The Spirit of the Abuser is the Same as a Mass Murderer

UPDATE Sept 2021: I have come to believe that Jeff Crippen does not practise what he preaches. He vilely persecuted an abuse victim and spiritually abused many other people in the Tillamook congregation. Go here to read the evidence. Jeff has not gone to the people that he spiritually and emotionally abused. He has not apologised to them, let alone asked for their forgiveness.


[September 25, 2022: There have been some changes made to this post. For more information, read the Editors’ notes at the bottom of the post. Editors.]

You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.  (John 8:44  ESV)

Most of you know that at the root of the abuser’s mentality is his profound sense of entitlement to have power and control. Power. Control. “I will be like the Most High.” That is what explains him. That is what makes him tick. On the surface he may seem very confusing and contradictory (many abusers want to keep people in the dark about who they really are, what they are really up to), but when you finally realize that he is all about power and control, things begin to make sense. He is, after all, a child of that fiendish father, the devil.

Now, the devil is a murderer. Why? Because he demands power and control. He wants to be God, and therefore he lusts for the power of life and death. HE will determine who lives and who dies. And this is the very thing that makes these mass murderers do what they do. Why does someone walk into a mall, for instance, and start slaughtering people they don’t even know? Power and control. “I am here. Look at me. I will now determine life and death. The cameras are on me. I want all eyes on me. Everyone must grovel before me.” And this, by the way, explains (IMO) why these sons of the devil typically commit suicide when they are done. As soon as they perceive that they have lost power and control, or are about to lose it (i.e., the police closing in), they exercise their one final defiant act of power and control. They determine that they will die and they will take their own life. No one else is going to do it.

Then they meet the living and true God and find out who really has power and control.

But here is my point. Abusers do not all go slaughter masses of people. Some do. Far too many do. They kill their wife. They kill her children. But even the ones who do not literally murder are of the same spirit as those who do. They all crave power and control and they are determined to get it in one way or another. This is why, I believe, that moment when an abuse victim leaves her abuser is a highly dangerous time to her. He sees he is about to lose power and control. He often decides to do something that “shows her who is really in charge here.” That “something” can run from seizing all the money, sabotaging her career, or right on up to the hellish murder / suicide scenario we see in the papers every week.

Abusers share the very same spirit as mass murderers. Abuse is murder and the Lord sees it as such.

This is something then that all of us need to be on guard for as we relate to other people. Do any of them evidence signs of this satanic spirit of entitlement to power and control? Perhaps some of our readers could comment here and help us learn. What signs, as you look back in hindsight, might have been evident of the presence of this mentality in the early days of your relationship with your abuser? How did he evidence this craving for power and control, even in perhaps rather subtle ways back then?

You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; above the stars of God I will set my throne on high; I will sit on the mount of assembly in the far reaches of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’  (Isaiah 14:13-14  ESV)

[September 25, 2022: Editors’ notes:

—For some comments made prior to September 25, 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 September 25, 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 September 25, 2022 that quoted from the post to the post as it is now (September 25, 2022), click here [Internet Archive link] for the most recent Internet Archive copy of the post.]


54 thoughts on “The Spirit of the Abuser is the Same as a Mass Murderer”

  1. First sign that everyone should have noticed was he got special attention and was able to break the rules of the church. He was not a member of the church but was able to lead a group because he was so wonderful. He would also cut off people’s sentences and lean into them when he talked. He would preach constantly, not converse or connect yet people felt so enamored and convicted by his Bible talk they would all bobble-head “yes”. He gives you a feeling in your soul that he is so GOOD and you are so not good compared to him….and yet now you share what he does and people keep coming to his defense and blaming good institutions trying to hold them accountable or other good people.

  2. Also, I always thought my abuser was murdering me in his heart because of the anger and look on his face. The Bible speaks about the anger that murders and if he could have he would have.

  3. Thank you, Ps. Jeff!! You have done a masterful job weaving truth together & exposing the deceit of the enemy.
    This is so powerful.
    I remember the very moment when I realized in my heart the (profound) truth of Isaiah 14; that my abuser was constantly proclaiming “I will! I will! I will! I will!”, and realizing these were the very words that got Lucifer thrown out of heaven.
    Let us never forget the first war ever fought was by God Himself in heaven, against a lying, deceitful, arrogant, power-hungry angel and the allies / demons who followed him.
    If God Himself will not tolerate such deceit, arrogance & bloodthirstiness, then He doesn’t expect us to, either.

  4. Seen on Facebook yesterday commenting on a meme about an abusers control issues:

    When it is all about control…controlling information, controlling people, controlling outcomes, there you will find manipulation, intimidation, domination.

