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Author Topic: Marriage
BiLLaBaBy017
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Me and my fiance are planning on getting married in a couple months, but he's in the Army finishing up his last bit of training before he goes to Iraq in September.

He wants me to plan the wedding and everything but he says he might not be able to get time off to fly up here to get married, he says he would rather have me fly down there to get married at the Justice Of The Peace. I'm totally not for that at all! I want my family to be there, just want to have a very small wedding with close friends and family, nothing more.

He wants to get married, and have me move to Kentucky and live with him until September when he goes to Iraq. I don't want to leave my family, but that is a sacrifice that I have to make because I want to be with him.

I'm only 18 and I know that 18 is way too young to get married, but I feel like I'm ready to marry him and spend the rest of my life with him. I'm just afraid that if I plan everything then he won't be able to come up here. SInce it's my first wedding I want it to be my only wedding and have it be special.

There have been incidents in the past with abuse and whatnot, but that has changed. Hasn't happened in awhile and we've already worked it out so that it stays out of our relationship! So that is not an issue anymore.

Can anyone help me out with this? What are some things that I could do so I don't screw this up? Any advice/ideas will be appreciated Thanks


Posts: 294 | From: Minneapolis | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
logic_grrl
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quote:
There have been incidents in the past with abuse and whatnot, but that has changed. Hasn't happened in awhile and we've already worked it out so that it stays out of our relationship! So that is not an issue anymore.

"Worked it out" how? Has this actually involved seeing a counsellor, or anything like that?

Would this be the same guy who was "leaving bruises" and broke your toe, stalked you, broke into your house, threw glass at your face so you had to get six stitches, and who you took out a restraining order against?

Given what's generally known about patterns of abusive behaviour, I'd be very, very, very wary of saying so confidently that it's "not an issue anymore".

And that's a much bigger issue than what sort of wedding you have!

C'mon. Unless you've been making all of this up, it's time to start using some basic common sense here.


Posts: 6944 | From: UK | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
BiLLaBaBy017
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Never say I "made" this up. Makes me feel like crap. Everything I've said is true. I never lie, especially about these kinda things. And we have seen a counselor and a relationship helper thats why things have been worked out. we see things in a new perspective now, and we both have seen things at a different angle. i asked for help, not to be called a liar.
Posts: 294 | From: Minneapolis | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
logic_grrl
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quote:
And we have seen a counselor and a relationship helper thats why things have been worked out.

We're talking multiple incidents of extreme physical violence and stalking within the last ten months.

Even with amazing progress in therapy on his part, I really doubt that any counsellor who has experience working with people who abuse would advise you that it's "not an issue any more".

Or tell you that, right now, marrying this guy, leaving your home and moving to another state where you have no support network apart from him aren't all huge, huge risks.

quote:
Never say I "made" this up. Makes me feel like crap.

I'm sorry if that upset you; it wasn't my intention. But we have had a number of cases at Scarleteen where people make up elaborate stories.

And frankly, the fact that you're still with this guy, let alone considering marriage, after all this - http://www.scarleteen.com/forum/Forum3/HTML/004964.html - just makes no sense to me.

But if you are really determined to stay in this relationship, and really believe that he's changed, then take some basic precautions here to give the relationship a chance of staying non-abusive (and yourself a chance of staying safe).

Don't tie yourself to him legally at this stage. Don't move away from your family and friends. Don't isolate yourself with him, and make sure he continues in therapy, preferably with someone who specializes in counselling men who abuse.

Think of it this way: imagine he was a former alcoholic. Maybe he's made amazing progress in AA, maybe he's been sober for months. But if you said "Hey, there's this great job you can get - working in a liquor store!", that would not be smart, and it would not be helpful, to him or you.

What you are talking about doing here is essentially the same: setting up a situation which makes you as vulnerable to abuse as you could possibly be.


Posts: 6944 | From: UK | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Gumdrop Girl
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Hey Billababy, to put it very clearly, logic_grrl and I are particularly concerned about your safety and well-being. I say the two of us specifically because it seems she and I are the ones who answer most of your posts.

Marriage is intended to last the rest of your life. It often doesn't, unfortunately, but that's what the intial idea is and that's what people try to stick to. That's why it should not be something you rush into.

