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Old 05-10-2009, 07:26 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Emotional Abuse Article, "From the Abuser's Point of View"


This is from the website You are NOT a Victim, REALLY


From the Abuser's Point of View

I should avoid emotional closeness, because it leaves me vulnerable and open to hurt. I will adopt an attitude of aloofness and indifference to keep my partner from getting a piece of me. Besides, if I let my partner get into my head, I will be under her rule and will be smothered. I will lose myself. To prevent this, I will subconsciously and consciously distance myself from my partner to keep her from overtaking me, while giving her fleeting moments of tenderness to keep her near me.

Here’s how I’ll go about it.

I will put off her requests for closeness, for talks and for time alone together. I will interrupt her and dismiss her opinions. I will show little interest when she wants to share an insight or a story from her day, and I will not share mine. When she hears me share something with someone else and asks. “Why didn’t you tell me that? I will say.” Or “I didn’t think you’d be interested” or “I forgot.” I will scoff at her interests as well as her choices and habits. Also, I will make sure I don’t miss a chance to point out with a tone of superiority and rightness-- how opposite or different her choices and habits are from mine. This helps prove that any attempts at working on our relationship will likely fail, since we are so different and thereby gives me more reason to distance myself.

I will spend my time at home on house projects, watching TV, reading magazines or playing with the kids anything and everything to leave no time for us to have a private moment. I will stay up each night later than her to avoid any closeness when we go to bed, then tell her she needs too much sleep. If I want to have sex, I will wake her from her sleep and began touching her, knowing she’ll respond because I’ve minimized affection and she’s craving any intimacy I’ll offer. When I am not at home avoiding her, I will pursue activities outside the home and not include her or forget to tell her about my activities until the day of the event, thereby leaving little possibility that she can attend with me.

To keep her within arm’s reach, I will occasionally throw out a “we should do X.” I may even really mean to do something with her, but I won’t ever make it a priority so that other things I have to do will always come first... I will leave my schedule open to attend whatever event I want, work on any project I want, or go out with friends (without considering that I should find a sitter because I know she’ll be home). But I will raise a fuss when she decides to take a night off from the house and the kids without getting my OK. After all, she always checks with me to see if I’ll be home, so if she doesn’t check, she must be punishing me, and I will call her on it. I will evade suggestion from her for a night out together or will commit to a night out grudgingly and without any sign of enthusiasm. When she stops initiating dates for us and then later complains about our lack of fun time, I will (with irritation in my tone) remind
her that she needs to initiate it I can’t always be the one initiating.

If she asks that we have a talk, I will put on my game face of mild irritation at her demand that I share. I
will let her run the talk, not offering much input and not validating her opinions. If she pushes ANY buttons or requests any changes in my behavior, I will unleash my rage and feel it is my entitlement to cut her, criticize, accuse her of riding me and then leave the room or the house, so that she can’t continue talking to me. Her talking is just a cover to get a chance to bitch at me anyway. When she sets up a session with a counselor, I will go so that no one can place blame on me for not going. Then I will tell the counselor that the reasons we have problems is that we are very different people so we can’t communicate with each other.

Once in a while, I will throw her a crumb and share a thought or a hug with her. Or, at the spur of the moment, I will decide -- without asking her first -- to take her out to dinner so that she can’t say to her friends or my family. He NEVER spends time alone with me. I will subvert any attempts from her to talk about us spending more time together during these rare occasions when I do spend a night with her.

I will show disgust at her lack of confidence and insecurities. Then I will bring up her tender spots (insecurities) whenever it helps me gain the upper hand or control in an uncomfortable situation. That way, the focus of whatever comes up is shifted away from me and onto her unreasonable insecurities.

When she reacts to any of this with anger or other high emotions (yelling, getting hysterical, crying, bawling, or walks around joyless and bitter), I will offer very little comfort, concern, reassurance or attention. After all, she is trying to punish me with all her hysterical and depressing emotions, and I don’t need the hassle.

Her anger and emotional reactions provide good reasons to keep distancing myself from such an intentionally hurtful person. I will make sure I tell my friends and family that her only moods are depressed, hysterical, joyless and bitter, and nothing I do is ever enough for her. That way I can make an ironclad case that proves to everyone, including myself, that it is her fault when she leaves me.
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Old 05-10-2009, 07:47 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Wow!!! That gave me goosebumps.

Are you sure my exah didn't write that? J/K. It fits him to the letter.