    There are three key words that expose the activity of witchcraft: manipulate, intimidate, dominate. Domination is its ultimate purpose. Manipulation and intimidation are alternative ways of achieving this purpose. Wherever people use verbal or nonverbal tactics to manipulate, intimidate and dominate those around them, witchcraft is at work.
    [Emphasis original.]

    From: “Blessing or Curse: you can choose!” by Derek Prince.

  5. When I don’t do what he wants, he tells me he’ll punish me. The evil gleam in his eye and the wicked sneer lets me know he means it every time.

    1. Dear Tee3.

      What you shared is so familiar even though I left my abuser so many years ago. Know that you are right about what you see. That evil gleam in his eye? He does mean it. Not only will he punish you, but he will feel triumphant when he does. It is wickedness. If you haven’t already, I pray you will get away from him.

      You deserve better. I trust you know that.

    2. One thing I’ve noticed for me is that I can usually pick out the abusers by their eyes. Something is different in their eyes. It tells me to be careful around them, like a red flag. I always hope that I have read them wrong but over time their true colors come out.

  6. Now that I have been separated from the abuse. The past abuse comes flooding in…. If I allow it to.

    One incident is vivid in my mind. Sharing because it’s a subtle yet passive aggressive tactic of power and control. While on an trip out of town. My drivers license and credit card came up missing. It was sent back to City Utility dept. They called and said they were holding my DL. I wasn’t told about the message until I listened to a voicemail I wasn’t told about. When I called to see if they still possibly were holding my DL. He said “No. We destroyed it.”

    The credit card, I used for gas only purchase.

    Hmmm. Set-ups happen behind the scene.

    I asked my ex if he took both? He said “I deactivated the card.”

    [Paragraph breaks added to enhance readability. Editors.]

  7. I agree with what you are saying; however I think their may be some cases where the person isn’t necessarily evil per se but they deal with deep fear, which comes from childhood abuse and / or many times brain injury. They act on that fear through intimidation and yes the entitlement personality which some say is from the thinking of “I love and care for someone nobody else cares for or loves.”

    So if another person is setting up boundaries and the abuser wants to change what should we expect to see? In my case I see some change but when any stressful situation happens the person immediately falls back into paranoid thinking and starts with accusations and verbal abuse.

    Also this person is terrified to take pharmaceutical medication and wants to rely solely on marijuana which may help for a short period of time but not in the long run.

    So what is fear vs what is evil, and what can we expect to see if an abuser does want to change? I struggle with this.

    1. Hi, AnonYmous, I changed your screen name for your safety. Welcome to the blog. 🙂
      And I encourage you to check out our New Users’ Info page as it gives tips for how to guard your safety while commenting on the blog.

      If the abuser SAYS he wants to change, that is actually pretty insignificant. Words are cheap. Actions and behaviour, over the medium to long term, are what counts. Many abusers say they will change / they want to change / they are changing / etc. But in many or most cases they are saying that to manipulate others, or to pretend to themselves that they mean it when really they don’t mean it, not deep down.

      Self-medication and eventual addiction to illicit drugs (or misusing prescribed drugs, same thing) is a problem that he needs to address by getting himself into treatment to get off the drug. Abuse of his partner is a different problem. He has two problems: he is addicted to marijuana, and he is a man who abuses his partner (you). Each problem requires different treatment. That fact that he is not doing any of the things required to seriously reform either of those problems, strongly suggests that his words are just hot air.

      He claims that he is terrified to take pharmaceutical medication. This could easily be just an excuse he has cooked up. Another thing: maybe he does not actually need pharmaceutical medication, maybe his deepest issue is that he has a disturbed character. Pharmaceutical medication does not fix a disturbed character. It may ameliorate some of the ways that disturbed character expresses itself, but it doesn’t fix, on its own, the real core problem.

      Character disturbance can only be changed if the person himself takes responsibility for his bad behaviour and selfish attitudes and works really hard for years and years to change himself into someone with a better character. I am using the word ‘character’ in the same way that Dr George Simon Jr uses it in his book Character Disturbance [Affiliate link] —

      In this book the term “character” will refer to those distinct aspects of personality that reflect the presence and strength of a person’s virtues, personal ethics, social conscientiousness, and depth of commitment to respect-worthy and meritorious social conduct. (p 26)

      Most people who have character disturbance do not care that they have it, nor do they care how much they hurt or neglect others in their selfish way of living. Most of them masquerade repentance and change, when it suits them, when they think it will enable them to keep on being selfish while maintaining control over those they choose to oppress or neglect. But this masquerade is usually only a way to buy time and to keep other people off their back. They have for so long practised many ways of avoiding responsibility for their bad behaviour, and these ways generally work for them (both short or long term) so they see no real reason to truly change. They actually fight against having to take responsibility for their bad behaviour.

