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    • #128786
      nbumblebee
      Participant

      Hi,
      Im trying to make sense of all this i am trying to stay strong be calm amd trying to carry on with my life and even try to enjoy some of it.
      Ive said time and time again I wont leave so In my head I need to find a way to live with my husband. Im looking for some books that may help me feel strong, help me get on with my life, help me be more positive more determined cause right now it takes everything I have just to get up each day and I dont wanna feel like this anymore.
      I love to read so I thought maybe some of you may know some good books out there that may give me the kick up the arse I need to get a grip and to fight. Find myself again and to live again.
      Thanks xxxx

    • #128793
      KIP.
      Participant

      There is no way to live with an abuser without it destroying you and your mental health. Many of us including me have tried this. Contact your local women’s aid and try some counselling. Google trauma bonding and learn all you can about abusers and why they abuse. Living with the Dominator by Pat Craven. Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft. Healing from hidden abuse by Shannon Thomas. Know your enemy. Nothing you can do will prevent him continuing to harm you. Why do you want to stay with someone who deliberately harms you? Look deeper into that question.

      • #128812
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        I get what you are saying but I just feel like a fraud. Some days are good it can be good for weeks I just dont understand how when its good sometimes it can be abuse bad days wow i can see it I really can hes rotten so nasty but good days hes great. I will be honest Im not sure I love him but life is ok most days so maybe i just need to suck it up and cope. No marriage is perfect right?

      • #128818
        KIP.
        Participant

        Google the cycle of abuse. No marriage is perfect but abuse is not a part of marriage x

      • #128833
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        Thanks x

      • #128874
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @kip sorry i shouldve reaponded more than a thanks but your words i think hit me hard. I need to think I really do I cant answer your question just yet its too hard but I hope too one day. Ive downloaded the book now to find the courage to read. You take care and thabk you for being so honest hugs xx

      • #128878
        KIP.
        Participant

        Hey don’t apologise. Take a step back when it becomes overwhelming which it will as the fog slowly clears and take baby steps. It’s awful to have to accept the truth and that’s why I think we stay and love in denial. Dip in and out when you’re felling strong enough and cognitive dissonance is another lightbulb moment for me. Slowly the pieces will fit together but only at your own pace. Reading other posts also helped and there’s a national domestic abuse helpline if you need to talk x stay safe x

      • #128881
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @kip Its all just too hard isnt it? Huge huge thanks take care and stay strong xxxx

    • #128799
      littledove
      Participant

      I agree with Kip, you can’t ever live a positive life whilst you’re still with an abuser. They will just constantly wear you down again and again.

      The only way you can truly be happy and take back your power is to leave someone like him.
      I know this is really hard to do. I’ve been there, we all have. I hope you find the strength one day to live the life you deserve.

      But until then, the books Kip has suggested are excellent.


      @iliketea
      should have some great advice too xx

      • #128813
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @littledove wow I read that post and I dont know how i feel about it. But Thank you so much for posting it xxxx

      • #128816
        littledove
        Participant

        You’re welcome ❤️

        I read your reply to Kip.

        Abusers have moments of positive reinforcement to keep you there, so that maybe you’ll think that one day it’ll only ever be the positive moments and that the abuse will go away.
        It’s what makes things so confusing for us, because it’s like being with two different people in the one relationship.

        Yes no marriage is perfect. But there are respectful, loving, good men out there who do not abuse their partners.

        I guess you just need to ask yourself. When you’re on your death bed taking your last breathe and reflecting on your whole life, will you be happy with how you’ve lived it? Will you be happy with just having an “ok” life, one that you felt you just had to “suck up”?

        You’re in the drivers seat of your life. You get decide what life you want for yourself. He’s wearing you down so much. Ask yourself what is keeping you here? Be honest with yourself, what IS keeping you there, list them all.
        Then list all the reasons why you want to leave.

        Sending hugs; you have more strength in you than you know xx

      • #128834
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        Huge Thanks for the amazing honest advice
        Yeah I got some stuff to sort i just dont know how or where to begin I keep going from yes i see this yep its abuse to OMG no im just being silly, attention seeking, crazy. I need to really sit and think this out. Hugs and thanks x

      • #128836
        littledove
        Participant

        I totally understand you and get it. It’s a whirlwind.
        But please don’t doubt yourself. Our bodies are so good at telling us when something isn’t right or is off.
        Listen to your instincts.

        I think reading the books that have been suggested will really help you find clarity and the answers you’re looking for.

        You’re not silly, attention seeking or crazy, that’s just his words and they’re meaningless.

        Wish you all the best, stay safe and take care xx

      • #128851
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @littledove thanks I will read the books they have been suggested b4 but ive always been too afraid to read them afraid of what i may find ojt afraid of him noticing the books too but I think I need this once and for all I need to really understand if this is abuse why and how and then maybe I can find a way. Thank you xx

    • #128800
      littledove
      Participant
    • #128840
      Bettertimesahead
      Participant

      For the last few years before he went I felt much like you, but now my one regret is not doing something sooner. It has not been an easy ride and he continues to make my life very difficult but I am still happier. Write down the bad days, refer back to them and believe in you and getting the life you deserve.

