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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

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Comments for Reading Site

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 2000. 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
  

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, August 28, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda, It's hard to believe that you tolerated this for so long but having lived in hope and fear myself, for 20 years I do understand why you stayed. I know what it is like to have to cry alone and know if you took the risk of doing it in front of your partner you know you would be abused. I wish you well and if Irene is correct, life gets so much better! Regards,

Lindy Hi Lindy!  Look here: 

Cutting Loose: Why Women Who End Their Marriages Do So Well  also  

Our Turn: Women Who Triumph in the Face of Divorce  and a little off topic but I will mention it anyway

Taking the High Road: How to Cope With Your Ex-Husband, Maintain Your Sanity, and Raise Your Child in Peace  My very best to you...

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Miranda, I haven't been physically abused in my relationship, and I can only imagine the horror you've been going through. But I have experienced what I believe is emotional and verbal abuse, and what very much spoke to me was the quote:

"You are one of those people with two very sweet, giving, nice parents - probably both codependent and very giving. They taught you to roll with the punches. This worked very well for them - since they did not punch each other. Punches were about the last thing you expected... You assumed other people were as kind and loving as you and your parents are... "

I was in much the same situation as you as a child. My parents tried their hardest, but they were extremely codependent. I was proudly called "the independent one" when they were in a good mood, but "the selfish one" when anything I did threatened them. Nonetheless, they instilled in me the idea that I needed to roll with the punches, not make waves, etc., little realizing that this would do me harm in my adolescent and adult life.

Like you, I was the scapegoat in junior high; I came home with bruises on my arms from ringleader girls pounding me in the bathrooms. I was insulted continuously from 7-9th grade. That sort of thing.

And here's the strangest thing. When I was 22, my grandfather, then in his eighties, began cornering me when no one was around and touching my breasts. I know this is rather explicit. But I need to be honest about it. He did this twice, and i haven't talked to him since (10 years). I don't remember any abuse as a child, but I do know I've always been afraid of him, as many of my cousins have been as well. I've just avoided him since then. Strangely enough, my family members don't question this, even though they don't know about the abuse. I get the sense sometimes that there are so many deep and dark secrets that people just gloss over. And that's what I've done as well. I would never even think of telling my family about it.

So it is any wonder that I'm in an emotionally abusive relationship? And that I wonder sometimes if I'M really the one in the wrong--making something out of nothing? Trust your feelings...if you think it hurts, it hurts. I don't have any advice for you, but I just want to tell you that your message struck a chord with me.

RainyDay

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

I can totally relate to the wonderful, loving, codependent parents. I didn't know about the type of men I met as an adult - users, liars, abusers. I had no idea how to handle myself around that type of person and I gave everything and expected the same in return. What a shock!!

I am so glad you are free. I am free now too and it is a wonderful feeling. :) However, some of the hardest work began once I left. Now I am working on loving myself and healing from the abuse.

I just picked up Melodie Beattie's guided imagery tape "Language of Letting Go". They are so powerful, and they have really helped me through this trying time. Excellent choice, also available in paperback

Take care,

Suzanne  You too Suzanne.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Hi Miranda,

It's great that you found your inner strength to get out with the kids. Other than physical and verbal abuse, my ex-husband had some type of porno-addiction. (I got married just as I turned 20; he was 29)I would remember seeing him on his computer and as soon as I would look over at him, some obscene picture would quickly go off the screen. Also he had the "yucky" station on cable I tried sooo hard to get him to to remove it, but he didn't at least when I was there. Addiction is addiction, it could be drugs, alcohol, a person, etc.. Yeah... It sad, but I learned that they (or we) want to feel in control of some part of our life, but in actuality we can't control ourselves that's why they have an addiction. (Please correct me if I am wrong Dr Irene) That's not the whole story, but certainly not untrue. Anyway, my ex and I finally split up when I said "NO" to physical intimacy. 

In my heart I kept having this nagging feeling that it wasn't special to him, because I think of it as a precious gift between us together. I would be thinking like, "Oh no, how am I going to divert his attention so we don't have to make love", because I knew that I shouldn't under our unhealthy circumstances, and I also wanted to keep the "false peace" we seemed to have afterwards (briefly). Anyway, I finally told him one night that I would not be physically intimate with him until we worked on our relationship. I told him that I love him, and that I want to be with him, but our relationship is in trouble, and we need to work on it for us to be together, especially intimately. He knew we had problems, but didn't feel the need to get help. He just couldn't handle that and said that he wanted absolutely no commitment to me then at all, almost insulted that I said that to him. But hey, I needed to stand up for myself and my feelings for once! 

I was heartbroken after he said that, but I knew I did the right thing deep down and that part felt good. He tried calling later, but I didn't answer, and realized that there was too much water under the bridge, I love him and I hope one day he gets help, but I need to focus and work on me for once and my co-dependant issues. I do want to get better! Just tell me how high to jump Doc! :o) So sexual addiction is common but with awareness and help there can be a happy ending.

God Bless, CLC You're jumping high CLC! Looks like you've come to know and love your integrity and self-respect.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Miracle Miranda! Welcome back from purgatory! (I've got a terrific Doberman, who is not only intelligent and incredibly obedient, but the looks of her alone keep my kids playing in the yard worry-free. Gives me a little external confidence. And she loves our kitties!) Seriously, take some time to grieve for your lost children, and the loss of the marriage. Sounds like it meant so much to you that you endured anything to try to keep it going. Sadly, that lousy jerk of a "husband" did not have your kind of mind set or commitment. I'm sorry for your losses, and happy for your new freedom and a better life.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda! Good luck for you on your new way! I'm very glad for you that you left him. My peace of mind was disturbed by one detail in your story: How your nice, loving parents did not prepare you for the malicious kids and teachers. Though my husband and I are loving parents, we are both aggressive (or, should I say, were... ) towards each other - he as the abuser and I as the acting-out victim and codependent.

Our 3 year old, though, is a wonderful, charming, delicate, sensitive, greatly verbal, tremendously intelligent, very cooperative, friendly girl - who has not the tiniest bit of violence in her; who cries easily when she's hurt, and never ever expects abuse. When another child attacks her, as they do in playgrounds or when we go visit, there is a bully - she is surprised, and cries! I do not think she learned it from anyone (I may be wrong. She may have picked up on my true feelings when I'm hurt, beyond my "mask" of aggressive responses and my engaging in futile arguments that only make me feel more helpless). I think she is like that by nature. :)

What do you think?

