Monday

What Your Abusive Mate Did to You is Playing in Your Head Like a Broken Record

You see yourself in the mirror, you sit down for a bite to eat, you talk on the phone, or you walk by your abuser on the way to the bathroom, and all you can think about is that thing he or she said or did to you the other night, two weeks ago, or a couple months back.  You think you are losing it, you attempt to shake the ugly scene(s), but it keeps coming back.  What to do?

Well, the explosive arguments don't go away easily.  Depending on how impactful they were on your mind, body and spirit, they will interrupt your routines like a breaking news report during a favorite television program.  The best thing to do is to keep pushing these negative scenes out of your mind and think about something else like: goals to complete for the day, children that need your attention, work, house chores, etc.  There are various instrumental brainwave music that helps with relaxation, getting to sleep, breaking bad habits, and more.  Try spending some time each day meditating on some positive affirmations and listening to music based on your need for the day.  So if you need study music, you would search for sounds that help with that.

While you are taking control of your mind, you have to know that those ugly problems will not go away until you start making plans to alleviate some of the stresses in your life like the toxic man or woman you continue to sleep with, buy for, assist, etc.  Give yourself a time out from her or him and start thinking deeply about your future and the children if you have some and how they are coping.

Getting out often as you can from a difficult partner will help you begin to focus on you and what you want out of life.  If things appear to worsen with your health, you definitely need to see a medical professional.  There could be some other things going on besides repetitive hurtful images of your partner.

What you don't want to do is keep nursing old wounds by frequently talking about them while not wanting to do anything about them but complain or cry.  You may have already talked to everyone you know about your issues or maybe no one at all.  If you are keeping a lot inside, then you might want to discuss with a spiritual counselor or someone on a domestic violence hotline.  He or she can guide you toward some immediate solutions, resources and other valuable information.

Another thing you don't want to do is enable the abuse by taking responsibility for an angry spouse's mistreatment of you, excusing it or pretending as if nothing happened.  Establish boundaries!  Tell this person, "I will not allow you to hit/kick/shove/curse me any longer..."  Now you may not want to tell the individual about calling the police or packing up and leaving, because you don't want to be further abused.  It is never good to let a violent man or woman know what your next move is unless you are ready for a legal, physical or passive-aggressive fight with him or her.  Putting up with abuse says, "It's okay, hurt me some more...I bounce back." to your abuser.  But the truth is, as long as you stay in the mess, the harder it is to bounce back.

Nicholl McGuire is the author of Know Your Enemy: The Christian's Critic, Laboring to Love Myself and other books.

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God didn't put you with an abusive mate. Your flesh did.

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