      Are your partner’s issues fear and paranoia? Something he cannot control because he was a victim in childhood or has a brain injury? Or is he plain evil? He may well have fear: he ought to have fear: fear of God’s judgement upon him which he will face when he dies, if he keeps on going the way he is. But with fear that stems from having been abused as a child, well, many many people were abused as children, and still have fear from that, but they do not abuse other people. Abuse is always a CHOICE.

      He may well have some brain injury that is medically documented. If so, he needs to do what he can to get treatment from good behavioural therapists who can help brain injured persons manage their emotions and behaviour somewhat better. Yes, it is not a cure, but it can help moderate and ameliorate the brain injured person’s behaviour. But again, he needs to choose to comply with such treatment, and he isn’t. He is actively rejecting it. That is his choice. Again, he is choosing to stay the way he is. Even though he may have some brain injury, he still has personal choice, and he is exercising it to remain the way he is: an addict of marijuana and an abuser of his partner.

      And really, the situation is the same for you whatever are the causes or contributing factors to his behaviour. You are being lied to, cheated, abused and oppressed. You can’t change his choices. All you can do is consider what choices you have and decide what you want to do with your own life, and your own well-being and safety.

      I encourage you to read Lundy Bancroft’s book Why Does He Do That [Affiliate link]. You can find a link to it (and to the book by Dr George Simon) on our Recommended Books list. Lundy discusses how between domestic abuse and substance abuse and mental illness are all separate issues. Substance abuse and mental illness can each intensify domestic abuse and make the abusive behaviour more dangerous, but they do not cause domestic abuse.

      You may also like to read my Checklist for Repentance.

  8. The aspect of control that came to mind was not what I expected. Luring. When we begin to see the truth about the abuse and endeavor to set boundaries to keep ourselves safe, the abuser will suddenly turn into “Mr. Nice Guy” and prop himself up as a harmless puppy dog, while in reality he is setting a trap. It is the work of a deceiver, the control freak who is looking for a way to lure us in and then tighten his grip.

    We know that even the devil himself may appear to us as an angel of light, right?

    So does the abuser. It’s all part of the game.

    1. Gosh I needed to read this comment today! Thank you….this is exactly what my abuser is doing at the moment to me….it is doing my head in and causing me to feel confused and at fault.

    2. Yes, once the deceit gets exposed and not tolerated the control and entitlement got far worse, yet way more subtle. And the abuser in my life definitely set traps, and then he’d use those traps to play the victim.

    3. This is freaky-scary to realize (especially when alone and without support in the true – loving! bold! courageous! – body of Christ) – that is UNTIL the Word of God (light) is brought (by me in response to the Holy Spirit’s promptings) into my field of vision and memory, comforting and strengthening and emboldening my spirit to not faint:

      My God has not given me a spirit of fear (the result of the spirit of slavery – Rom 8:15)….

      God IS love;
      perfect love casts fear out of doors! (1 John 4:18)

      ….[My God] has given me [not the spirit of the world! – 1 Cor 2:12] but a spirit of power, love and [the discipline of] a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7)

      My Lord is faithful to establish me and guard me from the evil one (2 Thess 3:3 Amplified Classic Version)

      Christ’s divine presence in me protects me against evil and the wicked one does not lay hold or get a grip on me or even touch me! – (1 John 5:8 Amplified Classic Version)

    4. It definitely is all part of their game. It is sport to them. And the only thing that keeps them to the task, is the task itself. They are enjoying themselves. When we begin to realize and accept this reality, the emotional roller coaster they strive to keep us on to keep us off-balance will finally come to a screeching halt, and we will be more than ready to step off and pursue a safe and abuse-free environment with a hopeful future. We will begin to realize life this side of eternity is very short and we do not need to be stripped of our dignity, personhood, humanity and the very essence of who we are!

  9. I have been in a relationship with my abuser for more than three decades.
    The abuse started very early on. Many red flags and warning signs when I look back. He shoved me on the stomach with a kitchen implement one day….[detail removed to protect commenter being identified by her abuser(s)]….he was smothering….when we married and became Christians he became very controlling, lectured me about every aspect of my person, criticized me, raged at me, threw water over me…. He has lacked empathy (he says he is empathetic)….it’s a syrupy act.
    There’s so much.

  10. First sign was h wanted to establish exclusive dating way too early on in the relationship. His reasoning: if I’m going to date others, he will too. If I was that important to him, he would not have wanted to date regardless of whether I was.

  11. Since you mentioned “back then,” I have a memory from when my husband and I dated in college. We had been pretty serious for about two months when I realized we had never gone out to eat. We had always stayed on campus and eaten together in the cafeteria.