My solution is (for various other reasons too) not to send her to any preschool, kindergarten or school at all. I take her to socialize with nice kids, I defend her and am there for her when a child hurts her (I also tell her she can simply tell the child she does not like this or that, and that she can move away), but I think any "school" where she will be alone with 30-40 other kids, most of them violent and cruel, and one teacher who mostly does not know what to do (or makes matters worse!) - is not a good idea until she is older and has more tactics to fend for herself.

I'd be glad to get your opinions on this. B. 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Miranda, I am happy for you that you are free, I am almost there myself. Dr Irene you are right abuse does not start at 19; that is also when I was with my husband. My mom is co-dependent and my father is emotionally abusive, and years ago was physically abusive mainly to my mom. As I got older the emotional abuse started on me. I am co-dependent and in the process of separating from my abusive husband.

Miranda, I have a severe disease and my husband pretty much expected sex whether I was deathly ill or not. Funny he is in counseling and supposedly changing. This weekend I had surgery. Guess what? I supposedly made him upset and he pulled my hair the day after my surgery. Then he proceeded to accuse me of seeing someone else and climbed in my bed after 3 months of sleeping in separate rooms. He woke me up by hugging me too hard and hurting my stitches, then asked to make love.  I told him to leave me alone; I was so drugged from everything that all I could do was cry, get my stuff and go into the other room. How insensitive! Ouchhhh...

If I had not been under tranquilizers, general anesthesia and pain killers I would have left. I really had started to believe he was changing from his counseling , I now see that he is sicker than ever in all ways. I will keep you in my prayers and thoughts, I could use the same if you would. NUTS

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Hi All,

Thanks for your replies...and well wishes and prayers...mine go back out to you as well. To "B", you said: "My peace of mind was disturbed by one detail in your story: How your nice, loving parents did not prepare you for the malicious kids and teachers." I was a very quiet child, shy in every respect. I had two younger sisters I loved very much and a baby brother. My sisters attended the catholic school as well. Apparently I have a 'protection' disorder of sorts, but I never told my parents what the kids and Nuns put me through. I was embarrassed that I was being made fun of...it is not the sort of thing you want to go home to announce to your Mom and Dad: "Gee...guess what, everyone hates me!" 

My sisters were very pretty, I was the 'ugly duckling' of the family...and since I felt they had a chance to thrive in the school atmosphere...I kept my mouth shut...and I distanced myself from my sisters in school so they would not get picked on for being my sisters. My parents never knew what was going on at the school...until I couldn't take it anymore and finally told them. As soon as they knew, they pulled us all out of the school. So, I can't blame them, it was my fault for not saying anything. My husband also threatened at times to hurt my parents...brother-in-laws, Brother, if I told them what abuse I was suffering at his hand... So I never told them...for fear they would suffer the same abuse as I. 

Then I prayed about it one day, I was at the end of my rope...he had began physically abusing my oldest son just as he had abused me, and I figured I'll have to trust God and take my chances...cause if I stay someone will really get hurt...and I didn't want my kids to go after my husband...the oldest was 13, 165lbs and 6foot tall...it was just a matter of time before they came to blows...well, I won't go on and on...you've got the picture. Yeah...

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda, I have not been through nearly as much as you and I am no longer in an abusive relationship.. I am still recovering though. My parents are both "nice" people, though my mom is my father's servant and very codependent and dad is distant and hard to please. One thing that has bothered me very much, is that my mother seems to assume/ insinuate that whenever I am in an unpleasant or problematic situation, that I am somehow at fault. I realize this is how my inner thinking goes too. Always the problem must be me esp. when the problematic person is a man. I doubt she realizes she does this... she is a real sweetie otherwise. A real sweetie. Mom is the angry codependent and dad is the passive abuser.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda, B. here.

What bothered me about your parents was not that I thought it was "their fault" that they did not save you. What bothered me was, how they "taught" you to "suffer and shut up about it"? How did you become someone whom others picked on? Kids learn by watching how their parents deal with life.

You see, I believe (based on what I've learned about people through the years and through a lot of reading), that people only "pick on" someone who somehow "transmits" to them that he/she is a "victim". Pretty much; people who don't defend themselves.

When you came to school, your body language and/or something else in you "cried out loud" to all the cruel kids: "Hello there, I'm a victim! You can hurt me!" This is not something that came FROM school. You learned that at HOME. Because mom and dad were the type of people who saw the good in people and excused their transgressions.

And you did behave like a victim: you let them abuse you without putting a stop to it, even though you could have, had you chosen to! Yes, but not at her age.  Remember, her parents, who are her teachers, don't teach her how to stand up for herself. Standing up for the self becomes the task of adulthood when raised in this type of home...

Now, Miranda, this is not an accusation of you in any way! I hope you don't think that (it's so difficult to convey this in e-mail).

What you told about your childhood bothered me because I see a similarity to my little girl. But after I wrote about it here, I woke up at 4 in the morning and suddenly got it: *I* taught her to react like that to abuse! You, dad, and her biology. (In my previous post I said, that whenever another child "crosses her boundaries", i.e., hits her, hugs her against her will, she just stands there, makes a sound of distress and then cries. If the child hit her or hurt her in any way, she will be afraid and keep her distance from him from then on (I support her in it). She is now 3.

My husband wants her to act violently: hit back, push etc. Well, he is an abuser... So, there is no such thing as healthy anger in your home. Anger is expressed poorly; it is rage.

However, I also react violently/aggressively to attacks, so I did not understand how could we have taught her to act like this, when she is such a confident child in every other situation!  

Now I realized that she learned it from me, from my true self. It does not matter that when I'm attacked, I shout and argue and I can also push or hit my attacker. This "acting out" does not change in the least my surprise and amazement at the fact that someone abused me (I *never* used to expect it, and was *always* caught unprepared, just like she is), it does not change even a bit my feelings of hurt, it does not change, actually - it even deepens, my helplessness and lack of control. In short, my learned thin mask of "aggressive retort to attacks" does not really change my true inner reaction, which is - like my little girl's - to stand there dumbfounded and cry (quite the opposite, as Dr. Irene has stated time and again). Poor sweetheart. I think the anger and aggression in your home hurts her...

