Women, life, happiness
  • “I’m in an abusive relationship. I’m tired of living this way.”

    April 14th, 2011Keryl PesceFamily and Relationships, Life in general

    "l am living with a mentally and emotionally abusive, alcoholic, narcissist husband. I haven't any "real" job skills or college degree to make enough money to live on my own. I now suffer from severe depression, panic attacks, extreme shyness and barely associate with anyone, or go anywhere due to low self-esteem. I'm 40, humiliated, and tired of living this way. I have 2 kids with him (12 & 9) that I am trying to raise as responsible, independent, giving, caring people. I don't want my son growing up thinking it's ok to treat any person the way his father does, and I'm starting to see signs of him beginning to. I also don't want my daughter thinking this is the way relationships are supposed to be. The atmosphere of the community we live in is also a daily struggle with trying to keep my kids on a good path. I try to keep them involved in activities away from here. I live between a rock and a hard place."

    I've got some advice for you; but first and foremost, if there is physical abuse involved, call your local domestic violence hotline. If you live in the Hudson Valley, the numbers are 1-845-471-3033 or 1-518-789-6977. These people are trained and these organizations exist for the sole purpose of helping women in your situation. Call them. Even if there isn't physical abuse involved, call them.

    When EMTs are trained to assess the most immediate needs of a person who is injured or ill, they learn the basic theory of ABC, which stands for airway, breathing, and circulation. It gives them a clear picture as to what needs to be addressed in what order. It helps take a potentially complex situation and break it down to clear priorities. 

    I want you think of resolving your situation in a similar fashion. What's most critical to address? Then what's next? And so on. Before I give you some suggestions on how to do that, there's something I want you to know.

    You said you "live between a rock and a hard place", which means you feel stuck, trapped and powerless. I'm here to tell you that you are none of these. Every single obstacle you listed above can be overcome. Without exception.

    That's not me making light of your situation. Nor am I telling you that getting you and your children to a better place will be simple or easy. I am telling you that with the right thinking, guidance and support, living safely, with peace and happiness is possible, and you have the capacity to make that happen. As a matter of fact, you are the only one who can make that happen (with support of course).

    Part of you already realizes this. You reached out looking for guidance. This is the critical first step, one which many fail to ever take. You took a giant leap and are already much closer to the life you want. Take a deep breath, pause to give yourself credit (which you will learn to do more often than you have been) and let's press forward.

    What are your critical ABC's?

    A – Get yourself and your children to a safe situation. The experts I referred you to above can help you do that. Even if your physical being isn't at risk, your emotional being is, so the goal remains the same. Get yourself and your children to a healthier environment.

    B – Stop blaming yourself (or anyone else for that matter) for the situation you find yourself in. Blame is useless. It focuses your priceless thought and energy in the wrong place and does nothing to move you in a better direction. All it does is hold you back.

    This is the second-most important thing you can do for yourself. When you do this, two extraordinary things happen.

    One, you release the power other people and circumstances have over you.

    Two, you begin to lighten your load and discover the strength and wisdom you have within you. It's just being kept behind a dark curtain of shame and self-doubt. It's there. I promise you. Watch what happens once you stop beating yourself up. You need to begin treating yourself as you want others to treat you – with patience, kindness, compassion, supportiveness and respectfulness.

    You will be told by people you are a victim. I understand why they do it, and it is with good intentions, but it's a term I am not a fan of. Is that a label you want to wear for the rest of your life? Or would you rather be a woman, like many great and inspiring others, who has faced her share of challenges and unleashed her kick-ass determination to rise above them? My friend, we don't look back, take pride in and celebrate that which was easy.

    Understand you have been emotionally and mentally beat down. Temporarily, I might add, but you have. I do an in-person exercise where I pre-program people for one second.  And in that ONE second, I can alter how they view something. Not 60 seconds, not five minutes, and certainly not 12+ years of programming from a mentally abusive person.

    The point is, ditch any "should haves and should be's" you have going on. Until this point, you have done the best you could with what you have and know. Can his influence on you be undone? Bet your ass it can. And it starts today. With new thinking and new programming on your part.

    C -  Build the habit of thinking in terms of what you want, not what you don't want.

