Domestic Violence: The Signs I Missed

Dec 11th, 2011 | By | Category: All Posts, Guest Blog

by Patty Hite

The day we got married, Bill greeted me in our kitchen with a slap across the face that was so hard it knocked me to the floor. He grabbed my hair and dragged me into the bedroom where he raped me. Afterward, he told me that now I belonged to him and I would do what he said, when he said it, and how he said it.

When he finished, he told me to get a washcloth and wipe the blood off of him. My blood. He then told me to clean myself up, cover up my bruise and to stop crying. Like a robot, I did what he said. It wasn’t until I looked in the bathroom mirror that I could actually believe what he just did. The man I married, the man I loved, just raped me and beat the crap out of me.

I wish I could tell you that I fought him while he was raping me. But I didn’t. I often had fantasies of fighting back and he was the one on the floor with me standing over him and kicking the hell out of him. But that was only a fantasy. The truth is, I became totally helpless, submissive in fear. Instead of trying to figure out how to escape this torment, I convinced myself I needed to be a better wife.

I’ve often asked myself why I submitted to that abuse? Why didn’t I fight back? Why didn’t I walk away or go to the police? Physical and emotional abuse was the norm in my childhood home. My dad ruled the roost. Although I never saw him physically abuse my mother, he verbally and emotionally abused her. And she submitted. He would go to the bar, mess around with other women, and then come home and accuse my mom of having affairs. I heard him yelling at her in the middle of the night. The next morning, she would make him breakfast and he would treat her like a queen. My parents groomed me to submit.

I believed that a woman stands by her man, no matter what. My dad repeatedly raped my sister and I witnessed it. My mom stood by my dad and sent my sister away. I believed that family business—adultery, incest, and abuse—remain in the home. Cover up the bruises and put on a happy face and pretend that life is good and wonderful. I believed that asking for help was a sign of weakness and that crying, complaining and getting angry was not allowed. I knew that if I did any of those things, more punishment would follow.

By the time I became an adult, I knew my place in the world. I was to be the submissive wife and I would do anything and everything in order to please my husband.

This became the norm with Bill. At night, when the kids were asleep, he abused me in the most sadistic ways. He always found a reason to hurt me—if the mailman said “Hi” to me, if a button was missing on his shirt, if my mascara was smeared—any reason to let me know that I was a failure and I needed to be punished. I would make him breakfast the next morning wearing a smiling face for my kids. Bill would greet me with a morning kiss and tell the kids what a wonderful mother and woman I was—a copycat of my childhood. It was so familiar and I knew what to do and how to act.

I used to believe that there were no warnings that Bill was Satan in disguise. During the six months we dated, he seemed to be everything I could possibly want in a man. But the truth is, there were warning signs from the very beginning. The signs were everywhere, but at the time, I didn’t see them for what they were since they were familiar and normal.

I mistook attention, jealousy and possessiveness as signs of love. I had a distorted belief of what a husband, marriage and love should be. I was so caught up in the abusive world and the false beliefs that come from that world, that when abuse was going on around me, I ignored the signals that were as loud as a fog horn or as bright as a neon sign.

Before we ever started to date, Bill was grooming me. We worked together, (that is where we met) and in the lunchroom he would point out the failures of my friends—people I had grown up with and now worked with. As soon as they were out of earshot, he would tell me about their weaknesses. In front of them, he was charming. They were users or they were bad parents or they would always take advantage of me. I never saw these bad points in my friends, but after a while I was convinced. Bill was the only good, honest person in that whole company and I shouldn’t waste my time on such riff raff. He separated me from my friends.

It was the same with my family. They were too good for me. My brother had too much and flaunted it. My sister had too little and was trash. My mother was too close and wouldn’t let me grow up.

He loved me so much and couldn’t stand one second away from me. We should be spending every moment of every day together. That is what relationships were. We became one. Actually, we became “him.”

