I took a survey on survey monkey the other day, to kind of see where my facebook friends stand. I wanted to share some of the results with all of you.
Tonight, I want to talk about one specific question:
[Check all that apply: What do you suffer from because of Domestic Violence?]
78.26%- LOW SELF ESTEEM
65.22%- PANIC ATTACKS
60.87%- NEGATIVE SELF IMAGE
WOW! Those percentages make me feel physically ill. There were others as well, such as homelessness, hardships, trauma bonding (I’ll cover that later!), loss jobs, loss of your children, hate etc…
The day I started calling myself a SURVIVOR, rather than a VICTIM.. was the the day I decided I was going to overcome everything that he put me through. I was going to use my experience to help others rather than just think about it constantly in my head. It was time to forgive someone who wasn’t sorry and I was going to move on, for ME. Forgiving someone who wasn’t sorry proved much harder than I expected but I am still truckin’ along. Holding all the hate in doesn’t get me anywhere- but, it does still give him the ability to have some kind of control over my emotions. I am not ok with that. He doesn’t deserve another moment of my life. I’ve forgiven him for the most part, for what he did to me. I know he isn’t sorry because I am sure somewhere in his mind- he still blames me for all the abuse. That’s ok- he can hold onto the hate.
Unfortunately- during and after abuse comes a lot of emotional stuff… Fear is so real. “Will he do all the things he promised he was going to do to me?” (like slice my throat, kill my family, shoot me in the head, kill my kids, kill my male friends or ruin their life, feed my dogs poison, burn my house down with me locked inside? the list goes on and on…) You remember all the things he did to you when you were doing what he wanted you to, you begin to swallow the huge gulps of fear when you are away from him, and you are no longer answering his calls and texts even though hes threatening to kill your children while you watch. You are terrified and sick. Then your mind starts telling you.. “If I go back, he will just stop.”, “Just go back because the kids seeing him like this hurts them.” (counter productive- I know.. but in the mind of a victim that has been twisted by an abuser- it makes sense.) “maybe it was my fault. maybe I didn’t show him enough attention, or he didn’t think I loved him and he just loves me so much.”
that is the manipulating thoughts he has put into your head speaking to you. don’t listen.
Along with advocating, and helping people out of Domestic Violence situations, I am also working with victims and survivors about self care. Self Care is not selfish. Self care is necessary. I will be posting about self care, soon.
Now that I got those shocking results out of the way, I want to cover another question that was posted… “Why do women stay?” That is a blog post of it’s own though, I’ve got too much to say…