    On this particular Friday night we had already gone through the line at the cafeteria and sat down with our bowls of soup and salad. (Now, mind you, we were both on a semester meal plan where all our meals were pre-paid, so we weren’t really “out” anything by leaving.) Anyway, I sweetly mentioned how I had noticed a nice Italian restaurant that I’d love to go to. The look that came over his face! It really scared me! Well, he sat there for an angry moment, then with one giant hand grabbed my bowl of soup, flipped it over on my tray and through gritted teeth said, “FINE!”

    We went to that Italian restaurant, but I remember so well feeling like a jerk for even asking. I felt punished. Needless to say, our conversation was tense throughout the meal. I promised myself that I would wait for him to initiate dates from that time forward.

    Ha! That should have been a wake-up call for me! His need to control the money and plans have been a horrible hallmark of our twenty-some year marriage.

  12. There are several things I noticed in an abuser:

    The first thing I noticed in an abuser was when I cried out that he was hurting me, he brushed my pleas aside, denying what I was saying, because he wasn’t feeling the same thing I was.

    The second thing I noticed soon after that was him constantly evading responsibility for his words and actions, such as saying that it wasn’t him that said or did the things I claimed he did, I made him do it by acting a certain way, saying a particular thing, or not doing what he asked quickly enough for his liking, or that I was exaggerating the circumstances. He was more powerful than me, so I didn’t have a right to defend myself.

    The third thing I noticed was how very sweet, nice, patient and pleasant the man was a week later. This included buying expensive, thoughtful gifts, just because, or to show that he was thinking of me, or to apologize to me, as he promised he would never abuse me again if I’d just forgive him. This nice phase would last anywhere between a week to a month until the cycle repeated itself.

    The fourth thing I noticed was how he acted very differently in public than in the privacy of my own home. The closest way to how he behaved at home was his persona at work, even then he didn’t show his true colors, there.

    The fifth thing I noticed was I could act like I was agreeing with him while inwardly I’d defy him, therefore, protect myself.

    The sixth thing I noticed was it was much easier for people to believe sexual and physical abuse, than verbal, emotional, and spiritual abuse, because they could clearly see the signs of sexual or physical abuse more than verbal, emotional, or spiritual abuse.

    The seventh thing I noticed was even those having a close relationship with you, those whom you trust, and live in the same household as you, and so suffer the same things you do, will say what you suffer from isn’t as bad as those who suffer from physical and sexual abuse, they have it worse, because society sees those kind of abuses as criminal.

    The eighth thing I noticed was being passive, by doing and saying anything he wanted made the abuse lessen, however much it tore me up inside to do so.

    The ninth thing I noticed was I would have to continuously be guarded, not just at school where I was left out every weekday, but also at home, which I renamed a living nightmare.

    The tenth thing I noticed was in order to not be taken advantage of, I could not show my anger, sadness or frustration regarding my situation, only my fear and happiness, to appease him.

    The eleventh thing I noticed was being guarded and automatically reacting to people’s words and movements drew attention to the wrongness of how I was treated at home.

    The twelfth thing I noticed was being called names enough times made you wonder if he was right to call you those names, if you did something wrong to bring these problems on yourself. Maybe if you were more obedient, more patient, more giving, more submissive, then the abuse will stop. This thinking perpetuates the vicious cycle and only makes it worse, because now your self-confidence is plummeting.

    The thirteenth thing I noticed was if I could get proof of what I suffered from, then I could get him help and I could be taken somewhere far away where I could be safe.

    The fourteenth thing I noticed was social services won’t help you, despite what you’re told, because they only focus on physical and sexual abuse, so you have to pray you can survive long enough to leave home.

    The fifteenth thing I noticed was even if it’s been years since you were in the living nightmare, the abuse cycle will begin again.

    The sixteenth thing I noticed was you will eventually come back to the abusive relationship, or at least be tempted to, out of necessity or security.

    The seventeenth thing I noticed was it is easier for a wife to leave her husband than for a daughter to leave her father, because a wife is not biologically or adoptively related to her husband, only married to him.

    The eighteenth thing I have noticed is if you have survived this long, you will get enough of the abusive cycle and want out of it.

  13. ….And this, by the way, explains (IMO) why these sons of the devil typically commit suicide when they are done….

    I divorced my assailant last year. I have a “Domestic Violence Restraining Order” [exact type of restraining order removed] in its second year. My assailant keeps me in court since that’s the only way he can be in the same room with me. He even approached my family members in the courthouse blaming me for “not communicating” with him.

    He attempted suicide recently [exact date removed]. The only reason I knew about it was a police officer called me. He didn’t succeed, he’s still alive. [Details of the assailant’s injuries removed to protect commenter’s identity.]

    1. Becoming Me Again,

      Welcome to the blog! You will notice I changed your screen name and edited your comment – both done to protect your identity. We like to direct new commenters to our New Users’ Page which gives tips for staying safe when commenting on the blog.

