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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Abuse & Assault » hard to move on

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Author Topic: hard to move on
Member # 47898

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I was in an abusive relationship about a year ago, with a very confusing and manipulative person.
At first, this person treated me well. My ex-partner knew I was recovering from abuse and assault from the past, so he reminded me that I didn't deserve it. He would take me out to dinner, play board games with me, and invite me over to his house to just hang out. We were very affectionate and our friends thought we made a cute couple.
The relationship changed slowly. Over time he became very critical of me and my family. "I can see why you're crazy. Everyone around you is crazy! Your parents, your aunt, and your sister are all crazy!" He spent lots of time talking about flaws he found in me. I told him that hurt my feelings. He replied, "You're not going to fix your problems by ignoring them!"
He insisted on making all the decisions, and would yell at me if I didn't obey him without question. Sometimes I would spill a package, ruin dinner, or be late for something. He took this as proof that I couldn't make decisions for myself. He once said across the house, "You know you're my slave, right?" I asked if he was kidding and he just laughed.
On several occasions, I brought up my discontent with the way he was treating me, and sometimes I cried, but he would just yell at me for being a pain. He said I was delusional and took everything the wrong way.
One of the worst parts of the relationship was the sexual abuse. My ex-partner complained that I was bad at sex and that I didn't "put out" enough for him. He also yelled and threw a rage when I said no to sex, and I didn't feel safe saying no anymore so finally I said yes. I feel really gross about this and haven't talked about it with anyone.
My ex-partner and I got into a very heated argument once, because I took a phone call while we were watching a movie. He was drunk. He got mad at me. I walked away to spend a few minutes alone. He walked past me in the hallway, growled, and punched a hole in the wall.
To top it all off, he also put me in danger by driving us home drunk. He didn't tell me he was drunk. When we got home, he laughed and joked about being drunk. I told him I was not OK with him driving us drunk, and he yelled at me for not looking out for myself.
I finally broke up with him when I realized that he was bad for me and the relationship was beyond repair. He told me that I deserved everything I got from him and worse. Then he told me to go get raped. That's when I hung up.

It's been almost a year now and I am still very confused and hurt about all this. I don't understand why my ex treated me this way, or why I stayed as long as I did.
I'm writing here because I've recently encountered triggers that reminded me of this abuse: a phrase he used to use, a person who looked like him, an insensitive joke. I've been having a lot of anxiety and difficulty dealing with this.

Posts: 5 | From: California, USA | Registered: Jul 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Member # 47280

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I know how you feel and I'm sorry that you're going through this. It would break my heart if my partner said those things to me.

I know it won't make the feelings go away, but you can remind yourself that feelings are not dangerous and that might make going through it a little bit less scary. And at the same time you remind yourself that feelings alone will not hurt you, take a sec to remind yourself how brave you are for getting yourself out of there. My goodness, you've already demonstrated how much strength you have even in your state of fear and beated-down-ness.

I can hear how awesome you are right through the computer screen. If it's OK, please give yourself a hug. You deserve one.


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Posts: 116 | From: Texas | Registered: May 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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aloevera: Just so you know, this evening we begin a week of these boards being closed. We'll provide referrals on the hold page, and you can certainly come back to talk more next week, but wanted to make sure you knew so that you didn't feel cut off in the middle here. Sorry about this timing.

First things first? You got out, you left. Yes, you stayed in it for a while, but that's very common. Few abusers show themselves and their behaviors right at the start, and abuse dynamics are such that it's easy for anyone to get stuck in them for a while and have a hard time getting out. What's not common IS people being abused leaving and getting out. And that's what you did. [Smile]

The why of abuse isn't a simple question, but it's not generally personal. In other words, this was not likely about YOU, save that you're a person he got involved with, who let him in, who we had the opportunity to abuse. If you want some reading on this why, a book you may find helpful is called "Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men," by Lundy Bancroft. It's a pretty amazing book, and one I think is very important for people who have been abused by men to read.

By any chance, have you entered into any counseling around this and dealing with your triggers? Part of any support groups of people who have been abused?

Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Member # 47898

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Thank you, it especially helps to remember that it's about him and not me.
I got that book from the library and it's helping a lot.

I'm in therapy right now to deal with this and other issues, and I am considering joining a support group too. I am kind of scared of what might come up in group therapy, but it will probably be worth it.

Posts: 5 | From: California, USA | Registered: Jul 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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