Edited for length
After 29 years of living with verbal, spiritual and emotional abuse at the hands of her preacher husband, May, a Christian abuse victim, determines to break free and take control of her life. This is her domestic abuse story:
I was married 22 years. I thought because he never actually hit me (he just threatened to if I didn’t shut up), that it wasn’t classed as abuse. I’ve always been afraid of him, so I’ve worked myself and our 4 children around pleasing him in order to maintain peace.
I kept praying and waiting for God to change my husband, because the situation was out of my control, and when he’d spent time praying or chatting with certain friends, he’d show signs of really kind behavior and be committed to being a better person toward me, but the phases soon wore off and he’d be back to his bad temper. I soon found that confronting his bad behavior just brought about a fight.
I just put up with the bad because I thought it would get better. I’m an eternal optimist and I always focused on the good within him when I got the chance to do so in order to try to cultivate the good in him. I now realize he had no intention of change, the good intentions were convincing verbally, but produced no results. I thought this was my lot for life.
In public a different image was portrayed, we played happy Christian family, and I genuinely didn’t give up on my dream of my ideal husband up until 5 years ago when something inside me snapped. We were going on a short break and driving in the car, he was calling me fit to burn as usual with the kids in the back listening in silence. He slammed the car breaks on, threw the keys in my face and left the vehicle. I calmly turned the engine over and the kids and I had a great stress free break on our own.
Step by step I took control of finances, decisions concerning the children because I was operating as a single parent anyway on a day to day basis, always had done. I got some of the joint finances put into my own bank account.
I am already in a new relationship. This man has brought such love and healing into my life I never thought I’d feel love again. I feel like my old self, and I’m contented and alive! I didn’t go looking for it, and it hit me like a train in terms of intensity. I just didn’t see it coming at all. He’s been a friend for years.
I do forgive my ex-husband, and I wish him well, but I’m glad I don’t have to be part of his life or his family anymore. ~ May
source: Hidden Hurt