Where do I go from here?

The bruises on her delicate form told the story: he laid hands on her in anger, again. She found in the days after, that she could not speak, silent, she suffered inside as she tried to make sense of everything, retracing her steps.

Another woman was on her second marriage when the man she was with decided to regularly tell her she was ugly, that she was no good, to “go away,” that she was stupid, and he made fun of her teeth that were missing because she had no money to fix them. She went to work and supported herself, although married to a millionaire who had bags of gold and diamonds in his safe at home. When she first started dating him, his “flash” anger was something she chalked up to him having a bad day. Or that, she thought, she really was, as he said “no good.” One example of the terror in their home is the night he took out a large knife he had purchased, looked at her and caressed the knife, knowing she was terrified of knives. He did the same thing with guns, and forced her to hold each new gun he bought. He also forced her to buy ammunition when they went to the store, when bullets seemed to be getting harder to get. The community (to include the church) loved him and had no idea he had an arsenal in his house. 10,000 rounds, she said. He did not like to be questioned about anything, even simple stuff like hey, what would you like for dinner. He did not like her using the phone at home. He became agitated. He told her he was going to buy one way passports to leave the country and her kids would have to travel to see her, because she would not have the money to leave. They used to go to restaurants, and he would scream at her for every little thing. The nail in the coffin of their marriage was the night he loudly proclaimed at a restaurant “why do you always have to have an F-ing attitude every time I have to give you correction?” She left the table and went to the restroom, and almost heaved. The next day she was gone, and she never returned. And the church and the community were like, hey, what happened, he was such a nice guy.

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Another story. A man came from poverty and rose to great wealth. Married a retired school teacher, their second marriage for each of them. He bought her a home in Hilton Head and it was pristine. She had everything a woman could want or need. But it was not enough. Day and night, she fussed about him and how “stupid” he was, how he could never do anything right. He just took it. He sometimes made excuses for her. But the line became more clear when she, not more than a year after moving into a brand new house, wanted the house across the street instead. So he did. It was not long before the complaining continued.

People who have lived through domestic abuse have seen it all.

And the question rises to the surface, where do I go from here?

Getting out of an abusive relationship is not easy, many would attest.

Those who moved on from it say that the best thing you can do (besides go to God with it) is to treat yourself as you would a child in your company. You would not talk down to a child, you would not allow the child to be hurt, you would nurture, love, and cherish the kid, making sure there are plenty of opportunities for growth and fun. You would plan for the success of that child.

Think about it.

What can you do for you to help yourself succeed?

Surround yourself with quality people, fun things to do, education, church, music, art, sports, nature walks, etc. The world is full of things to help us all heal.

And most of all, remember you are special. A unique creation. Wonderful. Smart. Your life has value. Reject anything that will harm you from this day forward. Read up on how to recognize toxic personalities, the warning signs. Invest, if you can, in you. If money is an issue, the library is free. Set some goals. Be safe.

May you have a wonderful day today.

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