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PostPosted: August 8th, 2003, 1:38 pm 
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Joined: January 3rd, 2003, 5:35 pm
Posts: 160
Angela is posting questions arriving anonymously from readers along with her answers. Please share your advice with these women, too! :)

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Q. My friend is being abused but won't let me help her. What can I do?

A. Some women are afraid to ask for help. Others leave, then return to the abuser, then leave again, and continue this pattern until they finally break free, or until the abuser kills them or gets help. Often, it appears these women have self-esteem issues. While your friend may beg you to keep her secrets, you must know that it is a crime to ignore a crime. If your friend is assaulted, you must report this to the police. Most states now allow charges to be filed against abusers without the consent of the victims.


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PostPosted: August 9th, 2003, 7:17 pm 
I am an attorney with 5 years experience in dealing with domestic violence, I am also a survivor of domestic violence.

Here are a few facts and recommendations,

1) Don't tell her she is stupid or weak for staying - she is already being abused enough.

2) Don't put him down to her. She is conditioned to defend him. Putting him down only makes you feel good, it hurts her because she probably still loves him.

3) There are some things to say to a victim of DV, say them over and over, it does get through the turmoil,

a) I am afraid for your safety,
b) I am afraid for your children,
c) It will only get worse,
d) It is not your fault,
e) I am always here for you.

You would be surprised how much that first statement matters. She has gone a long time without anyone caring for her. Don't say the last one unless you mean it. Also remember, it takes an average of 5 separations for an abused woman to finally escape. If you are a real friend, you are in for the duration.

TLC


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PostPosted: August 11th, 2003, 9:32 am 
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Joined: August 6th, 2003, 7:56 am
Posts: 12
Location: Crenshaw, MS
Abused women are also conditioned to believe that they cannot survive on their own and that they have no friends or family that care about them. The first thing an abuser does is alienate the woman from all emotional connections. You must understand this and just be patient. If you really are her friend, you will try to accept this and just be there for her when she does need you. And sooner or later, she is going to need you.


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 Post subject: abusive relationship
PostPosted: August 20th, 2003, 1:11 pm 
When your friend has had enough she will leave. I was in an abusive marriage for 10 yrs. Having married when I was only 15 and very naive. When I finally figured out he was not going to change, no matter what, I took my two daughters and left. It was not easy. I had no job, two children and not even a high school diploma. We managed to survive, but my self esteem took many years to be restored. Usually it isn't just a husband who is abusing your self esteem. It can also be a parent who set up the situation. It's very hard to get away from and fear can have a strong hold on a person. Even stronger than love.


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PostPosted: August 20th, 2003, 3:29 pm 
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Joined: August 20th, 2003, 3:16 pm
Posts: 1
Location: Kitchener, Ontario Canada
The best advice I can give to you is patience. Speaking from the abused end of things, I "lost" more than one so called "friend" because they got tired of listening to me cry and telling me to just leave. It is a little hard to leave when you feel your life is in danger and you feel you have no where else to turn. Stick with your friend and be there for her without giving advice. All she wants is a sympathetic ear and shoulder to cry on. She knows deep down what she has to do but needs to build up the courage to do it. It may take months or years, but hopefully she will come around as long as she has one good solid friend to keep building up her self-asteem and being there for her. The worst thing you can do is let on to her husband that you know he is mistreating her and you feel contempt towards him. This may make serious trouble for her and you, and he will force her to alienate you. Once it becomes a severely dangerous situation, then you may have to make an anonymous call to the local authorities, but this sometimes doesn't help either, because the wife is too afraid to stand up to her husband. Help her to regain control of her own self and she will eventually, we hope, regain control of her life.


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 Post subject: Don't give up
PostPosted: August 21st, 2003, 9:54 pm 
The best advice I can give to someone who knows someone who is being abused is simply this:

Don't give up!

It can seem hard to just hang around and watch a friend being hurt, and it can be especially hard when the victim is actually pushing you away and refusing your help. What is important to understand is that alienating the victim from all friends, relatives, and outside support systems is part of the abuser's M.O. The abuser wants full and total control, which leaves no room for outsiders.

