Abusive or Violent relationships

I decided to separate these issues into separate posts to better categorize the issues.

I had a former neighbor who had an abusive spouse who was constantly putting her down and trying to break her self esteem.  She realized she had been cowering and allowing her cruel spouse to torment her and he was feeding off his cruelty and reducing her to tears. She didn’t have any money like my other friend had. My neighbor just had a nasty spouse who enjoyed tormenting her. A gun nut which made him even more dangerous. I actually saw him smiling one  time when he reduced her to tears.

She decided to stop the cycle of abuse. She described how she just started smiling pleasantly every time her spouse said something cruel. (She said it is important not to make a nasty or sarcastic smile, otherwise it doesn’t work and the spouse would know he was getting under your skin).  The smile has to look genuine and not overdone. She stopped arguing back. It takes two to argue. He used to say mean things just to get her upset, but she  just smiled pleasantly, said “OK” nicely and walked away. My neighbor made it a personal rule to never say something more than twice. If the other person did not get it after the second time, there was no point in repeating it further. Anything more than twice is a waste of breath. Thus, she never engaged in another argument. She simply stated her opinion no more than twice and walked away after that with a smile. You can’t force someone to agree with you no matter how wrong they may be. Even if they are saying it about you. They are only doing that to get you upset. Her spouse tried to push every button to get her upset again, but she just ignored him, smiled and walked away. Within just a couple weeks, my neighbor’s spouse came apart at the seams because he was no longer able to feed on tormenting her and making her life miserable. He stopped bathing, stopped doing his job and became a basket case simply because he could no longer reduce her to tears. With him coming apart at the seams, she was able to get away from him and moved to another state.

I found her method to be quite effective. I haven’t had to raise my voice nor argue in 20 years. I am not an expert by any means. I can only describe my own experiences or those of my family or friends. Hopefully, some of the info is helpful as an insight about the cruelty of some people and why you shouldn’t allow someone to destroy your self esteem. No one is worth that. Anyone who says nasty things is not your friend and does not care about your welfare.

However, if you live with a violent person, they can be deadly dangerous. You can’t reason with a psychotic and they tend to be unpredictable and can rapidly become murderous. You need to get away to a safe place and have someone help you if necessary.

I had another friend who wanted to leave a violently abusive spouse who was making threats if she ever left, so she called the police while he was otherwise occupied and told the officers she wanted to leave but her spouse had threated to harm her if she tried to leave. She said she was afraid of his violence and asked them to come out to insure her safety as she was leaving. She had not given her spouse any clue she was leaving until the officers had arrived. He was in the shower and was completely surprised to see the police. The police even gave her a ride to the bus station and made sure she was able to leave safely.

When he tracked her down and begged her return, the same pattern started all over again. So she called the police a second time & the police again made sure she was able to leave the house safely without being attacked and they took her to a women’s shelter where she was able to restart her life again. The shelter also helped her get orders of court protection which was something she was unable to afford the first time. It is always best if you have multiple people or friends who can help you leave safely. Never try to leave on your own or make threats of leaving. Just quietly get friends or authorities to help you. Don’t talk about your plans in the house or car in case it is being recorded or monitored. Don’t warn the violent abuser in advance. Making threats of leaving has gotten a lot of people killed. Say nothing. You need help to leave a violent spouse. More than one person. A group of big male friends, relatives or the police or help from shelters, etc. Many men who abuse women are not so violent when they are facing other men larger than they are or in numbers.

Many of the cases on Forensic Files were set off by these types of threats being used during a spousal argument. 

Remember Drew Peterson and two of his wives? Stacy is still missing. Remember how he followed her everywhere after they were married, checked her phone and her email and made accusations working himself into a suspicious frenzy while he was also planning to replace her with a new mistress? There is a movie about them you should watch.

Remember all the dark secrets of Scott Peterson who pretended to be Mr. Niceguy?

The following items could save your life with an abusive spouse (male or female). Never assume someone is going to be a good spouse. Before marrying someone, ask their former spouses and former girlfriends. Ask female coworkers. Run background checks, read their divorce records, etc.

My former neighbor’s ideas for personal rules dealing with an abuser.

