Ever wonder why doesn’t she leave that loser? The reasons are complex and intertwined when inside the relationship. I’ve listed the first 50 I could think of because…well…I’ve been her. But, were any of these thoughts the real issue?
My pastor will disapprove.
God will disapprove.
I don’t want to disappoint God or my pastor.
I made a promise to God that I was going to stay with him for better and for…worse. If I leave, I will have lied to God.
If I leave, I will have lied to my family.
If I leave, I will have lied to my friends.
If I leave, I will have lied to him.
If I leave, I will have lied to myself.
I’ve been married before.
This was supposed to be the last one.
If I leave, I will have to admit I’ve screwed up again.
If I leave, I will be ashamed of my failure.
If I leave, who would want me in the future after so many failed attempts?
Where would I go if I left?
I haven’t worked in years. What am I even capable of anymore?
I met him in Bible college. I must be delusional.
Maybe he’s right and everything that’s wrong with us is my fault?
Maybe if I try harder, we will get better.
Maybe if I pray harder, God will make my actions and words more pleasing to him. Maybe if I pray for him, God will prick his heart to be happy.
Maybe if I rebuke evil, evil will leave.
Maybe if I cook the potatoes perfectly he won’t have a reason to be annoyed with me.
Maybe if I keep the house in even better shape, he will want to stay home with me. Maybe if I just do as he says, he won’t get mad.
If I keep my happiness to myself until he gets home, then he won’t hang up on me.
Sharing revelations with him about life makes him tell me I’m not relevant. “Why would I say something like that?” Maybe if I stop sharing revelation knowledge with him, he won’t think I’m stupid.
He has his good moments.
Why can’t I seem to get it right? Whatever “it” is.
I need to try harder.
If I go along with him, he will think of me as a friend. Even if it’s illegal.
I have no friends now after all this time. Who would I tell about my struggle?
I don’t want to burden my kids with any of my life. They have been through enough of my mistakes.
He laughs at my incompetence. That hurts. But he laughs.
He said let me buy you some clothes. He would then tell me what to wear. He was content when I obeyed.
How would I leave? He sold my paid-for car within a few weeks of being married. I didn’t have my own vehicle again until after I left him.
If I leave, I have nowhere to go, no vehicle to get there and no job to support myself. I might as well stay.
He has never hit me.
This can’t be abuse. He has never hit me. Never hit me. Never.
Why do I feel so lonely? In such a dark place? At the end of self so much so that I can’t see a way out? What’s wrong with me?
He tells me what’s wrong with me all the time.
As my God fearing, third-year Bible college graduate, prayer minister, now licensed minister he must be right. I’m the problem.
If I loved him, so he tells me, I would do that thing he wants me to do…so I do it.
If I just listened to him, and not have an opinion, he wouldn’t get agitated with me. I’ve got to stop thinking and just listen like he wants me to.
If I lie by plastering a smile on my face and be more agreeable, maybe he will not get agitated with me.
Maybe if I could figure out the rules that keep changing, he would see I’m trying.
He doesn’t want me to befriend any of the neighbors, and we don’t have cable or internet or even a house phone, and we live in a trailer out in the middle of cow pasture. It’s so pretty and peaceful, how could I ever want more than this?
My isolation is my fault. I need to come up with a new hobby.
I made my bed. Now I need to lie in it.
If he finds out I’m leaving that will really make him mad, and I know what he is capable of based on everything he has broken, thrown, yelled at and put holes in. He said…we will build our own church.
He said…I will take care of you.
He said…I love you.
He said…I will pay you back.
I believed him. Always.
I’m sure to have only scratched the surface. He lied about everything. I was used. I let him. Please know that I have learned that the real question is not, nor ever was, why does she stay? A better one might have been why didn’t she leave when she saw the flags…because…trust me…she saw the flags. We are with the abuser for one reason, and one reason only. Our own, personal, lack of sense of self. That’s it. That’s all. Simple. The abuser just confirms our unworthiness of love and thus maintains control over us. It’s a win-win!
If I could go back in time and talk to that MJ, I would ask her some straight-up questions to get her thinking because she was a thinker! I would ask, “MJ…what is your value?” And after her lower chin begins to quiver and her eyes fill with tears as she shrugs, I would say: “MJ…after everything you’ve shared above, I’m going to say one thing. So what? Nothing says you have to stay with your abuser. You’ve asked him to get counseling with you, and he has refused. He doesn’t want to change or he would have. Trust me – life without abuse IS an option, and I want you to choose life and life abundantly. YOU are a beautiful, talented, creative, smart, funny and filled with the love of God woman. You deserve to be loved by your husband like Christ loves the church. To be cherished. Nurtured. Protected.
So, the decision is now yours. There are answers to everything in your top 50. You can get out of this crazy head space if you want to, but that won’t happen until you leave this crazy abusive physical space. Until you leave your abuser. The man who said he loved you and has forced you into your current mental anguish. So, you say you want your situation to change, but I ask, do YOU want to change? How badly? It has to be an internal shift. A new perspective. A new understanding of truth. Now, figure it out.
Hi! I’m MJ! And I’m a survivor of Domestic Violence. It has taken me four years to get to the point that I can now share my heart with you and not freak out about what someone might think of me.
With all the help I’ve received from family, new friends, and professionals in the spiritual and mental health arenas, I know had I NOT gotten the help I needed, I’d still be struggling.
What I hope to do is help other survivors get a grip faster than it has taken me. Through VictoryLife House, I have developed a platform for survivors to meet the professionals they need at a reduced rate. Just for them! Just for VictoryLife House! Just because I believe survivors are worth it!
Life without abuse IS an option. Choose life!
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