And then there was the jealousy. Every man I talked to was flirting with me and every woman I spent time with was trying to convince me to stay away from him. He told me that it hurt him when I talked to other men or when I went shopping with my girlfriends. It was wasted time that should be spent with him. He loved me so much and couldn’t stand one second away from me. We should be spending every moment of every day together. That is what relationships were. We became one. Actually, we became “him.”

In truth, I became his property. It didn’t take long before I realized that I was not capable of making decisions about people and I couldn’t trust anyone but him. Not only did my body belong to him, but my mind and my soul had his name imprinted on them and I was nobody. I became no one. I no longer existed.

As I look back on those times, I could honestly say that his jealousy made me feel all warm inside. To me it meant that he loved me so much and was afraid to lose me. Separating me from my friends and family meant that he was watching out for me and wanted to spend every waking moment with me. I was his girl. I was special.

The rest of my marriage to him was abusive in every way. There were no more hidden signs. They were out in the open now. I knew I was going to be beaten before it even happened.

I started to have flashbacks of my childhood. I started to see the familiar patterns. The false beliefs that I learned so well started to reveal themselves. I knew inside that these lies were the beginning of finding the truth of what a normal, healthy life should be. The more I healed, the stronger I became. I started to realize that I did have a choice. I was able to decide what was right and what was wrong.

Hopelessness and helplessness was being replaced with hope and strength. I needed to get out of this hell. I was strong enough to make plans and I was strong enough to leave. It took me three years to plan my escape and it was my friends and family who helped me do it—the same ones I walked away from. They saw the signs from the beginning and were waiting for me to give them the sign. The sign that said, “It is time.” The sign that said, “Help Me!”

Now thirty years later, with healing from my abuse, I am able to discern the signs. The more I heal, the more signs I see:

1. Abusers are extremely possessive and jealous. Those are not emotions of love. They are efforts to control. An abuser will not share you with anyone. They have to own you.

2. Abusers separate you from family and friends. If they can keep you away from supportive people, then you won’t tell others. (Deep down I knew this was wrong. Walking away and hurting my family and friends, kept me in shame. This shame kept me from asking for help.)

3. Abusers have rigid expectations of relationships. There is no compromise. You will behave accordingly and agree to agree with him/her. (I dressed the way he wanted me to. I cooked the way he wanted me to. I spoke the way he wanted me to. I pretended my marriage was wonderful—the way HE wanted me to.)

4. Abusers blame the victim. “He wouldn’t get angry if only I would do what he wanted me to.” (I was convinced early on that I was to blame for his behavior. I would get him so angry, that he couldn’t control himself).

5. Abusers act like they have a double personality. They can be overly charming or exceptionally cruel, generous or selfish. (I never knew what personality he would be. I spend most of my time trying to see what “mood” he was in and then trying to change it. I knew before the abuse happened. It was like a fog was surrounding me. I would prepare myself emotionally for what would happen that night).

6. Abusers are con men or con women. In front of others, they are charming and convincing. Cool and collected. (This was so confusing for me, because he would be so happy while entertaining others, but the moment they left, I got blamed for their faults. If someone said something wrong, I heard about it all night. I wouldn’t dare make excuses for them or their behavior. I soon learned to try and not entertain. Stay away from other people all together.)

7. Abusers stop calling you by your name. By separating you from your name, you are no longer a person. You are a piece of property. (The last time he used my name was the day we were married. From that day on, I was addressed differently: “Get” (Get me something to drink.) “You” (You did this and You did that) “F*&^*ing” (F*&^*ing Whore, Bitch, Good for Nothing, Piece of Shit, Worthless Piece of Crap, etc)

When I separated myself from abuse, I had every right to not trust any man. But, throughout the years, I’ve learned that life isn’t about living in fear. My life started when I began to learn to trust myself. Now I trust myself to see the signs and to listen to their warning. I’m not afraid of being around people because I’m not afraid of being hurt. Now, I know I can walk away before the danger starts. Abuse isn’t love; love allows me to make choices and decide what is best for me and who is best for me. The more I heal, the more signs I see now and especially the ones that were there all along.

