That stop business

Some here may remember that several years ago, I stumbled late one night on to an internet forum for verbal abuse.  I almost skipped over it, because verbal abuse is not the typical method my passive aggressive husband has used.  Well, almost never.  There was that time years ago when he called me an f’ing b*tch in front of our teenage son, but maybe that will be a throwback Thursday post later. 

Speaking of throwback Thursday, for those who aren’t familiar with facebook, it’s the day when people post old photos typically.  Lots of nostalgia.  The kind of looking back that I tend to hate and cringe from in the same way you’d recoil from a hot burner.  When my firstborn was getting married, she asked me haul some bins of photos on a pre-wedding visit to her.  The plan was for us to go through them together, and choose some for a slide show for the reception. 

I lasted maybe… maybe fifteen minutes into that, then broke down and wept.  I couldn’t stop crying. It hit with a slam.  I wasn’t prepared because I’d never looked through all the photos I’d taken over the years my kids were growing up, so didn’t know to expect such an intense emotional reaction.  That whole ‘this is your life’ thing was a disaster for me in the viewing.  

I used to love taking photos, and writing this post reminds me that it’s been years that I’ve almost entirely stopped taking them.  I almost dislike photos now.  I ended up just leaving the photos with her to sift through and choose at another time.  I couldn’t do it.

Back to the title of this post and the opening paragraph.  Something I noticed when I became involved with the internet community of women that were victims of abuse, was that most of them seemed afraid to speak up to their abuser.  I can understand that, and in fact, for many of them it’s a very wise thing to help them remain safe until they get out.  It was never an issue for me.  My husband probably wished many times that it was.  If I don’t speak up to him, it was for entirely different reasons, not because I was afraid to or didn’t know how to stand up to him that way.

You see, the frontal assault methods of an overt abuser never were very successful with me.  Overt abuse just gets me angry.  My father was overtly abusive emotionally and verbally to my mother.  My poor little mother would be angry, but she’d just go quiet.  She tended to be passive aggressive in response, or just shut down because she was overwhelmed.  My mother wasn’t passive aggressive in ways that were abusive to any of us, but I think it was a defense coping strategy at times with my father.  Around the time I turned fifteen, I began standing up for my mother, and going toe to toe with my father when he’d begin to intimidate her by unwarranted criticism, harsh words, or yelling.

What this means in my own marriage is that I have always tended to stand up for myself if the abuse is overt.  Overt abuse would elicit a roar from deep within me. 

The covert abuse, however, strikes at the most vulnerable spot in my being, and that’s a lack of a sense of worth.  Not feeling an innate sense of worth has always been the Achille’s heel for me.  If my husband told me there wasn’t enough money for my violin, of course it should go to pay the ‘mystery bills’ that previously didn’t require it.  If he was too busy to spend time with me, naturally practically anything was more important than I was.  If he didn’t seem to desire me and didn’t touch me, if I stared into the dark while crying silent tears in the bed night after night throughout the years, then why and how could I fight that when deep inside, I doubted my innate desirability as a human being. 

Ignoring me has been the toxic weapon.  Leaving me to be alone with him in the marriage was effective punishment. Treating me as though he’s entirely lukewarm about intimacy has been my kryptonite.  The passive aggressive abuse is covert, and the message isn’t just one of resistance and sabotage, but a message that just doesn’t care about your feelings, your dreams, your heart, and your well-being.  In other words, you just aren’t worth it.

The rest of my story has been one of evolving from what I didn’t know about passive aggressive abuse, to understanding that passive aggressive is aggressive, and also a growing realization over the years that being a ‘good’ wife didn’t mean that God expected me to tolerate abuse. 

This means that the story of my marriage is full of stories of me standing up to my husband when I could see clearly that he was behaving wrongly.  Right from the beginning, it was so.

You see, standing up to him and speaking up is not a growth step for me.  I’ve always done that.  I also learned the hard way that those truth telling sessions often became what sure seemed like my supplying him a script that he could work off of later.  When he’s sensed that I was at the edge of the cliff, and ready to risk the jump to freedom, he’s ‘changed’.  Only now looking back, that ‘change’ looks an awful lot like behavior modification, and very subtly and covertly, I’m the manager of his behavior.