Im speechless.
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Old 05-10-2009, 03:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Startingover2 View Post
Wow!!! That gave me goosebumps.

Are you sure my exah didn't write that? J/K. It fits him to the letter.

I'm speechless.
I'm speechless too and in tears as I read this as this is my recovering ABF to a tee. The other night, once again, he gave me grief because I can't seem to kick the smoking habit and that has become an issue for him. I have cut way back on it - do not smoke in the house and things like that but there are times - mainly when I am stressed out that I do smoke more than I should - I am fully aware of it but like any addiction, it is a hard habit to break. It seems that whenever something does not go right for him - something beyond our control, that is when I smoke more and he lashes out at this.

It happened Friday night (again) and there's no arguing with him when he gets like this-he clams right up and shuts down, shutting me out in the process, trying to goad me into losing my temper and lashing out. I have tried so hard to put it down to his version of recovery (no AA meetings or anything like that since he got out of rehab and one relapse) but today, for the first time since we have been together, I sat down and cried - he went to see his mother without me (we had planned to go together) not even telling me he was going or taking the pictures of us with him. As much as I have tried to be objective about this, there's no denying the hurt of our alcoholics cause us when they get like this.

So, I am going to read and reread this again and bookmark it - coming to SR today was something I was fated to do to read this thread and find some comfort in it.
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Old 05-10-2009, 05:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Scary

WOW! I am new to all of this and boy is this a scary scenario. I can say that I am so glad that I have found this site. All of the information is "spot on", has openend my eyes and clearly steered me in the other direction.
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Old 05-11-2009, 04:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Throw in other women and alcohol and you have my STXAH described EXACTLY.
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Old 05-12-2009, 03:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Amazing. I am new here too and this fits my AH to a T. And here I was thinking I was all alone!
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Old 05-12-2009, 04:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'd encourage anyone who hasn't to follow Chrysalis' link and read that web page. It's wildly powerful.

It's true. We are not victims, we are not survivors....as long as we remain in abusive relationships, we are TARGETS, no more, no loss. Truly amazing stuff.
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thank you, Chrysalis. I've lived with this. I've been willing to accept a few "crumbs" thrown my way. And it stinks. I have frequently referred to my AH as a passive-aggressive, which is how he operates. Just plain old abuser would be a more appropriate description.

Great post!
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Old 05-13-2009, 01:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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partners aside, in all honesty I can see my behaviour in some of this.

I'm not proud of it and its not intentionally, (or perhaps better worded as not consciously), done in the way the article articulates. Not that it makes a bit of difference to the person on the receiving end. Do you think anyone who uses these techniques does so consciously?

This is how I learned to argue, and its poisonous, I know,
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:59 AM   #10 (permalink)
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None of us are victims

Although abusees are certainly a target, they don't have to be 'victims.' Victims need to be rescued. Targets get out of the way. Victims are passive. Targets are active.

GOOD STUFF!!!
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Old 05-13-2009, 01:45 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Hi.. I've not posted in a while. I've been concentrating on working on myself and getting my life back to 'normal'.

One of the things I'm doing to achieve that is going into counselling. I hesitated about this at first. I knew I needed to talk things through and try and make some sense of what happened during my time with the A: I knew I had to learn lessons. I suppose I was just nervous about revisiting life with the A.

Anyway, I went and continue to go. The lady I am seeing specialises in DV, abuse and addictions. I described my relationship with the A. She said that I had undergone some terrible emotional abuse (as well as the physical culminating in the act that put me in Hospital). One thing she said in my first session struck me. 'Stop blaming the alcoholism'. I realised that for our entire relationship I had put all the behaviours (most of which are in the OP) into a box marked 'what the alcoholic does' and excused him as he excused himself. With the covering of 'he's an alcoholic' I hid what lies beneath.

In some strange way it comforted me when she said that, whilst he was not there and she was in no position to diagnose him, it seemed he had issues and problems out with alcoholism and that there was nothing I could have done, said, or been that would have changed how he was. Deep inside myself I knew he had.

Also, in some strange way, when we discussed how a human being could abuse another (for whatever reason not just because of their addiction to alcohol), it comforted me when she said I had been dehumanised. It is hard to hear but it makes sense. To treat another human being with no compassion or caring, no understanding or sympathy/empathy, to hurt them emotionally/mentally/physically.. you would have to see them as nothing.. like a rat in the street... a pest an irritant, not human.