You're still very young, and he has a lot of SERIOUS issues to work out. You still need a support network like family and friends. He needs a LOT more counseling before he can commit to providing you with the life and partnership that you deserve.

I understand the need for many military couples to marry quickly. A lot of people in these relationships were brought up with strong, marriage-emphasizing values. Tri-Care is excellent health insurance, so many couples marry to ensure provisions of benefits. And then there's the danger of being deployed to fight which sends lots of couples to the altar.

But lucky for you, your man is just going off for basic training and you're still young enough to be under your parents' health insurance. Other than fulfilling a cultural desire to marry quickly, you're not going to gain anything significantly great just yet by marrying. You can still wait things out.

If he loves you enough, and he feels that your relationship is strong enough and worth preserving, he will agree to postpone. Did you know that many abusers will TRAP their victims by rushing and pressuring them into marriage? Then when they get married, it is that much harder to leave. Isolation is another common tool abusers use to pull their victims away from their families and friends' support. Once you're away from support, it's so much easier to physically hit and emotionally poison a person because who are you going to run to for help and confidence? No one 'cause you've got no one.

So what can you do to ensure that you get the wedding of your dreams and the marriage you'll have for the rest of your life? Don't go through with your current plans. Let him finish his training. Your wedding can wait. In fact, the more time you wait, the more time you have to plan that fairytale event you've always dreamed of, and that's more time he'll have to get counseling in the mean time.

Have both of you considered pre-marital counseling? A lot of churches offer those services. They teach you to resolve issues and approach common stumbling points for married couples before saying "I do."

If it seems like we're all coming down on you too hard, well, think of it this way: maybe something really IS wrong that total strangers are all unanimously telling you not to do it.

And lastly, honestly, how does your family feel about this guy and your plans?

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Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
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I'm actually going to go ahead and make clear that Scarleteen isn't going to in any way endorse and encourage a user to marry, or even continue to be involved with, a person they have repeatedly reported as a violent abuser, both on the boards and with their local authorities.

To do so would be incredibly irreponsible of us, as well as knowingly dangerous to you, and as it is our mission as an organization to do our level best to keep users FROM known dangers, rather than direct them towards them further, it simply is not something that is going to happen here.

I think I have directed you to this organization before, but I'd really encourage you, Billababy, to check into resources here for help with the effects of an abusive relationship on you (including things like denial, and getting onself trapped into those relationships more and more): http://www.chrysaliswomen.org/

They can help hook you up with free or low-cost support and counseling in this regard. Obvsiously if none of this is stuff you're ready to hear or want to hear, there isn't much we can do, but should you ever be ready for it, there it is.

Until then, please don't ask us to help you continue to put yourself in a dangerous and potentially deadly position. It's just not something we can or will do.

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Posts: 67131 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
morganlh85
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Think of it this way...if you believe you are ready to make a lifetime commitment to this guy, then what will be the harm in waiting a few years to actually get married? After all, you have another 60 or so years to be married. If you have problems right now, work them out BEFORE you get married, because marriage will not change what is already wrong with your relationship.

And the fact that you brought up the past abuse even though it wasn't too relevant to your question shows me that it is still bothering you and affecting you in some way.

And in the long run, your wedding will be the most important day in your life; if you compromise the event by having it somewhere you don't want to have it and without having your family there like you would want, you will only end up resenting your fiance for making your day less special, and that will lead to more problems in the future.

I know you believe your abuse problems have worked out, but you are both just 18. Going to the war, going to college, and just getting older can bring on monumental change -- for the better, or for the worse. There is no saying right now that he will never return to his old ways. Abuse is like a disease, like alcoholism; he will always be a recovering abuser, he will never totally defeat his problem without extensive LONG term care. Just a few months is not enough to say your problem is solved. Abusive behavior is usually so deep-rooted in someone's mindset that it takes years to repair.

It is MUCH more important for you to protect yourself and your emotional well-being than it is to rush into a marriage. Wait a few more years and make sure the relationship is right for you. There isn't anything wrong with not being married, especially if it could save you from pain and heartache in the end.


Posts: 304 | From: Pittsburgh PA | Registered: Aug 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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