Once in "thirty something" there was a chapter exactly on that: Hope's little girl gets terribly upset in kindergarten when she happens to draw "outside the lines". The teacher confronts Hope and hints that she has too high demands from her daughter. Hope is truly puzzled: She never once told her child any such thing, quite the opposite! But as the chapter unfolds, Hope learns that her little girl did not "learn" from what she said to her, or even from the way she treated her - her daughter "learned" it all from HOW HOPE IS. And it was the traits that Hope was LEAST aware of, that imprinted so deeply on her child. Yeah...

This is what I see: I was not aware at all that I was a codependent victim of an abusive husband (and of an abusive mother, and of a codependent loving and caring father who also took his frustrations out on me via hitting me until I was 15). I was not aware of my true feelings at all. So I raised my daughter the best way I could, but what I did not know about myself was the one thing that "slipped through the cracks" and made my daughter helpless in the face of abuse. Yeah... Smart lady...

Now I am changing myself. I recognize abuse when I see it, and instead of "engaging" and "acting out" in ways which only helped to weaken me further - I "stop" him, I am assertive, I really make a change. It is not easy, but I really do react differently. I really exhibit more self respect and a truly efficient way of reacting to abuse. I also thought of some ideas to help teach my daughter how to stop abuse, based on what I know that she will be inclined to remember or to use. I also know that she is very young (will be 3 on Sunday, Sept. 3rd), so she has a good chance of "recovery" if I change myself. Yeah!

One of the things I want to teach her: Since she has a very active imagination, I will tell her that she has an imaginary bell- or ball-shaped "field" which surrounds her. We will call this bell her "boundaries". I will ask her to give it color, and tell her that it has the quality of air, and is always around her. I will tell her, that nobody may "enter" this bell unless SHE gave them permission. If someone does that, she can tell him/her that they crossed her boundaries, please step back now, and/or she can put out her hands to create a barrier and keep that person outside her bell. She can also move away with her imaginary bell, to where anyone who does not respect it cannot enter it. Oh! I love this! What a wonderful way to teach a child boundaries and give her power and control...

I hope my ideas help someone, and I'd be glad to get feedback. B.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Miranda,

Congratulations to you for finding your inner strength to move on. Being in an abusive relationship then going through therapy usually helps us to look within, check out our past, and find out some reasons WHY we tolerated this type of behavior and allowed our boundaries to be crossed. Yes, family issues come up and the way we were raised has much to do with who we are. I've recently gone through this process and discovered that because my mother is a doormat, she expected me to be one too (she still tries, but now I know the boundaries). Basically, she sees or has seen me as an extension of herself. So, I'm just empathizing with you. I do understand how parents can be this way. Doesn't make them mean, in fact, I would say that mine were at times "too nice". Often if they allow certain behaviors, they expect you too as well. We can be taught to be "too nice", or too allowing, or too advocating of other people's behaviors. It is unfortunate that in this world we can be "too nice", isn't it? Then when you try to make some changes, people may perceive you as having some type of problem. But you don't!. You are on the right track - keep it up. At least now you are finding out some of the reasons why you are who you are, so that you can continue the good work on yourself. None of this surprises me. I've been through much of what you've said (although not to every extreme). It doesn't have to be that way anymore...and you are on your way to changing what you get in life (and don't)!!  Sad that being "too nice" doesn't work. But it doesn't work only if being "too nice" if your "niceness" hurts you... If you give too much, you have to ask why you do that...

Best of luck, LHW

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda,

Loads of Love and Lots of Prayers. I wish you the best. LL

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Dear Miranda,

Lynn here from the cat box. I hear you about the childhood. My father is a bully, but this came later in his life. Until I turned 17, I knew of no evil, never heard a dirty word, and life was beautiful. What a shocker to learn of all the horrible things people can do to each other. I think that is some of the reason I have trouble dealing with it now. The real me would love for it to be a perfect world. "Yeah!" says Trubble.

I wish you the best, Loads of love and prayers, Lynn

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Miranda, I just posted a question on the yak boards about being sexually assaulted by your abuser. Sadly it was misconstrued, it seems I am not always diplomatic. LOL. Not funny really I know, but I was wondering about ways to deal with this. My H and I have been married for five years. I wish I could say they have been wonderful, but I can't. In the past two or so years, he has demanded sex, manipulated until I gave in, said the same things: "it is his right to get sex whenever he wants it, he bought the cow, she better provide the milk", or "If I don't get it from you, I will get it from some one else", or just demeaned me until I could no longer stand the sight of him. Yuk. Did you see the Allah post? Twisted humor...

I am still living with him. We had a brief, and I mean very brief separation of all of three days. Since then, the name calling has stopped, but the rest of it hasn't. He is still trying to control me, be it through sex, money whatever. My problem is this: he only touches me sexually, and usually only when there is somebody else around. If I go to his work, he tries to fondle my breast or genitals in front of the other men he works with needless to say, I seldom go to his work. How disrespectful! Then when I ask him to stop repeatedly, and he doesn't, I get defensive and try to stop him physically. My husband outweighs me by fifty pounds, is ten times stronger than me, and he threatens me with assault. I don't even make contact with him. I know this isn't the way to deal with him, but what is the way? How can I get him to stop this embarrassing behavior? Refuse to put up with it.

It has progressed to the point where I don't desire him at all, and now he is accusing me of either being unfaithful to him, or being a lesbian. We had company over the other night, and I commented that the woman of one of our friends seemed very sweet, and he accused me of wanting to have sex with her. Then when I wouldn't have intercourse, he accused me of being frigid. I am not frigid, if I got some honest affection from him at other times, I might find him sexually attractive. If he even tried to talk to me, I might. But he doesn't, and there are other ways of attaining intimacy than having sex. Actually, without those other ways, there isn't any chance of it. So, usually he pressures me into having sex, and I end up just going into my own little world. Checking off the things I needed to do and did. Ugh... Why are you there?

Speaking of pornographic addictions, I don't believe that my husband has one, but the other night, when these new friends were over, he got on the computer to show them a picture of a fish that was caught in our pond, and he started to show them all the porno sites that send him email. They immediately left, and I was mortified. We just met this woman, it was the first time guy had ever been to our house, and he is trying to show them all these porno sites. I know he doesn't look at them regularly, because he hardly ever checks that email account, but still. That is sick. Yes.