I’ve had that epiphany too.  My reasons for staying have been faceted, and I’ve partially explored them on the blog.  Some of my reasons, even though this blog is theoretically anonymous, I’ve hesitated to write about yet.  The important thing is that I entirely overestimated my strength in being able to manage abuse.  Since I’m still married, I try to limit that to a few very specific things, and one of them is finances.  Don’t screw up the finances. 

Another biggie is that my husband has a history that has included rare but traumatizing behaviors.  It hasn’t happened often, but it has happened.  Experience taught me that there are warning signs, just like you can tell when an animal is poised to vomit.  A handful of days ago, I saw some body language, heard words, the tone, the look in the eyes, kind of an intense almost manic tone to him, and my radar started blaring.  I asked him to go back to his office, and I told him I was seeing those warning signs, and that he needed to Stop ItJust get a hold of himself, and Stop It

I told him that I wouldn’t ever put up with some of the traumatizing garbage he’s pulled over the years, and if he didn’t get a hold of himself and stop it, then I’d just blow things up here, and let the cookies crumble however they landed. I said, “Stop it, or else...”   In other words, I wouldn’t put any effort whatsoever into saving our marriage.  I would only protect myself and my kids, and it meant I’d put things into motion that would just end our relationship for good. 

He knew this.  He understood it very well.  But unfortunately I chose the words ‘blow it up’ and the part that was connected to HIS behavior was entirely and intentionally lost by him.  He suddenly focused on my threatening him.  At that point, I got very quiet and told him to cut the crap.  I reminded him that I wouldn’t do anything unless it was in response to him behaving very badly. 

I said, “I’m telling you to get a hold of yourself, whatever is going on, stop it now while it’s just starting, or else I’ll step in and do something proactive.”  But he was still ramping up, and he said that I better be careful of what I was saying. 

I replied, “Why?  What do you think you could do to me?”

He said, “You haven’t seen anything yet.”

I said, “Really?  Because you know when I say I’d blow it up, I mean end our relationship if you behave really badly.  I wouldn’t say you’d never see me again, but it would be rare and brief, like at a family wedding.  What do you think you could do to me if we weren’t together?”

He said, “Oh, you’d be surprised.”

I said, “Okay.  Sure.  Whatever.  So here’s your choice.  Get a hold of yourself, or else.  Your call.”

He said, “If you do that, then I’m just going to walk.”

I replied, “If you get up and pack a suitcase, and drive away tonight, I won’t try to stop you.  I’ll go on with my life.  You can take the car.  Your call again.”

He said he needed to think.

A fairly short time later, he came out to watch a movie with us.  He seemed entirely normal.  He’s behaved fairly normal since then, other than my suspicion that he’s sabotaging by not getting work done (which is kind of a big thing). 

The next day, I talked to him again and told him that I was tired of having to watch and manage his behavior.  I told him that I’ve been too sad for too long, and I need to change my life.  I said that if he had any intention of learning to love me, that he was running out of time.  He asked what he could do to show me he really wanted to try.  I said, “For one thing, if I say stop it, just stop it.”

Last night, he was unusually affectionate when we crawled into bed.  He was looking at me more intensely, hugged and kissed me a few times.  Then he said, “I’m going to work really hard at that ‘stop business’.”

sigh

I doubt.  I doubt very much.  I’m going to keep moving towards my goals.  I hope I don’t lose ground.

It’s gotten warm enough to go to the lake and swim.  My driving foot has the dislocated bone issue, so he drives the girls and I there, and swims with us.  I let my injured foot just dangle, and do water aerobics for about a solid hour.   As I told my daughters, “When your hands feel tied, wiggle your fingers.”  I feel so hopeful about recovering some of me. 

 

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22 Responses to That stop business

  1. Exodus says:

    Thanks for posting this today even though it’s not a happy post. Do you have a surveillance camera in my house? I’ve been writing in my journal the past few days about the abusive dynamic between my parents ( and other things) and the role that I played as their daughter. Our experiences are very similar even though my father was not abusive at all.

