emotional abuse, in danger?

dallass51October 18, 2012


I am new to this forum, but thought I would give it a try. I need to ask if someone else feels like my situation is dangerous or abusive. I have been married to my husband for two years, with him for five. Now that I have been researching emotional abuse, my husband seems to fit all of the warning signs. I guess I just chose to ignore it and hope it would go away because I love him. I have many stories that I could share, but this past weekend we were out and about going to church, going to the movies and shopping. After we had gotten out of church, my husband and I were driving and he asked me to give him my cell phone. (keep in mind he likes to take my things away and not give them back especially my cell because he thinks I am a whore) so I gave him my cell phone. He wouldn�t give it back to me, he says he does it just to make me mad (but there is no trust in our marriage he is intimidated by me). Finally I got my cell back when he went into the gas station, he hid it under his driver's seat. We then parked at the movie theatre because the movie we wanted to see was about to start. He asked for my cell again I told him no. so he said we aren�t going into the theatre until you give it to me. I wouldn�t back down, so we sat there for about 20 min because he was throwing one of his fits and refused to go inside until he got what he wanted. He was so mad that he proceeded to buy 1 movie ticket for himself and left me to buy my own and try to run to catch up to him inside the theatre. After the movie he was continuing to throw a fit about me not giving him my cell phone, he drove to Hooters, threw his wedding ring in my face and said you can sit in the car, I am going in here to have a good time. He went in for five min, came back out and I was so angry. I was yelling at him for acting that way to me, he started saying he was going to beat me up and throw me in the street, he started raging, got in my face as he was driving and drove down a back alley and said okay you want to yell at me like this I will give you something to yell about, I was terrified he was going to hurt me. He just kept threatening me and screaming in my face. I am just wondering what anyone thinks, I have many, many, stories, too many to tell like this. I have been called every name in the book, my personality criticized,mind games etc. everyone says I am in danger and a domestic abuse counselor says I am in danger, but I guess I am in denial and hoping for him to change. Any opinions would be appreciated. thanks in advance.

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I'll be very blunt here....if you stay with this guy and put up being treated like this for one more day, you are a complete fool.

Can I be anymore direct?

Whether or not you are in actual danger of being harmed I cannot tell of course, but for you to put up with being treated like a child by your husband is absurd. This guy seems to be a controlling bully. You absolutely DO NOT treat anyone you care for and have a shred of respect for like this. Why on earth are you with this jerk? Real men do not treat women like this...I'm a guy, and I am embarrassed that there are actually neanderthals like this still around.....

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 10:04AM
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Jesus wept, why are you still considering staying with this creep? It's such a no-brainer, you should have been long gone before now. With the controlling and bullying behaviour he has exhibited to date, and in public no less, if you stay I can almost guarantee you will end up in the papers some day as the "wife killed by husband" discovered in a pool of blood in your home or a shallow grave somewhere. It sounds dramatic but is a sad probability.
Good men do not call their wives "whores". Good men do not throw wedding rings, or threaten to hit, or take things away (whether to make you mad or otherwise).........jeez, from the outside it is clear this a$$ho!e is out of control.
Gotta tell you, the minute my husband walked in the door of the cinema without me would have been the minute I turned around, went home, packed my stuff and got the H3[[ out of Dodge.
For your own sake, leave NOW. YES, you ARE in denial.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 10:59AM
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Thank you both for your replies. I know you are right. It is hard because I don't want to go through the pain of another divorce, I was with someone for seven years before this one, I seem to attrack or be attracted to men like this because they fool me into thinking they are so nice in the beginning. I am only 30 and am terrified of what the rest of my life looks like. Chris (my husband) always tells me that if I leave him that I won't ever find anyone else that will be faithful to me because sense ( I am pretty) that guys will only want sex from me then in ten years when I am old and a has been that they will just throw me away for someone that is 25. Sense we are Christian he says that noone has values anymore and that I won't find anyone that will be faithful to me. It is crazy how you can be brainwashed and start to believe the things you are told after hearing it for so long. I do appreciate your response.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 11:25AM
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With that sort of attitude I strongly dispute the Chris is even remotely what could be described as a Christian.
Honey, get out of there and find yourself before you go looking for someone else. Good men are attracted to women who are confident and self-assured.
There are men out there with values, but Chris isn't one of them.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 12:01PM
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Wow, gotta say I am shocked that the OP is so young and tolerates this (I'm 48)...I would have guessed much older from her original post...in her 50s or 60s at least, someone who was brought up before the women's movement really took effect.

I'm not religious at all, so take this for what it's worth, but I agree with colleenoz...he can call himself whatever he wants and go to church every damn day, but he is hardly living a "Christian" life if he is treating you this way.

And if you do leave....resist the urge to try at attach yourself to a man right away. You need to heal yourself, become independent and gain confidence in yourself, otherwise you will likely be right back where you are in a few years. Men like this sniff out needy, reliant women, because they know that most strong women wouldn't put up with this crap for more than two minutes. I can only imagine the look on my GF's face if had ever demanded her to hand over her phone or wait in the car while I go into a Hooters...I'd have been out the door that night. But then again she's an NYC girl too....lol!

