A little about me

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Mediation revisited 2

Got the call last week about the date for Mediation. I am going with a bit of worry for a few reasons:

1) I am apprehensive to be in such close quarters with this man. The idea that only 2 other women will be in the room with me is little comfort. I had mentioned before chance he had at putting his hands on me he has. What about after I leave the building?

2) I don't want to be saddled with his bills! I spoke briefly with the Mediator and she advised me to bring bills relevant to our marriage. HUMPH! We filed bankruptcy, the man decided "ON HIS OWN" to reaffirm on the house. Then he lost it to the bank after he decided that he did not want me to get "Half" of it. I was supposed to file a Quick Claim but my lawyer at the time, in his infinite wisdom, wanted to wait until we were at our final hearing. Real smooth since we are not any closer to finalizing and the house has already been with the Sheriff for sale. GRRFACE! I do not want to pay any of his bills!

I was reminded in order to make this process go smoothly I needed to be a team player in order for this to work. HUH?! Was I not a "team player" anytime he told me not to tell anyone about this act of violence or that act of violence against me? Was I not a "team player" when I kept quiet for over 20 years? So now once again I am asked to play nice, keep my mouth shut, nod and get this thing over with.

Perhaps I am just being moody. I'm so done with this divorce! A few weeks back he texted me about how much he still prays we will get back together. That he doesn't want the divorce, but since this is what I want he will do so. He will always be my adoring husband and he still wants us to be man and wife.

The thought repulses me! The idea of going back to crazy is not on my list of things to do with the reminder of my life. Picking up what is left of any dignity I have is a big part of moving on and beginning anew.

I don't have many reminders about the apartment of our marriage. And a small handful of things I have given away. They hurt too much to keep staring at. They are a reminder of too many years of turmoil. Never knowing if I was going insane, questioning to the Lord and a few close friends/family if what we have is "normal" and trying to survive.

People do the darnedest things to survive. You will say what you have to in a nasty situation. You beg, you cry, you will do anything just to stop the madness. Even if it is so low or shameful you live with regrets down the road.

So with mediation coming up on the 9th. I'm not looking forward to facing my Gaslighter. He stole so many years from me and the kids. So much happiness and what could have been's. And all for what? For control. For fear. For his view of love. For nothing.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Addictions and DV

I have been learning much about DV and FV with regard to addictions. In many cases an Abuser never lifted a hand until the Abuser began to drink or use drugs. Studies have shown that many incidents of abuse occur when someone has had too many or indulged in some substance. The satistics are staggering!

Violence and addictive disorders coexist.

Domestic violence and family violence are associated with substance-related disorders. Alcohol sharply diminished impulse control; drugs of greatest concern are stimulants, as they can increase paranoia and lead to preemptive violence. In a survey of 12,360 children from single-family households where at least one parent filled out an alcohol use questionnaire, children of women classified as problem drinkers had more than twice the risk of serious injury as matched controls. There was a statistically significant relationship between the number of alcohol-related problems the women had and the risk of injury to their children (Bijur et al, 1992). Nearly 75% of all wives of alcoholics have been threatened, and 45% have been assaulted by their addicted partners (AMA, 1992).

In a recent study of 62 episodes of domestic assault in which police were summoned, 92% of the assailants reportedly used alcohol or other drugs on the day of the assault, and 72% had a prior arrest for substance abuse (Brookoff et al., 1997).In a study of 400 women, 67% of their batterers frequently abused alcohol. However, not all batterers drink. To assume that alcohol causes battering is to relieve the batterer of responsibility and to deduce that violence will cease with abstinence. In actuality, while substance abuse and violent behavior frequently coexist, the violent behavior will not end unless interventions address the violence as well as the addiction (AMA, 1992.)
Not only is domestic violence perpetrated by the alcoholic spouse on the sober spouse, it is also inflicted on the alcoholic spouse by the sober spouse. This is particularly true when it is the woman who is drinking. Several studies have found an association between female drinking and increased victimization in marital violence (Miller and Downs, 1993; Kaufman-Kantor and Straus, 1989). According to a 1992 U.S. survey of alcohol and family violence, a wife¹s drinking, whether alone or with her husband, led to more severe violence both by and toward the wife (Wisnack et al., 1994). In a study of 100 alcoholic women physicians (Bissell & Skorina, 1987), 22 women had been beaten and 21 had beaten spouses or lovers themselves.
"Date rape" is also facilitated by substance abuse. Two studies show that up to 50% of sexual assaults by acquaintances involve alcohol consumption by the victim or the assailant (Koss et al, 1987; Muehlenhard and Linton, 1987). In an acquaintance rape situation, both men and women who learn about it consider the incident less likely to be a rape if the victim and assailant had been drinking together (Norris & Cubbins, 1992). Both men and women attributed more responsibility for the assault to an intoxicated rape victim than to a sober one; at the same time, the offender was blamed less when he was drunk than sober. This attitude makes women who have been sexually assaulted while drinking, more reluctant to report it.
Domestic violence in lesbian relationships occurs at about the same rate as in heterosexual relationships, and as in heterosexual relationships, alcohol may play a large role. Several studies report that almost one-third of all women who identify themselves as lesbians drink excessively or experience alcohol-related problems (Norris, 1994). In a mail survey of members of a lesbian organization, 37% reported being in a past or present abusive relationship. 64% reported that alcohol or drugs were involved prior to or during incidents of battering. Drinking was significantly correlated both with being the victim of abuse and with being the perpetrator (Schilit et al., 1990).
Addictive sexual disorders (Irons & Schneider, 1997) are frequently associated with domestic violence, although no statistical studies on this association are yet available. Many of the same factors that predispose an individual to the development of an addictive or compulsive sexual disorder can also predispose one to being a participant in a violent relationship.