      Praying for your continued safety during this time. The time after a victim leaves is often a very dangerous time. But it sounds like you have taken sound steps to stay safe.

      Again, welcome!

  14. My abuser has worn out all the typical excuses for his decades of abuse, so his excuse today is now claiming ignorance. “I had no idea that the things I was saying or doing was hurtful to you…. Why I just need to be educated on how to treat you, because I didn’t know these things.” “Wont’ you teach me?” (says the spider to the fly).

    Early on in the relationship when I expressed to him how my feelings were repeatedly hurt by his jokes, or comments in front of others about me, he accused me of not being able to take a joke, or being too sensitive. Had I known then what I know today….

    1. Standsfortruth [wrote]:

      I had no idea that the things I was saying or doing was hurtful to you….

      Oh my gosh, does your abuser know mine? That’s the exact same excuse my abuser said to me when I confronted him about how he had treated me for half a decade, and I took him back because I had believed him! I found out soon enough that these were just words to overpower me.

      Early on in the relationship when I expressed to him how my feelings were repeatedly hurt by his jokes, or comments in front of others about me, he accused me of not able to take a joke, or being too sensitive.

      My abuser said the exact same thing to me, I forgot to add that to my list.

      1. Yes, perhaps they share the same father….
        I think these abusers know that any “new untried bait” might buy them more time with us. I’ve learned to look at everything my abuser offers or does, as another likely “baited hook”. Even when it appears benign, or an innocent gesture, I have discovered many times that there IS a hook in it – somewhere down the line. So I scrutinize everything knowing our Lord’s reminder, that an evil tree cannot produce good fruit, just like a good tree won’t produce evil fruit.

    2. This sounds very familiar. I’ve heard this a lot from my husband. Now he will try to say that if he’s not changing much it’s because I’ve failed to tell him or teach him what he needs to know. So again, it’s my fault. One time he even said of a relative who molested me when I was young, “Maybe he didn’t know you didn’t like it. If you never told him, how was he supposed to know?” I couldn’t believe my ears! I was so hurt by his willingness to excuse the molester as being ignorant while accusing me of failing to say I didn’t like it — as if it’s the little girl’s job to tell the abuser she doesn’t like being abused. Crazy. Not only was the comment itself hurtful, but also the knowledge that he was willingly supporting the abuser over his wife was another huge betrayal. In addition to all that was the question in my heart, “If he’s that sympathetic to the man who molested me, is it because in his heart he, too, is a molester / rapist?”

  15. A few months into dating my husband got depressed and repeatedly told me I should leave him. Of course, to me at the time that seemed mean. I do believe he was depressed but I also know now I should have left it to professionals to help him. Now I see it as the first of many (hundreds?) of times that he has cast himself as a victim. When he came out of the depression he began his blame game and he was always the victim. It never stopped. Unfortunately, I didn’t see it until after we were married and I became the target. I wish I’d known that if he’s blaming everyone else eventually he’d get to me.

    Like Standsfortruth, my husband also would joke about me and tease me in front of others and if I complained I was told I couldn’t take a joke. That’s when I think I began to doubt myself. And some of his “compliments” were often really veiled criticisms. For example years ago, he would say to people — “she can’t cook but she sure can bake.” And I was supposed to be delighted by his compliment! It was years before I realized he was the only one who ever criticized my cooking. He still makes fun of my cooking. I’m a great cook and have people asking when am I going to invite them over! And I do — but only when he’s not going to be there. [Editor deleted details about the abuser’s eating patterns to protect the victim’s identity. But yes, Annie, I agree – really?!]

    I believe he knows he lacks empathy. He makes no effort to hide it around me any more. He used to “apologize” or act like he cared but it always seemed a bit phony and now I know why. He didn’t mean it. All his efforts were to try to manipulate me. I think he realizes that it doesn’t work on me any more and he’s just going full force with his hatred towards me.

    I believe he uses me as his excuse to not change. I’m so awful he has to act this way. But in reality he doesn’t want to.

    So anyway, the two things that stand out for me are — 1) he was always a victim and yet 2) he always made me a victim of his jokes and criticisms.

    1. Standsfortruth: Metaphorically, I agree. Thank God I had a better relationship with my abuser’s biological father than with my abuser himself. Unlike most abuser’s childhoods, my abuser had a great childhood with wonderful parents and no brain damage. I finally concluded that my abuser treated me the way he still does because of his own issues, and not because he was repeating things he learned from childhood. I too have learned to scrutinize my abuser’s every word and action, no matter how subtle they are or how benign they look. Thank God I have such a wonderful family on both sides besides my abuser, who support and encourage me, I think it’s why I’ve turned out to be so well-adjusted, despite the triggers or flashbacks I still get even to this day. I’m also extremely grateful that I have such wonderful male family members who I could trust to support and encourage me as well as to look up to as role models for how men should behave.