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 1:34PM
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Thank you both again. I know it seems strange that I stay in this situation. I know it seems strange, but there are good qualities in him and it is hard to just pick up and leave. He also pays for me to go to school and has been helping me pay off debt. Yes, I am only 30 and I know that is shocking. I guess I just tend to be overly forgiving and try and see the best in people more than I should, even when it hurts me in the process. I have never been/lived alone, so that is something I would need to get help with, seeing a therapist, etc. I do appreciate both of you responding. It is extremely hard to be in this situation and I only pray that one day I can be strong and get myself out of it.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 2:44PM
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Christian? What is Jesus-like in saying he was going to beat me up and throw me in the street?

Of course it is hard to pick up and leave. So what?

He also pays for me to go to school and has been helping me pay off debt. And that matters more than your emotional and physical health? Pretty high financial terms, if you ask me.

It will never be any easier than it is right now. You don't wait to "get strong." You do the things that scare you and that makes you strong.

We can talk until the cows come home, but all you're doing is more of the same-old same-old, wanting someone else to validate what you do instead of deciding for yourself.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 4:54AM
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I'm with Readinglady. People in real life have advised you to get out of this relationship asap yet you come to this forum to get more opinions. I'm not sure that I understand what it is that you're after here? Do you need more people to tell you this is a bad situation? Or are you hoping for advice to make this work? If you'd be in denial you wouldn't be here writing what you wrote.

When will you leave; have you thought about what would be the last straw?

Let's assume for arguments' sake that we know this guy will never take it to the next level and actually physically attack you; his behavior will stay the same as it is now. And then picture the rest of your life like that, possibly bringing kids into it. Is that enough said?

And I was also thinking: comparing good and bad qualities in a person only applies in non-abusive situations so please don't use this as a way of validating staying where you are. For example:

-Being a bit of a messy person vs cooking nice meals = ok
-Screaming abuse in your face vs paying off your debt = not so much

    Bookmark   October 21, 2012 at 10:01PM
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Thank you guys for responding. I know exactly what you are saying, it is a no- brainer. But until you are in this position, it is hard for you to understand. When you marry someone and expect them to treat you right, then they don't and you still have feelings for the person and love them it is hard to just say one day, oh he is out of control I think I will just pick up and leave today. I need to try and get as much as advice and opinion as I possibly can to see if people like this can change without walking out of a relationship that I have invested five years in. Everyone that I know, friends and family says I have always been able to put up with a lot, and that is true. I guess the reason I came on this forum was to tell my situation to complete strangers and get some feedback, because everyone else I have talked to about it knows me personally, in some way or another, including my domestic abuse counselor, she is a good friend of my step mom so everyone involved wants what is completely best for me- because they KNOW me and love me. Getting an outside opinion is what I need and it just helps me get perspective in my very confusing world. Thank you all again.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 11:03AM
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Just remember, throughout the years, the morgues and the battered women shelters have been full of women who thought just like you, "maybe this time he'll change..." As a guy who was raised in a home with a wonderful, caring father, it's always blown my mind when I hear of what some women have put up with in a marriage.

True, we don't know you (hell we don't even "know" each other here), but no one wants to see anyone put up with what you have been put up with, and more importantly we don't want to see the situation get worse, which there is a good chance it will eventually.

As for "investing" 5 years...you can't get that time back, so it shouldn't really impact things. What matters is doing what's best for YOUR future....f*ck him, he's shown you how much he cares for you by his actions.

Best of luck.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 12:18PM
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Worrying about losing your "investment" of five years is the kind of thinking that keeps suckers sending money to the Nigerian scammers.........."Oh, I've sent them $50,000 already, they say if I just send another $5,000, the deal will go through: I'd hate to lose my $50,000 because I didn't send it....Oh, I've sent them $55,000 already, they say if I just send another $5,000, the deal will go through: I'd hate to lose my $55,000 because I didn't send it...." and everyone on the outside can see there's no way on God's green earth the sucker is ever going to get a penny, but he'll just keep on sending it against everyone's good advice until he is completely tapped out.
Staying with an abusive spouse is just like that. Some days you just have to let go of your investment and move on. The odds of your husband changing are about a bajillion to one, he has to want to change and that doesn't look likely, does it? But when you do decide to cut your losses, don't let him fool you into thinking he _has_ changed to convince you to return. It's all a show, every time.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 12:47PM
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I hope you will think about your own heading. You used the word danger. Yes, you used it in a question, but the fact that you used it at all indicates you recognize a potential for that. He's certainly come close.

Belief in change on the part of the partner is one of the most destructive delusions an abused woman or man can fall prey to.

Abusive people pursue deeply entrenched patterns of behavior which meet primal needs for validation, power and control. Even with serious committed counseling the odds of change are miniscule.

The odds of change for the abused party are better, but they also pursue deeply entrenched patterns of behavior. I have no doubt some who respond on this forum know precisely how difficult what they are suggesting you do is.