I personally, can not relate to this because my Abuser did not use drugs or drank. I was still a Co-dependant, fueling his need for his desires that were sexually related. My Abuser used used many of these things. After a time the desire to be loved was so great for me that I became a participant in many of his devious fantasies. The need to inflict pain did not stop with a few slaps. I saw him lost in a world all his own.

Addictive sexual disorders

When a person evidences a pervasive pattern of sexual behavior over which there is loss of control, continuation despite adverse consequences, and which includes preoccupation or obsession, that person has an addictive sexual disorder. The range of fantasies, urges, and behaviors that can be considered addictive sexual disorders may be appreciated by reviewing the ten categories developed by Carnes (1991):
Table 4: Categories of Addictive Sexual Disorders
1. Fantasy sex: Sexual fantasy life and consequences due to obsession.
2. Seductive-role sex: Seductive behavior for conquest. Multiple relationships, affairs, and unsuccessful serial relationships.
3. Anonymous sex: Engaging in sex with anonymous partners, having one-night stands.
4. Paying for sex: Paying prostitutes for sex, paying for sexually explicit phone calls.
5. Trading sex: Receiving money or drugs for sex or using sex as a business. Highly correlated with swapping partners and using nudist clubs to find sex partners.
6. Voyeuristic sex: Forms of visual sex, including pornography, window peeping, and secret observation. Highly correlated with excessive masturbation, even to the point of injury.
7. Exhibitionist sex: Exposing oneself in public places or from the home or car, wearing clothes designed to expose.
8. Intrusive sex: Touching without permission, using position or power (e.g. professional, religious) to sexually exploit another person, rape.
9. Pain exchange: Causing or receiving pain to enhance sexual pleasure. Use of dramatic roles, sexual aids, and animals are common themes.
10. Exploitative sex: Use or force or partner vulnerability to gain sexual access. Examples include sexual assault and professional sexual misconduct.
Schneider & Irons (1996) placed addictive sexual disorders within the context of the DSMIV (1994). Addictive sexual disorders, although not a separate disorder within this manual, are subsumed within several diagnostic categories in the DSMIV: paraphilia, impulse control disorder, or sexual disorder not otherwise specified.
Five of Carnes¹ categories can be readily identified in the DSM-IV as specific paraphilias. Paraphilias are defined as recurrent, intense sexual urges, fantasies, or behaviors that involve unusual objects, activities, or situations that occur over a period of at least six months and cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. The five categories that constitute paraphilias include voyeuristic sex, exhibitionistic sex, pain exchange (sexual sadism, sexual masochism), some types of intrusive sex (frotteurism, or inappropriate touch), and exploitative sex (pedophilia). Four of the remaining categories may be correlated with paraphilias: fantasy sex may be associated with paraphilic urges not acted upon, anonymous sex may be used to express paraphilic behavior with decreased risk of consequences, and paying for sex and trading sex are means by which a partner who may permit paraphilic activity may be purchased. A few cases of sexual excess represent an impulse-control disorder; most cases can best be viewed as an addiction.

In an intimate relationship in which at least one of the partners has an addictive sexual disorder, domestic sexual violence may be part of the addictive pattern. Fearful of abandonment or rejection, the partner is often vulnerable to coercion into participating in unwanted sexual activities. In a study of 100 couples recovering from sexual addiction, 50% of the non-addicted partners reported having engaged in sexual activities with which they were uncomfortable. In some cases these activities included sex in public places or with additional sexual partners (Schneider, & Schneider, 1990).

Many victims do pick up addictions of they're own, from drinking, or drug use, sex addictions or BD/SM involvement, gambling or many others. Losing yourself, if only for a moment into a reality that is not they're own but gives a alternative lifestyle that can give what the victims lack. A experience of bliss, even if it is to relax and let you forget your problems at home. 

Your not alone!

You can leave! If you have children with your Abuser the chances that they will become an Abuser of physical, emotional, sexual or addicted is high, due to what they witnessed. Break the chain! It's ok to be alone while you heal. There are places that will take you in while you get on your feet. De-program yourself to know you are worthy of so much more and you can do it!

Please get yourself help before it's too late!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Another birthday~ A survivor's inspiration!