    Go back and read your note. More words (therefore more thought and focus) are used to describe what you don't want than what you do want. Understand something. What we focus on expands. The answers, guidance and strength you need will come to you the more you see and think in terms of where you want to go in life. Your life will transform in ways you never imagined with this one simple but profound change.

    Start with a written list. Imagine your current situation is simply an image on a chalk board. Grab the eraser, wipe it all away and begin re-drawing what you want. Don't allow doubts and roadblocks to limit your list. Just pretend there are no limitations. Imagine what would need to be in place for you to live an extraordinary life. Write it all down. Then start building.

    Rebuilding your life is doable, one step at a time. Just take the first step, then the next, then the next. With the right thinking, you will see what those steps are.

    As you progress through your ABC's, look for every opportunity to invest in yourself. Feed and expand your mind with new knowledge in any way you can. Do what makes you happy. Put yourself in the company of good people.

    Live the life you want your children to live.

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3 responses to ““I’m in an abusive relationship. I’m tired of living this way.”” RSS icon

  • Not very often do I find someone as intelligent as you. Even though I know many women can do what you do, I don’t think they’re brave enough. Very often I find that women, like myself are just too shy to write a book like this, or even help others like you do. Elizabeth, my friend, tried to do something like this, but unfortunately she died of cancer a few years ago. Reading this site has been very helpful to me. Going back I few years I remember one of the last things Elizabeth ever said; “Never give up!” these words are still with me today. Often I find it hard to not give up with all of the stress in this world. Nine years ago when Elizabeth died I thought no one could give the advice she gives, but you are almost just like her! Negativity, greed and selfishness all seem to get in the way of most people, but. Apparently not you! Going through the motions of live without any meaning was a regular routine before finding your book. I found this site only a few months ago, but strangely things have been going. Very good lately! Even though my husband left me for another woman, this article and a few others have given me a lot of guidance. You have helped me so much. Other books, and advice just haven’t done the trick! Using your site as a guide, I have gotten my life back on track!

    I know this comment is long I just wanted you to know how much I enjoy this site

  • A woman who knows

    I understand the type of husband this gal is dealing with. Every form of refuge has it’s price and sometimes refuge, like an abusive relationship, has a price tag of your soul. After 19 years of abuse and 3 kids, no job and no self esteem left, I finally mustered the courage to leave my x. It has not been easy, fun or simple. No one can give advice on this one unless you have been there. One thing to know is that even yelling and blocking are reasons to call the police. The will arrest your husband and lock him up for 72 hours. They will also make him take a mandatory 17 week anger management course. No one told me this in time for me to use this tool before I was physically, verballly and emotionally abused to the point of loosing myself. But I did get out and so can you. You need to find out who you can trust, mainly just yourself and God and get out! Grab some money and the kids and leave! File for divorce and get a restraining order and drain the accounts and get some cash. Put a hold on the accounts so he can’t run up debt and get a attorney stat! Go live your life. Your young and you can do this. Get free!! Don’t get a home phone and only speak to him via e-mail or text, never verbally so you can keep a record. Get smart! You can do this!! Narcisstic men are really cowards hiding behind words. Once your free you will be able to see and think more clearly. Dont use meds to stabilize yourself…they will just keep you dumb. Maybe a advil if you need it… nothing more! YOU CAN DO THIS!!

  • just divorced from a 25 year marriage. i had similar issues. i shook with anxiety and started thinking about cutting myself and i knew i needed help because everytime he left me, i let him come back when he had totally destroyed his life. he get ditched by the latest girlfriend, fired, lose his vehicle and have no place to live. i’d feel sorry for him and believe all his promises. i hated myself for being so pathetic. finally i went to my primary care doc and poured out my whole pathetic story. thank god for her. she got me on meds for the depression and anxiety and got me into a counselor. i was feeling better then he decided he was lleaving me again and i fell apart. i begged my doc and my counselor to help me get strong enough that i am immune to his charm this time. and with hard work and lots of support i got there. i no longer hate myself and i am learning how to spot this kind of man as i begin dating. i go on lots of dates and challenge myself to spot the red flags. i told my doc and my therapist i will do anything to not go back there. even if i needed to go to therapy everyday i would do it. and i take an active role in therapy too.

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