    PJ’s, I haven’t been able to write about what I’m currently going through in my marriage because it’s so over-the-top insane that I’m trying not to dwell on it too much. I have to call my only friend every day and I use that opportunity to vent. But, something happened last night that maybe you can relate to- relative to rage. First of all, My husband started therapy last week and while I know it’s a big waste of time and 30 dollars a week, I really try to be fair and just let Norman do his thing. The reason why I know it’s a waste of time is based entirely on my husband’s very brief comments about his therapy session. BTW, the therapist is in therapy and she spent a lot of time talking about her therapy and her two dogs. Could life get anymore insane for me? I want her job…where I can get paid for talking about my life. I asked him if they discussed PA behaviors and he said no and that the therapist won’t discuss anything with him from his past and that she only believes in working from the present moment. He told me that he cried and cried about losing our dogs this winter *****RAGE ALERT******
    Norman is a f*(& liar. He hated our dogs, was terribly jealous of them and resented them and he showed his true feelings for them every single day. Damn him, how dare he even attempt to use my dogs this way.

    Norman told the T that all he wants for me is to have the best life, love and wonderful place to live
    *******RAGE ALERT********** Really? Then how come he never felt that way before or cared to improve our relationship by becoming a worthy husband? And how come he never got the boxes down from the loft for me even though he kept promising to do so?

    I have a whole slew of comments that I could post that produced rage in me PJ’s but the ones that really get me are the ones where he uses the death or misfortune of someone to generate sympathy from the therapist. He is also avoiding the truth at any expense and selling me down the river as a horrible woman that he doesn’t even want to come home to. I realize that he’s going to write his own story- a story that he can live with that avoids personal shame, personal accountability and emotional pain. I get that.

    BUT, last night we were sitting in the living room and I asked him something about company business and he shot me an evil , and I mean evil , look and said, ‘ Since when do you care about the company”. PJ’s, I lost it and I threw the remote at him so hard that it gashed the side of his face. I didn’t even care and I thought ‘ good, now he has a permanent scar to remind him of the pain he’s caused me every single day of our marriage’. The reason I lost control was because this was MY company, MY dream and MY creation from the beginning and I wanted this not just for me but for HIM so that he could have something to be proud of and to call his very own. He wouldn’t have shit if it wasn’t for me and my family’s money. I even made him the president to make him feel good even though most couples know that making the wife president is a much smarter move. I believed that we could be a successful team. I had no idea that he would be my enemy and resent me. Thanks to my abusive narcissistic PA Borderline evil husband I haven’t been able to do much of anything for our company in the last ten years and especially in the last 5 or 6. He has made it impossible for me to do any job in the office or in the field and he won’t admit that of course. When he made that comment to me, in an instant, years and years of all the exhausting attempts I made to help him help himself, all the days spent crying and frustrated so alone and unable to do my job or communicate with a husband who cared about his wife, and all the decisions that I had to make alone in a deep state of hopelessness and depression because of his constant undermining , heaped on me in an instant and I think I could have killed him.

    So, after I hit him last night, he pulled back is fist and stood over me and I just waited for him to hit me. I wanted him to hit me. I wanted him to show his true colors and I wanted to be able to wear his abuse on my face. I wanted to charge him with abuse, I wanted to put him in jail. PJ’s, this is a terrible state of mind and spirit to be in. It’s not going to get any better for you and when it comes down to leaving, if you ever do, it’s only going to get more emotional, more confusing, more abusive. I don’t want to seem like I’m telling you what to do but if I were in your situation, I would split/separate now while you still have kids at home and I wouldn’t wait until you’re alone. The kids are a good source of love as well as a distraction from negative thoughts and they are also helpful and they can also be a good source of inspiration to keep moving and doing. It’s getting really difficult for me to get up and want to stay alive through the day. I don’t have any dependents, I don’t have any reason at all to be here on this earth.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear, sweet Exodus, yes, you do. Yes, you do have a reason to be here on this earth. You already encourage so many here, and I just can’t wait to hear down the road when you discover all the things in store for you – the lives you have yet to touch, the joys you have yet to experience, the dogs you have yet to love 🙂 . (I have read your three comments on this post and am responding to all of them here). You are on a very difficult journey and a dangerous one. The heat got turned up higher last night and you got tripped up. Please don’t let this take you by surprise. Get your bearings, take what strength you can from your kind friend, the shelter, the counselor, this site, anywhere else you can and hold on for dear life! You keep letting it out where you are safe to do so – like here – but please try not to let him engage you. You already know what he is – he will lie, he will re-write history, he will bait you. (Mine is saying some things right now that would strip me of my worth if I didn’t know any better). It is what they do! You are facing the storm more intensely than most of us have had to deal with. Can you let his lies confirm for you what he is and settle you in what you know instead of them unsettling you? I know I am not going through what you are going through right now, but I do not want him to get you to the point you were last night and worse. I really believe you are in a spiritual battle.