In the short-term I recommend you obtain and conceal a second pre-paid cellphone not connected to your current plan which can be used in emergencies for 911 calls or for rescue by a family member or friend.

Start researching options. Consider it your own personal emergency preparedness plan.

Since you're going to school, check into their counseling and assistance services. Everything you disclose is confidential and nothing you say will be new to them. They can help you recognize patterns of thought (i.e. stinkin' thinkin') which trap you in destructive patterns.

I would characterize discounting your therapist because she knows your step-mother as a perfect example of stinkin' thinkin'. To give less credence to those who know and love you and want the best for you and are on-site to see precisely what's going on is absurd.

For more advice check the forum at the link. No one knows better than those who've been there. If for some reason the link doesn't work (just covering all bases) go to dailystrenghdotorg and enter "Physical and Emotional Abuse" in the search box for the appropriate group.

Here is a link that might be useful: Daily Strength Physical and Emotional Abuse Forum

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 2:19PM
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Readinglady, thank you very much for your valuable information. I do take it seriously and am thankful. Also, to colleenoz, yabber and mkroopy, I appreciate you all as well. It is funny how someone on the outside can see a situation and think gosh, what is wrong with them, why are they still staying in this horrible situation?? It is just confusing and when you want something in your life to work out so badly and it starts going downhill, you will do anything to fix it/hold on to it. It will take a lot for me to leave, many people say a punch to the face (hopefully not). I wish I had never gotten myself into this mess and would have waited to get married. I have threatened to leave before and he will just tell me that no one else will want me or just to use me and that no one else our age has values anymore.( he is 26 and works in a prison, guess that explains his attitude) then, he will just start working overtime to pay my bills and take me shopping every weekend probably to make up for all the bs. Which is where I am now. Yesterday went shopping and bought a bunch of stuff for me and took me out. Tells me he is sorry and he will change. But you all are right, probably will be another cycle of abuse in the next month. Anyway, I will update and let you all know what is happening, as I do appreciate your advice.
Take care.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 3:04PM
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no one else will want me or just to use me and that no one else our age has values anymore.

In 2006 there were some 37,600,000 unmarried men. Even allowing for gays, those in a committed (if unmarried) heterosexual relationship, etc. I'm guessing if you left this guy, there would be someone decent and good out there for you when you were ready.

I notice your spouse has a tendency to use global statements. No one our age has values. That's ridiculous. Taken literally that means he doesn't have values, because he's certainly part of the No one.

But any reasoning person knows there are thousands upon thousands of young people with sound values. If No one [your] age has values the result would be a society in collapse. The crime rate would be skyrocketing instead of diminishing. A reduction in violent crime has been the trend for years.

It was telling that you said your spouse works in a prison. I come from a family of police and prison employees. I know all too well the statistics relating to depression, family violence, alcoholism and drug use in those fields. My sister has spent her entire married life with such a man. The only saving grace was when his own physical debility made it impossible for him to beat her up anymore.

I cannot begin to tell you how painful it must be for your loved ones to see you clinging to a marriage with the potential for your own destruction.

I wish you well. I hope you can at least take some of the steps suggested to ensure your safety.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 5:25PM
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When I was younger I was in an unhealthy relationship once. No physical abuse but some mental abuse. Nothing like what you are describing, but what I wanted to say is that I remember how hard it was for me to get out of it. Somehow he always made me think that if I was a better person the relationship would be better. So for me to break up with him was not fair, I just had to try harder. I did break up with him a couple of times but I always caved and went back. I was so unhappy and I knew it. All my friends (the ones I had left after he isolated me from many of them) told me to leave but I just couldn't do it, even though I wanted to.
Then an opportunity came up to do a 6 month traineeship in another country (about 3 hours away by plane) and I took it. He did what he could to try and convince me not to go but I went ahead and organised it. Once I was there I still didn't break up with him and after a few months he even came over for a week to visit. I had hoped to feel strong enough to break up but I kept making excuses (like: breaking up over the phone is rude and I'm not like that so I'll have to wait till I get back home). About 4 months into it I still hadn't done it and then I received a letter from my mom with a very direct message: snap out of it and end it now, enough is enough. She even got a bit upset with me, she really told me off. Keep in mind that for 2 years my mom had kept her opinion to herself so when she finally got to that point it made an impression. It was exactly the last push that I needed and so a couple of days later I broke up with him; over the phone! I clearly remember that moment because it was different to all previous breakups; this time the spell had been broken. I knew I'd never get back with him; no matter what.
I really REALLY enjoyed the last 2 months there before I went back home. After I got back he did hassle me and showed some stalker-ish behaviour but that was nothing other than a nuisance. He soon moved on to the next girl when he realised I was serious.

The moral of my story is that I only got strong enough to do it once I physically moved away from him. And even then it still took a couple of months before I reached the point of no return. I think any form of brainwashing (minor or major) only works when you're subjected to it on a regular basis; once you break that cycle by creating distance (literally) it does fall apart sooner or later.

