This Is All But Love
I'm a 30 year old woman, married, with a child of 3 years old. I'm college educated, always been a straight A student. I'm a used-to-be self confident person who knows what she wants in her life. I say used to be, because today my self esteem is so low that it cannot go any lower.
I realize I need help but I'm just not ready to do anything. I have no friends and family where I live now with my husband and his family and I know I'm being abused emotionally and physically and still have no strength to leave. I came from another country and started everything from the beginning when I started my life with my husband. I went to school again. I worked and I quit when I had the baby so I can be with him on his first years.
My husband pushed this idea on me to become a stay at home mom because he was not willing to help with childcare. Our relationship was never perfect. Whatever I tried to talk to him would turn to a fight and slowly to emotional abuse by calling names, and soon hitting me once, then twice, and after 5 years it elevated to a beatings that would leave bruises and scars.
The worst thing is, that no one suspects this other face of his. He is only with me behind the closed doors like this. Whatever I'm not happy with or I express my opinion that he doesn't like, I know what will follow. In the beginning I blamed myself, that I trigger him, because this is what he made me believe.
I don't know how I got to the point where I hated myself, I believed him. I'm worthless and I gave him a right to do all that to me. I was raised in a loving family, where nobody ever hit anyone or call names. I know family values and that was the first thing I wanted in my life, a normal family. But how do you get to have that when the other spouse doesn't even care if you stay or leave, doesn't care to work things out and what is the worst he is completely sure that it is me that has a problem that I make him do those things to me.
I let things go till he started hitting me in front of his family members and the worst, in front of our son, whenever our conversation turns to a fight. I realized that the only time everything looks ok between us is when I stay out of everything and don't get involved into anything about his life. That means I have to accept everything he says or does without a say so we won't fight. I know I have to leave because he won't change, but I am not ready to put my kid through all that. I want for him to have both parents even if that means I have to lose myself and my personality in this marriage.
Sometimes I think maybe he feels threatened from me because I am more educated than him and he thinks I will find a better paid job and he will lose control over me. I realized he feels happier when I am cut off from the outside world and from going to school to taking care of everything.
Raising a kid was always an issue for him. He would say who cares about your school, why aren't dishes washed, you can't take care of a child, this was everyday conversation of ours. My choice was to not say a word or to talk back to protect myself and get beaten.
I don't think he loves and cares about me anymore, otherwise would not do this to me. no one can hurt someone they love this way. I'm trying to find a job right now but he is not making it easier. What hurts too, is the way he acts in front of others, so people would think he brings stars down for me and the kid. He is willing to help an respect everyone else and be a gentleman except no one knows behind closed doors he shows a different face.
I know I am not crazy I know he passed every possible limit and I don't understand myself why I feel so weak to do anything about this and why it's me feeling ashamed to even tell someone what's going on when he is the one who should feel that way. But he must be sick because he still believes he has a right to do this to me and I deserve it. He never ever said he is sorry and I think he truly believes it's always my fault.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello, and thanks for telling your story here. I'm glad that you're clear about where you stand, and that this is not your fault. I'm glad you're looking for a job. I hope you can find the strength to do what you need to do to take care of yourself.
Nothing is worth, in your words, losing "myself and my personality in this marriage." Your child will witness that if you allow it to happen. That is great damage to you and your child, and it does not do any favors to your husband to give him the message that this is acceptable behavior.
I suggest that you read the following page, and follow the recommendations you find there:
battered wife syndrome
You have to believe in yourself, or your life will be a constant source of pain and disappointment for you.
I think you will do the right thing and take the necessary steps to take care of yourself.
My very best to you,
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