am thinking .. God thank you for this lesson.. And lets see could my X and I reconcil.. since we feel we can...

How if possible would I say to this guy whom feel he was their when my life was chaos..leave him, rrespectively.. I understand you are not I nor .. could actually give me the perfect answer. atlas, your opinion.. I waould appriciate..

Thanks,

signed.. Hearts of who?

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Date: Monday, August 26, 2002

S1

I have made the same choice as you after living an almost identical life. I am 33, and we have been separated a year. Not a moment goes by that I wonder if I was blowing things out of proportion and I still miss him daily. I suffer from a terrible addiction to him. A sickness. I wish I could be happy without him, but at least I know my son has some peace sometimes.