So, is there a way to handle this that I don't know of? He is in therapy for his verbal abuse, but I don't feel like it is getting him very far. The therapist only knows his side, and he is very good at pulling the wool over peoples eyes. He can be very charming, and I am sure that he is just learning new ways to abuse me there. She even told him to tell me that I shouldn't go to DV support group because it would just confuse the issues. He adamantly denies ever laying a finger on my in anger. I insist that pushing and hair pulling, thumping, slapping, and head banging on the wall are all forms of physical abuse. YES!!! And when he is screaming and cussing and calling names, I call that anger. Rage. Sadly, there aren't very many options in our area for therapists. And I thought that this DV support group would help me to get over my anger at him, help me to regain my sense of self. I don't know, I need help. You need your own therapist. You need to think about why you stay in this marriage.

I am sorry , Miranda, I was supposed to be replying to your email, and seem to have gotten onto the subject of my woes. I don't know how to handle sexual abuse, so I guess I wouldn't be much help anyways. Good luck, Dustie

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2000

S1

Miranda, you are NOT the only person to ever suffer sexual abuse. My ex-husband did not look at pornography, but he had it all in his head. He expected me to do things like dress up and pretend to be a prostitute, use various props like whips, handcuffs, etc. and be called names (slut, whore, etc.) as well as reciprocate by calling him names. He would talk about lesbian fantasies while we had sex and expect me to tell him what I "wanted" to do with specific women we knew. If I objected, he accused me of being frigid and saying I should never have gotten married if I didn't want to satisfy a man. Ugh...

I began to question whether or not I really was too mundane in bed and doubt my sexuality. The confusion blurred my personal boundaries and allowed me to do things that ended up hurting my conscience. Sexual abuse of this kind is the worst because it's almost impossible to talk about it with ANYONE - you're so humiliated by what you've done. Even if you do manage to hint about it in counseling, or to a minister, you're often told you ARE frigid. I really thought all men expected these fantasies to be fulfilled with them. I am now married to a verbally abusive man who at least doesn't sexually abuse me and sex has never been better - probably one reason I haven't yet had the courage to get out of the relationship - my psyche has been so damaged by that past stuff. Good luck in healing! I'm glad you know now that you experienced horrible sexual/emotional abuse. Good luck in your healing process too!

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, August 31, 2000

S1

Dear gang, B. here. An amazing thing happened yesterday! Just a couple of hours after I described here how I wish my 3 year old to stand up for herself in the face of "abuse" - she did it!!!! I didn't even have the chance to talk to her! It's as if she got it directly from my thoughts! I transmitted it to her higher self, and it heard me!!!

We came to my sister's. My daughter's 3 year old cousin tried (as usual) to hug her against her will. She put out her arms and hands, not pushing him but stopping him, and assertively said something like: "No, A., I don't want you to hug me right now!" He stopped, and they went to play. Purrrfect! 

I was soooooo proud of her! Still amazed, B.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, August 31, 2000

S1

Miranda, I have been through the same things you are describing. I have been feeling awful about myself because of the things he has made me do. You are lucky that you have gotten out. I continue to live in fear. I believe he will take out my family if I leave. He is an excellent manipulator & intimidator. He has out smarted police, attorneys, etc his whole life. While maintaining his professionalism. The community loves him. The thing that hurts me the most is how he forces me to do his sexual fantasies and then afterward says "you kinky bi#@8" or "you do that for yourself." This is totally not true. It is peace at any price. He has a sexual problem but would never admit it. You are not going crazy, or should not feel bad about yourself. You have a lot to offer others from your experiences. I know from myself (if I ever get out safely) that you must have a lot of strength to have endured this type of behavior for so long! Take that same strength an direct it toward yourself! You deserve it!!! Keep your head up and know that you are not alone! Sexual abuse is the one people don't want to talk about ! Keep smiling & enjoy life!! I like your idea about the dog!!!!! :)   You deserve it too...

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, August 31, 2000

S1

Hi Miranda,

I'm so glad you were able to leave. I was raised in a home where showing emotions was met with physical punishments. "I'll give you something to cry about". This left me unable to cry a tear. I cried many a tear inside. As time evolved, and it does, I learned to cry in private but never in public. I never showed my pain because I knew someone would hit me for it. I learned to show some anger. I learned to show joy even when I felt pain. I learned to take care of everyone's needs but my own. Years later, I cried inside when my daughters father would put me down. I cried inside when he went out/slept with other women and flaunted it, acting as if I was abnormal because I didn't want to be their friend. Ugh.

I went numb when he threatened to kill us. I stayed numb until one day I realized that he was doing worse to my child.

You see, she told me he was fondling her. He taught her to tongue-kiss and let her see him in women's underwear. I learned to cry. I cried when I told the therapist; when I told her pediatrician. I cried when I told the CPS worker. I cried when the courts decided there was not enough evidence to protect her from him. I die a little inside every time I turn her over for a visit. I will die a little inside when she will have overnight visits with him. I am her protector that cannot protect her. I read a book Incest: A Mothers Nightmare (Hardcover here) by John Meyers. A legal guide to protecting these kids. If I'd read it before I acted she'd be safe right now instead of with him. Thank you for this reference.

Now, I can teach her to cry. I can try to give her a voice. I can honor her pain and her joy as it spills from her. I can hope that someday she'll disclose again and I'll do what needs to be done to protect her.

Miranda, has anyone ever told you that it's OK to cry? It is, you know.

Be good to yourself!

-m-

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, September 01, 2000

S1

Miranda,

Stay strong! I too am in a position of trying to realize its ok to feel! I am 37 years old and for 3 months my children and I have been living with friends. My verbally abusive, very controlling husband changed the locks on all the doors one day and left my 5 yr old's doll on the porch. A couple days before this, he removed all of our money from our joint (only) account and said if I needed groceries or gas to ask him. A week later he took my van from my church parking lot while the children and I were with a group at a Billy Graham crusade. He is "teaching me a lesson" for standing up for what is right: finally, after 8 years of verbal abuse affecting my daughter and son and myself. 

I asked if he thought a separation would help . For those 8 years I have swallowed mine and my childrens' hurt, kept them quiet and myself too, so to avoid the meanness. I learned as a child to take what you get , show no emotion or else I will be given a Good reason to cry, or be angry etc. I was abused as a child. My way of handling abuse now (before our separation) was to be quiet and cry myself to sleep with hurt for my children who cry themselves to sleep and for myself. This past January I went to see a Therapist. She asked me what I needed. I told her I needed to tell her my past, and my present and for her to BLUNTLY tell me if I am the cause of this horrible, hurtful family life. 