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      • Exodus says:

        Seeing, thank so much for your thoughtful words. They mean the world to me right now. This is truly a very difficult time and it’s just so surreal observing Norman in action. It’s like being on a mental ward and having to share a room with a psychotic person. It is indeed a very spiritual battle. It goes from bad to worse. For starters, my ‘ kind’ friend wasn’t kind yesterday. She was on one of her typical drug induced self loathing missions and I said goodbye. Screw her. Then, I don’t know if you remember me writing about one of my neighbors that is nuts- the one who tried to murder his wife? Anyway, I knew he was still watching me ( since our altercation two years ago) and sure enough, when Norman spent the night away from home, that creep cut down my privacy hedge so that he can now see me. I didn’t bother calling the police. I’m so tired of living among demons. I can’t take anymore of this place or Norman or any other crazy people. Norman sure wouldn’t protect me. The psycho neighbor even called him a wimp.
        There seem to be plenty of cool places to rent in the country. I’m going to look at a place on a horse farm tomorrow near Moniticello ( Jefferson’s home). i love that area and my step sister lives nearby. I hope it’s nice and I would love to be able to start riding again. I may be able to work out some sort of barter deal with them as well- working on the farm. I keep remembering to ‘ Melt Evil’.
        You take care of yourself and do the same! I’ll be so glad when I can finally rest in peace.

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    • RockyRoad says:

      Exodus, please, please stay safe!! We are all rooting for you to keep making progress to get out!

      I completely understand your comment, “I wanted him to hit me. I wanted him to show his true colors and I wanted to be able to wear his abuse on my face.” I lived in a very explosive, violent marriage before I met PAM and at least that kind of abuse is forthright and obvious. It made it a LOT easier to leave that marriage rather than the ‘boil a frog’ type of PA marriage where you believe you are just going crazy.

      And crazy it feels today because it’s my birthday and I have to put on a smiley face and have a family dinner while pretending I’m enjoying getting one year older. :/

      I just finished reading a book about a PA marriage with a happy ending. It’s not a self help book, but a novel. I’ve been downloading free books on my kindle and I don’t remember this specific one when I downloaded it. The name is 30 Days. She is in an abusive marriage and escapes by trying to commit suicide after her sister is killed in a car accident and that was her last living family member. This is the book description from Amazon:

      Abused by her husband. Dealing with the loss of her only sister. A suicide attempt that doesn’t end in death and a husband who wants her inheritance. Elle’s life is a catastrophe. But she has a list and thirty things she’s determined to accomplish. Love isn’t on that list but it comes crashing unexpectedly into her life.

      Ryan’s current lifestyle requires a lot of funds, he likes his toys. He married his wife knowing she had a hefty inheritance and is bent on securing it for himself by any means possible.

      Boxing coach and personal trainer at the gym he co-owns, Colin’s content with his life. Until a chance meeting with a woman eating alone at a restaurant sets his heart in motion. As secrets unveil themselves his only goal becomes holding on to what he’s found.

      The second book, ‘Committed’: As Elle tries to pursue love and life to it’s fullest one person from her past threatens to steal everything she’s worked for. Forever.

      In the stunning conclusion to ’30 Days’ Elle and Colin find themselves ripped apart without warning. As Colin desperately tries to find Elle she’s desperately trying not to lose her mind.

      Joe, Colin, Jenna and Ben work hard to find and rescue Elle but even if they get her to safety will she ever really be safe? Will her life ever really be her own or will she and Colin always be looking over their shoulders wondering…waiting.

