A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

Deception and Abuse: The Lure and Hook of the Lie — taken from Anna Salter

Joh 8:31-32 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

In discussing whether it is really true that most abusers/predators are victims of past abuse themselves, Anna Salter writes:

“The notion that most offenders were victims has spread throughout the field of sexual abuse and is strangely comforting for most professionals.  For one thing, it gives meaning to the behavior of offenders and at the same time allows people to feel badly for them. I remember a cartoon in which a man is lying in the gutter, badly beaten.  Two social workers stand over him, and one says to the other, ‘The man who did this really needs help.’  If offenders are just victims, then no one has to face the reality of malevolence [ie, the existence of pure evil just for evil’s sake], the fact that there are people out there who prey on others for reasons we simply don’t understand.”

She continues:

“Many true things frighten people, and lying about them doesn’t help…. Probably I am a goody two-shoes — certainly, an obsessive academic.  But a couple of decades of swimming in deception has left me holding onto the true things, clutching them in my little paws, turning them over and over.  A  true thing has a different ring, a different energy about it.  It leaves little wake and does not disturb the complex inter-weaving all around it the way a lie does.  These lies: they glitter, spin, and undulate like lures trailing through clear water, but always, always there is a hook embedded somewhere under all those feathers.  Call me an obsessive academic. I’ll check every figure before I release it.  It’s not a moral stand.  It’s just a need for one true thing.”  (Predators, Pedophiles, Rapists, & Other Sex Offenders *affiliate link)

Most all abuse victims who have begun to see the light of truth will resonate with Salter’s statements here, especially perhaps about holding on to the true things, turning them over and over.  That is why journals are so valuable.  When the fog of deception is swirling and you are beginning to doubt your own perceptions and memories, you can pick up this objective, historic document of truth and hear that “different ring” that it has that sets you free instead of hooking you with a lie.

1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 (19) Do not quench the Spirit. (20) Do not despise prophecies, (21) but test everything; hold fast what is good.

One of the quickest ways, therefore, to quench the ministry of the Spirit of truth is to fail to test EVERYTHING.  How to do this test?  Compare every teaching, every statement with the Word of God.  Always.  Then reject what is evil and false, and hold onto what is good.

 

* Amazon affiliate link — ACFJ  gets a small percentage if you purchase via this link

 

12 Comments

  1. Kay

    Most all abuse victims who have begun to see the light of truth will resonate with Salter’s statements here, especially perhaps about holding on to the true things, turning them over and over. That is why journals are so valuable. When the fog of deception is swirling and you are beginning to doubt your own perceptions and memories, you can pick up this objective, historic document of truth and hear that “different ring” that it has that sets you free instead of hooking you with a lie.

    My journals were one of reasons I was able to stay separated from my abusive husband and eventually divorce him (official 8 months now), even though he cried, said he was changing, had others convinced he was truly repentant – as I read back over several years of journals, including 3 separations, the TRUTH was clear – he wasn’t going to change….I am so thankful I kept those journals and didn’t burn them, which I had considered doing after one separation.

    • Right on, Kay! Yes, that hard, historic data is so important. It is a real anchor in a sea of deception.

  2. Reblogged this on Speakingtruthinlove's Blog.

  3. So Jeff, what does Salter say about the statistics? Does she think there are reliable statistics about what percentage of domestic abuse perpetrators have been victimized themselves?
    I have read quite a few stats on this question, and like Salter, I’m dubious about any stats unless I am really sure they are based on quality, population based studies. And being me, I can never remember stats anyway – I don’t have a memory for figures. But I’d like to hear what Salter says about this, as I like her cautious ( & obsessive) academic approach.

    • Here is what she says — “In a series of three studies, the offenders (sexual) who claimed they were abused as a child were 67%, 65%, and 61% without the threat of a polygraph (to check on their claims). WITH the polygraph (and with being granted conditional immunity from prosecution), the offenders who claimed they were abused as children were 29%, 32%, and 30% respectively. In other words the polygraph groups reported approximately half the amount of victimization as children as the nonpolygraph groups did.”

      So while many people claim that virtually all abusers are victims themselves, Salter believes that perhaps only 1/3 were. And one huge problem we need to consider, as she points out, is that so many of these studies rely upon self-reporting by the abuser. In other words, the abuser is the one who is providing us with the data that he was abused. Lundy Bancroft points out that so many of the false theories about why abusers abuse are taken from the claims of abusers themselves, and he urges us to stop believing them.

      • Thanks for that Jeff. I’ve never heard those stats before – the polygraphed sexual abusers given conditional protection from prosecution differing so much from the other cohort. VERY interesting.

      • Please read “WHY DOES HE DO THAT? by Lundy Bancroft. It will open your eyes to so many of what society “thinks” are reasons why abusers act as they do. Lundy discredits most if not all of these ideas. It is an entitlement mentality that is taught from childhood from abusive fathers. This book is a must read.

      • Jeff Crippen

        Thanks much! Yes, that is a great book and we have read it and Bancroft’s other books as well. We highly recommend them.

  4. Anon

    “Most all abuse victims who have begun to see the light of truth will resonate with Salter’s statements here, especially perhaps about holding on to the true things, turning them over and over. That is why journals are so valuable. When the fog of deception is swirling and you are beginning to doubt your own perceptions and memories, you can pick up this objective, historic document of truth and hear that “different ring” that it has that sets you free instead of hooking you with a lie.”

    I’ll say Amen to that! Sometimes people accuse me of going on about the evil of abuse and the wickedness of perpetrators, but isn’t that what we need to do, turn it over and over, especially if we were once hooked by the lie? We seem to prefer comfortable lies to ugly truth.

    Lundy Bancroft is the only person I know that quotes those stats about abusers being abused as children. Maybe they are not well known, or maybe there should be more studies. Psychologists like Donald Dutton (“The Batterer: A Psychological Profile”) claim that all abusers come from an a certain type of family, so there’s definitely different opinions out there, and most Christian articles or books seem to be adamant that the root of abusive behaviour is an abusive childhood. Unfortunately, most readers wouldn’t have the time or inclination to verify whether the studies are reliable.

  5. I might one day dig out the stats I’ve read from several sources, which say that of boys who grew up being exposed to domestic abuse in their family of origin, only about (?) one third go on to become domestic abusers themselves. The rest don’t model themselves on the abuser. This confirms that being abusive is a choice, not an unavoidable outcome of a rotten childhood. Remember, my memory for stats is not good, but this is as far as I can recall.

  6. Anonymous

    I say Amen to this, Barbara, particularly in the Christian circle, where we should know better than to say that abusers are Christians. But for those who insist that an abuser can be a Christian, they should understand that people choose how they will act, just as those of us who have been truly redeemed by the blood of Jesus, choose to obey Him, rather than abuse, as we have been abused.

  7. Finding Answers

    (Heavy airbrushing….)

    Anna Salter quote But a couple of decades of swimming in deception has left me holding onto the true things, clutching them in my little paws, turning them over and over.

    In hindsight, my anti-x was consistently truthful about one thing…and there were others who agreed with his assessment. Given the circumstances, I knew no one was lying. (Omitting details for protection.)

    Even now, knowing he was telling the truth doesn’t matter – he spun too many other tales.

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