A recent post from a inspiring woman, who is courageously putting herself out on the web to share her story of survival, hope and struggles. Please visit her at: http://www.dealingwithviolence.com/ or her blog at http://www.ashley-domesticdispute.blogspot.com/

another birthday...

Well, another birthday has come and gone...big mile marker. A few weeks ago, as the day was approaching, I felt as if my armageddon was coming. LOL - not so. Life goes on after you turn 40. It's silly how we can think sometimes. It felt like just another day, nothing spectacular, nothing catastrophic. Just a day older and perhaps wiser.

But, on the flip side I am very greatful. I'm still here, alive and kicking. Kicking and screaming. Laughing till I almost pee my pants. Smiling at lives little jokes. Still wishing upon that shooting star. And still loving to my fullest ability. Going into my sixth year of "freedom" from the domestic violence and I am happy to be out from under it. There was a time that I wished it all would stop, that a big rock would fall on me...that lightening would strike. If not me, my abuser. Just so as I could live without fear, live without feeling like the scumbag I was made out to be. But guess what?! I'm NOT a scumbag, I'm NOT a piece of crap! I deserve to be happy and NOT live in fear. I am a human being. Breathing, feeling, thinking thoughts that are my own. I do have a brain and it is no longer "washed".

I have learned many things over the last forty years and that learning curve will never stop. I am wiser. I hope that I have learned enough to be able to teach others. Share my experiences - the good and the bad. I want others to benefit from my pain and suffering. That will make it all worth it.

So here is a bit of advice for you, some thoughts of today...LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE! Live your life like it is your last day. Laugh even if it isn't funny to someone else. Even if you do not like the place you go to spend eight hours of your day. Laugh. Laugh. Laugh. It really is the best medicine. When you haven't had much laughter and finally find things funny and amusing... LAUGH! It feels wonderful! And LOVE. Love to the fullest. Spend time with those you love and treasure.

I spent the morning with my mother yesterday. We went to breakfast and giggled and giggled. I didn't want the morning to end, and as I was settling in at my desk at work, I recv'd a call. It was my mother. She was still giggling and thanked me for a really good time and told me to tell my boss I needed the day off. Because she wasn't ready for it to end either. Grab those moments and keep them in that photo album in your mind. Remember the look on their face when they are laughing so hard that the tears are rolling down their face. That... Was a wonderful birthday present.

As life sometimes gets in the way, and we get busy...Take the time to spend with your loved ones. Near or far. Make the most of it all. Stay in touch, even if it is on Facebook. It is a connection. It bridges the miles that keep you apart.


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

He watches that and I don't anymore!

Over the past week I have seen several TV shows that I just can't bring myself to watch anymore. Like House, The Simpson's, Family Guy, South Park, and a few more. The first reason I don't watch some of these shows is I find them distasteful and just wrong. Oh I have laughed and then feel terribly stupid for it later. Good clean entertainment, nah! Not so much. Second, we "HAD" to watch them. Any talking during these shows would be bad for you! The house remained quiet and still. Nervous laughing during jokes on the shows, while looking at his reaction to see if it's too loud a laugh or if it was ok to laugh.

This is just the tip of the iceberg for me of things I won't watch or do because they remind me of him.

I dislike Febreze. I can't stand the smell. To the point it makes me sick to my stomach. I bought garbage bags a few weeks back. "A" has garbage duty and she changed the bag and I smelled an all too familiar. I actually panicked. I figured it out what it was and felt so dumb for my emotions as well for the mini freakout.

I don't eat stuffed pizza, go to Pepe's, like onion rings or listen to various music because they remind me too much of him. It is almost aggravating to me that I react the way I do! Sometimes Terry/or someone else says something in a tone or in a statement that reminds me of R and I have to breath slowly. I reply, "Ok R!" Or "Thanks R". This is to let the person know that they maybe a little too close for comfort with whatever.

Things I do that I know annoyed him are:

Shop at Target!
Eat at a resturant
Laugh and be silly in public
Go where I want and when I want
Leave the TV off
Rent movies all the time! :)
I wake up in the middle of the night if I can't sleep and watch TV late night!
I have left my shoes on in the house!

Oh my gosh the list of things is endless!

It takes time to let go of these traits I have learned. Learning to trust, to feel safe, to love, to feel happiness and not worry about what comes out of my mouth.

Safety plan!

What is domestic violence?

Domestic violence can be more than just physical abuse. Domestic violence occurs when one partner controls the other using physical, verbal, emotional, sexual or economic abuse. The Illinois Domestic Violence Act defines domestic violence as physical abuse, harassment, intimidation of a dependent, interference with personal liberty or willful deprivation.
What is this plan?
This is my plan for increasing my safety and preparing me in advance for violence that may happen in the future. I don't have control over my partner’s violence, but I do have a choice about how to respond and how to best get me and my children to safety.

My important telephone numbers

  • Police: 911 and __________________   (Non-Emergency) 
  • Domestic Violence Program/Safe Home: __________________ 
  • District Attorney’s Office __________________
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline:  1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
Keep these numbers, along with spare change or a calling card, with you at all times for emergency phone calls.