      I got so caught up in it, I finished it the same day I started it. The 2nd book finishes the story with a happy ending. It was a nice way to relax on the porch and enjoy the beautiful weather we’ve been having. For everyone here who has fantasies about escaping to a cottage by the beach will enjoy the escape into this book!! 😀

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      • Exodus says:

        Hey Rocky, I downloaded those books on my Nook. One of them was free 😀
        I’m so tired today- too tired to read but, it sure sounds like a gem. I think my adrenaline has worn off and I feel like collapsing. I haven’t been eating well either so, I went to one of those haughty supermarkets with all the organic foods and spent 200 dollars! hahahhah I have plenty of good eats now 😀
        I had the strangest thing occur while I was in the store. I ran to all the sample tables before I began shopping because I was so famished and dehydrated. They had watermelon juice, watermelon salads, cheeses, wines and more. Yum. One of the ladies at the table was a chef and she noticed the items in my cart and asked me if I was a chef. I went on to tell her about how I always had a dream of opening my own shoppe and I even said the name and her face literally lit up like I had a most brilliant idea and she even got excited and began to make some suggestions but she got interrupted. So, as I walked off, I began thinking about my Aunt Dot ( my grandmother’s sister) who was a trained chef/cook. She attended culinary school even in those old days and her signature dessert was Divinity. Just as I thought of that, I passed a huge display of Divinity! Am I receiving Divine messages? I think so. The last time I was in this same store, I ran into a very old friend who is now a world wide evangelist and he kept saying, ‘ Just believe. Remember, always believe’ That was the weekend that I began packing…4th of July.

        Before checking out today I purchased one package of the Divinity. I sat in my car, opened up the pack of Divinity sat back and closed my eyes and imagined eating my Aunt Dot’s. It wasn’t bad at all for being processed in a factory. It was so good that I even looked to see where the company was. It was in Georgia, where my Aunt Dot lived. Well, my life may not be expanding to new horizons just yet but at least my hips are.

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        • RockyRoad says:

          Exodus, I loved hearing you had an uplifting day! That’s a lot of coincidences… maybe your angel is steering you in all the right directions. 🙂 I DO believe there are ‘signs’ we are sent, that steer us in ways we don’t always understand at the time. I’ve had some of those events happen in my life that convinced me I have an angel on my side working for me, because the coincidences were just too bizarre to explain any other way. Strangely enough one of those events is what led me to marrying my PAM, and I have since asked God many times to show me what his purpose was to put me with him.

          It sounds like your grocery trip was a positive step outside of the daily fog you’ve been experiencing. They had to feel like a very normal, but positive day in contrast to the huge amount of stress you’ve been under! I’m rooting for you to have many, many more of those days!! 😀 It just feels like things are coming together for you now…the houses in the country you keep finding…your uplifting grocery trip…you never know how things can fall into place to bring you the peace you deserve.

          I heard this quote by Oprah that has always stayed with me… “I say the universe speaks to us, always, first in whispers. And a whisper in your life usually feels like ‘hmm, that’s odd.’ Or, ‘hmm, that doesn’t make any sense.’ Or, ‘hmm, is that right?’ It’s that subtle. And if you don’t pay attention to the whisper, it gets louder and louder and louder. I say it’s like getting thumped upside the head. If you don’t pay attention to that, it’s like getting a brick upside your head. You don’t pay attention to that—the brick wall falls down. That is the pattern that I see in my life and so many other people’s lives. And so, I ask people, ‘What are the whispers? What’s whispering to you now?'”

          The book ’30 Days’ will also speak to you. Please let me know what you think of it after you finish it. I get a daily email that alerts me to a lot of free kindle books and so far I’ve gotten about 200+ on my kindle. I didn’t realize there was a follow up book until I got to the end, but I HAD to get to the ending, so I downloaded it for $4.99… but it was worth it.

