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...