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    • #132511

      Ive written this so many times and deleated it I dont feel I should post yet again Im always on here moaning but im struggling, im trying to keep myself busy as im punishing myself by not allowing myself to eat today messed up arent I?
      Im so full of guilt about all this about what Im learning, thinking, trying to believe then im so full of guilt about trying to change, put in boundries, work, make friends, talking to a counsellor my head is such a huge mess. The guilt on good days is so intense i cant help but think is it all in my head? Weve had a quiet aeek a few comments about (removed by moderator) but nothing I believe a normal marriage doesnt have so am I just looking for something to be wrong? But then I think no It cant be that cause im so unhappy. So, Can I ask a few questions? I just need to know that Im not batshit crazy that others feel the way I do.
      Once you opened your eyes and saw your relationship was abusive how long till you really believed it? Do you ever really beleive it?
      Did it consume your every waking thought?
      Some days i can hardly focus on simple tasks as im questioning things so much.
      How, how do you make that last step out and get away?
      Do you ever forgive yourself? I dont like me i dont like me at all anyone else feel like that?

      I wish I could go back a year, not see not lose it just keep living the way we was I thought I was happy I believed I was but now things just seem such a mess.

    • #132512

      It’s absolutely crushing and devastating to admit to yourself that the person you love and thought loved you in return has actually been abusing you. The cognitive dissonance between these two thoughts, one that he’s a monster and one that he’s the man who loves you, that battle is what’s destroying you just now.

      • #132524

        Thank you so much Kip, It just feels like im goung totally insane right now like im being pulled one way then another and i dont trust myself to know which way is up x

    • #132513

      First off nbumblebee I did the same thing (the not eating) for many many months before I left. I knew nothing about abuse and had no conscious idea my marriage was abusive. I did know I felt dreadful, I was severely anxious and depressed, but I thought it was (like everything else) all my fault and I punished myself by working myself to the bone, both at home and at work, hardly sleeping and barely eating. I became weaker weaker and the abuse escalated. It ultimately became violent and I couldn’t ignore it any longer. The denial of my reality was ripped away from me in that moment. I saw very clearly what he really was, and how damaging the situation I was in was to me.

      I escaped days after reality hit after reading Why Does He Do That cover to cover. My life was described in those pages. But I do think on a subconscious level I had been emotionally distancing myself from him for some time prior. I knew he wouldn’t change, I had just accepted it, and our relationship as all I could hope for.

      I have no doubt anymore that my relationship was abusive but it took a long time to deprogramme myself from the brainwashing. I am happy and healthy now, two things I hadn’t been for years in the relationship. Abuse steals from us even the memory of peaceful contentment. I left with nothing and have now completely rebuilt my life. It is possible.

      I have nothing to forgive myself for, the abuse was done to me, it was not my fault. This took time and lots of self compassion to come to. I have also forgiven him, not that I would ever communicate with him to tell him that, but he doesn’t have that hold on me anymore. I spent so long being angry, but I’ve processed it and it has passed.

      Better is possible. Leaving is a leap into the dark, but staying only means more of the same. You deserve peace and contentment and are on the right path. The guilt is a feeling, and like all feelings it will pass. Be as kind to yourself as possible and keep reaching out xx

      • #132525

        Thank you so much for sharing. Ive read the book watched utube videos and yes i agree and like you its almost like they are tellung my story but still I wont allow myself to really believe.
        Im just so scared i think cause if I admit it then i guess the only way out is to leave and i just cant see that. Im trying to take this one day at a time baby steps but i guess anxiety creeps in and i start to panic. Thanks again for your understanding xx

    • #132520

      Hi nbumblebee

      The first question is easy to deal with. No you’re not crazy but he would like you to think you are. If he’s succeeding then it just proves what an accomplished game player he is. This ‘good’ week is part of that. He senses that you have cottoned on to him and he’s reigning it in so as to remove the evidence you need to confirm it to yourself.

      Everyone’s journey is different. It took decades for me to recognise it at all. Even after I left, I had doubts and had to read the posts I’d made on the forum to remind myself how abusive he was. This is a man who raped me repeatedly and I still had doubts.

      As KIP said, it’s hard to accept that the person who is supposed to love you can deliberately hurt you like this. Then there is the FOG of abuse (Fear, Obligation and Guilt). It stops you seeing the picture clearly. For many (maybe most) women, this doesn’t even begin to clear until you’ve left.

      In a normal relationship you wouldn’t feel guilty about enhancing your life with work, friends, family etc.

