Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Recovery from Abuse

Rescues a life
from endless suffering
but requires facing the pain
as it moves along slowly

Releases us from
shame's heavy burdens
and clears the way for
new choices

Restores dignity
renews faith
brings hope
for better tomorrows

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Myths I Told Myself

I told myself myths to try to make sense out of my confusing marriage. I didn't recognize the role of myth-telling in supporting my denial.

I told myself:
  • My spouse really does love me
  • I must have heard him incorrectly
  • I must be misunderstanding him
  • Since we love each other, everything will work out
  • He tells me the truth about myself
  • He tells me the truth about himself
  • He doesn't mean what he just said
  • He would never do that thing he just threatened
  • He just needs lots of my love to shore up his insecurity
  • My love and God's love will change him
  • He didn't mean to hurt me
  • He won't do this ever again
  • His tears mean that things are going to change for the better
  • His tears mean that he really does care and wants to do better
  • When things don't add up, it's because I'm stupid
  • When he is in a better job environment, he will start be less angry
  • If I would be more perfect, he wouldn't need to be angry with me
  • If I forgive him, he will have the courage to stop exploding
  • He just has an anger issue
  • Good wives hang in their no matter how miserable a marriage is
  • I just need to focus on his good qualities
  • He's trying to do better
  • It can't be abuse
It was abuse. His love wasn't healthy. And all my wishful thinking made no difference at all. Facing the truth is what changed my life for the better. When I stepped out of denial, I was able to make new choices and free myself and my children from the abuser.

Recommended Books

  • 10 Lifesaving Principles for Women in Difficult Marriages by Karla Downing
  • A Way of Hope by Leslie J. Barner
  • Angry Men and the Women Who Love Them by Paul Hegstrom
  • Battered But Not Broken by Patricia Riddle Gaddis
  • Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend
  • Bradshaw on the Family by John Bradshaw
  • Caring Enough to Forgive/Not Forgive by David Augsburger
  • Codependent No More by Melody Beattie
  • Healing the Wounded Heart by Dr. Dan B. Allendar
  • Keeping the Faith: Questions and Answers for the Abused Woman by Marie M. Fortune
  • Perfect Daughters by Robert J. Ackerman, Ph.D.
  • Recovery: A Guide for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Herbert L. Gravitz and Julie D. Bowden
  • Safe People by Dr Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend
  • Slay Your Own Dragons by Nancy Good
  • The Cinderella Syndrome by Lee Ezell
  • The Dance of Anger by Harriet Goldhor Lerner, Ph.D.
  • The Search for Significance by Robert S. McGee
  • Turning Fear to Hope by Holly Wagner Green
  • When Violence Comes Home: Help for Victims of Spouse Abuse by Tim Jackson and Jeff Olson
  • Why Does He Do That? by Lundy Bancroft