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          • Exodus says:

            Hi Rocky,
            I’m heading out of town tonight to look for work and a home. I’m also registering the name of my ‘ shoppe’ and going to create a business plan. I’ve been dreaming of this since 1996. I need to at least try.
            I usually notice the whispers but don’t always move quickly enough. I believe as you do that all things in life serve a purpose…especially adversity. I always say that G-d chooses ( and picks on) His students very carefully so they can become the best teachers. I must be in super sensitive mode now because I had another intuitive message that has broken my heart. ( can things get any worse? Yes, always) For a couple of months I’ve been trying to locate my best friend from HS. I don’t have FB, so it’s not always easy for me to find out what’s happening with old friends. Anyway, I did find her obituary just now. I found out that she died last night from cancer. Her father died a month ago from cancer as well. This is just unbelievable. I feel like I’m living in the twilight zone. Seriously! It seems every time I feel anything positive, something comes along and throws a heavy wet wool blanket on top of me. My friend was truly an amazing woman and I hope she’s got some time to help guide an old friend to a better place.

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            • RockyRoad says:

              Exodus, I am so sorry to hear about your friend. It sounds like you’ve taken more than your share of bumps along your life’s highway path. I am rooting for you to take some positive steps forward once you begin your new life without Norman. I pray your head will clear once you on on your own path in a new direction! Be sure and leave all the evil spirits behind when you go!

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  2. WritesinPJ's says:

    Exodus, he’s escalating and trying to shift it all to you. Please, be careful. I knew a woman to suffer terrible consequences from something far less than the incident you described above.

    Believe it or not, I was really calm when I told him to stop it or else. I was even calmer when he threatened to leave, and I acknowledged it and told him he could take the car (even though we only have one car right now). I really would have just watched him walk out, and then maybe been scared, maybe felt overwhelmed, but would have started sorting through how to pick up the pieces and go forward. He knew that.

    I have had many of those brain spinning fast you-have-got-to-be-kidding moments where I want to just go all batpoo crazy on him because of some grotesquely inappropriate or ‘seemingly’ clueless comment or behavior from him. I try hard to never let him know anymore if I’m feeling that inside, at least not in a way that shows.

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    • Exodus says:

      I called the women’s shelter and guess what? They are having technical difficulties and a recording advised that I call back later. I can’t believe this shit!!! It’s like calling a therapist when you’re suicidal and having them offer an appointment 3 weeks from today.
      I just got off the phone with my friend and she calmly advised me not to get into anymore physical altercations with Norman for obvious reasons. It’s so hard PJ’s not to go crazy when he says things to me that are just SO untrue. He’s writing his own script about our history as he’s making up stories about me and accusing me of causing our marriage and business to fail. He’s so delusional that I’m wondering if he’s falling into a deep psychosis. He actually told me last night that when he and I first met that I was so withdrawn and bitter that it took months before I would respond to him. ?????????? He had sex with me on our first date and sex almost every night for two years and I shared everything with him about my life. I gave him a big birthday party two weeks after we started dating. I was always an open book to a fault. How does he create one extreme from another extreme? I mean, why doesn’t he just embellish a more realistic version of our marriage and business?

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      • AlonewithGod says:

        Exodus honey – you are fine, fine, fine!! He is doing this on purpose, not delusional; it is very calculated. Once you are free of him, you will see that he is an evil abuser.., nothing more!! He chooses to be this way. My ex did the exact same thing. Fabricates off the wall stuff, accuses me of things that NEVER happened. No telling what he dreams up to tell other people about me. PA men CAN help it; if they want to be nice, they can be nice.
        Yours is absolutely unstable and will never change. The sooner you can get out, the better and clearer you will be. God DOES have angels assigned to you and you are being protected because you are a believer. Just trust God and talk to Him, please!!
        I also thought my husband was becoming psychotic. But he will behave perfectly sane when at work, or with someone he doesn’t want to piss off. These men are serving satan;
        they are on the highway to hell. It is spiritual all right. When my ex used to get in my face with his drunken abuse, I would speak to the demons, bind that activity, talk about the blood of Jesus and say “in the Name of JESUS, get out of my face.” He would leave me alone! Demons flee when commanded in the Name of Jesus.
        Do not listen to a word Norman says. He is escalating like PJ’s said because he sees you are serious about leaving. He will continue the extreme shifting to keep you off-balance. That is what they do…it is their goal to keep their partner off-center, dazed and confused. We have all fallen for it. I promise when you’re out of there, God will show you so many things and heal you!!
        I so wish you lived close; I have plenty of room for you. Press on; hold fast to your confession of hope.