How can I be safe during an assault?

You can't always avoid violence, but you can do a number of things to increase your safety during violent incidents.
I can do some or all of the following:
  • If I decide to leave, I can get out of the house by __________________.  (Practice how to get out safely. What doors or windows will you use?)
  • I can go to __________________.  (Decide this even if you don’t think there will be a next time.)
  • In order to be able to leave quickly, I can keep my purse or wallet and vehicle key ready by putting them __________________. 
  • I can tell __________________, (neighbors) about the violence and ask them to call the police if they hear suspicious noises coming from the house.
  • I can teach my children how to use the telephone or radio to contact the police and to get help in an emergency.
  • I can use __________________ as my code word with my children and/or friends when I am in danger, so they will call for help.
  • When I think an argument is about to happen, I can try to move to __________________, a space near an outside door that has no guns, knives or other weapons (usually bathrooms, garages and kitchen areas are dangerous places).
  • I can use my judgment and instincts. If the situation is very serious, I can give my partner what he or she wants to calm him or her down. I have to protect myself until I am out of danger.
  • I can avoid arguments that will trap me in spaces where there isn't an outside door.
  • I can call the police when it is safe, and I can get a protective order from the court.
How can I be safe when I leave my abuser?Leaving must be done with a careful plan to increase safety. Abusers often strike back when they believe their partner is leaving the relationship.
I can do some or all of the following:
  • So I can leave quickly, I can leave money, an extra set of keys, extra clothing and important documents with __________________. 
  • I can keep a bag packed and ready to go in case I need to leave quickly. 
  • I can open a savings account or apply for a credit card to increase my independence. 
  • I can check with __________________ and __________________ to see who would be able to let me stay with them or lend me some money.
  • The National Domestic Violence hotline number is:  1-800-799-SAFE (7233).  By calling this free hotline, I can get the number of a shelter near me.
  • I can rehearse my escape plan and, if possible, practice it with my children.
  • I can get a cell phone and keep it with me at all times. (Many times, you can get emergency cell phones from your local domestic violence program.)  I can give my cell phone number to people I know are safe.   
  • I can prevent my email and internet activity from being discovered.  See Below
  • Other things I can do to increase my independence. This is a checklist of what you may want to take with you, if it is safe to do so:
        - Identification
        - Green card
        - Address book
        - Money
        - Credit cards
        - Medications
        - Social Security Cards
        - Keys (house/car/work)
        - Welfare identification
        - Driver’s license/vehicle registration
        - Address book
        - Marriage certificates, birth certificates of children
        - Checkbook, ATM (Automatic Teller Machine) card and other bank books
        - Work permit
        - School and vaccination records
        - Lease/house deed/title
        - Divorce papers
        - Copy of protective order
        - Passport
        - Pets (if you can)
        - Jewelry
        - Clothes
        - Photo Album
        - Children’s special blanket, doll or stuffed animal

Dirty little secrets~ WARNING EXPLICT!

18+ Explict!

Domestic/Family/Child Abuse of any kind is a dirty little secret that is in many ways shameful to those living through this. You feel ashamed that it can happen to you. You feel ashamed that you didn't do enough to stop it or you rack your brain on how you could have not set him/her off. You may have closed your eyes to the abuse if it was happening to your children. Thinking that things will improve and wishing with all your might that it will disappear.

I look at those tiny faces and see my shame. Shame for not standing up and shouting to anyone that would listen. Pretending we were a happy family,when our home life was filled with dread, anger and fear. A peek of our dirty little secret would sometimes surface at family gatherings, work situations or public outings.

My Gaslighter liked to make sure he did not leave a mark or harming us in spots that were not commonly exposed.

I have many dirty little secrets. Some I have shared and many I have not. I was angered to find out early on that STBX decided to open the closet to our secrets about things that should not have been aired and he twisted them to suit his needs. I could have shouted at the top of my lungs about things about him. But I didn't.

Do not take my silence or kindness as weakness.

We were swingers. His choice not mine. I would excuse myself during these encounters, leaving to escape to check on the kids. I would say I heard someone calling me. (these happened late after they were in bed) I did things that I admit I fantasied about at some point in my life. Once these things were in front of me (literally) I knew it wasn't right for me, it went against my growing faith. It replused me. I would try to close off my mind as I did when I was getting hit. I would pretend I was someone else or watching a movie.

Intrigued and wishful for him to consume someone else's energy and spirit, I complied. I did so under protest many, many times. I cried many times afterwards. I would take a shower, scrubbing my skin until it was raw. I couldn't seem to get the smell off of me. I felt dirty. I felt like a whore. Alone he couldn't get a date or whatever you want to call it. With me as the bait we could have any couple/person. I hated this.

He cheated on me many times. He would tell me to call for "strange *ussy", I would take a list of women's numbers or emails and do the rounds, looking for a date for him for the night. After sometime I was happy he was not into me. I dreaded sex with him. He was demanding, forceful, critical and harsh. Any tenderness tended to be shortlived. 

