Just Trying to Understand

May 8, 2007


I’ve been doing some research lately on a subject I know very little about but have observed for several years now. The idea of why abused women stay in their destructive relationships.

You see, I know someone. Once upon a time she was a bright, talented, loving, spirited girl. But she was always all of these things and for some reason picked “loser” guys. It never got better and her life got worse. Exponentially. She was never hit, but the way she let men continually treat her is no different. And she never made the easy choice that is so obvious to everyone else – family and friends alike. Have some self-respect. Have some dignity. Expect more. Leave.

And she never does.

So I wanted to see why. Here’s what I found:

There can be many reasons, with more than one contributing to the problem. The categories are not discrete, with many overlapping characteristics among the arbitrary divisions.

The Safety Seeker:

It may be familiar, and oddly enough, a comfortable lifestyle.

The Blind:

Not realizing it is “abuse.”

The Worthless:

“No one else would ever love me.”

The Defective:

“I deserved it; I’ll do better.”

The Manager:

“I can keep it from happening again.”

The Gullible:

“He’s really sorry, and it won’t happen again.”

The Pretender:

“I know I make him sound terrible, but he’s really a good person most of the time.”

The Defender:

“He didn’t mean to hurt me.”

The Caretaker:

“No one else understands him the way I do.”

The Fantasizer:

“But I love him.”

The Helpless:

“I can’t do it on my own.”

I’ve heard almost all of these.

One day I hope to hear, “Enough. No more.” I’m hopeful that day will come. And I’m not the only one. It will take guts. No, it will take balls.

I hope she finds them. ‘Cause until she does, she’ll never get what she REALLY wants.

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One Response to “Just Trying to Understand”

  1. Marie Says:

    I was involved in an abusive relationship for 22 years. I had five children with the man. It was not easy to leave. It never is. He was abusive mentally and emotionally, which is worse in alot of ways because the outside world cannot see your scars or touch your bruises, but they are there nonetheless. Leaving cost me my home and my family but it was the only way I could get out and save my life.