When I was the victim of emotional and physical abuse, my boyfriend succeeded in convincing me that he was the only soul on earth that I needed. When friends would call, I would say I was too busy. Or when I would actually try to go out with friends, he would make me feel so guilty afterwards that it finally got to be more effort than it was worth. (Or so I thought at the time.)

It didn't take much to convince my friends to give up on me. In fact, it still hurts me to think how quickly they lost interest. Even though I did my part to push them away, I wish they had hung in there just a bit longer. If they had, I might not have stayed with him as long as I did. In my case, there was no one to tell me I should leave. I had to decide that on my own, with no help or support.

The victim of abuse is ALWAYS going to have to come to the decision to leave on her (or his) own, but having support--and a constant reminder that there ARE others in the world who care--can help facilitate the making of that decision. So once again, my advice is--don't give up! Ever! No matter how hard it is--just think of how hard it must be for your friend. You have to be the strong one for her.


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PostPosted: August 22nd, 2003, 4:54 am 
A: Be patient with her as she may need your empathtic listening and to know she has someone to support her. She might be going through lot of fears, some concious and some are unconcious -@ subconcious levels for which you may not have a ready made answer nor she .she needs someone who is walking with her and yet allow her to make the decision., in her time.

ANATTA



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Q. My friend is being abused but won't let me help her. What can I do?

A. Some women are afraid to ask for help. Others leave, then return to the abuser, then leave again, and continue this pattern until they finally break free, or until the abuser kills them or gets help. Often, it appears these women have self-esteem issues. While your friend may beg you to keep her secrets, you must know that it is a crime to ignore a crime. If your friend is assaulted, you must report this to the police. Most states now allow charges to be filed against abusers without the consent of the victims.[/quote] :?: [b][/b]


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PostPosted: September 19th, 2003, 12:35 pm 
Hi! I'm so glad that there are others like me here!

My best friend is being abused. I just started a blog chronicling my journey with her through this awful time and how I am learning to be a support to her.

I started my blog because I had a really hard time finding resources on the web for people like me... those who have friends and loved ones who are being abused.

Please visit my blog, and share it with your friends too. I hope it will help give strength to others.

http://www.upsaid.com/queequeg0925/

:)

Deirdre


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PostPosted: September 20th, 2003, 11:05 pm 
My spiritual arms go out to you and my cries for your friend . Life is so very short, for her to be spending it (her life) in this fashion. You are a great sister (friend) the world certainly could use more personal loving people like you. Continue to demostrate love towards your friend, showing her how love is truely displayed. And, hopefuly through your efforts of love displayed. She will begin to see and experience love for what it really is... iYou are in my spirit ..sincerely B.
Anonymous wrote:
Hi! I'm so glad that there are others like me here!

My best friend is being abused. I just started a blog chronicling my journey with her through this awful time and how I am learning to be a support to her.

I started my blog because I had a really hard time finding resources on the web for people like me... those who have friends and loved ones who are being abused.

Please visit my blog, and share it with your friends too. I hope it will help give strength to others.

http://www.upsaid.com/queequeg0925/

:)

Deirdre
:cry: :arrow: :cry:
Quote:


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 Post subject: abused friend
PostPosted: October 28th, 2003, 5:01 pm 
I just got around to reading some of these posts, Angela. I'm sorry I took so long. Now, I need to ask the advise of others. Yes, here I am, a man, asking for help, not for myself but for a friend. I thought I knew it all but I don't.
My friend finally broke down and confessed to me why she was always in an depressed mood. I must admit I was shocked at what she told me. She is in a abusive relationship with a man who loves to hit women, he gets a thrill from watching women cower before him. Personally, I'd like to introduce him to the business end of my .357 Magnum with hollow points. I've advised her to contact the police but she doesn't want to get him in trouble, "I still love him." Her two year old daughter witnessed one beating that left her dazed for several hours. Unfortunately, she won't tell me the man's (I use that term loosely) name and continues to see him.
On the down side, I've been told to butt out, it's none of my business, that I could end up being hurt myself. I ask you, who's better able to defend themselves, a 30-year old woman, or a combat-trained, Vietnam Veteran? I would have no trouble with my conscience in blowing this guy into hell.
So, what can I do? Do I butt out and then feel bad after she's dead? Or do I try to help anyway I can. I've already offered her a safe, and well-armed, haven if she ever wants out. The first thing I did was give her this web site and strongly suggested that she use it, and I hope she does. Other than that, I'm at a loss as to what to do.
Any suggestions, ladies? The Long Ranger (I'm one of the good guys)