I hoped one of these encounters would end in a new love for him. In 2007 I left for the first time due to the abuse, tired of the sex demands, tired of being nothing more to him then a punching bag. Tired of the threats of harming/killing the kids. I came back, yes I did! I believed his words of regret and promises of change. And I have to admit the first 2 weeks back together it was awesome! It was though a new life had taken over. He was helpful, doting, kind and humorous. Kind to the kids and he actually was playing with them. That ended on the 3rd week when Kat moved in. She needed a place to go as she was in a fight and thrown out of her house she shared with her BF. I argued that this isn't good and NO! We were on the mend!

He said you know I always wanted another woman, another wife... I was crushed. I had no choice... He became mean again, but worse. At one point during the next 3 weeks, he pushed me down the stairs, threated to kill me if I did not sleep with them at night in our bed. Said he would kill one of the kids if I did not participate in relations with them. I lost it! I became defiant! I opened my mouth and let words come out that I would never dare before.

I started to plan to leave again. I did it slowly and left after a month with the kids. I did go back a second time, once again I felt sorry for him. He asked Kat to leave, but I found out later they had relations before she left. He felt sorry for her and it was for old times sake. She came back into our lives a few more times. He would go to her place instead of bringing her home. He finally broke it off after he found her with another man. I laughed my butt off! Karma is a bitch!

2008 was not as physical but there were constant mind games, threats and when he did get physical it was more aimed at more cruelty and harm. Especially towards the 2 older kids. He threatened them if they told he would harm them further or he would never talk to them again. At the end of 2008 I had enough (that's another blog in the archives), I left in Feb 2009. I gained my independence on the 25th. I'm hoping to gain peace of mind from this broken marriage before the end of the year.

I'm not that innocent:

In 2000 I fell into pornography. I watched porn for pleasure, for a yearning in my heart for closeness I no longer felt for him.I longed for a real love. Someone to want me, someone to need me and not want to change me. I wanted to feel beautiful if it was only for a night or a few hours. I wanted to be enough for someone as I never felt as I was enough for him.

I loathed myself. I can't call a kettle black now can I?

I would stop watching but felt a pull in my head again. And then when I had a chance I would be at the computer again.I would pop in a video. I had a problem. Even though I was watching things I did not like to do, the enticement to do things was so strong. I didn't understand! I didn't like women! Why can't I stop watching?! I resolved to stop, I had to get on my knees and pray for strength from God. I would go back to start if R wanted to look for a female or couple because the sites we were a member of was filled with images that would draw me in again. I was intoxicated with the lust and imagery.

I let myself go and give in to them. I started email and IM conversations with other men and some women. Teasing and making plans to see them. Heck, R, already thought I was doing it so why not give him so truth to it. He didn't believe me anyway! I didn't follow through. I chatted online through IM's and got swept away in the good feelings I was getting from these people. Promises of real romance, dinner, to take care of me and the kids.

As much as I fought it, I seemed drawn back. Like a tickle in your throat you can't get rid of. I was revolted with myself.


I knew these things were not love. The porn was not love, not real or not tangible. The people I was chatting with? No they only wanted one thing. The turning point came when a few of the people dropped in on me at the antique shop we ran. I panicked! A guy knew about R and didn't care, we had flirted and talked for over a year. He was tired of waiting. A woman dropped in. I was stunned again. She promised to take care of me and she would help me. I had to explain my way out of how I knew these people, (they stopped at different times of the year) as well as asking these people never to come back again. That put fear in my heart. What if those situations ended badly?! What if one of them were a rapist? Or stalker? I had enough troubles and did not need more.

I am a terrible liar so he knew something was up. I never told him about those, my dirty little secrets. He didn't know I had a porn problem, I turned into a sex junkie, but I wasn't into actually following through. I realize now that I was cheating. I was cheating on my marriage by watching these things, by putting myself out there to have an affair with others. I hated myself. I wanted to be loved so badly!

I had begged God for forgiveness more times then I can count. He took me back each time. I slipped here and there. I would again cry out to God to redeem me, to cleanse me, to give me strength and to fill that love I so badly felt I needed.

I slip now. I have to be big enough to get off the computer. I need to hang up on those that I was in contact with before or not answer their email/IM. Or if I see them on the street I walk the other way.  There is a Bible verse that one needs to flee temptation. And another that tells that you should repent quickly if you give in.  I have someone in my life for the first time that is real.

I left R again later in the fall of 2007, at that time I found out I was positive for HSV2. I was angry! I was so mad. Mad at myself for allowing the swinging. There was nothing I could have done about the affairs he had, but I could have left as soon as I found out. I coulda, woulda, shoulda myself to pieces. I count my blessings we did not end up with AIDS or something else. No, HSV2 is not curable. I have outbreaks under stress. HA! The trick is to try to stay stress free. I am on meds and have not had an outbreak in sometime. I do get tested for other diseases just in case. I am depressed, getting much better, due to wonderful friends and family.