Does this resonate with you? Please join in by leaving your thoughts and feelings about this topic and don’t forget to subscribe to the comments.

Related Posts:
Power Play: How To Recognize an Abuser
The Fear of Being Re-victimized
Life-Saving Anger
The Myth of Unconditional Love
Dating After Sexual Abuse: Is This Love?

As a survivor of emotional, physical and sexual abuse, Patty Hite has been tenaciously pursuing her healing for over thirty years. She’s a passionate advocate for all survivors and dedicates her life to inspiring emotional wholeness in others. As a former victim of spousal abuse, she’s delighted to have found the meaning of true love, a respectful relationship, and support with her late husband, Lonnie. She’s blessed with four children and six grandchildren.

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27 comments
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  1. Hi Patty

    First I want to send a (( hug )) and tell you how much I admire your courage. This is one of the best blogs I have read, Maybe because it reminds me of my home. I dont think my mom has ever been physically abused, but the emotional abuse in my home is just like the points that you wrote about. Sadly my siblings are still living in the house and as the years have gone by, from a distance, I have seen how the abuse has changed them and hurt them. I still dont fully understand the abuse pattern in my home and maybe I never will. But I do know and understand that something bad is going on. I dont think my siblings have been hurt physically or rather I think I was to young to remember, I have been a couple of time, but only one time where it was really bad. My mom left and took us with her, but later returned back and thats when I couldnt keep up the brave face anymore.

    Thank you so much for writting this blog Patty

  2. Willow,

    I’m so glad this blog spoke to you and reminded you of your past. This is my desire, that others will see the dysfunction and reveal the lies and false beliefs from their childhood. Once my past was opened up, it was a like a light bulb flashing. It gave me the answers to “Why.”

    It helped me with my shame and the blame I lived with every day. There is hope in healing, and discovering our past, our childhood dysfunctions, is a tremendous step in that direction.

    Thank you so much for sharing, ((hug)) Patty

  3. Hi Patty
    I completely relate to being “owned”. My mother and father owned me, and every boyfriend I ever had “owned” me. This was my familiar. I had been objectified as long as I could remember. My job was to make them feel okay. The harder they could make me try (submit and comply) the more they liked it. BUT the more they made me try too. Learning ownership and “rights” over another person has nothing to do with love was huge for me. It was key for me.
    I love your last paragraph! Everything changed for me as well when I learned to love myself!
    Great post!
    Hugs, Darlene

  4. Darlene,

    I am hoping that many will be able to relate to this blog and how the lies, false beliefs and dysfunctions in our family has power over our life and why we will do anything to try and make others happy. and they are usually toxic people.

    You are right. Our misconception of what love is has been a big turning point in my life. Especially when I learned to love myself.

    Thanks for sharing, dear friend, Patty

  5. Patty,
    I could relate to the ownership stuff too, just like Darlene said. I felt so enmeshed into my (ex) husband that I felt as though I ceased to exist. The ME in me disappeared and I experienced “life” through his point of view. It’s still amazes me how lost I was in the abusive system and yet I still found a way out. I know there’s hope for anyone! Thank you so much for sharing this with us. Great job!
    Hugs and love,
    Christina

  6. Thank you for sharing. As I have healed during the last 4 years — I too can look back and see the signs that you point out. How he kept me from my friends and family; how he was possessive of me; how he was rigid and controlled everything. I too was allowing myself to be a victim of emotional and verbal abuse. I thought it was all right — because he only hit me once and when I said I would leave if he tried that again, he never did. Instead he turned to the verbal and emotional abuse.

    I too was grooming my children — they saw how I submitted to and always gave in to him. He ran the house. I had no authority. After my own suicide attempt (the only way I thought I would get out), I slowly became a stronger person. Slowly started fighting back — and this gave my daughter the courage to come forth that this same man (the one I had been married to for 18 years) had been sexually abusing her (and her sister I later found out).

    Since that time — we all three have worked on healing and recovery. No more abuse in relationships we are involved in. We are learning to trust ourselves and our instincts. Learning to listen to our inner voices and make healthy decisions.