Hope this helps, wishing you all the best

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 9:42PM
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Yabber- thank you for sharing your story with me. This really does help. My mom always asks me, when are you going to get away from him? She doesn�t say when are you leaving him, but when are you going to get away from him.. you are right. I think the problem is, I have never been away from him. We have never spent more than a few nights apart in five years. Sometimes I think to myself, if he were to just disappear into thin air and leave me to be alone, I think I would be relieved. But the thought of actually picking up, moving my stuff out, dealing with the pain of hurting him and (myself) because I do care for him is just too much. That is why people always tell me that it will probably take a punch to the face to get me to walk out. It is a cycle of abuse as well, because after things get really bad, they get really good. Like he is a different person and says he wants to change. Like the honeymoon stage of a relationship, then back to bad again. So it is very confusing, like a really bad mind game. I tell him all the time he plays mind games. Well Yabber- glad you were able to get away from that person, by physically moving yourself out of the situation for a while. I think that is an eye-opener for me and yes I need to do that. My Step Dad lives in Australia, which is very far from Albuquerque where I live. Maybe one of these days I can take a long vacation out there. Then again that is wishful thinking, he would never let me go alone anywhere, and that is where I need to be strong.
Thanks again and the best to you all as well.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 12:58PM
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You are blessed to have family members who can help. You can use that to your advantage.

If Australia is what it takes, then work with family members to obtain necessary documents and tickets. Start shifting clothing a bit at a time to another house. Arrange to leave while he's at work or instead of school, when he drops you off, arrange for someone to pick you up and just go.

It can be done. Right now you're in a daze, brainwashed, and that makes it hard to think, but while it may take you longer to figure out the necessary steps, it's doable.

You might also want to read this information on intermittent reinforcement. That he's abusive then apologizes, brings me flowers and swears 'never again' is a common and very effective strategy of abusers.

It's like being in a cult.

Here is a link that might be useful: Out of the Fog - Intermittent Reinforcement

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 3:40PM
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"he would never let me go alone anywhere" Sweetie- can you hear yourself??? You're an adult. Adults let _themselves_ do stuff. If I was your mother, and you told me you had nowhere to go, I'd say, "Come home." I bet your mother would too.
Leave and get someone else to pick up your stuff. Or have a police officer and friends come with you to get your stuff. (The more friends, the quicker it's over.)
As for "hurting" your husband, I doubt he will stay "hurt" for long, abusers generally find someone else to abuse in fairly short order.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 2:23AM
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He is not going to change.

Read it again, out loud: He is NOT GOING TO CHANGE.


You are in love with a batterer. That says wonders about your self-esteem. You have none. Get out of there. See a counselor. Do NOT put yourself through any more of this idiot's abuse. Learn that you are totally able to live on your own and do for yourself. As the song goes: Pick yourself up dust yourself off, and start all over again. Decide that you WILL do it. You CAN do it. You are WORTH IT!

Now say this again: HE IS NOT GOING TO CHANGE. The rest of your life will be spent as it is now, only escalating, if you do not leave him. If that's ok with you, stay. But I think it's not ok with you and you know it and you know you are better than this.

Say it again: He is not going to change.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 7:41AM
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I am grateful for all of your comments. I do have a lot of support, lots of friends and family members who want to help. My problem has always been that I have never been alone, even from the time I moved out of my mom�s house at 17, started working a full time job while finishing my senior year of high school, I always lived with a best friend or boyfriend. Then at 18 I got engaged, 21 got married, 25 got divorced and less than a year later moved in with my current husband. I am terrified. I know I am capable of taking care of myself, it is just scary to think about actually doing it. I have a business degree and a job that has been amazing to me for 12 years and I am currently trying to go back to school to get into another career field. I know I am capable but I am scared. Fear seems to be paralyzing. It is never ending though my drama at home, it is only getting worse like you all have said. Chris knows that things are really bad and yesterday at work I had a panic attack because of stress. Now he doesn�t even want me talking to my mom or best friend on the phone because it is taking away from "his time" and that I don�t put him first. I haven�t seen my mom in over a year and she lives three hours away. I don�t see her because her boyfriend has sons my age living in her house that might "hit on me" or so Chris thinks, and I don�t bring Chris because my family hates him. Anyway, I do realize he won�t change, but something in me says what if in two years I am 32, still alone and am going to be too old to start a family and my life going nowhere. Sometimes putting up with it seems more doable because I know Chris wants a family and will be there from now on. I need to just get rid of this toxic mindset and get out. Anyway, thanks again everyone. Take care..

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 5:45PM
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If you stay with him you choose your own suffering; that's your choice. But PLEASE do NOT start 'a family' with this guy. Knowingly bringing kids into this would be SO very wrong. I trylu don't understand how you cannot see that. Low self esteem is one thing; but considering having kids with this man and subjecting them to whatever WILL come their way is just not on. How can that not shake you into action? You're only 30 or so; you have plenty time!