      • #128852
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @bettertimesahead thank you. Yes I believe i should write things down as i do forget alot its not until I talk to my thereapist then i realise some of the things he has said. We seem to be going through a long quiet spell but if he starts again I will be sure to write it down. Thank you x

    • #128857
      ISOPeace
      Participant

      Hey, I’ve been working on a reply but it’s getting a bit long… I’ll post it in a bit. In the meantime, you can read a lot of the books online. There’s an online library archive.org where you can read books for free on your phone, that’s how I read the Lundy Bancroft book before I left. xxxx

    • #128858
      Eggshells
      Participant

      Hi nbumblebee,

      There are books and articles out there that claim to help you live with an abuser. One of my close relatives has read them, watched videos etc and now claims that they can “handle” the abuser.

      The truth is, my family member is still walking on eggshells, in their own words “coping with it”. “Coping with it” means contacting his adult children in secret because the abuser gets jealous, constantly trying to keep secrets from his abuser, then passing that pressure onto his adult children by trying to get them to tell their private business to the abuser so that he doesn’t have to keep the secret (so children just don’t confide in him anymore), dealing with vicious verbal attacks, he has regular suicidal thoughts.

      The books have given him the illusion of coping because they have taught him some strategies for deflecting some of the abusive behaviour. But then a new behaviour emerges without him noticing. So honestly, although he now believes he’s more in control, it is an illusion and for that reason, I’m afraid I can’t recommend the books. They’re just a smoke screen.

      • #128875
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @eggshells Thank you yeah i can see what you are saying it makes sense it really does my goodness i never expected responces like these its really hard to take but very very much appreciated thank you x

    • #128860
      ISOPeace
      Participant

      Hi nbumblebee. I agree with the other responses to your post. This is such a difficult question to answer. I really admire your strength and determination. It sounds like you’re in the freeze part of fight/flight/freeze, which is what the trauma bond does to us. We feel too scared to even look in the direction of leaving, because we’re frozen in fear. This is a normal reaction to the abuse. There’s nothing wrong with you for feeling this way.

      I’ve been in the position of feeling frozen and desperately wanting to find a way to make it work, even if he was never going to change. I did a huge amount of reading and trying things to make me more resilient. I learnt a lot and I noticed some significant positive changes in me while I was still with my ex, but now that I’ve left I have to say that it was like I was dragging a huge weight behind me. Yes the things I did and learnt made me stronger but they didn’t get rid of the weight I had to drag. Now that I’ve left I can feel the difference.

      In a healthy relationship, both people have the mutual want for both of you to be happy, fulfilled, respected and have the space to be who you are. For normal people, this is what makes them happy. But abusers don’t care about us being happy. They only care that they can what they want and don’t care whether it has a negative effect on their partner. They don’t want us to be ourselves, they want us to be what they think we should be. They don’t care whether we want to do something, they just care whether we do it and they believe they’re entitled to force us to do it. They make sure there is a power imbalance, which is not the case in a normal relationship. The way they achieve this is to brainwash you, to make you feel too weak to challenge him, to make you feel confused, like you don’t know the difference between what you want and what he wants, to feel like you’re to blame, to not be you and to make you feel like you cannot survive without him. The effect of this is that it chips away at you. It’s like he takes chunks out of you, more and more over time and convinces you that only he can fill the gaps left behind. Eventually you’re just a shell. There is no way the survivor can be themselves, let alone be happy. Maybe the abuse will stay at a level where you can muddle through life, but abuse usually escalates.

      I think it’s wonderful that you are thinking about enjoying life. You haven’t given up on yourself. In my experience it is possible to enjoy parts of your life while you’re with him. But there’s always that weight in the background and there’s always the possibility that he decides to make it big enough so that it drags you under. I had found a way to kind of muddle through before lockdown. I didn’t see him on days I worked or some days when he worked, I planned as much stuff as I could to do without him. I lived for the days I didn’t see him, but it was not a life I’d wish for anyone. Lockdown made that way of coping impossible and it got to the stage where I knew that I couldn’t be a decent parent if I stayed because my mental health was always at the mercy of what he would throw at me. How could I look after my kids if I couldn’t look after me?

      I think the only way to truly enjoy life is for his behaviour to not affect how you feel, either by not having him in your life or for your self worth and wellbeing to not be attached to him in any way. In reality we all attach our self worth and wellbeing to external things: other people, possessions, ideas etc. It is possible to let go of these attachments, but this is what Buddhist monks spend a lifetime trying to do. In other words, very few people manage it. He needs your self worth to be attached to him to keep control over you, so he will try to sabotage any attempts. But I think the degree to which you can detach from him will allow you to feel freer and happier, whether you stay or leave.