    Thank you for all you share — it really hits home.

    Lisa

  7. Christina,

    Yes! It was easy for me to adapt to his abuse and that is what always troubled me so much. Once my past was revealed it gave me the answers I needed. I needed to know why, I was so vulnerable to this kind of behavior.

    I remember when I did leave him, it took me a good month to “wake” up and start living one day at a time. I was so controlled by him, even when he wasn’t around, that when leaving him, I didn’t know how to do anything on my own. To take a shower or brush my teeth on my own was so unfamiliar to me. Abuse follows us. It has a voice that continues to speak, even when we aren’t around it anymore.

    Thanks for sharing and your support, love ya, Patty

  8. Lisa,

    Yes, it is so true that when we are in the world of abuse, we are preparing our children for the same outcome. It is so important to not only get out of it, but to heal and to find out why we were susceptible to it in the first place. that was another reason I strived to heal was because I knew I needed to stop the cycle.

    I’m so glad that you are all on the journey to heal and have made the commitment to boundaries and healthy relationships.

    Thank you so much for sharing, Patty

  9. Hi Patty,

    Thank you for sharing and hugs to you. I don’t imagine things like that get any easier to write and share no matter how much time has elapsed or how much healing you have experienced.

    The husband you describe sounds really similar to my father. My mother told us that the day they got married he told her that now that they were wed, he didn’t have to do anything nice for her anymore. She owed him. And while you can trace your life backwards and see how you could fall into that trap, I’m at a loss as to how my mother did. She wasn’t abused as a child, nor treated like property, nor abandoned. Her parents were wonderful, loving parents who asked her over and over to leave my father. Her parents are the only reason I survived the hell I lived in. Anyway, just rambling.

    We kids knew there was no love in their relationship. My brother told my mom she needed to divorce my dad when he was eight. They weren’t great actors. We always figured that after all the kids left, they’d have no common enemies and at that point they’d tear each other apart as they had done to us. That is exactly what happened.

    I am thankful to God that I at least recognized the sham and detested it enough to not follow in either of their footsteps. While my mind is a mess currently sorting out the tangled web of my childhood, my marriage of over 15 years is amazing!

    Thank you for all you do!

  10. Jenna,

    I’m so glad that you recognize the dysfunction in your childhood home and have chosen to not follow.

    It was “strange” to dig into that abusive time in my life because it is so far behind me now. It is like watching a movie of someone else’s life. Although the memories are there, the pain and the emotional trauma is gone. healing works! I have seen nothing but good fruit from the process and I’m always so excited to share in order to bring hope to others.

    And isn’t it the greatest thing to have a great relationship, in spite of the example that was shown? (I learned this, of course, after I left the ex) lol Thank you so much for sharing, patty

  11. Well, I cannot wait until I can write my memories without feeling physically ill afterward. I cannot wait until I can live without those memories casting an underlying sorrow on my joy and magnifiying other issues in my life which should be minimal things, but get blown all out of proportion if there are triggers. And there seem to always be triggers. But I am recognizing them now and I don’t feel so out of control knowing what it’s all about.

    It is a wonderful feeling to be in a wonderful relationship built on truth and love, for sure! You wouldn’t be surprised then if I told you how often my parents have picked apart my husband. You also would not be surprised to know they openly despise him though he’s never wronged them.

    Patty, God bless you!

  12. Hi- I was married for 18 years to a man very similar to the one you described. I came from a loving non abusive home. We never even hit each other while we were playing. I was so shocked the first time he hit me, I had no idea what to do. It didn’t take long for me to take on the robot personna you described. I never told anyone what was going on and everyone was shocked that my good looking & charming spouse was such a monster. He continued to badger me throughout the order of protection hearings and divorce. The coalition of domestic violence and the sheriffs department were so alarmed by his behavior, they suggested I change my identity. I refused to give him that control but did move a few states away. I have since remarried and truly found a wonderful man. We have been married 3 years and I have never been in fear of him doing any emotional or physical violence. I have many ongoing health issues brought on by the repeated beatings and from being knocked unconscious so many times. I am currently training to become a lay counselor for domestic violence victims. Thank you so much for providing this forum because if it helps just one more of us get out of the abusive hell we are put in by those we thought loved us, it has become more valuable than all the wealth in the world. Keep up the good work! – Bev

  13. Bev,

    Thank you for sharing and I am so glad you are out of that relationship. (I don’t even feel right, calling it a relationship.) The aftereffects of such abuse, besides the emotional and verbal abuse which I have spent much time healing from, have left me with body damage as well.

