So I want to continue talking about some things that people may not know or understand about domestic violence. I’ve said many times before that I feel like my journey has been confusing, so I would imagine that others would be even more confused.
When my friends come up to me and talk to me about my blog and my past, it is sometimes followed by a comment fueled by anger and sadness. Anger towards that man and sadness towards me. I am always left puzzled as to why it angers them so much. It really doesn’t even anger me anymore. I think that a lot of people immediately take the “hate” approach. Or think “I would have done this”, or “If I ever see him I would”, and I can’t help but to think that it is just simply not that easy to feel that way. I am sure my family has felt all sorts of emotions from seeing and hearing me experience abuse, but hate wasn’t one of those emotions. It is actually so beautiful to know that my family extended grace towards him and always tried to accept him despite what they had happened. I’m sure you’re saying, “How could you not hate someone who has done that to you?!”, and all I can say is that it is not so black and white! Domestic violence has a lot of gray areas.
I think that it is so easy to want to feel a certain way when you’ve never been in that situation before, but if you’ve never been in that situation you just simply don’t know how to react or how you will feel in that moment. You just will never know until you’re in it.
Its hard to explain how you feel about the situation since not all of it was bad. I know that’s difficult to understand for some people, but if you’ve read my previous post, you know that there was a good amount of time where no physical abuse ever took place. There was a period of time where I was so confident in my relationship and I was actually extremely happy. Those are times that I do sometimes miss. I miss times where our minds would connect on a deep level. We complimented each other so well. He was like my other half, my partner in crime. Even during the dark times, I would sometimes question if I could ever find someone who I could connect with as much as him. It was as if we knew each other our whole lives. We talked about the same things, we thought alike, we acted alike, and we liked the same things. He was the male version of myself (in only some ways).
For others outside of the domestic violence community this would be difficult to understand, and the immediate thought would be that I hate him and that I want the absolute worst for him. Now, he isn’t necessarily a person I want to associate myself with, but I definitely don’t have any hateful feelings towards him. There are actually happy moments that I can reflect on. During those happy moments, that is what makes it difficult for a woman to make the decision to leave. You weigh the good and the bad and sometimes after a bad moment you feel like there have been more bad times, but then after a good moment you feel like there have been more good times. Its so confusing and stressful. I could never judge a woman for being in a DV relationship because I know how conflicting all your thoughts can be. I really liked how Reut Amit described her own experience in the Huffington Post:
“No one could understand how love, hate, fear and comfort could coexist simultaneously. They could not understand that in addition to my abuser, I also lost my confidant, the person to make dinner with, the person to watch movies with on a rainy Sunday, the person to laugh with, the person who knew me. I lost my companion. How can you explain to someone that the abuse was only a part of who he was? How do you explain that to yourself?
There are still days when I remember tender moments and wonder if it really was that bad. I still struggle with reconciling how he could love me to the point of tears and yet hurt me as if I was an enemy.”
I appreciated so much hearing her words because I could relate to it exactly. She took the words right out of my mouth.
I hope this was helpful in understanding a bit of what kind of battles we fight in our head, and a little bit of understanding as to why women confuse themselves into staying with their abuser a little longer. I know a lot of this will still be confusing to you as it is difficult to fully grasp an experience that you’ve never experienced before. I just hope that it could provide some insight and sensitivity.
Although I mentioned the things above, I want to make it clear that I 100% know exactly what love looks like now and what love does not look like. I know what a real relationship blessed by the Lord should be like. For those that may still be confused by the definition, I pray that God clears your doubts. I pray that He opens your heart to experience His undying love. Once you’ve experienced His love, you will never accept anything less.
If you want to read Reut Amit’s entire post, click on the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/reut-amit/he-never-hit-me-domestic-abuse_b_5974386.html
Love you all! #ForeverFighters