He says I am and could change everything in a day! YUK! My Husband was addicted (is?) to pornography and was up most nights all night on the computer and also at work. I found out by accident and was too afraid to confront him, and so for 6 or so months I lived knowing what he was doing, and he was so cruel. He never touched me and hasn't for 3 1/2 years. I confronted him with an email and he acted like he never received it but miraculously he was home early from work that whole week! One morning he tried to get me to be intimate and I refused and stated that we needed to talk 1st. He got mad and has been mad since. almost 4 years. Oh boy...

Things came to a head and he kicked us out. I believe he thought he would Teach me to "behave and obey." We have many other big issues in our marriage. But with the help of friends, this site, and my therapist who introduced me to the term "verbal abuse!" I have learned I am hurting; its not my fault; I am not cold. Pornography is not what everyone does for fun, and I am allowed to cry if I want to! You bet! I still struggle with guilt, but am strong enough to know that possibly it is a habit Yep. A bad habit you can unlearn. and I am not going back! GOOD! I have filed for divorce; he never answered so now its in default. He is arrogant, angry, self righteous and blames me for everything.. which is weird because he locked us out, stole my car, took our money, wont help me financially, etc., etc... I refuse to be made crazy by his words and actions! Just typing this makes me stronger!!!!! Good luck Miranda, get a dog, I am and be happy with your self for awhile!!!! I am trying... Gina Bless you Gina. Go for it! This would be a good book for you too: Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation and Guilt to Manipulate You.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, September 01, 2000

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I love cats. Meow. You have good taste.

  B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 02, 2000

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Dear Miranda and all,

Cat box Lynn here and I can't stay. This happened to me over 30 years ago and I don't like to go back. It can still be painful. Mine was into loaded guns, blood (mine) and rape). He finally threw a sewing machine at me and hit me in the small of the back. I had a miscarriage and nearly died. Then I went into therapy with a Catholic Counselor.

I just wanted to give you all a word of support. When I left I took the 3 kids, 1 cat, 1 dog, 2 suitcases and $35.00. I moved back "home", got my old job back (graveyard waitress), lived with my lovely folks 2 weeks (they drove me nuts). And Never looked back.

About 2 weeks after I left I got a phone call from the Hospital personnel where he was living. My husband tried to commit suicide and he wanted me there.

I almost went! I called my old Catholic Counselor (I can still remember his name). He said, "Well Lynn, If you go back now you'll always go back, but make your own decision." I did. I called the hospital and spoke to him. Told him if he didn't know how to do it, I could tell him how to do it right. (He took about 10 aspirin and washed them down with a can of beer and called an ambulance.) He said one word. B&%$H ! I grinned. No answer was necessary. Purrrr!

It wasn't always easy. I made every mistake. 30 years down the road, am I happy? You Betcha. That was the best decision I could have made. I never got any child support, nor did I ask for any. (I wouldn't advise this.) He told me I was so ugly, I'd never get anyone else to marry me. I was so stupid, I'd never get another job, and If I left him, he wouldn't give me or the children and support and he'd ever see us again..........I shrugged my shoulders, I just didn't care anymore.

Moral. For me it was the therapist; I wouldn't have realized I didn't have to go back. He threw it right back at me and helped me come to the right decision. That's what I love about Dr. Irene and the groups here. We have the power to do what is best for us. We can give each other strength to get through these agonizing decisions. Hey! What about me? Maybe I'll take back my purrrs...

Now I must leave this site, but I wish you all lots of love, laughter, tears, and a great life. I know you have it in you or you wouldn't be here.

Lynn

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 02, 2000

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Dear Trubble, Lynn here,

I told you I couldn't dwell on these old times. As I was trying to edit I must have hit send. Please see if the Doc will kindly erase the 1st 2. Well, Lynn. She refused, but I felt bad for losing my temper with you. So I fixed it. Love & purrrs, Trubble

Thank you and love to all here, Lynn

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 02, 2000

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I was married 25 years: I told him early on that if he ever hit me I'd call the sheriff in a minute.

In our divorce interrogations by our attorneys, he brought that up: "I never hit her." I hadn't said a word about it.

If only I'd known: I'd have set my limits a little higher. . . .earlier. Yes...

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, September 05, 2000

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Wow I'm not going crazy as my husband says. He says I should have sex with him because it is my duty and that I am frigid and unloving, and if I was a good wife I would want to please him. I increased the frequency but it turned into that I am not "imaginative" enough. Right. And it will never be something or other "enough" because that is the nature of obsessive-compulsive sex addiction stuff. As this progressed, I felt my soul leaving me. And the love I had for this man, get colder & colder. But the more I tried to explain how I felt, the more he insisted I do what he wanted and for me to not make it so complicated. UGH! Thanks to all of you for sharing your emotional and sexual abuse. It gives me strength to know I am not alone or crazy, and to stand up for what my gut is telling me. Do you know Trubble how common this type of abuse is? I wish I had something to hand to my husband to show him it is not his legal right. This is way too common. You don't have to show him anything either. "Tough meows" is all you need.

Also it is interesting to read the discussions on not feeling one's emotions. My mom being codependent with an abusive husband, has completely shutdown to her emotions. Shut down to hearing herself... I have wondered why I can't cry anymore. Why I don't get angry. This site has educated me so much that I am sure I can turn the tide, so that I don't follow down the same road as my mom.

Holding tight by my tip of my fingers. Trust your body. That "gut sense," the "little voice," doesn't lie. Hang in there; we'll give you a paw.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, September 06, 2000

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Dear Miranda

I know exactly where you are coming from. I was sexually abused as a child by a cousin, an uncle (my mother denied this happened, continued to expose me to him, and called me a liar- then as an adult I found out he abused her and her sisters as well?!?!?!) Unfortunately, not uncommon. She couldn't deal with it... and then in college I was date raped (forced to perform oral sex on a 'stranger', nose bloodied etc). Ugh...

This is where I am confused. My husband seemed very "Safe" when I met him. We were just friends for several months and he seemed to really care about me. I had been in a hospital the year before dealing with anorexia. I really wasn't emotionally stable enough to be in *any* relationship, but my parents felt at 19, I had to either get a job or commit myself to a state hospital. So I moved out on my own and got a job, while plagued with night mares and fears of being alone. 