    The scar on my lip (I told the ER doctor our dog bit me) deafness in my ear from a broken ear drum (I told the ER doctor I got hit by a basket ball) are just a few of the daily reminders I have from that time in my life. But, considering what could have happened, I consider myself fortunate to be walking and having enough brain cells left to tell others about the abuse.

    What a wonderful thing to be doing. (lay counselor for domestic violence) Helping others is one of the greatest honors I have and thank you for doing the same. I am so glad to know that there is help out there. When I was being abused, I reached out one time to a home for domestic families, and they told me that I could stay there one week. One week? Then what do I do? I felt so alone. I knew that a week was not enough time to keep me safe. (I had no job, 2 kids, no money) So, I stayed with him.

    I’m always so glad to know that Survivors are getting involved and changing the rules, to help. (Bless you)

    Patty

  14. I so celebrate you today! What a powerful story. I believe that this blog will save many lives. I know you don’t know me- but I am proud of you! :) You can check out my blog at: http://www.ressurrection.wordpress.com I talk about child sexual abuse and the like. On December 7th, I wrote “My Letter to my Younger Self.”

    I applaud what you are doing and I’ll keep sharing your work.

    Peace,

    Ressurrection

  15. Ressurrection,

    Thank you for your encouragement. It always helps to hear that something we did (write) has made an impression on someone. That someone else “gets it”. I appreciate your kind words and I am always happy to read others blogs about abuse. Thank you for your work and spreading the word. patty

  16. Hi Patty,
    I was going through my Face Book friends telling them about my new web page, and I found a post which led me to your blog. I read every painful word of this article. I felt like I could have written it myself. All I want to say is God Bless, I’m so happy you’ve figured it all out, and know what to look for now- Kudos!!!!

    Louise

  17. Thank you Louise.

    I’m so glad you found the blog!! And yes, I am so happy I figured it out. My life is a whole lot better now.

    Patty

  18. My Mom always tells evil lies about me to everyone she runs into and when I confront her, she’d tell me, “playing the role of the mother, she has the right to say anything she likes. Even if she doesn’t say the truth, I have no right to object:. Over the years, she continues to isolate me from everyone I know, she even talks bad about me with my husband, my best friend even though she may just meet them for the first time. She never says, “being my mother”, just “playing the role of my mother!” When I got married, my husband also behaves like her, he got mad at me if I talk with my neighbors, or waive at people in the neighborhood. In the beginning I believed in his reason, that I don’t know people enough to waive at him because they may be dangerous and I may be misunderstood. Now I think that’s only to isolate me from everyone around me and make me look like I am a hateful and proud person.

    Thank you Patty for exposing abusers’ behavior so that we can learn to recognize them and stay away from them. Abuse never happens over night but progresses through stages. I wish every one on earth be informed about this epidemic because knowledge is power.

    Thank you for your post.

  19. Sylvia,

    I’m so glad that you are being awakened to your value. To even recognize it is a powerful step. Good for you. It’s crazy how people’s behavior can say so much. I used to take it at face value. But, healing has helped me to see the under current of behavior. I am a firm believer that the more someone talks, the more they show their true colors. They expose themselves and the meaning behind their actions and words. keep listening!