      1. You are indeed fortunate to have such a balance of goodness in your family, Joy. I pray that more families would offer support to targeted victims. But if not, that the Lord would provide these precious ones with the resolve and conviction to work towards their freedom.

      2. Thank you very much, Standsfortruth, I pray that the Lord provide every precious victim of abuse resolve and conviction to work toward their freedom, not just those who don’t have support from their families. Please pray for me, as I too am slowly but surely working toward my own freedom.

    2. Annie, the part where you said how even your husband’s compliments were really veiled criticisms, to further injure your self image….

      Mine perfected this undermining stradegy to a fine art. At one point, he had me believing that I was only good for “One or two things”, and you can only imagine what he was referencing.

      Somehow in my confusion back then, I was grateful that that I still had some redeeming quality in his eyes.

      But now I see it as “Intentional Gaslighting” to make me doubt myself throughout the marriage. He loved manipulating me. It was a game to him. (Until I caught on, and challenged him.)

      If he was a good person, he would not have tore me down mentally, to create my focus on implied imperfections, so as to not see him for the manipulating person that he was.

      [Paragraph breaks added to enhance readability. Editors.]

      1. Standsfortruth: My abuser says the same thing to me, I’m glad I’m not the only one who has to deal with this kind of self-righteous, arrogant behavior.

      2. Now that I am removed from my abuser’s influence and presence, I am in a much better place. I want to encourage the readers out there, that “getting free” is worth the effort, how ever small the steps made, towards attaining that goal. Every step empowers you to take the next step.

        My biggest enabling step to start the “snowball of freedom” rolling was getting a vehicle put in my name. You would think that would be easy (especially for a mother with children). But my abuser knew having my own vehicle would give me independence, and he stalled and resisted my request for months and months. However, his withholding from doing this for me, when it was in his power to do so (since we had more than one vehicle in his name), made me realise I could also withhold certain benefits from him, and it became a “standoff” between us for some time. He eventually broke down, and finally gave me the title to one vehicle, only to be true to his character and steal it back out of my purse a day later, before I could register it in my name. So finally many weeks later I finally got it back from him and made a direct “beeline to the DMV”, to transfer the ownership name, and have the vehicle door key changed (so he couldn’t tamper with the vehicle later).

        From that point I was able to secure a job and earn enough money to help myself to work towards my eventual freedom. Since then God has performed many more miracles that helped and aided my final exodus. I think the Lord honored my personal efforts to help myself (however small), and perhaps He saw that as a step of faith on my behalf.

        I am sharing this to show and encourage others how I started my exodus plan, and it worked. I never thought the small strategic steps that I took back then could have led to the freedom that I have today, but it did.

        [Paragraph breaks added to enhance readability. Editors.]

  16. Standsfortruth, I agree with what you wrote:

    Even when it appears benign, or an innocent gesture, I have discovered many times that there IS a hook in it — somewhere down the line. So I scrutinize everything knowing our Lord’s reminder, that an evil tree cannot produce good fruit, just like a good tree won’t produce evil fruit.

    I suspect his every word he says to me.

    1. Forgot to add the best part of that Scripture from our Lord:

      Thus, You shall know them by their fruits. [Matthew 7:20]

      And what a tell-tale sign they do give.

      Sometimes it takes us a while to smell the “fly in the ointment” in their offers, but if we wait long enough, the Lord would show us where it is. That’s why it is a good idea to make the abuser wait….”Lets see…. Let me think about that.”

      They think we are like them, and will act impulsively. But we need to rethink what they might be doing to hoodwink us. Sometimes I would wake up in the middle of the night, and the Lord would reveal the wicked scheme behind the offer, and boy was I thankful.

      [Paragraph breaks added to enhance readability. Editors.]

  17. I saw that my abuser has the same spirit as a murderer. But he is well able to hide his murderous intent. If anything bad was to happen, he wouldn’t care less except about being caught, and no one would suspect him. He fools most people with his appearance of being a good, responsible and reasonable person, but it is a complete facade. Most of the time he managed to keep the dark side of his nature invisible from me too, but occasionally the mask would slip. Then just for a few seconds at a time I would see the evil grin, the look of pure selfishness and greed, the contemptuous hatred, the expression that seemed demonic. Even now I’m not sure what he’s capable of, because his real self is so hidden.

    He is all about control. Most of his methods are clever and covert. It’s only when people stand up to him that he becomes aggressive and angry. Eventually I came to realise the whole problem could be summed up in that one word, control. In hindsight the signs of his true nature were present very early on, but I didn’t know how to make sense of it all. They aren’t necessarily the things that people warn you about. He didn’t hit me and he didn’t order me around, at least not in the beginning. He didn’t have addictions or mental health problems. He wore a suit and tie and had a good job. He was a church Elder and he gave elderly ladies a ride to church every Sunday. I met him through friends who are beyond reproach.

