Wednesday, 8 June 2016

DATING MY ABUSER


A few days ago I was reminded that it was okay to be vulnerable and human. I seem to have forgotten how relaxing it can be to let it all out sometimes, not caring if I would be judged, laughed at or insulted.
I had to remember that it was important to share some experiences that may actually save or help someone who is probably going through the same thing.

My story begins on a fun and exciting Saturday night in Lagos Nigeria, where I attended an after party. I met a tall dark and handsome man who was introduced to me through a mutual friend. We spoke for a few minutes, exchanged numbers and then parted ways. I didn't see or hear from him again until about 6 months later when I got a call on my way to a friend's private birthday party. He asked where I was and I told him where I was going, so he wanted to meet up at the venue and that was fine.
He came and we continued the conversation that we didn't get to finish the first time we met. After that night we started seeing each other more often as he would call me and say all the right things, then ask to see me.
So there I was feeling special, thinking that this stud must really like me so much that he had to see me about four times a week. My head was in the clouds because he came to me in a very honest and humble manner, he didn't have much but was not embarrassed at all because of who I was and what I had. In my head I was thinking "Wow what a confident man".
Needless to say, I fell for him hopelessly even against advice from everyone around me.

The relationship started and instead of taking time to really study and know him, I decided to give, give and give without thinking twice. I gave time, I gave energy, I gave money, I gave respect, I gave submission, I gave love, I gave honor, and I gave everything a woman would, just to make her man feel important and loved.
I gave money and everything that comes with making a man stand proud and feel wealthy.
I did this so much that even when you ask me a question or want me to appear somewhere I would ask him first or look out for his expression to get approval.
All this was to make him feel like the head, make him feel like the man, make him feel respected and know that his financial status does not make him less of a man, make him feel like he has his authority, and make him feel like he had the best woman any man could ever ask for.

Everyone around me hated the fact that I did more and more to make him happy and then they started noticing that I was loosing my happiness, I was loosing weight, I was loosing myself but the funny thing is that I didn't even notice. Eventually, I got so angry that I started pushing my friends and family away.
He kept telling me that everyone around me expected me to do better in choosing a man just because he didn't have money or a job. I bought into that and attacked everyone, telling them that they were being unfair and judgmental. So I made it my job to make sure he had something to do, he had a car, he had his own apartment, he had the latest devices etc.
All of this was to prove everybody wrong so they could see what he could become if we just  gave him a chance and helped him.

After a while I started noticing that he became aggressive towards my friends, anyone I introduced him to, people I worked with etc.  All of a sudden he didn't like anybody anymore and didn't want them around us. Then it all grew into calling me names at the slightest provocation even though I was not sure of what I did to provoke him. He would say things like "I am doing you a favor by being with you", "how easy do you think it is to find a single guy like me to date a woman with kids"?, "you are too controversial to have a sane man stay with you", "the only thing you have going is your career other than that you are not really worth it".
There were stronger names he called me like BITCH and other curse words he would use, but I would rather not even write them.The worst part in all of this is, after hearing these words over and over again I got used to it and even started thinking that he was right.
When he was done insulting me, he would walk up to me and say "see what you made me do, you are the only one who can get me to this point, you know how much I love you so why are you turning me into this monster?”, and yours truly would stupidly start to apologize for making him abuse me mentally.
As far as I was concerned at that time, it was strong love and because he loved me madly, him getting upset with me, made me the monster.

I lived in this lie for a long time and was still too blind to see how awful I started looking and feeling. I didn't even want to be seen too much so that no one would ask me if I was ill. People would come to me with proof of him cheating but for some silly reason I would make excuses for him. Out of fear of an argument I would not even want to confront him about it. I was so scared that I would ask myself "if you confront him and he leaves out of anger, are you sure you would meet someone else who is better? This was where i started using the phrase THE DEVIL YOU KNOW IS BETTER THAN THE ANGEL YOU DON'T KNOW. Silly silly phrase because the truth is, if you know someone to be a devil you are better off without the person.

Anyway,  I stayed in the relationship until one day when he got upset that a guy gave me the card to his hotel because he wanted my band to sing there. He got so mad that he punched the wall in my study. When he did that,  it was as if a very thick veil was pulled from my eyes. That was when I realized that the kind of anger that made him punch a wall can even push him to hit me since I was the cause of his anger.
I don't know if it was the prayers of my mother or my best friend’s, but something gave me courage that day and kept urging me to get him out of my life before it was too late. I yelled for my home staff and they came into the study and I asked them to get him out. I told him boldly never to come near me, my home or my family. That was how God delivered me from my abuser. If he had not punched that wall, I don't think I would have had the courage to end the relationship .

