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    • #127483
      Headspin
      Participant

      I have confided in a close friend the abuse I have suffered during my marriage. Still ongoing but not as severe because he is ill. She has been my friend since we were teens and are as close as could be. However I never discussed my deep unhappiness, I was like many abused people, a closed book. After revealing to her all that has gone on, she is outraged and upset on my behalf. She has been immensely supportive and loving and has listened to all the gory details. She has so many stories of her own about my husband, how much he hurt her with nasty comments. She is really laying into him now and the messages are angrier and angrier. It’s great to have her support but I’m feeling anxious hearing from her that he stopped me from reaching my full potential career wise. I was stopped from taking well paid jobs for which I was qualified because he refused to look after the kids or for me to pay for help. Any job had to be in term time thus limiting me. I don’t want to be triggered by what I know is true, also fresh stories of his awful behaviour. How do I politely and lovingly say, I don’t have the energy to hear all this or is it good for me to know the extent of his controlling? I’m a bit confused as to what my head can handle.

    • #127486
      [email protected]
      Participant

      Just confide in her say it’s too triggering righ t now to hear all of this xx ask her to write it down and you’ll read it all when and only when your ready xx the triggering will subside but it does take a while and it’s maybe best that you get counselling xx it’s a journey and one day you will be able to stand outside this situation and look in seeing it very clearly. It will dawn on you that he was actually very jealous and threatened by your capabilities and what you’ve attained in your life your smart xx his insecurities made him act the way he did – remember an abusers view point is a very screwed account of reality it’s definitely not the real reality xx hope on making sense lol 😘

    • #127487
      [email protected]
      Participant

      I’m

    • #127493
      Headspin
      Participant

      Thanks DIY. Yes it’s been horribly triggering and I didn’t know about the awful things he said to her in the past. She just put up with it for the sake of our friendship. I’ve been going to counselling, funded by my adult children because of financial abuse. The counsellor is very good and I’m regaining my confidence. It’s hearing new stories of abuse and how raging she is that is horribly traumatising to learn about. I should tell her how it’s affecting me. Yes someone must be jealous and threatened to be so controlling and nasty.

    • #127504
      Pears2021
      Participant

      Hi, I agree with the other person that replied. I was thinking too that your friend should write it down for you, and you can read it bit by bit when you feel ready, rather than feel bombarded. Yes he’s hurt her. But this is for you to decide how you feel about your relationship and what to do about it.
      With me, my family have made police reports about my partner. I know they were well meaning. But it upset me because I felt that they were taking my choices/decisions away, if that makes sense. He got away away with stuff though anyway because my family had actually made errors in what they’d told the police.

    • #127521
      Headspin
      Participant

      Thanks pears, “bombarded” is the right word. I am working through my own trauma and am finding it hard to hear more stories.
      Oh goodness that must have been soul destroying that your family made mistakes in the reports which affected the outcome. Our family and friends can be so well intentioned but maybe they forget that we’re still very fragile as we try to come to terms with the abuse

    • #127541
      ISOPeace
      Participant

      I had a similar experience where a friend was really angry about how my husband treated me. I know she felt it was well intentioned, but from my perspective I had another angry person to deal with. In my friend’s case, I’m pretty sure my husband triggered issues my friend had with her dad. I think she simply thought she was being angry on my behalf, but there was always a bit of a sense that it was more about her than about me. It also sometimes made me feel like she thought I should be angrier than I was, so it felt a bit like she was getting angry because she thought I was too weak.

      I guess it shows what a muddle abuse makes of our thoughts/feelings. I know she meant well, it just wasn’t what I needed. She doesn’t do it now but I can’t even remember how it got resolved. I think I managed to explain that I know her intention was to support me but it was difficult to deal with, with everything else I was already dealing with.

      I would try to make clear to your friend that you really value her support, you care about how he has treated her and you can see that her intention is to support you but it’s just a bit too much at the moment.

      There’s a great video on YouTube of Brene Brown talking about empathy vs sympathy. In short, someone is stuck down a hole. Sympathy is looking down and commenting on how bad it is, maybe telling them how they could get out. But empathy is getting into the hole with them and helping them cope with being there until they’re ready to get out. I think most of us don’t even realise we’re looking down the hole rather than getting in. I’m not saying this to criticise your friend at all. I just thought it might be helpful to see that she’s trying to help from the top of the hole, whereas you need someone in there with you. It doesn’t mean anyone’s doing anything wrong, but it does explain why her good intentions aren’t helping you they way she intends. Sending love xxxx

    • #127723
      Headspin
      Participant

      Thanks iso, that really clarified what I’ve been feeling. Interesting to know someone else has been through similar. As you say, dealing with two angry people and yes the feeling I get from her that I’m not boiling with rage so therefore I’m letting him walk all over me.
      She has calmed down a bit since I’ve just given a one word answer to her long rants about him. She’s an amazing friend and I think this whole situation has been very hard for her too. But the fresh stories, that she had never felt able to tell me until recently, were just so shocking for me. I was finding it hard to breathe as I read them.
      It’s so messed up.
      I’ll look up Brene Brown, thanks so much.

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