It is interesting that I've logged on today and seen this thread. I am not a victim. It is not strictly true to say I am not a survivor because I survived physical abuse and I am continuing to function and (hopefully) prosper in spite of the A's opposition to that and in spite of setbacks.

But yes I was a target... and then became a hostage.
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Old 05-13-2009, 02:56 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I was a target too. I called it an "object" then. I wasn't a person - I was an object, a concept.

I wasn't GiveLove, the person who has her own feelings and pain and needs and struggles, the person who has the right to a good life too.

To him I was "that woman who has to stay here in order for me to feel okay." My suffering didn't matter. My happiness didn't matter. Nothing mattered but the end result: power.

When I stepped out of the crosshairs and walked away, I ESPECIALLY became an object. Then I was "the woman I must get back even if it would be the worst thing in the world for HER." I was lucky to have support in fighting back and getting him away from me for good.

Object. Concept. Satisfaction of a need. Not a person.

I feel like a survivor too, but of a different kind: I survived the things I allowed to happen to me in the course of my learning. I was a hostage who finally realized that the door to my cell had never been closed. I am fortunate. Many do not survive stepping out of the target zone. We could've lost you tallulah, and ever time I think of that it just tears me up.
:ghug
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:56 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GiveLove View Post
I was a target too. I called it an "object" then. I wasn't a person - I was an object, a concept.

I wasn't GiveLove, the person who has her own feelings and pain and needs and struggles, the person who has the right to a good life too.

To him I was "that woman who has to stay here in order for me to feel okay." My suffering didn't matter. My happiness didn't matter. Nothing mattered but the end result: power.

When I stepped out of the crosshairs and walked away, I ESPECIALLY became an object. Then I was "the woman I must get back even if it would be the worst thing in the world for HER." I was lucky to have support in fighting back and getting him away from me for good.

Object. Concept. Satisfaction of a need. Not a person.

I feel like a survivor too, but of a different kind: I survived the things I allowed to happen to me in the course of my learning. I was a hostage who finally realized that the door to my cell had never been closed. I am fortunate. Many do not survive stepping out of the target zone. We could've lost you tallulah, and ever time I think of that it just tears me up.
:ghug
Hmmm

I am still processing all of this truthfully.

Givelove's post is exactly what I went through, but a bit different, if that makes sense.

I was an object that became a target I think

Her alcoholism had nothing to do with her behavior.

I know alcoholics, I'm related to them, I am one, I've dated them, all my friends are (recovering) alcoholics.

This was an entirely new animal.

I was meant to "save" her I think (to her), I spoke the language and gave her the love she had never had. She couldn't help pushing me away though, sometimes covertly, sometimes overtly.

It was the "double bind", I love you "POW" <punches me in the face>

"I love you I need you" her pursuit of me was relentless and repeated.

So I began to confuse love with abuse.

It all got so mixed up in my mind.

I still ask myself how could she have been so mean if she loved me?

So I was the object she needed to complete her in her mind, but she was "rigged" to drive me away the moment we got together. She had so much self hatred and self loathing that she couldn't help but to blast me with it.

When I left for the final time I have never seen so much pure hatred directed at another human being in my life as she directed at me. That's really when I became "The Target".

All in all it was an incredibly confusing experience I haven't entirely processed yet.

It was an act in three parts

Come Closer (The wall of seduction)
Get Away (Love Avoidant and extremely toxic and abusive behaviors)
Come back (Because I would leave her)

These cycles occurred closer and closer together.

It was like she hated me, but couldn't let me go.

She would beg for me to come back to her, admit her part, promise to change, offer me everything I ever wanted in a relationship, then when I did go back to her, would treat me worse then I have ever been treated in my life, then when I would finally leave her again the cycle would begin anew.

Until Like I said the last time she unleashed her full fury on me.

Hell Hath No Fury didn't even begin to cover it.

Pretty strange.

Made me doubt my own reality.

I've been in a "normal" relationship now for nearly six months.

We've had our differences here and there, but what a difference. Night and Day.

Communication occurs. Compromise occurs. Validation occurs. Two people seeing "their part" occurs. Resolution occurs. No "lashing out" and hurtful things being said. No name calling. No gathering of allies. No repeated break ups. No spiteful, vindictive behaviors. No Lying.

The roughest we've handled each other has been to take a "time out" for twelve hours.

That's it.