Sometimes, when women find themselves in an abusive relationship, it's easy for others to judge them or ask them to just pick up and leave. Even though it's the right thing to do, it's not that easy when you are the one in the relationship. Abuse takes a stronghold on the victim and messes up their mental state. If the victim is not careful she may accept the blame and never find the boldness to leave.
It is also worse for those who are not financially independent.
Mental abuse can actually turn out to be worse than physical abuse because with the physical you can prove it, you can also see the scars and they can be treated. Don't get me wrong it is extremely dangerous to go through it but with mental abuse, there is hardly any proof and no one can see the bruises or the scars so you don't even know how or what to treat. It may affect you mentally for years and that is scary because it definitely affects any other relationship you may have, if ever.

THE ABUSER’S MODE OF OPERATION
1. Identifies your weakness and uses it to gain your love and trust
2. Tells you the things they know you want to hear.
3. Gets rid of everyone around you who has the ability or capability to help/rescue you
4. Makes you emotionally dependent on him
5. Feeds your mind with things that you will believe are beneficial to your relationship
6. Uses your emotions to control your mind and reasoning
7. Tells you negative things about yourself and repeats it so it sticks in your mind
8. Compares you to others just to prove that you are not worth it and not good enough
9. Gives you the impression that he is doing you a favor by being with you.
10. Blames you for things even when you don't know about them
11. Yells and picks fights at the slightest provocation
12. Starts to get physical but begs for forgiveness, telling you that his love for you makes you the only person that can get him that mad.
13. Makes you think the abuse is your fault and you have to fix it
14. Intentionally allows you to loose yourself/esteem so that he can gain full control of your mind
15. Batters your mind so much that even when he hits you and there are visible scars, you find yourself making excuses for him
16. You become afraid of the unknown so you stay in the relationship because you don't want to start over in a new relationship
17. He gets you to the phase where you become numb so you can’t even feel that something is wrong.

It continues like this until something really bad happens or the woman runs away.

The good thing is that there is help and support for women and men going through any form of abuse.
Please don't die in silence and don't believe that the abuse is  your fault. Speak out and get help.

If you or someone you know needs help please send me a message and I will give you resources and contacts that can help.
If you would also like to share your story, please  let me know and You can be anonymous.

Share, comment and subscribe,
God help us all.

29 comments:

  1. Hmmmm.I know that feeling.. I'm lucky got out alive and on the right path with God.I was in a worse relationship,in my case he was married but his wife was not in the country.He made me lose my self esteem,called me names..he stopped me from seeing friends.made me lose my job.Annoying part is I still don't know how I got into the relationship with him..he wasn't even my type..naaaa..i still crinch at the thought of it,i feel dirty and belittled.I just thank God I got out alive and getting better.We should all speak out...yell not speak..not every one would be lucky to get out.Thanks SD for this...God bless you.If you have friends or neighbours.. please blow the whistle on their behalf as they may be living in fear or still not aware they are been abused

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  2. Thanks for sharing and I pray this post will truly bless people and give courage where it is needed!

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  3. Thought provoking. Thanks SD.

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  4. Every woman you know suffers one form of abuse or the other in a relationship,be it physical ,mental or emotional.To some women,such abuses makes them stronger,self dependent.To some ,it leaves them dejected.I am a victim of domestic torture,I call it torture cos it was a combination of all the abuses.He is rich,he made me quity job with a promise that he will give me money to start a business.Foolish me,I believed him.And then he started giving excuses for not releasing the money to me.He tactically chased all my friends and family members,I was depressed,my bp was soaring higher and I had no more self worth.hmmmm,I feel so much pain looking back to the past,but everyone has a story to tell.I couldn't leave because I was not financially bouyant,.how do I take care of my kids,no job ,no money,no where to run to,I'm actually an orphan.My own case is just so compounded.Still hoping someday a helper will come,but till then I'll keep moving,praying and hoping.The abuse has actually reduced,i learnt to keep away from him as much as possible.pls don't think I'm a fool by staying with him despite every abuse,I haven't gotten a way out.MONEY

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    1. I can never think you are a fool for staying because I understand what you are going through. I am just glad that the abuse has reduced. But please you have to know when it becomes dangerous. It's no longer about money but about saving yourself.

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    2. I'm somewhere in Enugu, the help I don't know how possible that is

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  5. OMG...my heart really bled as I read and for once, I realized it is really easy for me for example to advice somebody in an abusive relationship to get out,but what we don't fully grasp is the extent of entrapment these women feel. I have learnt not to hurriedly judge those in abusive relationships as 'weak' but to counsel with love and understanding. I pray for anyone going through any form of abuse to get an 'awakening' and have the strength to leave before it's too late cos as SD said in this story, family and friends told her to leave but it was she that finally made the call to leave when he hit that wall.