  • If you engage in arguing, yelling, etc., it only escalates the situation and makes the abuser more aggressive and possibly dangerous. 
  • Don’t engage in arguments.
  • Don’t respond to or acknowledge nasty comments, insults, lies, etc. 
  • Never yell
  • Be pleasant and polite
  • Never give them a reason to be violent
  • Never say anything more than twice.
  • Don’t say anything that you will regret.
    • Some things are unforgivable and cannot be undone or unsaid.
  • Don’t resort to name calling or personal criticisms
    • no matter how much you are provoked.
  • Find a way to get out of the situation & away from  the abuser without setting them off
  • Don’t engage in violence
  • Keep friends & family around as much as possible
  • Have a family member live with you or stay over for a while
  • Avoid being alone or alone with abuser
  • Invite frequent guests to come over (close friends who know the situation)
  • Never engage in arguments or name calling
  • Don’t make accusations or demands
  • Never tell an abuser you are leaving
  • Never threaten an abuser
  • Never threaten to divorce or leave an abuser
  • Never threaten to take children or property or money from an abuser
  • Never give an abuser advanced warning about any intentions or actions
  • Wait until you have help from police, friends or family to escort you to leave
    • Help needs to be males big enough & more than one male friend or relative or police officers to protect you from violence when you are leaving
    • a group of females is not enough to protect against an abusive male
  • Or quietly obtain a court order & have the police escort the abuser out the door
  • Never be alone while in the process of a court battle.
    • Stay with someone else.
  • Never become an easy target
    • Change your behavior patterns
    • Drive different routes
    • Change your child’s school
    • Change your child’s daycare
    • Move to another location with a friend or relative
  • Never be alone with the abuser after separating or divorcing.
    • Always have a chaperone & in a public place or your lawyers office
    • Ask a lawyer for advice
  • Carpool to and from work
  • Always make sure someone knows your exact schedule every day
    • where you go and with whom
  • Keep a digital recorder inside the lining of your purse
    • let someone trustworthy know where the recorder is located; just in case
  • Leave copies of evidence, recordings, photos of bruises and written descriptions of abuse situation with a trusted friend or relative
    • Signed & dated

Remember OJ Simpson and his ex wife Nicole.

Most deadly assaults have occurred after a spouse has made threats to leave, divorce, take children, property, money, etc., from the abuser. Never say anything to let an abusive spouse know what you are planning. Get help in advance. Do not make arrangements over the phone, in the house or car where you may be recorded or monitored, nor in front of a child that can repeat what you say. Nor tell anyone who might tell the abuser. Get help to escort you to leave or get court ordered help to remove the abuser. In the meantime, don’t do anything to escalate the situation. Don’t argue or yell or make threats, etc. Try not to respond. I know there are those abusive spouses who will intimidate, yell and threaten but if you respond, it will only get worse. Use your energy to start planning on what you need to do to get out of your situation.

The more the abuser escalates, the more desperate they are to see you come to harm. There could be pressures from a mistress, from a job, from money they owe which they need your demise to fix. They can get buy life insurance policies without your knowledge. They can also get life insurance policies on you through their employer benefits. Watch forensic files and similar shows to give you an idea of just how much danger you could be in.

However, do not strip down the abuser of all properties and unreasonable monies. The abuser needs to have money to live on, car to drive and part of the property in the house so they can have personal items (except weapons. Try to get a court agreement to have the weapons sold and the money returned to the owning spouse or divided rather than returning the weapons).

If you strip down an abuser with a mean lawyer and judge to get even, you are giving the abusive spouse a motive to destroy you and leaving them with nothing to lose for coming after you and harming or killing you. You will do better if you leave them with reasonable money and belongings and a fair part of the house items. It will reduce the amount of rage they have against you. Get a job to help with your own costs. Show you are making an effort to be fair. Utility companies have excellent entry level opportunities, excellent pay and excellent opportunities for advancement and promotions.

Even though I owned and paid for all of my properties and household items, I gave my ex enough furniture and dishware, pots and pans, tables, bed, linens, vehicles, tools, photos, etc., for him to set up a decent home. I did not ask for any alimony or money from him. We divided the savings. It was a mutually agreeable property division. We also remained plutonic friends for a few years then went our separate ways. He was not a violent spouse but he was quite cruel which ended with the divorce.

Some men will marry women with money or pretty women as a trophy prize. But most men will come to resent a wife who makes more money or who has a higher position. Men who marry pretty trophy wives will often become jealous and possessive or they may become abusive if the wife gains weight or gets older. In one case, I saw a story about a man on TV who married his wife because he had an obsession for very overweight women. As his 600 lb wife began losing weight and got below 300lbs, he became increasingly abusive and hateful and began tormenting her with food, etc. I hope she has the sense to leave him. I have seen men deliberately bringing home fatty junk foods to keep their wives fat. It was another form of abuse. They thought it was amusing to have that kind of power over their wives.