      Do we ever forgive ourselves? I don’t know if I’ll ever forgive myself for not leaving sooner – I did my children a huge dis-service by staying. Will I ever forgive myself for leaving him? There’s nothing yo forgive. I gave him decades to sort himself out but he chose abuse.

      It’s your husband that needs forgiveness but sadly, he won’t ever genuinely believe that.

      • #132531

        Thank you so much for your reply. Its so good to know you are not the only one who feels this way its all so hard so confusing some days you just need to rant. I appreciate your time and kind words thank you x

    • #132523

      Hi @nbumblebee,

      I’m so sorry that you have so much turmoil going on inside you. For me, the realisation that my husband was abusive was like a massive lightbulb going on in my head. It joined so many dots. Why had I always felt useless and unworthy? Tick. Why did he sometimes completely lose it with me? Tick. Why did he manage to find fault with everything I did? Tick. Why did he constantly remind me how much more important he and his needs were than me and mine? Tick. I didn’t feel guilt at all. I felt relief. Because it all confused me so much. That’s not to say the confusion ended there, but it’s when I knew that I had to leave him. Ha! That makes it sound easy, doesn’t it?! Of course it wasn’t easy. I had no idea how, or when, but I knew that sometime, I had to do it. I knew for sure that things would never change, despite me telling myself for years and years that they would, that everything would be ok when this hurdle was overcome or that hurdle was overcome.

      And that’s when I started preparing, both physically and mentally. I came on here. Like you I came on and thought I was whingeing and moaning, but it was what grounded me when I thought I was going insane and I needed it SO much. And I took the advice I was given and I read all the books, but especially the Lundy Bancroft (Why does he do that?) and this made me feel stronger and more sure that I had figured things out correctly. Yes, I felt doubt. All the time. I came back here all the time, looking for reasons to convince myself that it was all happening and that I had to go.

      And I started getting my ducks in a row. It was funny, there were quiet peaceful times, times when I wondered if it had all finished and I wouldn’t need to do it. But I never stopped preparing. Just in case. I got myself that second phone. Prepared a case to leave with, got the paperwork together. Researched storage. It was weird but actually it gave me a lot of strength because I almost felt that I was was (or would ultimately be) in charge of my own destiny.

      And then Lockdown changed everything, not for the same reasons as for most – it didn’t mean I was with him all the time, but it adjusted the shape of our future and our family’s future and I knew I couldn’t go on. I knew that my sanity had gone and that my future simply couldn’t be this. So I had two choices. Only two and I knew that. Staying wasn’t one of them. It was so scary.

      How did I get away, take that final step and get away? There’s a thread on here called “What’s your Red Line?” or something like that. That made me think. It made me ask myself that very question. But I knew that there would be another incident, when he lost it with me and I just didn’t want to be there any more, and that everything would be in place and I’d just say **** you and walk out the door. And it happened and it was terrifying but it was the only way.

      I didn’t need to forgive myself. You don’t need to forgive yourself. You need to start believing that you don’t need to be forgiven, but that may not happen until you leave him, because he will continue to make you think that you are a lesser being, that you are unworthy. The fact that you feel you need to forgive yourself just shows what he is doing to you. After you leave it takes time for you to gain the strength to realise that you are so, so much more than he allowed you to think you were, but it will happen.

      Keep coming back here. Keep reading. Keep writing your notes. Keep telling/reminding yourself that it is real and it is happening, because it is. Just because it’s not happening all the time doesn’t mean it’s not happening. Remember that. x*x

      • #132536

        Wow Thank you so much. Your words have really calmed me today I always feel such a failure especially when i have to come on here to calm myself down. I feel like I really am just going crazy and that all this is on me not him.
        It helps so much to hear anothers voice that they feel the same. I dont know how im gonna get through this right now it all seems too much but I know that I will somehow get there many many thanks xxxxxx