    So I say a special thank you SD for sharing this very personal experience and I pray it reaches and helps as many as possible. God bless you truly. Amen.

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  6. Wow 😲,this is amazing,no one deserve to be abused. It is always the best to walk away no matter how painful and difficult it might seem. God bless you dear sister SD, I pray for more ideas and inspiration upon you dear. I mostly appreciate the fact you listed the "Abuser's mode of operation"... Peace ✌

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  7. Stella Sis, you know I'm deep in psychology. This is actually called NARCISSISTIC ABUSE or COVERT ABUSE or Invisible ABUSE. People who behave this way are known to be NARCISSISTS, which is basically an Inferiority complex. You attract who you are. If you are used to abuse, you will Marry ABUSE. You must love yourself and Marry you first before you marry anyone. Thanks for the write up . Good one sis

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  8. SD thanks for sharing my dear. Considering how blind we are to our own experiences, we are always brought into a new level of awareness when we listen to other peoples'. I was spellbound as i read cos every thing sounded so familiar.
    I have finally come to realize that a typical African man is not culturally wired to be with a financially independent and well known woman.
    Thanks my dear sister and may God bless you immensely for sharing

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  9. Relationships like really kill. I'm still in it. I don't know how to leave. I don't know if I would be able to start again. At least he didn't beat. Mine would beat me. My abuse was physically and mentally. There was a time he beat me up, I crawled to bathroom and lay there, exhausted and bleading from my mouth where he hit. He still came into the bathroom to kick me more, with me lying there, looking Miserable. But eventually he pleaded, he said he's sorry. He cried and cried and I forgave him. That wasn't the first time he beat me. He makes me loose myself. He makes me feel I'm not worthy of him. Sometimes I tell myself that this isn't me. He's mental abuses are strong. There was this day he was calling me names, insulting me. I was like, there's nothing new, I've heard virtually every bad words from. Then he said "thank God a fool like you didn't get to give birth to my child". Yes I got pregnant for him, but I lost it. Because of him. I'm still in it, because I don't think I'll be able to start again. I've lost myself. I can't loose him too, it would mean I really lost everything. I depend on him a lot. All I pray is courage to one day walk away, and never look back. No self confidence now. I lost it all.

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    1. Please my sister, you are worth more than this. You have not lost it all because if you had, you will not even have the courage to comment. Please don't stay in that relationship. You may feel like you can't start again but how will you know if you don't try? There is help everywhere now, you can get a job somewhere, you can start over. God will never turn his back on you. He is the one who gave you the first child you lost so trust that he will give you another. It is a blessing that you don't even have a child for a monster. God knows what he is doing. Please my dear leave that relationship and go somewhere safe to get you mind back.

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    2. Please walk away and never look back..until it result into something more dangerous and irrevocable.

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    4. Leave him straight away.

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  10. Thanks Stella for sharing, I really learnt from this.

    www.miimisdiary.com  


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  11. Stella, I know someone who is going through this.
    she has no family. The husband is abusive.
    No day goes without a lash or beating. she can only sneak away but not to a friend's house because he can easily trace her.
    please how do we help save Jane?

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    1. Please look for project alert nigeria online and call the number there. Tell them I referred you and they will attend to her. Please do it quickly I beg you.

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  12. Am a victim and everything you narrated is the truth....
    Thanks for sharing

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  13. That was a lucky escape cuz. I thank God you escaped! I agree it is a symptom of a narcissist. Ive studied them too.

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  14. You have always been a stroby and level headed last...we all knew you would always try to assist everyone around you. Many have taken a lot from you but it didn't deter you from loving and giving more. I just thank God for giving you a discerning gift as you always come out tops from any challenge. May God continue to guide and protect you always.

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  15. Aunty Stella how can I contact you ? And the word to describe this people are narcissist I know a lot about them and I have been a victim too I will like to share some stuffs and blogs with you! Pls here is my whatsapp 2348067450404

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  16. Hello good morning Anty Stella pls I no some of someone....how can I get the contact of people who can help her?....pls it would be nice if u can reply as soon as possible. Thank you

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  17. Hello good morning Anty Stella pls I no some of someone....how can I get the contact of people who can help her?....pls it would be nice if u can reply as soon as possible. Thank you

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  18. Dear Stella thanks for this exactly what u said is the truth, funny enough I am a South African who is married to a Nigerian who degrades me just as u said...I am a professional woman and he always makes me feel like I am a nobody that I am not worth it..I am in a house whereby I feel like I'm in jail as I have no life...he calls me all sorts of names that can never be erased from my mind..I just want to thank you because I thought I am abused simply because I am a South African and not good enough to compete with Nigerians...so now I get it that abuse is everywhere irrespective of your ethnicity..I am still in the marriage and I pray to God everyday to give me courage and strength to just walk out without turning back

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