I have also seen women abusing their husbands. Abuse is not always the male. Sometimes it is both.  I had another neighbor who is constantly putting down her husband and yelling and making threats. I tried my best to get her to stop. She is not open to reason. She always started the fights and he became abusive in return and drinks heavily. He actually set her up into assaulting him and recorded her. He had her arrested and now she has a police record and was put on probation. He very nearly had her committed to an asylum. I just barely was able to help her avoid that. He was using that ploy to get out of paying her alimony or giving her any of the property by having her declared mentally incompetent.

They finally discovered they could not afford to get a divorce this late in life. Both in their late 50’s and their house is not worth enough for either to afford to get another home nor afford the cost of rents. It is cheaper for them to remain where they are. She still starts fights, but she finally got a job where she works late. and has been working there for 8 years. Having that job also helps her prove she is not mentally unstable should he  try that ploy again. He is an alcoholic who keeps losing his jobs. She often stays with relatives to keep out of his way. In this manner, they have learned to live without battering each other.  I still hear them yell and he is a gun nut who shoots off his guns from time to time which worries me. If she had any sense, she would stop yelling and stop starting fights. She is always the instigator and always putting him down. She seems to think it makes him look bad to others. It has the opposite effect. It makes her look loud, belligerent and unreasonable. He only fights after she starts them, but I fear she is in danger with his drinking and guns. One of these days she will push him too far and pay for it with her life. 

I have also seen many women who think it is perfectly ok to criticize and put down their husband in front of other people. It is quite awful either way. No spouse should treat the other with disrespect. Certainly without abuse or violence. Being married does not give anyone a right to abuse their partner. Verbal abuse and physical assault as well as restricting someone’s freedom of movement is just as illegal for a married couple as it is for a perfect stranger. Just blocking a doorway is considered illegal imprisonment.

Anyone who is cruel or hateful or abusive, violent, etc., either does not want to be married or have kids or they have no respect for their spouse and may have someone else on the side. You cannot fix someone who feels like that. You can only get out of the situation before it becomes worse.

Never let down your guard, especially when a spouse suddenly decides to be nice and want a second chance. They already showed you how they feel about you with the abuse. They only get nice if they have ulterior motives and to gain access to getting you alone or because they found out how expensive it was to be separated and only want reconciliation due to financial reasons. Many of them have darker, more deadly intentions. Pay attention to these forensic file shows and what happens to those trusting abused spouses who went on a reconciliation honeymoon, etc.

These are just various events and stories I can share from myself, friends or family members in the hope the info may be useful. It is not wise to remain in an abusive situation. They almost always escalate and become worse, possibly deadly. No one should ever remain in harms way.

 

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suicidal tendencies in abusive situations

I have a friend who had self destructive tendencies for years and I thought it might be of interest to know how she was cured of this desire. Her main problem was completely devoting herself to someone else so profoundly that she placed their needs above her own. When that person or spouse cheated on her or was cruel to her, her entire world was shattered and she felt it was the end of the world, so she tried to harm herself. She had two spouses which treated her horribly and she was so emotionally hurt by them that she tried to harm herself. Fortunately, she was not successful… but she came close a couple times.

The most horrible part was how her spouses treated her when she was in the hospital. They wouldn’t even come to see her. The first spouse tried to clean out the house while she was in the hospital. She even had to have someone else bring her clothes to wear and give her a ride home from the hospital because her spouse would not. It was his attitude and cruelty and constantly putting her down and trying to destroy her self esteem & confidence which had driven her to such self destructive actions in the first place. She cared too much about the cruel things her spouse said to her. The additional problem is that friends and family begin to turn against someone who repeatedly tries to harm themselves. Friends and family cut themselves off and don’t want to be involved… which makes the situation worse when this person needs  their compassion or help. Tough love does not work for someone who feels self destructive as it does for an alcoholic or substance abuser. Turning away from someone self destructive could result in their death. They need compassion but they also need to learn why they feel like this and how to stop it and how not to use it to get attention. However, these episodes should always be taken seriously because if you treat it as trivial, they could very likely show you how serious they are and it will be too late. If you don’t want to help, then find one of their friends or other family member or a help line who will help them. It is a desperate cry for help and requires understanding what has made them feel this way.