Get a grip, make a move. Stop over-thinking everything and start acting like a grown-up. Saying this with love, but your comment of wanting a family gets me fired up sorry :-(

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 7:36PM
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I do NOT want a family with Chris. But I do want a family eventually in my life, I just wish I didnt have to wait for the next guy. I would never willingly get off the pill in this marriage at all. I know that bringing a child into this would be very wrong, he has asked me over and over to get off the pill, I will not. He has even tried to hide my pill pack, but trust me, I wont have kids with him. But someday I would love to have a family, it is just sad that I have already been through two marriages and still no family, but maybe that is a blessing. But once I do figure it all out, I hope to one day have kids :)

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 7:48PM
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Go to your mother. I can't reiterate that often enough. Don't take Chris's word for it that her stepsons will "hit" on you. They may, they may not. At your age I'm sure you can tell them you're not interested, if you aren't.
In fact, don't take Chris's word for anything. Hiding your pill pack???? He's trying to make sure you _can't_ leave, as it would be so much harder with a baby. Don't waste any more time on him, get out and pursue the life _you_ want. Don't look back ten years from now and say, "I should have...."
The longer you take to get shed of this toxic relationship, the longer you will have to "wait for the next guy". But once you're away from Chris, spend some time NOT IN A RELATIONSHIP, not even looking. Become friends with yourself. Jumping at the first guy who offers because you're scared to be alone is the best way of hooking up with another a$$hole. They prey on women like you, so vulnerable and compliant.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 11:04PM
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And you know what: the thought of being on your own might be scary; but once you take the plunge and do it you'll be fine. Really; you'll be fine and you'll be wondering why you hyped it up so much (I'm sure Chris is not helping).

It's always the way; I remember how nervous I was traveling by myself the first time and I know lots of people never even try it because they're scared. But once you do it and you realise you're fine: it's such a buzz! Exactly what you need :-)

And hey; I'm so happy you don't want babies with this guy!

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 11:37PM
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I have never heard so many excuses! Makes me wonder if this is a real situation or not. No matter what everybody here says, you have another excuse. Yeah, It's hard. Adult life is no picnic. Put on your big girl panties, you're 30 now.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2012 at 11:39PM
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I agree with colleenoz, and said the same thing in an earlier reply...she needs to spend some time living her life for herself, not as someone's girl.

This seems to be an issue with many women from what I have seen...they go from being someone's daughter to someone's girlfriend to someone's wife....and never really experience living their lives for themselves. From the time I went away to college to the time I got married at 32, I was "unattached" way more than I was with someone...those years were great and really helped form the person I am today.

Right now I am in a relationship...but the concept of not being in one for an extended period of time does not scare me at all. I remember in one of my online dating profiles, I once put a line something like "while I would like someone to share my life with, I don't NEED anyone". I still feel this way, I am a very independent person. My ex, on the otherhand, is like the OP in that she has really never been on her own. She's been with the guy she left me for for about 6 years now. A couple of years ago, they had a bad fight and "broke up" for literally a few (3 or 4) days maybe....she actually went out on a date during that time....unreal....

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 9:02AM
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I don't think there's anything more anyone here can say that will help you. You have identified a pattern of increasing control and isolation, including separating you from your family. Breaking away may be difficult now but it surely will not be easier a year from now or two years or three.

The only way things will change is if you change them.

There is another issue to consider. I can see you have many fine qualities and are a bright and skilled woman. However, I don't think right now you would be a good parent.

Could you protect a child? Could you be alone for a child? Even if you re-married and had the best husband in the world, he might go to work one ordinary day and be in a fatal car crash. Or he might get cancer. Any number of things can happen we don't anticipate.

What if, because of your fear of aloneness, you brought into your home someone just as bad for your child as your husband is for you?

This fear, this need to be "propped up", is an issue to confront and resolve for reasons that extend far beyond yourself.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 12:15PM
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Scarlett2001, yes I am a real person and yes my situation is real and not made up. Everyone in life has weaknesses and this happens to be mine. I guess I do need to put my � big girl panties on�, actually with what I have put up with in life so far, not even including my bad marriages, I have already done that. If you were to research abused wives, you would see that most of these women go back to their abusers more than seven times before they actually get out for good. It isn�t easy. I will just put my trust in God and hope for the best in my situation, no more excuses! Thanks again everyone!!

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 5:40PM
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I will just put my trust in God and hope for the best in my situation, no more excuses!

If ever there was a contradiction in terms...sigh

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 7:51PM
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>>I will just put my trust in God and hope for the best in my situation, no more excuses!This is like the story of the blonde who prayed and prayed every night for months to win the lottery. Finally one night as she was praying she heard a voice say in exasperation, "Will you give Me a hand here, at least buy a ticket!"
God helps those who help themselves. He is not going to make your husband better, or better yet make him disappear, you have to do that for yourself.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2012 at 2:30AM
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Y'know, Dallas, did you ever think that your fear of being alone is being reinforced by Chris? The way he treats you eats away at your self-esteem and it is what he wants. He is tearing you down. Once you leave you might just be surprised by how unafraid and liberated and strong you are.

(Why do your posts have the funny characters in them? Makes them hard to read).,

    Bookmark   October 26, 2012 at 9:00AM
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colleenoz that is a great analogy, I will definitely use that in the future...

It's frustrating, because the OP seems intelligent and knows the situation, she knows he will never change...yet won't take the steps to make her life better.