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        • Exodus says:

          Alone, thank you so much. I agree about how these men are serving satan. I’ve said this many times that Norman made a pact with the devil along time ago. I truly believe that I’ve been married to evil and even worse, he has attracted more evil to my life – including my neighbors. I’m so glad that you don’t have to live with your husband’s abuse any longer. Oh Alone, it just makes me sick to think of what you endured. These men are evil enough but toss in some alcohol and it just adds another dimension of evil to manage.

          I just returned from a road trip and I’ll share some of the details in another post but where I went was truly peaceful and the people in town were beyond friendly and considerate. There were no road bullies ( which I expected since I had to drive slow because I was lost several times) and when anyone noticed that I was a tourist, they just backed right off and let me go as slow as I needed. I didn’t see a single person texting or talking on their cell phones!! I’m serious!!! 48 hours and saw no one on a gadget. I went to a Mexican restaurant one night and noticed that not a single person in the bar or dining area was carrying a cell phone ( not that I could see anyway). Every single family or couple dining there was together and interacting with one another without any interference from gadgets. Husbands and wives were touching each other , equally interacting with their kids, laughing, singing and joking. The waiters were amazing and not rushed and resentful. I was truly in the presence of G-d and people who exemplify what a spiritual lifestyle is all about. It became so clear that too many of us have been seduced by evil’s toys that distract us from living a spiritual life and cause humans to end up being lonely empty shells that are desperately trying to ” connect”. The people in this town however didn’t need to connect with anyone or anything that was not right there in town. They really truly have each other. I felt so at peace, so loved, so welcomed and so safe. I’m going to write about visiting my childhood home in another post. You won’t believe what happened. PS…..there are many many houses available and I think I may be able to get a job in town as well. Maybe 😀

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    • newshoes123 says:

      Agreed. and it’s only gonna get worse the closer you get to getting the heck out of there. I’m at the same place you are dear. I almost hurt him the other day, he wouldn’t discuss something like a normal logical sensible person… I warned him to stop but to no avail and of course I almost lost it, walked away like a “normal” person but honestly I feel like the worse person in the world when I feel like that. I keep thinking “just a few more, just a few more”… that’s keeping me going. Keep strong Exodus, you’re almost there.

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  3. Exodus says:

    I finally reached the counselor at the shelter and she’s counseling me. This is the shelter that I helped open many years ago. Is this just truly sad? I know she is a professional and can’t make a diagnosis over the phone but until I gave her specific examples of how my husband was treating me, I don’t think she had any clue how abusive PA can be. I realize that my husband is on the extreme scale of PA but nonetheless, they should have a better clue of how dangerous and damaging this abuse is. Anyway, she was very nice and she is making certain that I have constant contact with the shelter. This is just horrible. I am feeling sick.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. DotedOn says:

    Please stay strong. I’m so sorry you (both) are going through this. I wish I could offer some kind of advice that makes you feel better. You are not alone.

    Like

  5. PJs, your post really resonates with me. Like you, the overt frontal assault would be useless with me and would elicit a response similar to yours. You said: “Ignoring me has been the toxic weapon. Leaving me to be alone with him in the marriage was effective punishment. Treating me as though he’s entirely lukewarm about intimacy has been my kryptonite. The passive aggressive abuse is covert, and the message isn’t just one of resistance and sabotage, but a message that just doesn’t care about your feelings, your dreams, your heart, and your well-being. In other words, you just aren’t worth it.” Yep. Same here. Indifference. Except for the role you are assigned to play in his life. I think it has been proven over time that indifference and neglect have the most damaging effect on a person. I have been having some conversations with my PA man in the last few weeks that started with necessary dialogues regarding the children. They have moved on from there to some deeper revelations about just how he views a marriage relationship and me. I want to write more about this later, but I want to quote something I read recently and I will have to find it. In the mean time I will say, the article I found and the things he has been saying make my blood run cold as it becomes obvious that his attitude toward women and their role leaves me feeling like I was supposed to be a concubine and a housemaid while he lived out his aspirations. I feel sick. I wonder how many of them are trying to hide what they really believe about the worth of women.