There are some men who will get into a relationship with someone who has money or property just to get even for their first spouse taking away everything they had in a divorce. So they think it is ok to do the same to some other unsuspecting woman out of spite to get even with all women. Hence the brutality. These men are carrying a dangerously vengeful hatred of women seeking payback for the divorce. Judge’s should consider the type of monsters which are created by stripping down someone of all their monies, properties & possessions. It leaves them with rage, motive, vendetta & nothing else to lose. They often go after the first  female they see with properties & money. In my friend’s situation, the property was hers. She earned and paid for all of it herself. It was not the spoils of a divorce.

Her second spouse cleaned out her bank accounts while she was in the hospital. All the money was hers. He never worked a day in his life. Part of the money was from her new employer to help them move to her new job location. She supported her spouse, a former high school sweetheart who had looked her up 20 years later. One day, he decided he wanted the moving money so he took off with half the money without any warning. She came home from work, found him gone and a horrible note he left her. She then hit bottom in a moment of grief and tried to harm herself. While she was in the hospital for 3 days, he stole the other half of her money. She had no idea he had stolen any money until all her checks started bouncing. So you can see how much he cared about his wife. He was also hiding a drug habit she knew nothing about. She was quite naïve. I had tried to get her to run a background check on him but she was too trusting. There is a lot more to the story as to how she was driven to such a low point, but not necessary for how she improved.

While she was in the hospital for 3 days, a psychometrist at the hospital had asked her to describe what her reasons were for trying to harm herself. She told him she wanted her spouse and others who had mistreated her to feel as bad as she did & to regret how they had mistreat her. She basically wanted him to feel bad and regret what he had done and to stop her own pain he had caused. But she was too trusting to understand that some people have no conscience about hurting someone or that they were pretending to have feelings to lure her into marriage and were then abusing her to the point of suicide to get their hands on her money and property. Especially hard for her to believe about a former high school boyfriend she truly cared for.

Then the psychometrist asked her if it worked. Did her spouse feel bad when she ended up in the hospital? She thought about it for a moment and said, “No.” She told me it was like a light switch had suddenly been turned on and she could see clearly for the very first time. She had tried to harm herself because she wanted her spouses, friends and family who had been cruel to feel bad for the way they had mistreated her. Instead of feeling bad for her near death, her spouses had taken the opportunity to rob her blind. They were actually glad she was out of the way. She had given them just what they wanted. It was only the fact that she survived which stopped them from taking everything she owned. She decided that she was never going to give anyone that pleasure again.

Since that day, she says she has never had the desire to harm herself again.

This completely changed her way of thinking. This was 20 years ago and she has never had the desire to harm herself again. She is a completely different person. She used to have a low self esteem. Was always apologizing and feeling like she was being scrutinized by others. She previously had a submissive apologetic mannerism & uncertainty which invited abusers to mistreat & bully her. 

After that moment of understanding, she became confident, sure of herself and a sense of pride which changed the way people treated her. She also stopped getting married and lives alone quite happily where no one is abusive to her. She cut off contact with anyone who was cruel to her… including family members. Just because someone is a relative, does not give them the right to mistreat someone.  She felt no one had the right to be cruel or abusive to her and was no longer going to waste her life on anyone who treated her with disrespect. She has become very strong and independent.  The difference is astounding. You would not know it was the same person. Just that one sentence the psychometrist asked about whether anyone had felt bad about her attempts, made all the difference. She became a new person overnight.

She keeps the TV on for company and she works on various hobbies and projects to keep her busy. She also has pets to keep her company. She is very peaceful now. Before, she used to allow others to be abusive and cruel and destroy her self esteem. But now, when someone treats her like that, she recognizes them for the cruel abusers they truly are and she immediately cuts them out of her life and has no more contact with them. It has made her a strong, happy person who enjoys life. She is determined that nothing or no one will ever again drive her to the point of self destruction. She says she no longer has any such desires and has not had any such thoughts for 20 years.

She finally realized that someone who truly loves you would not try to hurt you. Someone who loves you would try to do things to make you happy and care about your needs. Not just their own. So if someone treats you badly, they are not worth wasting your breath on. That type of person wants to see harm come to you and will continue to try to drive you to the point of self destruction to get you out of their way. Never give anyone that type of satisfaction or power over you. Get away from that person as fast as possible. They are not worth your life. Surviving is the way to get back at someone trying to harm you. They don’t want to see you well and happy. That is the best thing you can do for yourself. Bullies want to see you weak and cowering. The more a victim cowers, the meaner and more vicious a bully, abuser or tormenter will become.  They don’t have a conscience or remorse.

