Posted in choices, family, friends, Uncategorized

Resistant to Change

It takes thousands of years of wind, rain and sun to change the earth. There is clear evidence those elements made their mark on the rock formations above. These are in New Mexico. They have been altered but they didn’t move. The wind and water had to go around, over, under or through the rock. It may or may not be smooth to the touch but it appears so.

What I find most difficult about personal change isn’t actually changing, it’s getting those closest to you to accept the “new” you. Of course they encourage you to lose weight and exercise but when you do, you’re told that you are too concerned with how you look and getting old.

When you try to be a better listener and not talk, they say great. But when faced with the “new” you, they ask multiple times is everything okay because you’re so quiet.

If you mention wanting to learn something new or pursue something different, you are given support until you actually do it. Then it’s, I didn’t know you had the knack for that or that’s not very practical.

When you decide you won’t allow people to mistreat you or speak disrespectfully to you, everyone says good for you. Until you stand up to them and then it’s your taking the other side or who do you think you are now?

You want to be more outgoing, meet new people and have fun. Again that’s great! Then when you do, it’s you’re too old for that or I need you and you’re not available.

Change, real long term change is hard, really, really hard. And when we actually step out in faith, and do the hard work to make lasting change the support of those closest to us is important. However when we change ourselves, it forces changes in those around us. Maybe the change isn’t noticeable, but usually when we make a difficult change it causes a ripple in the water, a bump in someone’s road. People don’t like that. They say they are supportive but it usually turns out they are supportive until it’s inconvenient or uncomfortable for them.

Ask yourself, are you truly being supportive of someone you love make a big change in his/her life? Or do you pull back when it suddenly becomes uncomfortable for you.

Posted in Blogging, choices, daughters, depression, divorce, Experience, Faith, family, fear, friends, friendship, Health, help, Hiding, love, marriage, men, mistakes, Moving, New life, questions, relationships, sons, Uncategorized, values, women, WordPress, words, Writing

Fear, Silence, Homelessness

homeless

We read stories everyday of women that have been abused by a man. And sadly these women tend to repeat bad choices and go from one bad relationship to another. For anyone with a solid self-esteem and self-worth, it is incredulous that any woman would stay in such a damaging relationship. Here is something that so many people fail to understand; the abuser rarely walks in and begins the abuse immediately. There is physical abuse and emotional abuse. They go hand in hand but emotional abuse can happen without physical abuse. That is my story.

Why didn’t I share? I was embarrassed and ashamed. Slowly over time my sense of independence was destroyed. Over time the belief I was lovable was destroyed. Day by day comments, looks, turning things around so I would begin to question myself believing somehow I caused him to cheat and having my concerns being dismissed and ignored regularly created a complete sense of instability. If my ex-husband was home I was always tied up in knots because I was worried I wasn’t making him happy. When he was out-of-town I was tied up in knots because I worried about what he was doing. Should I have left years ago? Of course, but he didn’t reveal his true-self all at once. He did it slowly over time. Think of a bucket being filled by one drop of water at a time. It takes a long time before the bucket overflows. So don’t judge your friend who finds herself in my position. Listen to her. Don’t rebuke her for not leaving sooner. Hug her. Offer support anyway you can. Don’t exclude her because she is no longer a couple. And certainly do NOT remain friends with her abusive ex-husband.

If I could give advice to any woman who is living with a narcissist, it would be to read as much as you can about narcissism and how narcissists manipulate their victims. I would encourage her to find someone to share any secrets i.e. his cheating, his addictions, his crimes. Had I come forward the first time I found out what he was doing, I might have received support from my friends. However the shame he created in me, kept me silent. Silence is a killer. It kills your spirit. So speak up. Leaving is scary. I am facing homelessness at 56 because I was a stay-at-home mom and with no full-time work experience since 1984, I can’t get any business to take a chance on me.

Why do I write about this again? I write about this again because I can’t just dump the over-flowing bucket of abuse. It leaves as slowly as it came. Now I have a small hole in the bottom of the bucket and daily a little more of it drains out. It is just going to take time, a lot of time. Sadly I don’t have time when it comes to a job. While my ex enjoys a life in the lap of luxury, ignores his children and pretends he never destroyed lives, I work to survive and they learn to accept life as fatherless children.

Posted in communication, daughters, depression, divorce, Experience, fear, forgiveness, God, Health, help, love, marriage, men, mistakes, New life, Uncategorized, WordPress

Addiction Intervention 

 

I watched A&E’s tv show Intervention. It focuses on drug addicts that agree to do a documentary but in the end there is an intervention. Two things stood out to me while watching the show:
1st: I missed multiple opportunities to insist on intervention with my ex-husband and his addictions. Had I been honest with myself and my friends from the first time the police called, there might have been a chance to save him and save our marriage. But instead just like some of the family members on the tv show, I chose to ignore the seriousness of his addictions and how destructive they were and still are.

2nd: I saw too many silimaritirs between drug addiction and the way it destroys families and my depression. I don’t drink or use drugs but I’ve allowed my depression to become an addiction. I’ve taken steps to get help and I’m slowly getting better. But seeing first hand how heartbroken the families are watching their loved ones suffer and how much suffering it causes them made me realize I have to fight harder. 

I have to fight every second of every day to forgive myself for allowing my ex-husband to mentally and emotionally abuse me. I have to fight to forgive myself for not leaving. I have to forgive myself for disappointing my daughters. 

I have wonderful girls. They make me proud and happy everyday. They along with my son-in-law have stood by me. They have been strong and stood up to their father and refused to accept his behavior and his failure to admit his addictions and how he has hurt our family. They’ve also been strong and stood up to me and told me they know I can do better, be better and be happier.

All I can do is face the reality of my situation and fight my way back. I never deserved to be treated the way I was. I never deserved to be disrespected, ignored or cheated on. I deserve so much more.