    When I first met him I asked around to see what people thought of him. The reports were glowing. There did seem to be one or two people who didn’t like him. But I found I couldn’t get to talk to those people, they kept their distance and they weren’t willing to talk. So I thought any problems must not be that important. I realize now that the people with bad reports were afraid of retaliation for speaking out. It was a sign of ruthless and wide scale impression management.

    At the start he was often pleasant, but just occasionally he would fly into a rage for no reason at all, and blame me. None of this ever happened in front of witnesses. An important sign I missed was that he never took responsibility for anything, he was never sorry for anything. Everything was always someone else’s fault. Because of this behaviour early on, I tried to back off out of the relationship. But he seemed to see that coming and manipulated me into staying involved. After a while I realised that my circle of friends had got dramatically smaller. I was discouraged from meeting people and from following my own interests. It was all done by deceit and manipulation. I felt confused and tired. I knew something was really wrong but I didn’t have an explanation. If I ever raised these problems with other Christians, they reassured me that everything was alright. So I just got wound up tighter and tighter in the abuser’s web.

    It was never a normal relationship. The abuser was not a normal person. He was never not controlling, he was never not telling lies, he was never not prepared to be physically violent if other methods failed. The only way to prevent this kind of abuse is for people to learn to identify controlling behaviour at the very first sign. And most importantly, to recognize the real evil behind that behaviour.

    Something good has come out of this. I’ve taught these lessons to the young people in my life, and they are spreading the message. They’ve already been able to help and rescue some of their friends. That’s something very good.

    1. I went through a similar experience when I came to know my abuser myself, KayE. The good thing that came out of my abusive situation has been that I can pick out hypocrisy and stand against it as much as possible.

      1. Joy – it’s amazing how alike those abusers are isn’t it.
        For myself I struggle to see that any good has come to me out of being victimized for two decades of what should have been my most productive years. I can’t see that it was worth it. People tell me I’ll be a better person for the experience and that now I can start again. But in actual fact some the harm that’s been done is permanent. And despite what people say, I really am too old to start again. I think all I can do is make the best of things and try to stop it all from happening to other people. I wish I’d had access to more information about the way abusers operate, many years ago.

      2. KayE, your comments on this site have been a great encouragement to me, and I think to many others also. Some of the insights and pithy statements you’ve shared have been really helpful. So that is one ‘good’ that you are doing with the abuse you experienced. 🙂

    2. My abuser acts the same way, puts on a good old boy act, hides his true self from everyone else, when what he really wants is control. I understand what you’re saying. It took me a long time to figure out why I suffered from abuse, what it’s purpose was in my life, too.

  18. KayE: Yes, it is very amazing how similar abusers are. It took me about a decade to fully realize the good in my situation, even though I wouldn’t wish the experience on almost anyone. If nothing else, the abuse we’ve suffered from has made us into stronger people who can recognize abuse because of what we’ve gone through, and so warn others who are about to repeat the same mistakes we have made. I wasn’t abused nearly as long as you have, I’m sorry that you had to put up with two decades of being trapped in a living nightmare. I too hate that some of what should have been my productive years were spent being victimized. I also feel like I can never truly start again, despite my young age, just to make the best of my situation. I’ve accepted that some of the harm I suffered from is permanent, such as occasional flashbacks, and reactions to certain stimuli, but it’s okay that I’m not completely whole. I also wish I had more information about abuse over the years like I found out in college, much to my own shock.

  19. Thank you, Barbara and Joy. I might have sounded downbeat but sometimes I just get frustrated at how little understanding there is out there about abusers. I’m not talking about yourselves or any of the people here, but about the wider community. Maybe some of them might visit this blog occasionally. Who knows?

    1. I understand that completely, I always feel very frustrated that people who have not suffered under the oppression of abuse don’t understand just how lasting and damaging an effect abuse has. Because it isn’t happening to them, they choose to deny that it happens, or happens as frequently as it does, even when the results are staring them right in the face. Hopefully we can spread the word to end abuse. I’m glad I have this website to go to for support and encouragement, too.

  20. The verse above, Isaiah 14:13-14, is important in that it describes how the devil, demons and the devil’s children view life — as a hierarchy of dominance. We westerners live in a generation that teaches (lies) to its people by claiming that we are all the same fundamentally, and that we all have the same goals ultimately — which is something like we want a better future for our children. Psychopaths don’t think this way at all. 2 Peter 2:12 tells us they are creatures of instinct and the animal kingdom is very cognizant of the dominance hierarchy. We would do well to teach Christians the truth about this.