    Oh, the nebulous threats. It really is like dealing with a child. You give him an ultimatum, so he responds with a threat. You back up your ultimatum and he shifts personas and then throws you a bone. I am sorry you are going through all of this.

    I love your last paragraph, especially, “I feel so hopeful about recovering some of me.” Good! I am praying for your foot, as well as God’s deliverance in your life.

    Like

    • Exodus says:

      Seeing, I almost got my husband to admit that he hated women. I can’t remember specifically what we were talking about but it had something to do with men and women today. I deliberately made comments that would bait him into a confession and I also mentioned his mother a few times and he almost confessed his true feelings….he said,’ Women are……….” and he cut himself off. I just grinned inside.

      Will the REAL Norman please stand up!

      Living with a person who lives in such denial about their own emotions, what drives them, who they are, etc.. is very very difficult because they are never genuine and operate without any understanding why they feel the way they do or why they say the things they do. We are also living in denial if we believe that we can teach them how to express themselves with genuine emotion and honesty.

      I think I may have found a house. I can’t afford it really but it’s an old colonial 17th century beautiful 2 story stone house on an acre. 4 fireplaces! I’m begging for this house. I’m literally begging. I’m not sure I can qualify for it though. It’s about 4 hours away which isn’t horrible in case I have to come back here for court or business related bull malarkey. I would have to hire a grass cutter too…..hope he’s a handsome hunk ;D

      I keep dreaming about my new place. The dreams are so realistic and I’m so happy and relaxed and at peace as I walk through my new home.

      The other night I had a dream that I woke up one morning and Norman was putting my spice rack back on the wall and when I grabbed it out of his hands and asked him what he was doing, I noticed the rack was terribly scratched and stained. Everything he touches get stained.

      Like

  6. RockyRoad says:

    PJ I got chills reading this post! His comment: “You haven’t seen anything yet.” would have scared me. We all know how they step back and regroup to figure out a way to dish out yet more punishment in their slimy, sneaky, underhanded ways. I feel such pain for all of us here trying to navigate through the landmines… and I want to cry for each and every one of us. I want to have uplifting words of wisdom and comfort, yet I have been feeling more brain-fuzz than ever before and just don’t have the words come to me. That’s why I enjoy your blog and your writing style of saying what is on ‘my’ mind. Though I visit your blog about every day, I don’t always comment. Please stay safe and enjoy the fact that you still have children at home to give you the joy that you don’t get out of your marriage. I have my youngest home from college for the summer and am dreading next month when she moves back to campus, and I am alone with no one to talk to every day.

    Like

    • newshoes123 says:

      Yup, I’ve heard that one too along with “you haven’t seen crazy yet” and “I’m gonna show you what I’m gonna do” only to have him walk away, slam a few doors, punch a few walls then come back with another verbal attack. Sigh…. one a “few more” only a “few more” just like wash dry fold repeat….

      Like

      • Exodus says:

        Norman makes the most childish violent threats against people. Yesterday he said he was going to shoot a bb gun at our neighbor’s knees. Yeah, right. Please! I don’t see how someone can make such empty threats without knowing how stupid they sound. Norman has also threatened me with ‘ you haven’t seen anything yet’ and I just nod my head and move on. I’m guessing that maybe Norman might run away to avoid the truth or maybe Norman would buy a case of Pringles to stuff his face with ( he eats when he’s nervous). Ooooh I’m trembling.

        Like

  7. lost7658 says:

    PJ I have heard that comment before ” you haven’t seen anything yet”. After he said that comment he would simply continue his crazy-making behavior like he always does. I have also had a talk with my husband about stopping his behavior and has never followed through. My PA is a lot more destructive than yours so he just keeps escalating his behavior.

    Like

  8. RockyRoad says:

    In case anyone here would like to read the books “30 Days” and “Committed”…the first one (30 Days) is free on Amazon and since I’ve already paid for Committed, I can loan it out to anyone who wants to borrow it, so you don’t have to pay the $4.99 to buy it. I’ve gone thru the loaning process to borrow books, but I haven’t yet done the loaning… but according to Amazon, I can loan the book to anyone I want for 14 days. I only need to submit the email address so they can send you the link. PJ, since we don’t post our emails here, can you get me the email for anyone who wants to borrow it?

    Like

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