    • #132532

      Hey you, answering your questions – it takes time hon, it really does, lots of very good words of wisdom above, Im a bit drained so havent got a lot else to add but wanted to hop in and show you some support to answer your questions…
      Once you opened your eyes and saw your relationship was abusive how long till you really believed it? Do you ever really beleive it? – I’m not sure I 100% believed it until just recently, when he has said things which I know to be 100% not true. I can’t go into more detail but I think its the first time I’ve realised I don’t really know the person I was with for so long. He feels like a total stranger.
      Did it consume your every waking thought? – Yes, whilst I was learning and reading and listening to podcasts, even now it can, when I’ve been out for a good while. But now I try to stop it and focus on healing me and self care, getting fit, eating well, being healthy and putting me at the centre of my world, not him. He’s just an irritant on the very edge, right at the back, all the way back, and one day, he will just disappear from my mind, I am sure of it.
      Some days i can hardly focus on simple tasks as im questioning things so much. Yes, whilst I was trying to get my head around it, trying to decide what to do, what was for the best, what I wanted, remembering who I was, what my values were, yes, it was very hard, to do all that and to buffer abuse day in and day out. Your body and mind will be going into fight, flight, freeze or faun, this is why its hard to focus. My GP prescribed anti-depressants to help clear the FOG (Fear, Obligation & Guilt – The acronym FOG, for Fear, Obligation and Guilt, was first coined by Susan Forward & Donna Frazier in Emotional Blackmail and describes feelings that a person often has when in a relationship with someone who suffers from a personality disorder). I was very anti as I thought they woudl make me more foggy, they did the opposite and really helped me to start thinking clearly about leaving. That and a good IDVA, have you got one? Outside support to help you see, and focus and plan is a godsend.
      How, how do you make that last step out and get away? – with my IDVA, she made suggestions, gently pushed me to see a solicitor and to make a plan. I also had counselling which helped me realise my rights in a relationship and how they were being squashed. Making the step – amazing advice from an amazing woman here – “Look on it as planning a holiday – plan for that, pack for that” essentially thats what it is, to be free, to do what you want, to relax, to smile and laugh again. I’m not making light of it, but thats what really helped in the actual doing the last bits, packing was suddenly exciting, thinking about what I would do in those first few hours away – I painted my nails that evening, something I hadn’t done in years, I read a magazine and ate my favourite food. And for once I didnt read about abuse and narcissism, I felt so light, it was incredible.
      Do you ever forgive yourself? I dont like me i dont like me at all anyone else feel like that? – forgive yourself? for doing what? For leaving an abusive relationship. Honestly, I wish I had done it a lot lot sooner, I sometimes wish I hadn’t had children with him – I love them of course, but I don’t love what I have lumbered them with which will take time to heal from and they might well take into their adult lives. And I know if I hadn’t had children with him I would have been long gone and not put up with the c**p I did for so long.
      I hope that helps. Keep asking. Keep reading. Keep thinking. Only you know what’s best for you. And honestly you will know when the right time is. Please please don’t let it escalate though, and that be the reason for when you go. It was a quiet calm day when I left. No arguments. No nothing. Just a quiet normal day. No dramas. I didn’t even slam the door, just pulled it to when I went. He wasn’t even in. Best day of my life. x*x

      • #132540

        Thank you so much I love Love the fact that you left on a calm quiet day. Your words are incredable thank you so much for your support and for answering so honestly. You really are incredable.
        I dont have any other support other than you guys i do see a counsellor who is great but i find it really difficult to say what im really feeling inside however its early days there.
        I dont want to ask for help because then i will be accepting it all and I dont know if I can. X

    • #132541

      Thank you everyone. I am ashamed that I find all this so hard. I am ashamed that I have to come on here to calm myself down to stop myself from taking all this out on myself. Im ashamed im too scared too weak to get help to admit out loud what actually if I look deep down I know.
      My husband makes my days miserable im always on edge scared, qorried I dread him coming home I dread aomething going wrong for him as its me who gets the brunt of his mood his temper.
      None of this is right none of this should happen in a normal marriage. Yep some days some weeks we are great but I still live with that fear that feeling in the pit of my stomach waiting for him to b**w. That is not right. Deep down I know but Im just too afraid to really admit it.
      You ladies really do hold me up keep me sane This is the worst pain right? The most confusing mixed up nasty mess but its made that little less hurtful to be able to share with those who wont laugh or wont get angry and say just leave ffs. It helps to know i am not alone. My wish is that one day I can pass on advice and help others the way you all help me.
      Much love ladies amd thank you xxxxx

    • #132569

      I have no advise but no exactly how you feel I hate being home with my husband and also feel like if days are OK is it me am I the problem and I imagining all this stuff. He was supposed to be on lates (detail removed by Moderator) and I was so looking forward to time on my own and now he’s booked time off and says to me oh isn’t it nice you have my company (detail removed by Moderator) honestly I feel sick and could cry I want to be on my own 🙁 I felt so trapped xx I to am skipping meals now because I guess its the only thing I can control and its so stupid I have little kids and need to stay healthy for them I hate thr way he makes me feel like I should be privileged he’s home with me and I should be excited I hate It so so much xx I’m sorry I’m no help and have waffled on just hate livng like this xx

      • #132570

        @gazebo never say sorry you help by being here by listening. We are not alone and knowing that helps so much right?
        Sending you big hugs stay safe sweetie x

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