Abigail’s Domestic Abuse Story
Edited for length
Source: Hidden Hurt
A young Christian woman tells her domestic abuse story of an emotionally and physically abusive relationship and her road to healing and recovery. This is her story:
I grew up in a faith based church. I am a second generation Christian. When I entered my public high school, I chased after the Lord, wanting nothing but to live my life for him. Yet something happened when I started dating Thomas. He was two years older than me. He was also the son of my youth leader. He grew up without a father in his life and struggled with anger and abandonment issues. I knew, but have always had such a mercy heart. I do not know why I didn’t listen to the wise counsel of my family and friends. I thought I could save him.
Three months into the relationship I knew something was wrong. The emotional abuse is what I saw originally. The way he could manipulate me was amazing. He was a brilliant talker. He was my first boyfriend, so I seemed to think that it was all normal.
After three months the verbal abuse began. I was so brain washed I thought I deserved what I got. The more the lies were poured over me, the more I believed them. My character was smashed. I wasn’t eating. I wasn’t seeing my family. I was so isolated. That fall I moved into my dorm room at a lovely, private liberal arts college. I wouldn’t listen to anyone about how I needed to leave him. I was convinced everything wrong with the relationship was my problem; as long as I tried a little harder, if I could fix the things he said were wrong with me, Thomas and I would be fine.
Then the physical abuse started: twisting my wrist, smacks across my face, shoves to the ground, his hand around my neck. I weighed in at 90 lbs. My fear, my anxiety level was sky rocketing. I couldn’t keep anything together. I felt so small; vulnerable.
One month after I moved into college, my parents withdrew me. They had no idea how horrible it was, but they knew something was terribly wrong. It took two months after that for Thomas and I to completely lose contact. I changed my phone number and talked to the police. The longer I was away from him, the more I saw what had happened. I started seeing a counselor, and even now, almost two years later, I see her once a month. Jesus Christ brought me through all of it a lot stronger.
I do not know what Thomas is doing now. But I know I will never be the same, I am stronger. I want to speak out against abuse, to educate leaders in churches about the causes, the signs, and how to prevent it from happening to youth, to adults, to ANYONE. I want people to realize that it isn’t RARE, that it isn’t something that only happens with the addicted or poverty struck, it happens in churches. Thomas was a Christian, but he was messed up all the same.
Maybe you are currently in an abusive relationship, maybe you are healing from one. Either way, STAY AWAY from your abuser. I know that it’s probably one of the hardest things you could do right now. They are intoxicating. They are like quick sand. One toe dangled in there, one measly phone conversation, and you are back to square one. CUT IT OFF. It’s the only way you can come out of that fog he has put in your brain. And most of all, CRY OUT TO GOD. He and the other abused women of the world are the only ones who will really understand.
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