3rd August 2022 at 11:33 am #147967
Nice to meet you all! Looking for some advice from my fellow survivors
(detail removed by moderator) my partner and I had a petty argument where he went to bed. Some time later, he demanded the fan and called me swear words. I came into the room and threw the fan down on the floor in the bedroom, cross at the nasty language. (detail removed by moderator). I left the room and he then got out of bed and followed me into another room, head butted me and broke my nose. I left immediately and have been living with my parents ever since. We have no children.
The challenge I have is since then he has done everything right – sought counselling immediately, told our friends and his parents the truth, given me space, not got angry I’ve cancelled our wedding next year etc. i am financially independent, the higher earner etc. he is never controlling and actually encourages me to go out but he clearly has anger issues.
What I struggle to reconcile… Are there scenarios where a partner can escalate violence to this level and feel regret and genuinely not repeat behaviour, or am I kidding myself? The fact he followed me to another room to conduct the violence sticks with me a lot more than if it had been a knee jerk reaction to the pain from the plug.
I have a counsellor through my work, but they are naturally focused on my recovery and will offer no anecdotal information on this topic and I cannot find any research online. I do not want to forgive if it’s a losing battle.
Thank you for your help!
3rd August 2022 at 11:47 am #147968EyesopeningParticipant
I have realised that it is a long long road to recover (myself) and to stop the patterns in my behaviour to stop attracting abusive men and to stop falling into a abusive relationship. I think for people to change, the way they truly are is SO difficult, even if they really want to, it will take years and years of work. I have heard that abusive men can never change and do not want to change, why should they? they get everything they want being the way they are. And he most likely is only showing you all the right things to get you back.
For a long time I wished my ex was physicaly abusive, becuase for so long I doubted myself, doubted he was really abusive, I left him a while ago now, it was psychological, financial, sexual & emotional abuse. But reading your post, makes me see even then, when there is physical voilence, I can see how I would justsify that in my mind and still suffer from confusion and cognitive dissonance..
They are very very clever these men. I still cannot figure out if they do it knowingly, if they do they are master actors. I know they are already master manipulators and they all sound the same!
Cut contact and see how you start to feel, write a journal and try to contact your local Domestic abuse services, you need people who understand abuse to help you figure things out..
As you dig deeper, you may see more and more abusive tactics emerging. There are lots of good books to read also, ‘Why does he do that’. Also keep reading posts on here, you may start to see similiarities. Keep asking questions.
4th August 2022 at 5:04 pm #148033
Thank you EyesOpening. I have been reading the book you recommended this afternoon and am starting to recognise the gravity of how hard it is to correct those behaviours, if it is possible. I have tried domestic abuse support centres, my GP etc. and not got anywhere. I think that is intensifying my incredible sense of anger. I am intelligent, well paid, great family etc. and my heart is breaking in pieces for women who do not have the same resources I do. It is not fair that if you ask for help you don’t get it. What do I pay thousands in NI a year for only to be told to learn to barricade myself in a room and not rely on 999?
3rd August 2022 at 3:24 pm #147972BananaboatParticipant
Hello and welcome, well done for leaving. Can an abuser fundamentally change who they are? In theory yes, but it would take a hell of a lot of work and support as you’re changing the hard wiring inside. What’s possibly more likely is that an abusive person will take the steps they need to to look good / get us back / get out of trouble. A bit like a child saying sorry but not meaning it.
This might be going to counselling, going to GP and being prescribed drugs, giving up alcohol/drugs that kind of thing, but they won’t commit to these changes, they’ll think the counsellor is wrong, stop taking the medications, start drinking again. Because in their minds they are perfect and better than everyone else. Lundy Bancroft’s book ‘why does he do that’ talks about this quite a bit. Counselling also needs to be the right type, otherwise it can do more harm than good!
You describe this horrible incident but have there maybe been other red flags and the question isn’t so much whether you can move past this one incident but the whole picture. You’ll see it on here lots but very few change, and incidents only get worse overtime. Read up about the cycle of abuse, cognitive dissonance (which is a nasty b****r which keeps us forgiving them) and look after yourself.
4th August 2022 at 5:07 pm #148034
Thank you bananaboat, I have been reading the book you recommended and it is very useful. I am aware of your point about taking the right actions and then recanting and can see how this would happen. Ironically as I refused to cover it up for him and have been very upfront about his behaviour, I have put him in a situation where I can’t know if the upfront acknowledging of his behaviour is only because he has no other choice. We will see.
3rd August 2022 at 4:26 pm #147977AurielParticipant
Amukay I’m actually scared for you from what youve posted (I know you probably want to believe he’ll change but) I’m hoping you won’t risk going back to him as hes already physically damaged you, while he’s admitting to people what he did and he’s seeking counselling is a good thing (he’s taking accountability for his “obvious” issues) it’s for him to deal with, I’d have concerns about getting married and starting a family with this man lest he bring those issues to them too, as you said you’ve got everything you need to be independent of him yeah like I said I’m scared for you, all this is your choice and please don’t let him manipulate you (if he has contact with you he may do that or use mutual acquaintances) I’d want to see actions (but abusers are good at hiding anger then exploding)please think carefully whether you want to take the risk cos I’m pretty sure that none of us on the forum would want you to go back to him and youve already got it made without him and could find someone who won’t do those thing to you, please let us know how you getting on 💛🤗💛
4th August 2022 at 5:10 pm #148035
Thank you Auriel for your thoughtful message. I think deep down I am aware the relationship is over but I am not emotionally ready to let go and concerned I will take him back. I cannot reconcile the joy I’ve had with this sad outcome yet. I will cancel the wedding and remain at my parents home for the foreseeable. I have to protect myself as best as I can.
4th August 2022 at 9:03 pm #148042AurielParticipant
Absolutely, “you” 1st , I hope you stay on (come back to) the forum in the future as a support in encouraging others to put themselves also just if + when your ready to) your dealing with the trauma bond and cognitive dissonance right now that’s left after abuse, if your struggling to see things clearly and just remembering the good, write things down or speak to womens aid who’ll arrange counselling for you, I’m glad your not going back but sorry what you thought was gonna be your future is gone but we’d (and I’m sure you’d) prefer you to be alive respected and safe, take care 🤗💝🤗
5th August 2022 at 7:33 am #148059SquiddlesParticipant
My abuser voluntarily did a course for perpetrators. The transformation was remarkable. Outstanding in fact!* He admitted everything to me and seemed so very sorry.
Until he showed some low level hints of his old self. I thought OMG this is not real. I then spent months trying to get him to understand I did not need to give him (yet) another chance.
When he realised that I was not going to be swayed, he downgraded everything from domestic abuse to a rough patch. After that it got nastier as he took what he had learned and turned the tables on me. Suddenly my everyday behaviour was being called out as abusive, or even denying his accusations was part of my abuse problem. He’s actually more of a problem now than he was because of the course. He now knows what would be of concern to the police and keeps antics right under that bar.
I’m sorry what has happened to you. In my personal experience, no he didn’t change. I’d always look at change in the long-term and listen to any inner voice that tells you something doesn’t feel right.
5th August 2022 at 8:29 am #148061MellowParticipant
No don’t do it do not marry him please!it happened to me once and it happened again I always started blaming my self aswell though there was about (detail removed by Moderator) incidents in my (detail removed by Moderator) relationship it’s still not worth it if he’s physically abusive he’s more than likely going to be emotionally without you realising as it’s still very new it took me a (detail removed by Moderator) to realise I was emotionally abused.especially if you have an abusive background e.g parents you don’t recognise the signs straight away.they can’t change never will unless they want to !
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