I don't trust anymore. I don't trust me either. I know that is a bad thing. I don't want to self analyze, over analyze or self destruct any relationships I have by not trusting or blowing things out of proportion. ( I tend to do that and I am a bit intiutive so that doesn't help)

I am not perfect
I am not a Maytr
I am not super woman
I don't feel worthy of any praise or compliments

I'm not that innocent...

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Born Again...

Born Again Lyrics
Verse 1
Today I found myself,
After searching all these years,
And the man that I saw,
He wasn't at all who I'd thought He'd be,
I was lost when You found me here,
And I was broken beyond repair,
Then You came along and sang Your song over me
Chorus 1
It feels like I'm born again
It feels like I'm living
For the very first time
For the very first time,
In my life
Verse 2
Make a promise to me now,
Reassure my heart somehow,
That the love that I feel,
is so much more real than anything
I've a feeling in my soul,
And I pray that I'm not wrong,
That the life I have now,
It is only the beginning
Chorus 2
It feels like I'm born again
It feels like I'm living
For the very first time
For the very first time
It feels like I'm breathing
It feels like I'm moving
For the very first time
For the very first time
I wasn't looking for something that was more,
Than what I had yesterday,
Then You came to me,
Then You gave to me,
Life and a love that I've never known,
That I've never felt before
Final Chorus
It feels like I'm born again
It feels like I'm living
For the very first time
I'm living for the first time
It feels like I'm breathing
It feels like I'm moving
For the very first time
I'm living for the first time,
In my life

Hearing this song stirs up so many various emotions in my heart. I feel joy thinking of the happiness for being a Daughter of the King of Kings, feeling both undeserving and unworthy of His love. Elated in knowing that I have something in my heart that is unconditional as well as wonderful! I love to share the good news of Jesus and God’s love but I know you can only say so much at times. That’s ok, planting seeds of God’s love is just start. If it is just through a kind word or some small act of kindness. Most that I just do just because. I treat others as I want to be treated! I heard the song many times over the past year or so and each time I am moved by it.
Yesterday was different, I heard the song on the drive back from a mini vacation with the kiddos in tow, as we were trying to beat nasty storms from MO. Thinking of the storms made me think of my life, not the one I have now, but my old life.
 I thought about the old me. I thought about how who I am at this time compared to almost 3 years ago. The song came on, I started to sing along, if you drive with me I warn you I do burst out into song from time to time, I listened to the words that caused tears to stream down my face in buckets! I heard my life in that song. I was broken at several points in my married life both physically and mentally. Whether it was nursing a bloody lip, sprained ankle or wrist, or hiding bruising on my neck from where I was strangled the night/day before. I was broken, or the bald patches here or there on my head when STBX pulled around by my hair around the house.
My spirit crushed.
I cried out to God to help me.
I whispered to God to help us.
I bargained with God to fix my marriage.
I pleaded for a safe way out for the kids and I.
I was depressed.
I was scared.
I was feeling lost.
I felt worthless.
I felt hopeless.
I felt trapped.
I yearned for life without fear or waiting for a good day.
I cried, I lost my hair, my nails were brittle and breaking, I slowly developed a ulcer and felt jumpy all the time, especially when the phone chirped or rang because it was my STBX checking on me. I hated who I had become.
I leaned on God a lot. I know He was there with me. He gently reassured me that I was loved. He was there to comfort me. He brought people into my life that were supportive and loved us. People that impacted my mood and that reassured me that it would be ok. They reassured me God was working in my life for the greater good.
I am back in the car now, well not this second but for imagination sake. I’m driving along listening to the words, crying and thankful of where I am now. Terry and I are not perfect and we have an issue here or there, but nothing we can’t work on together. Knowing there is a greater love that keeps me safe and on my path. I may veer off to some unknown destination but my path usually gets right back on track.
I can do things now I never did before.
I feel free!
 I feel happiness to love and be loved!
I feel safe.
Every once in a while I go to a dark place of the past. I don’t like to go there, it scares me. I get depressed and sad. I feel in many ways I lost a lot of years and gaining them back is of course impossible. Moving on from that life has been a struggle. Thank goodness for the patience of a good man. On the road back I cried both tears of happiness and tears of contentment.
It feels like I'm born again
It feels like I'm living
For the very first time
I'm living for the first time
It feels like I'm breathing
It feels like I'm moving
For the very first time
I'm living for the first time,
In my life

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Educating my Abuser

Funny thing is while I have had blogs and during this time I have changed my blog home and each time my Gaslighter has found them. I am surprised that he has not made any comments on this one because in the past I have found nasty comments or bashing me for telling my story.

And then there are the times when I know he actually reads what I am saying. The bad thing is he is also learning. Much of the learning is way too late. And much of the learning is twisting things as well as trying to use them to his advantage. I have a bunch of things on my slate to write about but the worry is that he will use them when court time comes. HHHMMM! What's a girl to do?

