posted on Jan, 15 2008 @ 02:57 PM
Hi, I'm relatively new to this forum and mostly "lurk" but I couldn't let this one go without responding...
I recently divorced a man to whom I was married for 7 years. He was extremely controlling and verbally abusive and sometimes physically abusive.
I have come to understand that my ex husband is such a self loathing creature that he cannot let the person with whom he shares his life be happy. If
I were happy and well adjusted, he would feel his own failure even more deeply, therefore he had to make sure-at all costs- that I felt as bad as he
did, its almost as if I were a blank slate onto which he projected every hateful thought that he ever had about himself.
The lengths that these people will go to in order to prevent taking any responisibility is amazing. No matter what they do, it's always someone
else's fault. And in my husband's case at least, I think that he truly does believe it. I can't tell you how many times I have faced him down in
court on a CDV charge in which he came across looking like the victim. He is so very convincing. Someone said once when referring to abusive people
that you could give them lie detector tests and a large number would actually pass the test, that's how strongly they believe their own lies. I truly
believe that they live in a different reality than the rest of us.
I tried changing my behavior, thinking it would change him. It never did. No matter what I did he wasn't happy. If he told me to drink from a cup
and I did what he said, he would yell at me. If I did not do it, he would yell at me. If he could have snapped his fingers and magically had me
replaced by another woman, he would do the exact same thing to her. Realizing that I was not to blame at all was very liberating. Of course it's
also kind of frightening because we like to believe we have some sort of control over how someone treats us. That's just not the case with these
people. The only way to deal with these kinds of people is to leave them.
I remember how, for so long, I kept his "secret" hidden. I tried to make excuses for him because I was ashamed. When I realized that the shame was
his and his alone I started to reach out to others and was amazed by how that little movement alone empowered me.
When he saw that I was trying to become independent, he really made my life hell for a long time. We shared a car, and he would keep the keys from me
so I couldn't go anywhere. He kept all the bills locked away, as well as any access to money, he listened in on my calls, when he picked me up from
work he would demand my check on the days that I got paid. Because of my children I gave in to his demands as much as possible while very, very
carefully cultivating, behind his back a plan to leave, which I finally did.
And let me tell you, it aint easy. I deal with him still daily because of the kids but I am getting stronger by the minute. I wouldn't trade the
expericence for anything because I have learned so many lessons. One of the most important lessons that will carry me through life is that I cannot
change the actions of another, I can only control how I react to them.
No one can tell either of you to leave, it's something you will do when you are ready. And if you leave before you are ready, chances are you will
end up going back. And that's okay. Each time you leave you will learn more and you will become stronger.
My thoughts and prayers are with both of you. You have the strength to leave if you find that's what you want. You just have to find it. In the
meantime, I for one, am happy to be an ear if you need it.