I never felt safe. I kept trying to date, and it seemed like I went back to the same sort of guys I dated before I battled the eating disorder. That's all you "knew." Even though you hated them, at some level that type of guy was familiar and therefore "comfortable."  I was date raped in January and decided to basically give up dating altogether. The guys I was attracted to always seemed to have their stuff together. They were "morally" superior to me, and I "knew" it. I actually felt like these men could teach me something. What a sad attitude, you know? Yes. Sad... I was still hung up on the guy I dated the year before I had anorexia when I met my ex husband. He would patiently listen to my problems and he made me feel "Safe" when I was with him. He was very over weight, and I have never been attracted to that (and felt guilty about this for years) but, he started to diet while we were friends and somewhere in my heart, I knew it was because he liked me. I finally felt like I was in love with him and told him so. He asked me why I would love someone like him and I said "because you are a good person with a good heart and I know you would be a best friend and a best husband." (This shocks me now that I said that.. we started talking marriage from the very beginning of our dating!)

My ex had never dated anyone despite being two years older than myself. He had a very abusive childhood (alcoholic father) and had grown up so poor that he and another brother would work odd jobs to support the household while his dad lay passed out somewhere. There was one story about their mother waking them up at 3AM during junior high to go steal coal from the neighbors in the youngest brothers toy wagon to heat their home that night. His dad beat him. When he told me about his own childhood I was moved to tears- but he never was. He would actually laugh when he talked about his childhood and it disturbed me. The body talking to you... He would say that "the past was in the past" and want me to follow his example. It aggravated him that I had problems with the sex abuse. Where he had begun as supportive, he had turned cold. He seemed indifferent to my sexual abuse... this change was so subtle, that I didn't notice it for a long time. Yes; that's how the change usually goes...

I had told him I didn't want to have sex until I was married and this bothered him. he knew that I had been semi intimate with the man I dated before the anorexia and was very jealous of this. I made it very clear to my ex early on that I would NOT have oral sex with him. I felt degraded by it after the date rape, and had no desire to ever do it again. I no longer associated it with any sort of loving act. Well, this bothered him too, and he would throw it up in my face and say "its not fair that you did this for Joe and not me". Ugh! He would guilt me, and make me feel like I was holding back part of myself and tell me if I must not really love him. 

Still, I thought he was a safe person. I am trying to recall WHY??? Because he started out that way...

We got married and it took me a full month after we wed to have sex. I was so afraid of it, I was physically ill on my honeymoon. PTSD. Get treatment if you already haven't. Every sexual encounter I had ever had prior was abusive and I was really afraid of what it would be like now. It was all he talked to up until the wedding and I was nervous. Who wouldn't be? His yakking was entirely inappropriate and unloving under the circumstances. Enough to make your symptoms worse. This is when our relationship seemed to spiral. No doubt. 

Sex hurt me. I would tell him sex hurt me. I felt that something was physically wrong with me. I never could get 'ready', and I dreaded the sex. Sex was never beautiful or even intimate. It would seem like he was just going through the act and like I could have been anyone. I would have to ask him to say he loved me. I really needed to be affirmed during sex and he would struggle with it. He never said I was attractive, talked sweet or said he loved me during sex. It was just an act. He didn't even make eye contact with me during sex. He would bite my breasts during sex and it hurt. I would tell him to be more gentle with my breasts and he would get angry. He never stopped this and eventually I began to believe I had overly sensitive breasts and he was not doing anything wrong, but something was wrong with me. He agreed and supported this. Ugh. He said I needed sex therapy because "Sex isn't painful its in your head". He said I was frigid. Eventually I went to a doctor and found out that sex was indeed painful for me because I had severe tilt and was told how to make it more comfortable for myself. I was so happy. I was happy I had something physical wrong with me because it meant I wasn't crazy. Not at all crazy...

We couldn't have enough sex for my husband. Now, that's crazy! He kept mental count of how often we had sex and would throw it up in my face "its been this many days..." He would start to get hateful with me. We averaged 6 times a month. He would snap at me and then say "you know how to make this better". He read articles on statistics of how often other married people had sex and threw the numbers in my face. Ugh.

I began to hate sex even more and I am ashamed to admit I began to barter with him. He would buy me gifts in exchange for sex. Only he saw everything as a gift. He expected sex for dinner. He expected sex in situations where I was uncomfortable, like at his mother's or my mother's house. I would say "can you be quick?". He would know I didn't want to have sex (because I had said so) but he would say I must not love him. I would tell him I didn't want to, but to go ahead and then afterwards he would tell me how bad it was. YUK! On top of all of this he had gained all the weight back he had lost plus more and I had lost attraction for him. I would feel so guilty for not being attracted to my husband. 

I didn't work and he provided for me- wasn't it all he asked for? It was all he asked for. He would say every year for Christmas all he wanted was me naked. Every birthday... every anniversary. It was all he wanted. His weight was unhealthy and once he even passed out during sex. So, I would tell him I wasn't attracted to the extra weight he gained but that I loved him. He would say he would love me no matter what and that I was shallow. I would stand my ground and say that I couldn't help what I was attracted to, even if it was shallow to him. He would agree to lose weight, but say it wasn't fair for me to withhold myself from him and want to barter again. We said for every 2-5 pounds he lost I would do something that I didn't normally want to do in bed as a reward for him losing weight (because, he said it was my fault he gained weight in the first place, I cooked too greasy, had too many snack foods in the house, etc). He would choose oral sex. This is a horrible story... Only he would always gain weight during these times and then would tell me I was evil for trying to make him lose for sex (after we divorced he told me that he would purposefully eat cheese burgers while he was dieting to spite me). 

So, I would have sex anyway, and yeah, he would get oral sex because it was what I promised; then afterwards I felt like crap. I gave up on telling him I wasn't attracted to him and just had sex anyway because it was the only time things were better. When we went on vacation he counted the number of times we had sex (4 times in 7 days) and complained for two years afterward that I had slighted him. That I had cheated him out of a vacation.

After sex he was very gentle and loving. It was like some sort of high for him. He would touch me all day long, and in nice ways. touch my hair, my neck. Say sweet things. It was the only thing that made sex good for me, as I looked forward to being treated nice afterwards. However the amount of time he was nice to me diminished over the years. and always he would say when I said he was hateful "You know how to make it better". He didn't like to be touched except sexually. If I tried to touch his back, or his chest, he would say "you know I don't like being touched, it feels weird".

I often woke up in the middle of the night and felt like I was sleeping with a stranger. You were. My feelings of being "Safe" left and I began to lock any door of the room I was in. I wanted all the doors bolted at night and locked myself in rooms during the day. I couldn't shake the feeling I was no longer "Safe". Your feelings were very accurate: you were not Safe with him.