And talk about contradictions, on one hand willing to "put her trust in God", yet on the other hand obviously taking the time to search the web on this topic and wind up at a forum full of strangers, and spilling her guts here looking for either people to tell her she should leave him, or people to tell her things will get better if she hangs in there (still not sure what she wants).

Unfortunately I find it highly doubtful she will ever do anything about this, her last "trust in God" statement makes that pretty clear. I hope she doesn't wind up hurt, or worse.....because she is so close to doing what she has to do, in that she is fully aware of the toxicity of the situation....she just cant bring herself to take the first step.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2012 at 9:22AM
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"Somehow he always made me think that if I was a better person the relationship would be better. So for me to break up with him was not fair, I just had to try harder."

& the harder you try, the more you get on his nerves, & the angrier he is, & the harder you try, & the worse it gets...

This is so hard to break out of;
people who haven't had their self-esteem trashed & trampled sometimes (often) can't fathom the extent of the damage, cannot fathom how "a person as smart as you" can get hooked into this vicious circle.

Abusers don't walk up & say, "Hi, there, you're pretty, & you're charming, & you seem pretty sure of yourself, & that's a challenge to me. I bet I can break you down into your lowest components. How about going out with me? I'd like to see if I can destroy your confidence, control your every move, & ruin your life. C'mon. It'll be fun."

It doesn't happen that way;
it's as gradual as water dripping onto stone.

By the time you realize the problem & the scariness & the misery & the danger, you're so browbeaten that you doubt that you can survive without the person who's done this to you!

When you find yourself believing the unbelievable ("it's all your fault & nobody else will want you") & accepting the unacceptable (threatening you, screaming in your face, etc), there's no doubt;
you need to get away from this person.

These things never get better;
they always get worse, & the violence always escalates.

One more thing in Yabber's post strikes a note:
she got physically away from him.

You're not a tv set, & this guy doesn't have a remote control.

People cannot control you if they aren't in your daily life.

I sometimes think that men are like drugs;
we get the "habit", & the best way to break it is to go cold turkey:

get to a separate place, find a new job, change your phone number, don't go to your favorite places, don't listen to "your song", don't read his emails, don't open his letters, don't accept flowers.

Don't talk to him, don't let yourself be reminded that he exists.

Do this for at least a month, but it'll probably take longer-
as Yabber says, the longer you've been subjected to his behavior, the longer it may take for the fog to clear.

You'll know when you're "clean" when you can reflect on the nightmare that was life with him & be amazed that you believed the things you believed & that you accepted the things you accepted.

I wish you the very best.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2012 at 6:55PM
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I work in an adult school in a large city. People come to this school to get their GED's (High School diploma) or to get basic job skills, like computer literacy, LVN, etc. My job is to help these adults find their way to wherever they want to go in life. It could be rehab, counseling, job training, legal assistance, etc. etc. Most of the students I work with are female and they fall into two groups.

The first group have been through helll and they have come out strong, focused and determined. They know the road is long and that they will have to work hard and maybe be uncomfortable until they get on the right path, but they have courage and maturity. They have learned that depending on somebody else to take care of them is not going to work; they have to be their own best friends and take charge of their lives. These students usually succeed.

The second group comes back with the same sad stories week after week, month after month, year after year. They want sympathy, they want comforting, they want us to take care of them emotionally. They are not willing to actually do anything to help themselves. They leave one abusive relationship and get right into another. They can't grow up.

This abusive man is only half the problem. The other half is failing to deal with emotional dependency, disguised as love.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2012 at 1:42AM
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scarlett your compassion is overwhelming.

It isn't reasonable to expect someone who's been emotionally, mentally, & often physically battered into submission to pull herself up by her bootstraps.

Perhaps you'd be happier working solely with people who enjoy independence, self-assurance, & orderly lives.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2012 at 11:53AM
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You have missed my point entirely. All the compassion in the word will do nothing unless the person is willing to do something for herself. She has to TRY.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2012 at 10:36PM
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sorry, maybe I didn't make *my* point:

Needing/asking for support does not mean someone isn't trying.

& criticizing/judging/blasting someone for "not trying" is easy, uninformed, callous, & counter-productive.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2012 at 8:46AM
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Sylvia thank you for your posts. Emotional/mental abuse has an extreme effect on the mind/soul. It is something that I and others in my situation need extensive counseling and support. I do appreciate your posts and to scarlett- just because I havent left my situation yet, doesnt mean that I am not trying to help myself. By reaching out and getting input and advice from others, I believe is the first step. Acknowledging that my situation and life is not normal and realizing that brainwashing is real, is also a first step in changing it. Just because I am scared and unsure does not mean that I am not trying to pull myself back up and get out or change it. But sense I am assuming you have never been in an emotionally/mentally abusive relationship, then you dont really know how it would affect your mind and what decisions you might make with someone that you married and loved.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2012 at 10:56AM
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Dallas, I'm going to agree with everyone who says "leave". You aren't going to get your self esteem built up while you're living with an abuser. You say you love him. Could you explain that? What is it you love about him? People who love you will help you to live a fun, fulfilling Life. I don't see your attachment to this guy as love, I see it as your fear of being you. You can support yourself financially, get away! Abusers say the same things: you're not pretty, you're stupid, if you'd just_____things would be okay. You already know things aren't going to get better. And you already know you're able to keep a job. This guy doesn't want you around anyone. He will narrow your other relationships until you're totally dependent on him for companionship. That's not the way it should be. Sure, couples tend to sort of isolate themselves at the beginning, but people get added back in. One and one should make three! You, him, and the relationship. Please. Get out. You don't and shouldn't tell him! He will just try to stop you. He has no right to tell you what to do. He shouldn't "let" you do ,, you are an adult. Get away. And heed the advice here. Don't hook up with anyone until you love you enough to find a man who can love you. And let people you do trust help you ,if they tell you the guys a "no" then listen. I
think it's absurd he is afraid for you to visit your mom because there are males there your age!