Both of us are Pro Se, he is using some big words now. I am tempted to tell him that his clients is a total ass and he needs to fire him.  We are set for Mediation soon and supposedly we are to do this before our next court date on the 15th next month. The not so great thing is that I was informed that this is to be with him and I alone. No one is to go with us. I'm less then thrilled about this, I was assured they will protect me in the building, my ultimate concern is what happens when I leave the parking lot. I do know he has not paid his fee yet which will hold us up further.

So that's what is going on now...

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Positive Affirmations for Victims

Making the decision to leave is not easy. It is filled with much anxiety, indecision, fear and sadness. As a mixed bag of emotions that can leave you not sure and doubting yourself.  On one hand you don't want to leave. Your filled with regret or sympathy, or you may think if you give one more chance...

Oh you can second guess yourself into staying. As I said in many other posts if you can't leave for you, (if you have kids) leave for the children. Break the cycle of violence!

Here are some great Positive Affirmations I have found-

Knowledge is power, know your opponent. Act, do not react. Take the offensive, not the defensive. Realize your strenght and trust yourself.

I am doing something I believe in, and it doesn't exactly match your plan. Call me later when you want ot discuss the issues. It's your job to fix your life.

When I am treated with dignity and respect, then I will make a choice to have him in my life. Until he does, he is completely out.

Inner peace

Trust your intution

Do what is right not necessarily easy...

Don't second guess yourself

Know that the destination is always easier then the journey

Just take yourself out of the relationship in one piece if you can. All that other stuff can be replaced.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Infidelity and my Gaslighter

After reading much on the subject of Abuse, I have found the majority have sex addictions or infidelity issues from time to time. A phone number, online porn, or a bj doesn't mean they cheated right? I'm not sure if that is a warped sense of morals or if it's just a male thing to think it's ok to do these things. Sex is sex? No kissing doesn't mean it's deep right? Or just because you didn't snuggle with the person doesn't mean it's cheating? Or maybe oral sex is ok to do! What trust do you violate when you do that?

Men have a hard time with fidelity issues. I do not make any excuse for them whatsoever. But there is such a thing as trying. Trying not to look at porn or checking out some random chick or Hey making out with someone isn't cheating. Now hold on! Am I right or wrong?

Bringing home a disease to your loved one is not cool. Cheating on your loved one, no matter which act you are choosing, whether in your mind thru fantasy or oral sex with some stranger. You are cheating real love, and if you have kids you are cheating them.

Children can learn about love from Mom and Dad. Violence, relationships with others, intimacy with a loved one, they see it all! When they are old enough they can learn that hey Mom/Dad do it, then it must be ok.

"Hey! That thing that's beating on the floor? Yea, that's my heart you didn't step on it hard enough" I am not sure what part of a relationship normal or with an Abuser is worse, knowing he/she is stepping out or knowing they are. Getting sloppy seconds or finding out that your mate is filling the time with others. It's all rotten! It's all stinks and it all is something to add to the ever growing list of crap in your life that you have to tackle.

I'm not one of those women that can turn the other cheek anymore. STBX wanted several wives, we actually looked into becoming Mormon. He thought that would justify his sick views on relationships. HMMM! What did it get us? Not only did that further break our relationship it caused us to get infected with a STD. Luckily it's HSV2 and not HIV or HPV. Not that that it's lucky to get an STD but I am thankful it is one treatable and the symtoms can lessen a bit. It helps if you don't have too much stress in your life, you eat right, exercise and keep healthy.

There is no excuse for any of the behaviors from Abusers. None of it is ok whether it is the hitting, infidelity,drug/alocohol abuse, the excuses, the promises of change. Of course finding a real relationship after you have been abused can be tricky! Find yourself again, don't be so quick to jump into the next relationship! If there is one thing I should have listened to was this. I won't change it, I'm happy with Mr. Wonderful, but I can see how it could have been not so pretty if he wasn't so wonderful.  I've seen many woman fall into the same pattern of abuse with the next guy and the next guy and so on and so on...

Do things you love to do!

Make a list of 25 things you always wanted to do and do them! Cooking? Learning to sew? Building something or volunteering for an organization! Now it's time to get your life back! Stay single for a bit. Enjoy getting to know you again.

Don't pine or wait for the next guy... Sex? It won't kill you to be without it, honest! Don't be one of those women that have the "2 year crazies" after they have broken up/divorced they're partner.

Will the next guy be a cheater? You will have trust issues! I can guarantee it! You will look at his mail or check out his phone. You will pepper him with questions about where he is. Even if the next guy doesn't take a swing at you, there will be suspicions or even wondering on your part. It's a hard habit to break! It's one of the many things that take getting used to NOT doing when you find a real relationship. Not every guy will hit you, not everyone will cheat or be a substance abuser. Take time, read, talk to a counselor, find a divorce support group. Or find a group online! Cafemom is a great place to start! It's free and there are a ton of boards on there with a variety of topics.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Domestic Violence Survivor stories

You can google or bing or whatever until your hearts content about so many different topics my head spins and there are times I have to pry myself away from the computer to actually get thing around the house done. I have found countless blogs on DV or some form of abuse. The thing that amazes me (and shouldn't) is how similar the Survivors stories are. Oh no matter if he/she pulled a trigger or pulled a knife. The steps that lead up to the violence is almost so similiar it's spooky.