    My husband comes from a large family of psychopaths. He was on the low-ranking end of the totem pole. Of course I was unaware of any of this for the first twenty years of marriage and when God woke me up, it was still years later that I realized the truth of this. The “good” thing about this is that when God strengthened me enough that I started to stand up to his lies and abuse, he backed down. For a time.(Like his father the devil, he is perpetually jockeying for position and trying to move back up the ladder to usurp God and sit in his “rightful” position. “The Screwtape Letters” and “Lord Foulgrin’s Letters” are two awesome books that depict the hierarchy of demons which also explains how the hierarchy of people without a conscience works.) He never internalized any of the truth of my words but because he’d been beaten down in his family, he accepted that he was lower-ranking. Does all this sound insane? Oh yes, to those who have never been shown the truth in life or through God’s word this may even sound like I like this hierarchy business. Nope, I HATE even having to be AWARE of it, but this IS reality. People without a conscience are “like unreasoning animals” and God says they are “born only to be caught and destroyed, and like animals they too will perish” (2 Peter 2:12). But instead of being on the look-out for these evil ones we are taught to marry them and serve them unconditionally. Is it any wonder that we with a loving heart are destroyed when we follow anti-biblical advice? We are opening our heart to the devil — this is truly what is taking place when we love a person without a conscience.

    Does all this sound a little too harsh? If you find any of this to be truthful, please don’t forget how much this wisdom has cost me. The violation of my entire life. If you think this information is erroneous, ask God to show you the truth of it through His word and in your life. To save even one of God’s little ones from having to learn this wisdom first hand would be a blessing to me through Him. To be so fully awake like those in Luke 9:32 is very painful at times but God sends some of us on ahead to light the way for His little ones. It’s also to show you that He knew you’d need Him and His truth, and that He truly cares for you. You are not alone and you are loved.

    1. 2 Peter 2:12 tells us they are creatures of instinct

      Yes indeed. 2 Peter 2:12-13 (ESV) —

      But these, like irrational animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed, blaspheming about matters of which they are ignorant, will also be destroyed in their destruction, suffering wrong as the wage for their wrongdoing. They count it pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, while they feast with you.
      [Emphasis added.]

      The Old Testament also says that some people are like irrational animals:

      Psalm 92:5-6

      O LORD, how great are thy works! and thy thoughts are very deep.
      A brutish man knoweth not; neither doth a fool understand this. (KJV, emphasis added.)

      How great are your works, O LORD! Your thoughts are very deep!
      The stupid man cannot know; the fool cannot understand this; (ESV, emphasis added.)

      Proverbs 12:1

      Whoso loveth instruction loveth knowledge:
      but he that hateth reproof is brutish. (KJV, emphasis added.)

      Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
      but he who hates reproof is stupid. (ESV, emphasis added.)

      The bolded words mean stupid, brutish, like cattle. That Hebrew word is also used of men in Psalm 49:10; Psalm 73:22; and Proverbs 30:2.

      1. Excellent, Barbara! You’ve gone much more in depth so that we’ll know that God has it all written down in His word for us so we can know the truth and take comfort that He does too and that He loves us. Thank you!

  21. I loved reading the comments and I was greatly encouraged about the fact that the good that can come from the abuse is showing younger people how to avoid abusive relationships.

    I have been forwarding some posts here to my older son because he’s also a target of abuse from his N father. My son was in a relationship and he noticed the signs of manipulation and control from the girl. He was feeling bad when he told me, and I showed him the red flags. We both concluded he should back out of the relationship. He did without any regrets. Rather, he felt relieved.

    And yes, I inwardly call my N a fool, because many times he acts instinctively and doesn’t care what people will think or say about him. Thank you for nailing it with those verses, Barbara.

    Like Isaac told Esau:

    ….you will get restless and will break the yoke from off your neck. [Paraphrase of Genesis 27:40]

    I’m beginning to get restless in this marriage. I believe the yoke will soon break.

    [Paragraph breaks added to enhance readability. Editors.]

  22. When I looked up the word for “murderer” from John 8:44, I was surprised to see this version of the word used only three times, because the word “murderer” is used many times throughout the Bible. But then I studied it and it became clear. The person described in John 8:44 (anthrópoktonos: a manslayer; contextually, to be deemed equal to a murderer 443. anthrópoktonos [Internet Archive link]) is deemed EQUAL to a murderer in God’s eyes. Although this person may NEVER kill another person–they are judged (RIGHTLY) to be equal to–have the same mind and heart as–one who is guilty of being a murderer.

    Compared to:
    phoneus: a murderer (used 7 times 5406. phoneus [Internet Archive link])

    sikarios: an assassin (used once 4607. sikarios [Internet Archive link])

    ratsach: to murder, slay (used 47 times 7523. ratsach [Internet Archive link])

    (There may be others….)

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