There are always going to be people who lie. Fact. Unfortunately, with the advent of online dating, it is even easier to lie because the chances of the lie being discovered are a great deal less than in the ‘real world’. We are sad to say that we are continually discovering new lies in each investigation we take on, from the lies that come from the ‘restless married’ to those that come from men pretending to be women and vice versa.
Male victims who have been abused by female partners.
Experts tend to create their own definition of trauma based on their clinical experiences. However, the most commonly referenced definition is from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):4
“Individual trauma results from an event, series of events, or set of circumstances that is experienced by an individual as physically or emotionally harmful or life threatening and that has lasting adverse effects on the individual’s functioning and mental, physical, social, emotional, or spiritual well-being.”
Examples of trauma include, but are not limited to:
- Experiencing or observing physical, sexual, and emotional abuse;
- Childhood neglect;
- Having a family member with a mental health orsubstance use disorder;
- Experiencing or witnessing violence in the community or while serving in the military; and
- Poverty and systemic discrimination.
What I’ve called emotional terrorism has also been called emotional blackmail by psychotherapist Susan Forward and refers to a form of psychological manipulation that uses implied or overt threats and/or punishments in order to control another person’s behavior.
Attachment experiences between caregiver and child are powerful sculptors of personality,
and become key determinants in how an individual relates to self, other and emotions over
a lifetime. When a child’s early attachment relationships are characterized by recurrent
“errors of omission” – neglect, deprivation, misattunement, and lack of affection,
recognition and/or affirmation — that child can develop areas of psychic darkness or
invisibility, in which parts of the self that are not seen and mirrored become dissociated.
Such children, and later adults, may struggle with chronic and profound feelings of
emptiness, detachment, unbearable aloneness, identity diffusion and avoidant attachment
patterns. Because such attachment wounds are, by their very nature, absences, they can
easily go undetected, leaving individuals who have lived through them with incomplete life
narratives. Such “invisible” traumas are hard to heal because they are hard to see, and
left unrecognized, can become self-perpetuating, both relationally and intra-relationally. In
this paper, we will explore the case of a woman who grew up in a family rife with errors of
omission. In addition to struggling with an avoidant attachment style, she also lived
through cycles of re-enactment — both with others and within herself — in which her
emotional needs went unrecognized and unmet. Relational and intra-relational
interventions aimed at forging new attachment bonds between 1. therapist and client, and
- the client and an “invisible” part of her are illustrated. Recognition plays an essential
role in creating these bonds and sparking deep emotional processing of grief.
“What is essential is invisible to the eye.”
- (The Little Prince, Saint-Exupery)
“The existential need for recognition and the functional need for effective action on behalf
of the self are powerful motives; they are both manifestations of transformance.”
You (yes, you) need to read this…even if you’re not in an abusive situation.
You need to know where the line is between giving grace and accepting abuse, so you can help a friend or family member recognize it.
For millions of Americans, accepting abuse is an everyday occurrence. Statistics reveal around 10 million people suffer from physical abuse every year, which averages out to 20 people per minute. More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and more than 1 in 4 men (28.5%) in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
Abuse comes in many forms, including emotional/psychological, physical, financial, digital and sexual. Abusive patterns can lead to fear, anxiety and depression, and may escalate into stalking, harassment, or lethal violence.
The staggering statistics lead to an undeniable truth. Many people choose to stay in abusive relationships.
Perhaps the answer lies in a very subtle distinction that people often use to rationalize staying with an abusive partner: they want to extend grace, forgiveness and sympathy to the person they love.
But there’s more to a tough relationship than this. Empower yourself to find the best possible outcome for your life by knowing when to say “no” to your partner’s personality.
We want all children to have a safe and positive experience when they go online, but sometimes a child might be sent an image, video or message without their consent that upsets or confuses them. It can be hard to know what to say or do in these types of situations and that’s completely normal.
The abusive man hates the woman for continuing to exist outside of him. No matter how hard she may try, in her terror and in her trauma, to disappear inside of him, she simply cannot do it. (And if she gets some support in her life, she may even attempt to refuse to continue trying.) He hates her for this, for still being there, because he was taught that to disappear inside of him is her unlimited obligation and will make him whole.
When you find yourself wondering why the abuser hates you – as most abused women do at one point or another – this is why: because you continue to breathe, because you have skin, because you eat food and then move with the energy of that food, because by getting out of bed and standing up in the morning you have once again demonstrated your failure to become him.
Though he blames his hatred on your characteristics — your supposed failings, that is — these have absolutely nothing to with it. It has only to do with the fact of your continued being. He will only forgive you when he finally succeeds in cleaving you into pieces and vacuuming those pieces into his interior, which he will of course never be able to do.
So I encourage you to stop wondering if it was this thing about you or that thing about you, this thing you said or that thing you did, this thing you set off in him or that thing you brought up in him, which caused him to come to hate you. What’s going on with him has nothing to do with you at all, it’s entirely about him and about his society.
I pray that you find a way to get beyond the reach of his cleaver, beyond the sucking pull of his vacuum hose.