Many Abusers were victims once themselves and some have other addictions that have led them to abusing others (for a small percentage this is totally out of the blue). Whether it is a mental condition, drug induced, alcohol, past experience or whatever the excuse. The behavior is not excusable! The abuser knows this is unacceptable. Placing blame on victims in order to make themselves feel better for the beatings, the put downs or for harming the kids. Blaming any abuse on a bad day or if the victim had done something to please him/her they wouldn't have had to lose control.

Control? Funny little word when you think of it. Control starts slowly, subtly at first and you almost do not realize that he/she has got it until your too late. You lost your sense of worth, you lost your sense of being, you may hate yourself, have a terrible self esteem, feel you can not do anything right, you look in the mirror and belittle your appearance. You may start to berate your children or others around you. You find you are spiraling down a circle into not only feelings of lost hope but of never being able to break free.

So you stay.

Your abuser may tell you that you are nothing without them
You will never amount to anything
You won't survive without them
You will never find anyone to love you like they do (now wouldn't that be lovely!)
They will kill your children or you if you try to leave

They will do or say whatever they have to in order to maintain control. When that control begins to unravel, hold onto your butt! He/she can go extreme! Be prepared and don't give in! "YOU" take back the control! "YOU" are worth it! "YOU can do it!"

I've said it time and time again, if you can't leave for you. Leave for your children! Leave before you end up on the evening news or splashed on the front headlines on the web! Stepping out that door and leaving may be one of the hardest things you have to do. But aren't your children and you worth it? Get back the control! Get back your life! You can do it! No matter how young or old! Don't wait for the kids to all get out of high school or give the excuse about uprooting the family. YOU are important! YOU matter! YOU can be strong!

Visit http://www.dealingwithviolence.com/ for a Survivor's inspiring story! She is a AWESOME lady that still deals with the past abuse, but she is a wonderful strong lady that can inspire YOU to get the control back!

Me, myself and my abuser

It's going on 2 1/2 years now since I have been gone. Today actually makes a pivitol time for me as this marks the first time I left my abuser in 2007. I was working at the "shop" (antique shop) with my sister in law and mom in law. I had all three kids with me, M, J and A, so they could celebrate a small gathering we planned for the Dealers we had there. STBX was not happy that I was not rushing home after the shop closed and he was very vocal over the phone about it.

He knew we had planned this for over a month. We tried to do things regularly to socialize and keep morale high with our Dealers and customers. Not even a half hour into the gathering, he called, threatening that if I didn't get my "ass" home within a half hour later he was going to kick my ass. I choose not to go home. My inlaws knew I was upset so they immediately started to pelt me with questions and concerns. I called a women's shelter that was near by to see if they had room for us. We had just the clothes on our backs, nothing else. My inlaws gave us some money, about $100, gave us kisses and hugs and we left right away.

STBX was calling all over for us and he was searching all night. He did figure out where we were eventually. Long story short, he ended up at St. Margaret Hospital psych ward for a suicide attempt. I took him back after he pleaded and promised to be better. That was short lived, each time he promised he would be better he would find other ways to harm me and the kids, either by verbal abuse or some sort of physical threat to harm me or the kids or head games (mental).

He would ask me which kid I wanted dead. Because if I left him he would kill one of them. If I left him he would kill the kids during any kind of overnight they would have with him down the road. It would look like an accident. No one would be the wiser. He would take everything he could away from me...That threat still pretty fresh in my mind.

In the fall of 2008 it was time to go, I wasn't sure when and I prayed to God to know when the right time was. Looking back there was no "Right time", anytime is the right time to go. But I waited until Feb 2009 to leave. It seemed right, R was back to work and that was kind of what I was waiting for. I would do it over again. There are a few things I would have been different, a few things I would have taken with me and I would have called the police more often. I wouldn't have took any of his calls or listened to his rantings. He will never change.

This morning I'm being bombarded by text messages from my son. He talks about how he wishes I would die a horrible death. That I destroyed the relationship between him and I. That his sisters are disrespectful. Apparently he has his Dad's phone and he is texting me through that... It is going on and on. Of course I have the belief that it is STBX and not M. But I'm not sure now.

Yestreday Terry had court for the false Order of Protection. He was stunned that the court ruled that the OP stands and will now be placed with our divorce. WOW! I'm not sure how they could do that, but seeing that custody or removal of the girls from my custody is a possibility it sounds like this is why. GRRFACE! Terry just wanted it dismissed and he was also in disbelief that under oath STBX and M lied about the incident. I nodded my head that I was not surprised. Both of them believe the stories they have woven together as one. Both see only what they want to see and no one is the wiser. No one can tell them different.

I'm still getting text messages, 18 in all so far... All nasty and blaming me for the demise of the marriage. The only truth being that I wished I left the marriage earlier. To the police station I go to file yet another report against these 2. It's both frustrating and sad. I want us to be left alone. My son is a Gaslighter in training...