I like having my "normal" return to normal. To Sanity. I like being with someone who doesn't hate me and spend every waking hour trying to tear me down and squash me like a bug in order to feel better about themself while they desperately want me to save them.

yeah....I still don't truly understand it. I'm still confused as to why this person was so hurtful.

Quote:
Object. Concept. Satisfaction of a need. Not a person.
That's exactly it. That's all I was. But she couldn't help but to tear me down the moment I was with her. In a thousand different ways, from the most subtle, to disappearances, to constant lying, to in my face horrific, nasty things being said. Driving me insane, making me absolutely break down and cry, then pointing her finger at me and saying "see? Look how F'd up you are"

I sure am glad I don't live there any more though.

I guess that makes me a Victor.
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Old 05-14-2009, 09:01 AM   #14 (permalink)
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"Driving me insane, making me absolutely break down and cry, then pointing her finger at me and saying "see? Look how F'd up you are" "

Ughhhh, I think many of us here can share that sensation. It turns my stomach just to remember!

Ago, aren't you glad you have another chance to live a fruitful relationship? Its been almost a month since I am going out with a guy and yes, there are some issues but its also Night and Day.

I look at him and look at ME and my choices, and I have some tender emotion for the guy as he represents my progress. It is a very sweet feeling, specially after what we have gone through before (I agree 50% are personal bad choices, but what about the other 50% inflicted by the other person?).

I am just wondering how many people stay in abusive relationships believing that's all there is, and never get a slight change to feel truly loved and able to trust.
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Old 05-15-2009, 01:53 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by GiveLove View Post
I was a target too. I called it an "object" then. I wasn't a person - I was an object, a concept.

I wasn't GiveLove, the person who has her own feelings and pain and needs and struggles, the person who has the right to a good life too.

To him I was "that woman who has to stay here in order for me to feel okay." My suffering didn't matter. My happiness didn't matter. Nothing mattered but the end result: power.

When I stepped out of the crosshairs and walked away, I ESPECIALLY became an object. Then I was "the woman I must get back even if it would be the worst thing in the world for HER." I was lucky to have support in fighting back and getting him away from me for good.

Object. Concept. Satisfaction of a need. Not a person.

I feel like a survivor too, but of a different kind: I survived the things I allowed to happen to me in the course of my learning. I was a hostage who finally realized that the door to my cell had never been closed. I am fortunate. Many do not survive stepping out of the target zone. We could've lost you tallulah, and ever time I think of that it just tears me up.
:ghug
I can relate to everything you said GL.

God, it is hard to accept that to someone you were somehow ‘less than’ but it is what it is and it in no way says who you really are. When someone hands you something.. a package.. asks you to take it and take ownership of it… it only becomes yours when you accept it.

The day you stop accepting it is the day you find freedom. Like you have said.. you realise that the door was always open and you can turn around and leave, leaving them and their package behind.

Awwww… Hugs GL. :ghug I’m still here.. I was pulled out of there in time. Whenever I think about what might have been (and I try hard not to because it scares me how close I could have been to losing my life) I am reminded that I am blessed and fortunate.
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Old 05-16-2009, 11:14 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Boy i could have written that , but you took me back very vividly. I called it the come here, now go away ..... it is such a sad place to be in the midst of. It truely makes you crazy , all the collusion and trying to stay a step ahead of them. I am exhausted remembering! Thank you for sharing this.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:11 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Heartache

I am new to this website and searching for any information I can for my recovery from an alcoholic abusive relationship. I know this post is old but I wanted to say thank you for sharing. This could have been written by my alcoholic husband about his treatment toward me. I am looking for answers to understand why I feel like the one abandoning him because of my choice to let go and let God. All the blame and deflecting has been thrown at me that I have become accustomed to accepting his behavior as my fault.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:34 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Good Lord- Made me cry in disbelief! I am so thankful I am moving int he right direction for now. God give me strength~
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:09 AM   #19 (permalink)
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CHILLS!!!!! Been there- done that.... never going back to a situation like that again. Add in pinching, poking leaving bruises and tears. Poking with tips of cooking knives, steak knives and forks (and him finding this all amusing, funny and harmless)... pushing me under water in a pool with the full knowledge I'm not a strong swimmer....that was me.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:36 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Wow... I have some serious goosebumps after reading this. This has been my life for the last 6 years.. just add alcohol, pot, and cheating. Man.. That's a serious eye opener!
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