As far as porn, my ex never cursed, never drank, and said he never looked at porn, but I would go stay with my mom periodically and upon one return found a porn movie hidden under our bed. When I confronted him (he knew I found porn insulting), he got teary eyed and said he had never done that before and to please not tell anyone. He said he had "found" a bunch of porn movies and just brought them home to see what they were like and had forgotten to throw one away. I didn't tell anyone, but I always felt uneasy with him after that. This man is so detached from himself, a woman can be no more than an object to him. 

Everyone always thought my ex was perfect and he didn't want it to "Get out" that he watched porn. He said "I know you will tell everyone about this". I didn't mention it for four years. Not till we divorced did I talk about this. I kept secrets. He always thought I was eager to tell things and called me a gossip for confiding to friends and family - but I NEVER confided about him. I was very ashamed of my marriage, and also, if everyone else loved my husband, then it must have been ME with the problem. My goodness- You know, I remember feeling guilty for not being happy, I remember thinking I was "ungrateful" for what I had. I am so glad this is written in the past tense...

The bartering stopped because my ex quit his high paying job to go back to college and I began to work full time as well. Those first couple of months all I heard was that he bet that I wouldn't ever have sex again since he couldn't "afford me" anymore. Well, I was determined to make my marriage work and said that I didn't want to barter anymore anyway. I was tired of being called a prostitute, and tired of being called a tease. I couldn't even change clothes in the same room as him. He said it was teasing to allow him to see me naked and not have sex afterwards. I just had sex when he wanted. I got very good at just blocking the sex out. I got to where I could have sex almost any time he wanted and I would just day dream about happier times and he was so in tune with himself he didn't even notice I wasn't "there". He didn't want you "there!" We had even began to have oral sex regular. I hated that and never could block it out. I always felt demeaned by it- and he knew it- but it was easier to just give in than to hear a lecture about how I did that for Joe and I wasn't even married to Joe and here he was my husband. It still wasn't enough sex and I would get lectured about that pretty often, but I was working full time and was actually too tired to every night. On nights I was too tired to have sex he wanted me to perform oral sex or gratify him with my hands. I did that too. Even though I had begun to just go along with this, I began to really hate this man. And for good reason.

Also, he stopped being sweet to me after sex, and wouldn't touch my neck or rub my shoulders or back at night unless we exchanged favors. He wouldn't show me any intimacy unless he was being gratified sexually. He began to grope me in private. when he saw me, he would always grab at my body. I would TELL him this was demeaning, he would just laugh, or say he was sorry, but he wouldn't stop. Abuse cycles exactly this way: the good times get shorter and shorter and become further and further apart.

I was married 7 years to this person total. The summer after the 7th year he moved in with his folks (5 hours away) to work an internship and only came home every other weekend or less. It took some distance from him for me to see just what he was. I began to notice that he belittled me to his friends ("why do you always have to embarrass me?"). I noticed he wasn't supportive to me ("well, if your stupid enough to talk to your mother, than you deserve what she says to you"). He had agreed to leave me with a working car while he was away and he agreed to come in every weekend to see me. Well, he didn't leave me with a car and I had to rely on my parents for rides to work, and I had to wait till he came in to go to the store. I was trapped at our home with out a way anywhere but to work. He didn't come in every week either, he came in less and less, and would say "do you want me to drive home tired?" and I would feel guilt again. He would twist my words... when I told him I was lonely and needed a car he would say "what do you want me to do? quit this job???" It seemed like any time I wanted to talk to him about ME, we ended up talking about HIM. YES! Notice how he repeatedly barged into your personal space. 

Yet every weekend when he came in he wanted sex. He wanted to talk dirty on ICQ while he was away. (If he talked to me at all, he also avoided me by staying where he worked after hours to play quake knowing he had prearranged to chat with me online and that I was sitting up waiting on him every night). I really started to see that our whole marriage was nothing but sex. At the end of the summer I told my ex that I didn't feel like I loved him anymore and it made me sad because I wanted our marriage to work. He said he thought it was just the distance and that I would get over it. He just blew what I said off like nothing.

I don't want to imply sex was our only problem. My ex never helped with the house work and threw cans and whatever was in his hand straight to the floor, he belittled our pets and would want me to whip them for any little thing and accuse me of loving the pets more than I loved him. He would say my house smelled all the time and say I was a lazy slob. He would say that he wouldn't go dancing with me because he didn't want to watch me "parade around in front of other men for attention". He mocked anything I liked. (he even labeled one craft show I taped "crap show" and told everyone how funny it was). He said it was my fault his mother didn't like me and called me names like "Crazy" and "sterile". He would tip over pet bowls when we argued or throw my letters in the floor, or go into a screaming rage and get so close to my face that I would fall over backward or run from the room, then laugh at me and say "what? did you think I would hit you?" like it was comical.

He never hit me. Except in the heart and soul.

Anyway, I didn't "get over it". I finally began reaching out and told a few close friends about little things he did and asked if it was "normal." I didn't know what normal was. My mom and dad both beat me while I was a child (but only when I was bad) and to be honest, I felt I came up in the world when I married my ex. He was never as mean to me as my mom -  although perhaps the sex with him was worse than my mom physically hurting me. You've had some life...

I still didn't see my ex as abusive. I didn't get in touch with a counselor until Feb 2000 (we divorced in the fall of '99 Yipppeee!). It was actually after I told him I wanted a divorce that I began to see what he was capable of. His initial reply was "you just want to whore around in bars again." (The first time he ever used that word in my presence), and that became his name for me. "Whore."  "Lesbian."  He wrote to all my friends in email and said I was having an affair after he moved out because I wanted to date a friend of mine - after I filed divorce. My parents and my sister took his side. He was at my sister's regularly and told her he had always loved HER- not me. Oh boy... 

He said he only married me for sex and that the only thing he ever loved about me was my body. He had always said he hated my parents and now they were his best friends - buying him furniture for his new place, listening to how sad he was, giving him money, etc. Oh boy... He said I must want to date other men to perform oral sex on them (he didn't say it that nicely). He said I would go to hell. He threatened suicide. Then he would show up at work and say he realized he had taken me for granted and that I was the most special girl in the world and could he have another chance. I would say "ok, but we have to take it slow" and he would say "can we have sex tonight?" When I would say "NO!" he would call me a whore again and start asking who I was sleeping with if not him, and if they were better lovers. I remember telling him he really hadn't known me, because if he thought I liked sex he was mistaken. How could he have thought I liked sex?!?!?! Because he did.