    thank you for sharing, Patty

  20. Patty,
    this struck so many nerves. I was a victim of childhood abuse. Not sexually but mental and physical. However my mom was all the above and sexual abuse as well. All that you talked about is how my mom explained it to be …..how I learned it to be as well. I can remember as a young child, maybe 6 or so, I could hear something going on across the hall of my room so I left my room after my daddy had told me not to. as I entered the bathroom, there my mom was …leaning over the toilet with her nose pouring blood and daddy having her by her hair with the most evil look on his face. He screamed for me to go back into my room. All I could do was go and pray for her….pray that he wouldn’t hurt her anymore. When I was 8 she came to school one day and picked me up…after that we fled to virginia along with her cousin, she had finally had enough and knew we had to go far to get away from him. I was miserable….although I didn’t want mama to suffer, I was missing my grandparents (my dad’s mom and dad) so badly as they were the only non violent stable people in my life at that time. I knew that at their house, there would be no abuse. After being there around 8 weeks, one cold morning I looked out the window from my townhouse room and saw a black ford truck. This was January 1978. I knew it was him because of the brand cigarettes that were on the dash. I immediately thought “he’s found us and he’s gonna hurt my mama”. I ran down stairs only to see him crying at mama’s feet, begging her to come home with him. I said, “please don’t hurt her”. He hugged me and cried. Of course we left with him and he was wonderful for about two/ maybe three years and it all started again. When I was 12 he beat my mama unmercifully. I threatened to call the sheriff as the laws were getting a tad stricter on domestic violence but he beat me too. He said he would kill us both and put us where no one could find us. I am an only child…..I’m so thankful I never had any siblings to suffer thru what I did. Now, there were good times, but I think the bad out weighed the good. I sought refuge with my grandparents. They knew what went on but again, back then you just didn’t get involved in other’s personal affairs. As this abuse was off and on, at the age of 20 I told him if he ever hit me or mama again, I’d see to it that he was put away. He cussed, drew back his fist…I told him to do it…HIT me and see where it got him. I was married at the time but my husband was at work. He tried to control me until the day he died (I was 34 when he passed away). I prayed and prayed for my mama to find peace in her life as she was abused as a child too. I knew that the only way she would be able to live was if daddy died. I didn’t pray for his death, only my mom’s well being. In sept 2000 daddy had a heart attack. He survived but needed a defibrillator to keep him from going into full arrest. As he had igorned his type 2 diabetes and rarely ate right and smoked, drank all his life…he has basically killed him self. His heart was enlarged and the dr’s gave him less than a year (but he survived 3 yrs). It was then that he got some better with his disposition but was still a controlling selfish man. My daddy loved my oldest son, his first grandson….and he only got to spend 13 months with my 2nd son from a new marriage. On oct 22nd 2003 he drove home went inside to take his medication…he called mama and said he felt funny for her to come home….after getting there, she found him on the floor of the kitchen, already passed away with the defibrillator still ticking away trying to resart his heart. He was only 57 when he passed and mama was 55 at the time. Although there were times mama and I both hated him….we took his passing very hard, but at the same time we both felt ‘relief’. He didn’t suffer much and wasn’t a burden to mama with sickness as he was working up till the day he died. My oldest son was 12 when daddy died. He doesn’t know how he was ….or the ‘details’. I sheltered that from him and made him out to be a better man than he was due to shame. My mama is happy and has been for a while…she has a boyfriend, one who loves her, helps her and never speaks an ill word to her. If he did, he’d be kicked to the curve, :) . I have had my daddy’s temper show in me a few times thru the years but physical abuse….mental abuse I suffer and I have more of my mother’s traits, thank goodness…, I am recovering everyday along with my mama but we will always have scars, they will never go away.
    I’m going to let my mama read this article. She knows the pain from this. I don’t know how to explain people (mostly men) who think they can treat a woman this way. I think there has to be something mentally wrong with them. I believe my daddy was a manic depressant and I do believe he was bi polar. You could have never told him this as he was convinced he knew it all and WAS it all and then some…everyone else had the problems, not him. He was twice the devil when he drank. He was invincible or he thought….but we are all helpless when we do wrong and the Good Lord above decided He’s had enough. All his abuse and meaness got him no where here on this earth. He lost my respect and my mama’s along with most of our community as everyone saw him as a bully. BUT none the less,….this time of year regardless of how he was, I still try to find fond memories of him. although few and far between, I do have a few.
    God Bless you Patty and may your words be a blessing and help to others that suffer this abuse. ZERO tolerance for this. I know there are stricter laws now but I hope it’s enough to save lives.