      What would it be like to decide that you’re just going to focus on you for now? You have the freedom to leave or stay, but your day to day aim is to prioritise making yourself feel stronger. Maybe this will make leaving feel like a safer option, maybe it won’t, but the more you focus on him over yourself, the more you lose yourself. Sending lots of love xxxx

    • #128879
      nbumblebee
      Participant

      @isopeace I have tried Ive lost weight i get exercise Ive been trying to volunteer but he hates all these things and makes it so difficult for me to grow and change and look after myself I have to lie to him so much which makes me feel terrible like im the abuser for lying.
      But you are right he doesnt want whats best for me I can see that. We work together sometimes its the only time he allows me to work but ive hurt myself and im stuck at home and i can see he loves it as i cant go out and do what i enjoy doing and hes having to pick up the slack at work which i can see he loves as he says i need to perform in the bedroom as a thank you he says it as a joke but I know he means it and i know i will do it. Thats not marriage right? Ive downloaded the why does he do that book as im laid up Im gonna try and find the courage to read it to learn. Huge huge thanks for again making so much sense in a world where not much ever does.
      Sending you much love xxxxx

    • #128882
      gettingtired
      Participant

      Have you had a look at the grey rock method? I don’t think it would work long term though. Dr Ramani does a good YouTube video on radical acceptance that might be helpful. The problem is it’s extremely difficult to try and build yourself up whilst still living in the abuse because of the constant knock downs. You could try doing little things for yourself. I know how tricky they make it though because everything must always revolve around them.
      This sounds weird but for some reason last night I started envisioning myself as a young child, me when I was a toddler, innocent and just wanting to be loved. I imagined myself as an adult seeing myself as a baby and taking care of me; comforting the baby version of me. I find that as an adult I really struggle to put myself first or accept that I don’t deserve the abuse. I guess I was trying to find a way to help myself which came about by me thinking back to the young and innocent child version of me. Sorry if that doesn’t make much sense to anyone else just wanted to share.
      You need to work on believing that you deserve to be happy and free. You should not have to endure abuse as well as the self-harm. I know words are easy to say but you’re a lovely, caring person towards others but not to yourself (just like me and many others on this forum). Sending a virtual hug x*x

      • #128884
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @gettingtired Thanks my lovely for your kind kind words it did all make sense thank you for sharing that with me. I really do have alot of thinking to do. Sending you hugs stay safe chick x

    • #128892
      Tryingtofindhope
      Participant

      Wow this post is amazing. So much helpful information and advice. I hope you find it as informative as I do nbumblebee and I hope that you feel better both mentally and physically very soon. Take care x

      • #128896
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @tryingtofindhope Im so glad you have found it helpful never did i imagine this response and Im so pleased if it helps you and others.
        Much love xx

    • #128903
      Secretlife
      Participant

      Hello nbumblebee

      These posts have also helped me, thank you for starting these posts. There isn’t any more I can add other than to say read the book “why does he do that”. This book changed everything for me, it’s an education in itself. I have never been the same since reading that book. I no longer crumble to a wreak like I used to, and I feel to a good extent, I know how he ticks now and I respond very differently to how I used to. I guess he probably wonders what on earth has happened to me!!! 😁 It’s made a huge difference to my life (together with this forum of course). I still get anxious about potential moods etc and still feel very guarded when I’m with him. We recently went on holiday which caused me much anxiety, but, surprisingly, I coped. Time will tell how my new strategies are working but ISOpeace is right in that I am dragging round a heavy weight, and my ultimate goal is to leave this weight behind. One day at a time I tell myself whilst I build my inner strength. Sending you love and strength x*x

      • #128910
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @secretlife I needed this today Thank you.
        I agree maybe, MAYBE one day but I just cant see it but right here right now I need to leaen how to cope how to stop hurting myself for things he says and does I need to find strength from somewhere and I am hoping this book everyone speaks so highly of will help. Huge Thanks honestly I needed to hear this today. Hugs to you and stay safe and strong xxxxx

    • #128912
      soxy
      Participant

      This post is so helpful, thank you nbumblebee for posting. I understand where you are coming from, I am still to make any move. At the moment I am struggling with not being sucked into it being ‘ok’ at the moment. I have found all of the responses so helpful. I also really like Dr Ramani’s YouTube videos and actually you might find those helpful, because she says that not everyone can or wants to leave. But she tries to help you so you can change how you view your relationship. So rather than being there because you haven’t any choice, you are choosing too for a specific reason that you know. Although she does also say that once you see it, you can’t unsee it and that is where I have got too.

      I also found the freedom online programme really interesting and helpful and also need to get on reading the lundy bancroft book. As the others said one day at a time, baby steps. Only you can decide and make a decision, but you are a strong lady and thanks for coming here and sharing x

      • #128934
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @soxy, am so glad ive helped in a small way thank you for your advice and tips. I understand your problem as its been ok here flr a while too and i find this is hardest part of all almost wish he was nasty so I know its not me making it all up. Sad isnt it? You take care and stay safe and strong hugs xxxx

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