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  • Jane's Avatar
    07-15-2018, 02:29 PM
    Hi Livingfree :hi First of all I'm glad you finally got to the point of saying 'no' - splitting up with your abusive ex...that you are now in a supportive relationship. Hear you about your kids asking why. As travellers with you as you journeyed through the not ok stuff - thinking and asking you why you stayed for as long as you did. As a person who was also felt trapped in a toxic relationship...hurt on a daily basis I often find it hard to comprehend why I stayed...why I didn't see my options early on and leave. Now realise that I felt emotionally captured...hoped things would get better, that I could change him (even though he was happy as he was). Have come to realise that spousal abuse is a big, complex subject - one I only started to get to grips with after I left (still sometimes show I haven't by having an ":omg how could I have moment". Wonder if it would help your kids to get their heads round the complex dynamic that play out and trap both the abuser and the abused who find themselves in an abusive intimate relationship to read about the power of the 'cycle of abuse'...have a good article on this dynamic in out library http://www.fortrefuge.com/cycle-of-abuse.php...Other thing I found helped is to actively listen to my son, acknowledge his feelings let him know I am sorry that my choices placed in a situation where he had to witness and live with the tension and discord between me and my now ex - how he deserved better. Not always comfortable for me to hear his upset, however helps me a lot to temper that by acknowledging that he has every reason to feel upset and full of questions when he thinks back on being a kid in the centre of a domestic discord that he had no control over. To reassure you...with time and openness it seems to me that my son has been able to move on...has a clearer idea of the dynamics that keep people trapped in relationships that are not serving them well.
    1 replies | 14 view(s)
  • LivingFree's Avatar
    07-15-2018, 11:39 AM
    I have been out of my abusive situation for over five years. I am remarried to a very supportive, gentle, loving man that also loves my children. But my mom and one of my sisters (I have six) continue to ask me why I took the abuse and why I didn't leave the first time. I have continued to share the "reason" I stayed and continue to share with them that it's something they will never understand because they are not me and have never been in my situation. They both become quite agitated with me that I didn't leave. I need to nip this conversation for my own sanity. Please share your thoughts on how to move forward with them. Thank you!
    1 replies | 14 view(s)
  • LivingFree's Avatar
    07-15-2018, 11:34 AM
    Believe me, I am the last person who would judge you. All I can say is that I was in your situation... for 18 years and two kids during that time. I continued to give chances and the situation continued to intensify. The difference in our situations is that I never told anyone what was going on. I didn't have a best friend because he isolated me and my family lived hours away from me. Because I knew I wasn't leaving I decided not to worry my family. I wish I had done something sooner, much sooner, than I did. I left him five years ago and that's when the abuse transferred to my children during their visits. Like Jane said, historical behavior is the best indicator of future behavior. No one is going to change your mind on this, I'm speaking from experience that the decision of what you will do has to be yours.
    2 replies | 30 view(s)
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