    Andy R~ GEORGIA

  21. Andy,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’m so sorry that you and your mother endured such terrible abuse. I’m glad that you are both safe now.

    I hope that both of our stories, speaks to others and helps them to understand that there is hope and they are valuable. That no one deserves to be abused in any way. And yes, the laws are getting better and there is much more help out there. But, it’s knowing that we don’t deserve it, that has to speak to us first before we will take the steps to escape it. Bless you both, patty

  22. When I was a little girl I remember my Mom running through the house covered in blood, I was 3, I remember that to this day as if it were yesterday. As the years went on I was subjected to that and so much more, sexually abused by my parents and beaten so many times. My Dad even offered me as a young child of 9 to his friends to abuse :( Many years later, Nothing hurt me as much as paying my father to walk me down the aisle to give me away to my husband, yes, I had to pay him to do that for me. That shattered my heart. I read your post and cried, it is so wrong to make people hurt like this, but in the end, it has taught me to be kind, to love people more, to not be the parent mine were, to respect, honor and cherish everyone you love. I am certainly not a perfect person, but I love so much stronger for the abuse I endured. My heart hurts every time I read things like this, I know It says that you are happy now and I am too, 24 years to the best man in this world :) But I also know in your heart it hurts sometimes and although it is only a virtual hug, I am sending one to you :)

  23. Kerry,

    I am so sorry for all that you endured as a child. And the thought of having to pay anyone, more or less your father, to walk you down the isle had to have been so demeaning to you.

    I’m so glad that you are making right choices concerning your life and not allowing your past to control your present. None of us are perfect, but you sound as though you are squashing the lies and false beliefs you grew up with. And that is a very good thing.

    Thank you for sharing and here’s a hug right back at ya. ((hug)) Patty

  24. Patty,

    I just happened on your blog through facebook and I wanted to say that I admire you tremendously! Most people couldn’t even imagine going through what you and others who have endured.

    Many, many years ago I was in a relationship with a classic abuser (had known him several before we ever dated) who emotionally abused me for nearly two years. His jealously included my daughters and the time I spent with them versus with him. Heaven for bid if I was 20 minutes late from going to the grocery store even if I had my daughters with me! Emotional abuse gravitated into physically abuse and in the end I felt the pain of the bruises he presented me. Enough was enough … and I literally, told him to take a hike thanks to Mutual Grounds and their support.

    I’ve ALWAYS been a extremely independent strong person and never imagined “myself” in an abusive relationship. I was then in my mid 40′s and even now after nearly ten years I still have a tendency to second guess my relationships with men and have some trust issues. My point is that abusive behavior can stick with a person for many years through emotional mistrust. My biggest “issue” was forgiving myself for being so gullible even though I also know I couldn’t have known. Love can be blind at times.

    Take care and I wish you and your followers a wonderful Christmas!

  25. Kathy K,

    I can’t tell you how many times I questioned myself. “How did I wind up in this?” Even tho I found the root to the false belief system I was raised in, I had to also change myself and my way of thinking. Actually, my way of loving and trusting. I know longer trust with just my heart, I trust with my head. I listen, watch and keep focused. My late husband used to say, ” It doesn’t cost anything, to pay attention, but it can cost a lot when we don’t.” That s my new philosophy on life.

    thank you so much for sharing, and all the best and a wonderful Christmas to you as well.

  26. hiiiii pty…

    thanxxxx alot nw i can rcgnize my boyfrnd as a abuser n ol dis hppn just coz of ur expiencd viws points….n now i tell him dat i dnt lyk ol dis

  27. Hello Kerin,

    I’m glad my blog spoke to you and you are able to recognize abuse. ((hug)) Patty

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