this dude can't love anyone. People who want to control others are out of control themselves. He does not love you! He can't love anyone. And I'm with the others, he's claiming to be a Christian??? Ever read I Corinthians 13? Love is patient, love is kind, .... Not seeing this in his behavior. And that's just the first two.
You have Plenty of time to find a wonderful mate and have children. Don't let this mistake take away any more of your life. You can do it. You are smart and able! Keep telling everyone you can think of "I want to leave". And when you do go, PROMISE yourself you won't go back for a year!
I wish you the best! Let us all know....

    Bookmark   October 29, 2012 at 9:26PM
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Yes, I HAVE been in an abusive relationship and I finally walked out the door with nothing but the clothes on my back -no money, no car, nothing. Not even a coat. That was my real birthday.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2012 at 11:54PM
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Love is a decision.

We decide to love, & if it works, super.

If it doesn't work, we make a new decision.

Your continuing to "love" this guy gives him the empower to keep you beaten down.

Stop giving him fuel.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2012 at 10:19AM
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Everyone says, "LEAVE!",but for many women, it is a process. You are doing the right thing by reaching out--good for you! The next step is to educate yourself on abusive behavior. I recommend Lundy Bancroft's book, "Why does he do that? Inside the minds of angry and controlling men" This book saved my life. I understand that you are a Christian and want to please God by not divorcing. Your previous divorce is a scar on your heart, and makes you feel bad about yourself. God does not want you to punish yourself, and God does not want you to be trapped in an abusive situation either. It is godly and "OK" to walk away. His behavior is very dangerous, sweetheart. You are going to get hurt in many ways, and you know that no matter how much you hope it to be different, your hope should be in your future, not your husband. I understand that is why you stay for now, because you have a plan of escape (school, getting out of debt) You also battle with your heart, loving him, wishing he would wake up and realize that he is hurting you. READ THAT BOOK! It is written by a man who works with abusive men for over 20 years--I have never read a more honest, no BS assessment of the abusive mentality.
Do something else for yourself at the very least--do everything you can think of to prevent a pregnancy. Get on birthcontrol in secret, don't let him know. This man will use anything to trap you--he does not play fair no matter what he promises. Having a child with this person will make you more financially dependant, and put off your plans of making your life independant. Actually,realistically, the more time you take to put off your escape, the more ways he will find to prevent your leaving. His only goal at this point, is NOT to love you, but control you and keep you from leaving. Some men become extremely dangerous when they get wind that their partner is making plans to leave. That's why he watches you and threatens you all the time. This could cost you your life--but there is one thing worse than being murdered by an abuser, in my opinion...and that's having to live with an abuser...for the rest...of your...life!!!!! THINK ABOUT IT

    Bookmark   November 2, 2012 at 12:36PM
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I have sung the words to "I Am Woman" ,over the years to inspire me into persevering with a challenge, and to keep me on track towards my goal.

Helen Reddy, the original singer of this song, is an Australian and so am I.

Hop on that plane to Australia, singing this song and turn your back on this miserable life you have chosen for yourself. He is damaged goods, not worthy of your valuable time. You only get one go at life and, at 30, you have lots of time to re-invent yourself and embrace the joys of being a confident woman.

I am woman, hear me roar
In numbers too big to ignore
And I know too much to go back an' pretend
'cause I've heard it all before
And I've been down there on the floor
No one's ever gonna keep me down again

Oh yes I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to, I can do anything
I am strong (strong)
I am invincible (invincible)
I am woman

You can bend but never break me
'cause it only serves to make me
More determined to achieve my final goal
And I come back even stronger
Not a novice any longer
'cause you've deepened the conviction in my soul

    Bookmark   November 2, 2012 at 10:58PM
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"because he thinks I am a whore"

"left me to buy my own"

"After the movie he was continuing to throw a fit about me not giving him my cell phone, he drove to Hooters, threw his wedding ring in my face and said you can sit in the car, I am going in here to have a good time"

"He just kept threatening me and screaming in my face."

Whatever. Stay with him. Sounds like you live for the drama anyway. When you do decide to grow up then come back here.