I did finally agree to give him one more chance and it is the biggest regret of my life. He had a personal vendetta against me for dating and wanted to get even. (I only dated one person, whom I still see.) He was "perfect" for two weeks then asked for sex at my dads store. I was enjoying kissing him, but wanted it to stop there. I must have said "no" at least ten times - and loudly - but it didn't stop him. Afterwards I began to cry. I felt my own body betrayed me as well. I hadn't wanted to, I had said "no!". But I didn't stop him physically.

Afterwards He looked smug. He looked in control. I will never forget that look. He had won. It was all he wanted and he promised to call me the next day and didn't (I knew he wouldn't. I immediately knew that sex was all he had wanted), then he wanted to borrow my dad's car to go date another girl in... He threw keys at me and would punch things and say "Its your fault, if you hadn't wanted to whore around, I wouldn't want to date anyone." And said he wanted me back but that he wanted to date around more first. When I told him I said "no" about the sex, he got angry and said "So, what are you saying?!??! that I RAPED you?" Yes, actually. I don't know if its rape or not. Sex against your will when you are saying "No" is rape.  I just know I felt ashamed. 

I told him that I didn't think it was good for me mentally to date him anymore and I pulled away from him for good. Good! He continued to harass me (crank calls, showing up at work, emailing me to tell me who he slept with and how they were better) and I had to move away. I wasn't strong enough and actually wanted him back (why?). It's all you knew... The only way I got away from him at this point was to not take his calls, not answer his emails and not let his messages anger me (which was hard because he would tell my sister - who no longer supported him - that he wanted her to tell me that he was going to "get me"). He emailed me on my birthday to tell me he had met a "real woman" and finally knew what love was, then a month later emailed me on my anniversary to tell me "how good you could have had it". I didn't reply. Anything to get a reaction, you know? Yes. Anything. Aren't you glad you stopped playing the game? Good for you. You made a judgment about what was not good for you and finally stuck with your decision, despite feeling you wanted him back. You knew.

There is one more side to this story. He has been involved with two women since our divorce and they are both rape survivors like myself. How can that be? He is not unusual. He has "radar" for these women and, as he did with you, knows how to first disarm and then conquer them.

I am sorry this is so long. I am in domestic violence counseling and feel very ashamed to talk of my past sex with ex there. Thank you for letting me submit this. I am sorry if it is too long or offensive. Lizzie   No Lizzie. Not at all. I am very glad you are getting help. How else could a kid with a life-long history of abuse, who has been made to feel wrong, react? You survived intensive training in shame and guilt at the hands of your parents and then by your sick husband. You were taught to live in secrecy, protect your abuser, and think there was something wrong with you... 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, September 06, 2000

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I am sorry. I didn't realize my post would be that long. Please edit it if you want too. Only for spelling and grammar...

Lizzie

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, September 07, 2000

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Thanks Miranda, especially for the sex abuse - because I thought something was definitely wrong with me that I wasn't as "active" as he. I would come home from work and he would have tapes already in the vcr, "making it more exciting".... Translation: making it less loving, less personal; making you into an object, not a person. Am I that disgusting that he needs a movie to excite him. I read an article saying that those caught up in porno can not give you the type of touching; loving; cuddling; that I desire.... I am one who wears boxers and sweatshirts to bed.......not aprons and teddies......he knew that when he married me.....I am not a "boy toy"........signed, grateful to you for your letter. 

 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 16, 2000

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good job for getting out Miranda. It can be eay to become involved in an abusive relationship ,but hard to leave one. This may be a good time to memorialize your lost children,even though this happened a long time ago. You would be surprised how much impact a miscarriage can have. Anytime someone dies, memorializing helps us come to terms with the experience.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, September 18, 2000

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Dear Miranda and Doc: Thanks for sharing your story. Everytime someone is so brave as to share their story here, so MANY of us benefit, and thanks to Dr. Irene for her site and commentary... My boyfriend of 2 years was abusive, a classic abuser, but as I am seeing here, many of us do not realize that we are being abused as our self-doubt and lack of judgement prevent good rationale. My boyfriend verbally, physically, and sexually abused me. It took two years for me to see that it was abusive and I only just realized from educating myself that it also entailed sexual abuse. He would make me do things sexually after venting on me, putting me down, to show control and reinforce my worthlessness. What a selfish and terrible person. Then he started chatting over the internet and I found love letters TO PEOPLE HE DID NOT KNOW, telling them things he would NEVER say to me... I was devastated, angry, and did not understand it. Can someone explain this to me???? This is why our relationship broke up. I could not deal with BETRAYAL.

nelsonvl872@cs.com ("l872" as in "love", not 1-872)

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, September 21, 2000

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Being a Christian woman and married to a Christian man, I never would have dreamed that my husband would become abusive. In fact, when he did it took me a long time to realize it; mostly because I had been taught to submit to the man. It wasn't until he started asking me to do things in bed that I din't want to do or when he demanded sex no matter how tired or sick I was that I suspected he might be involved in pornography. This issue is never addressed by the church. They always want signs of physical abuse and when I point out the emotional damage it's always brushed off, and that I'm just crying"Wolf!"

C in Tacoma

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 23, 2000

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http://www.angelfire.com/tx/recoveredmemories/index.html

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, September 24, 2000

S1

Yes, I can relate to Miranda. I was married when I was 17. I had loving parents. My abuse came from outside the family and school. I spent 9 years with my husband who verbally abused me, sex was when he wanted it, whether I did or ot. He didn't blame it on a bible, he just took it. My ex-boyfriend and I speny 9 years together, in the same scenario. By both, I was physically abused as well. Not severely, only when I refused to comply with them or voiced my own needs. I had sought therapy with both relationships, to no avail. I became stronger, but would then slip back into a low self-esteem/self destructing behavior. I turned to alchohol and had problems with alcohol, the whole time. Now, I am single, attend AA, and learning to really like me, and take care of myself. I was diagnosed as co-dependent in treatment, and am still learning what it is. I know from AA that I want to be healthy and happy. I have been sober for 4 months now. I feel great, and feel like I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. I am scared of myself and new relationships. I have learned to turn this fear over to my higher power and not to control it. It was a long road for me to travel, and I know I am at the infant stage, but I'm 42 and really want to start living. I have two wonderful boys the good lord blessed me with. They actually kept me going through all this. Thank you, Lynn.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 30, 2000

S1

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 30, 2001

S1

can you tell me "the advantages and disadvantages of marrying young"