I Am a Liar — A Message from the Heart of an Abuse Victim
[August 12, 2022: There have been some changes made to this post. For more information, read the Editors’ notes at the bottom of the post. Editors.]
Guest post from one of our readers, an abuse victim and survivor. Many thanks to her for sharing.
I am a Liar.
I wasn’t raised to be a liar, I don’t like lying, I don’t like being lied to.
So why do I lie?
People have commented that I am pretty straight forward; I have been called blunt for calling a spade, a spade. But there is something that most people (majority really) do not know about me.
I am open about being a victim of Domestic Violence and Abuse so people know that about me; they know I champion for women that are being abused. My Facebook posts blast out speak up, get help, silence equals violence.
Here is the rub. If you know me you know that my first husband was chemically dependent and physically violent. He basically gave up his daughter over the right to grow and smoke weed and drink to oblivion.
Here is where the lying comes in. I not only married one man that was abusive, I repeated the lesson. The abuse was different in some ways and the same in others. I was determined not to hide and lie this time, so early on I went to a couple in the church. Of course the focus switched to me because after all you can’t change the other person.
We had a baby and moved out of town so we started attending a new church. I was pretty excited and was not working full time so I got to go to Women’s Bible Study during the daytime. Lots of moms at different stages of life. Of course the first lesson learned was we were not to speak negatively about our spouses EVER. That was disrespect and gossip and we were NEVER to do that. I tried going to the Pastor and of course he tried to help but he was not equipped to help so he did far more damage because the only person trying to do any work in the marriage was me and the thing I kept getting was I was not nice enough, submissive enough, __________ enough. I shouldn’t talk back to him; I shouldn’t make him angry. Sure he has issues but the thing is we all do and let’s work on yours. I never fit in with the women because as much as I was trying to be better, being a Stepford wife would never suit me
The next step was counseling and we chose a “Christian” counselor. He said good words at first that my husband had serious, serious issues. Of course after a few sessions alone with the counselor he was convinced I was a man-hater, my daughter is a problem child and between the kids and I we were ganging up on Jack and we needed to stop. Jack denied screaming foul words at us and of course he was a Deacon in the church and if he were so bad he wouldn’t be a Deacon. So when Jack started his next screaming rant I brought out a tape recorder and we agreed except Jack that we would not discuss the issue without a tape recorder. That ended up with us getting proof that he did act that way. We took that to the counselor and he refused to listen to it past Jack screaming that he refused to be taped and to shut it off. That turned into a lecture to the kids and I how disrespectful that was and we were to blame IF there was a tirade. There was more crappy counseling including telling my husband he had a demon and when he acted that way it was the demon. Well let me tell you that gave him free reign to act out and then blame the demon.
We ended up doing an in-house separation and setting severe boundaries and of course the only one that the Pastor tried to console or help was Jack. Right in front of my daughter and me, he goes up and puts his arm around Jack’s shoulders and asks if he can do anything for him. Not a word for the kids.
So now I have found that it is not safe to discuss the problems unless I want to have it backfire on me and the kids. So I try and manage it as much as I can. I don’t let people in because they will see what is going on and funny thing is they think they are let in because I appear so open.
Forward to today — we are in a great church but because of how I was treated over almost three decades, I don’t trust people to understand what it is like and how this person that acts one way in public can be so different in private. I have seen my spouse try and throw me under the bus at least three times with people without the same amount of success, but because of the abuse by the “people helpers”….I would rather lie and say “I’m OK. That was in the past.”
[August 12, 2022: Editors’ notes:
—For some comments made prior to August 12, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be an exact match.
—For some comments made prior to August 12, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be found in the post.
If you would like to compare the text in the comments made prior to August 12, 2022 that quoted from the post to the post as it is now (August 12, 2022), click here [Internet Archive link] for the most recent Internet Archive copy of the post.]