She said it was when the psychometrist had asked her if anyone had felt badly after she had tried to harm herself that she suddenly realized she was doing exactly what her abusive spouse wanted. To get rid of her so her spouse could steal her money and property and even gain life insurance if the policy was at least a couple years old. Her abusive spouses would have gained everything by using cruelty to drive her to self destruction. Her properties were quite valuable because she had a high paying career. Then she was carrying a huge life insurance policy through her employer which was worth millions. We told her she was making a target out of herself. After the last ordeal where her spouse stole the money, she got rid of the huge life insurance account which was worth $6 million. Her second spouse, whom learned about her problems with the first spouse, actually tried to heckle her into killing herself because he knew what had occurred with her first spouse and thought it would work for him as well. It very nearly did. Her 2 spouses thought they could torment her into harming herself so they would gain ownership of her properties.

Once she understood their true reasons for abusing her and deliberately trying to get her to harm herself, she said, “Never again!” and she never did. She also never carried an insurance policy like that again. She has never allowed anyone to destroy her self esteem again for 20 years… and she asked me to include her story on my webpage in case it might help someone else.

Having a background of trying to commit suicide also makes you a perfect target for a spouse to get rid of you so they can steal your money and property and claim it was a suicide by either driving the spouse to harming themselves or making it look like a suicide. Be very careful of what a cruel spouses intentions may be. Also be careful what personal info you reveal to a spouse. Never give them info they can use to harm you. Very few police investigators will take a serious look at a deceased spouse if you have a history of harming yourself. The prosecution would have a tough time convincing a jury. Plus, your own family would testify to your history. A good reason to be very careful who you trust. I did know one lady whom this happened to just a few years ago. Despite the fact that she had a new boyfriend of very low character and a lot of her jewelry and valuables were gone from the house and the method was not something she would have chosen;  the police refused to investigate because of her prior history.

Staying alive and staying away from creeps like that is the best thing you can do. Never let anyone torment you into harming yourself. Do not give them the satisfaction.

If you still feel like harming yourself, please contact someone who might be able to help you. Give yourself a couple weeks to think it over. There may be other alternatives you have not considered. Perhaps a fresh start in a new location would help you get away from your troubles. If you have children, you certainly don’t want to leave that bad memory for them or people you care about.

Lack of sleep and lack of proper foods can throw off your chemical balance and cause extreme depression as can substance abuse. It can affect your judgment, making things seem worse than they are.  Things always look better after a couple days of sleep and proper foods. Never do anything drastic when you are upset. You don’t have anything to lose by waiting a few days to think things over after you have gotten some sleep and food. Talk to someone else who cares or someone completely new or  hotlines to help you if you don’t have anyone else to talk with. They wouldn’t be volunteering unless they care about people. Perhaps a church or a social group?  Sometimes just talking can help you find better options. Please don’t make any rash decisions while you are upset.

Think about what my friend said. Never let anyone make you feel bad about yourself. Anyone who abuses you or says unkind things does not truly care for you, so they are not worthy of you. Don’t place your self worth and welfare in the hands of someone who is cruel and abusive. Don’t give them what they want. Nothing will bother the abuser more than seeing you happy, smiling and self confident.  Staying alive and being happy is the best way to get back at an abuser who tries to hurt you.

If you have a situation similar to my friends who had abusive spouses driving them to suicidal thoughts… never let anyone break down your self esteem or drive you to self destruction. Find someone to talk to or someone to help you. There is a lot of qualified help available if you need it. Never do something destructive while you are upset. Being upset alters your brain chemicals and can obscure your ability to make sensible decisions. Go somewhere safe & secure. Get some sleep and some food and wait a week or two to rethink your options. Call someone to talk with or seek qualified services or perhaps medical care which may have medicines to help. Or perhaps you are already taking medicines which are causing false depressions.

Never do permanent harm to yourself. Seek out help from friends, family, help lines or medical professionals. They will likely have alternative ideas or ways to help your situation which you may not have considered. Never give some cruel person the benefit of getting you out of their way. They won’t feel bad. They will take everything they can get their hands on.

Your happiness, survival and self confidence will be the last thing a cruel abuser wants to see. Get away from someone like that and start fresh, but do so safely. You can lead a happy life without being mistreated or abused.

I hope that some of this info may help someone else.