But yes - he sounds like a psychopath. He lacks empathy. He doesn't care about YOU - he only loves himself. Wait until you finally wake up and find yourself all alone, 56 years old and legally separated with NO job, NO friends, NOTHING. Trust me, it sucks.

If you can get out now - GET OUT. Get a job. Get independence. Pay your own way. You don't need another person to complete you. And begin to volunteer. Take care of kids or throw away pets. Being around those that truly have NO other choice is life changing.

Leave him. He's an ass. But you are a bigger one for staying in the relationship after he treats you like dirt. For that's what you are to him. DIRT. Good luck.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 6:34PM
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Hi you guys,
I wanted to let you know that I finally left my marriage. I am in counseling and in the process of getting my own place. Thank you all for your help and support!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 7:12PM
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This is very good news. Stay strong honey, you can do it!

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 2:39PM
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You people are funny you know. Out of this whole conversations taken place for the past year nobody in this chat room has thought that maybe there’s two sides every story. I am this woman husband and name Chris. Let me tell something she hasn’t told you. First lets start with the begin of this relationship. I meant Dallas while she was going through her first divorce and she was in abuse relationship with her last husband James. I meant Dallas and she was stuck in a house the bought together. After 1 month of dating I felt bad I took her rent-free and helped get her back on her feet. We than feel in love with each other. During the first two years in our marriage Dallas accused me of cheating went through my phone and if I smelt funny or even if I had a whiff of perfume on she would accuse me of cheating. All because of the fact I was 3years younger than her. For two years I dealt with that. Never once accused her of cheating nor mistreated her. I sat there well her real dad for the first time accused me of being to immature for Dallas and never once did this woman ever stick up for me at all. I sat there well her mom accused me of showing her boyfriend pornographic photos. Who in there right would show pics like that to someone mother in law or any family member for that matter. Also did I mention the fact that this woman has had an affair. This woman cheated on me what kind of man wouldn’t be concerned for the wife after that. Also what kind woman tells someone lets do a six month separation and agrees not see other people but doesn’t wear her wedding and tells people she leaving when she going marriage counseling this Sat. This woman is probably still cheating on me and expects me to live separately and just phone calls no contact for two months and than we will start dating each with other while living separately and go to marriage counseling. How do you work on a marriage when your not living with each other also where not supposes to see other people but like I said she I guess forgot that part. Did I mention that its either this or divorce, but she did come up with this she got from you people and her family witch is never around and does have real clue as to what’s going on. Just like you people. Of course I’m going to want to check on her. I’m not perfect by no means at all marriage takes work and it also takes two. This woman should have been talking to me instead of talking with you people. Half of what was said is either a lie or an exaggeration of the truth. What kind of woman leaves her husband at a bus stop. Or how about at the out back steak house. Let not even get into finances while I was working 16hr shifts with barely any sleep this woman was out shopping spending the money sometimes leaving us with barely enough money for food. I would begged her not go out or spend money. For Christmas if I don’t have money my family just gets cards or we tell each other not get gifts for us. Dallas spend almost are entire paycheck on Christmas for her family. Did she mention that I would work 100 hr of over time just to keep up with her spending and the debt from her last marriage and that I paid 6000 dollars off in year from her loan or the sacrifice that I would make for this woman. While she was getting her nails done and going out to eat well I was eating roman noodles. And for what so she can sit here and badmouth me with lies and fabrication. Who wouldn’t be tired after all that works. But you know what id get oh appreciate you and than she do it again and again. Over and over, but when I don’t think before when I speak during a argument or if something I did mean comes out of my mouth, and when I say sorry isn’t that the same thing. Shouldn’t we just both respect each other and not do it. But why is it that im taking all the blame and that I have accepted what ive done but yet she hasn’t. Also she spent two years going out with friends leaving me at home never bring them around even when I told her it bugged me. I never felt so alone in my life. It was like I thought she was embarrassed of me and she knows I have no friends what so ever but I guess that’s okay right. Dallas never would communicate to me at all she runs to everybody else when theres a problem. . This woman just want attention from every one probably because her whole family has practically a banded her while my family came in took her and made her one of our family members. When I met Dallas her whole life was drinking parting and sex. Her best friend Valerie is on drugs she has no positive reinforcement and you people are not helping at all. I could sit here and she did this and didn’t do that what’s the point. There only two people that truly no the truth and that me Chris her husband and my wife Dallas. What kind of abuse counselor can sit there not see any bruises or police reports and say ya you’re being abused really who does that. Every marriage has issues. I have forgave her for what she has done why cant she do the same for me. I want to save my marriage. I hope our marriage counselor will help because you people are not helping, and someone can get both sides of the story. Thank you let me know committers that have no life if want to know what’s going on let me know thank you

    Bookmark   March 21, 2013 at 3:45PM
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Did i mention that she never told me about this for what over a year who does that.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2013 at 3:48PM
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"Out of this whole conversations taken place for the past year nobody in this chat room has thought that maybe there’s two sides every story."

1 - this is not a chat room;
2 - everyone here KNOWS there are two sides to every story.

That's as far as I got in your ramble. Paragraphs and punctuation would make your post a lot more readable!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 12:23PM
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