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 Post subject: Abused friend
PostPosted: November 5th, 2003, 4:18 pm 
Thank all of you for fine advice and I will certainly try and put it to good use. The "self-esteem" comment really nailed the racoon in the garbage can. She thinks she's fat and unattractive to others. Putting on my best gentlemans hat and digging down into my reservoir of complements, I've tried to give her a lift the best I can. I don't know if it worked but I hope so.
I'll keep you posted.


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 Post subject: Abused friend
PostPosted: November 13th, 2003, 11:54 am 
Thank all of you for such great advice. It will not only help my friend but myself as well. Since I last logged in, she has found out that her "boyfriend" had been cheating on her. To say the least, this was devastating to her self-esteem and she has become very angry with the world in general and has put men lower than whale pucky on the bottom of the ocean. All I can do is keep trying and be there when she needs someone to talk to. In this case, I'm offering myself up as the mental punching/cussing bag for her. I realize she doesn't mean what she's saying at the time and it makes her feel better.
Is there anything else I can do?


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 Post subject: What worked for me
PostPosted: January 8th, 2004, 12:45 pm 
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Joined: January 7th, 2004, 5:15 pm
Posts: 22
Location: Way up North
Freinds and family started putting "reading materials" under my nose. It was there subtle way of saying "hey we are concerned". At first I threw out the info. because I was afraid of him finding it and "getting into trouble with him". As time went on though I started to read and what I read opened my eyes. That was because there were all of his behaviors right there on paper in black and white. In addition the information was coming from someone other than my friends and family and I paid more attention to it. You can tell people things a million times and they wont listen... how does that go you can lead a horse to water but you cant make him drink?


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PostPosted: April 30th, 2004, 12:22 pm 
i was married, still in terrible twisted divorce to an abusive/sex addict (long story)
i started counseling in dealing with his cruelty, affairs, possibility of aids, etc (it was always my fault for his messes) I do know that him and his recent partner of who I was friend's with poisoned m, as i was visiting her house, and my health deteriorated, when I was trying to make plans to break away, although I tried talking with him and giving him the benefit of the doubt. He revealed what was going on several times, because of his messed up mind. I had chocking, gagging problems, legs were swelling, knees and joints so sore and feet I could hardly walk, I was falling down, my legs would just give out, I had trouble breathing, especially at night, I was puffed up and at one point I could not walk up the stairs. I went to numerous doctors, to find that my thyroid had been attacked, and they had trouble regulating. One doctor said something was going on but didn't know what and that some test came back extremly high. Trying to explain to doctor's and they still didn't see what I was troubled with, but the entire time i WAS GOING I DID NOT KNOW WHAT ATTEMPT WAS BEING MADE ON MY LIFE. This knowledge came later and I tried to deny it, as many things. He knows that I know, as I told him. His attorney showed up at the Dr's office when I had a follow up visit to check my thyroid and he though I was going to be tested, and he was in jail for Domestic Violence. My husband acted very strange during the program that aired last summer or realy fall, about spouses poisoning their mates.I just overheard the program from another room. I am trying to locate this as it may be helpful.
I am finally in the divorce process and him and his attorney are trying to make me look terrible, this is hard to deal with, as, although not perfect, I was a model wilfe and mother, by that I mean my kids always came first, and my life showed them integrity, honesty, caring. I was committed to marriage and sticking with it, but knew all along a person does not feel as I did, nor are people treated as he did us.
If anyone can please shed some light, as I had a shadow hovering over me for so long. I am not sure if we can prove the attempt but I need to know what the substance was, be tested and see if there is anything I can do.
My health began to improve somewhat when I quit going to her house(she is very unstable) but my body (especially my lips feel tingly, salty and weird. I have also had sores or callases(never before) on bottom of my feet. I take snythroid, but know it was due to what they gave me. I drand coffee at her house, once or twice a week, and she brought to our house 1 single cupcake, that my sone ate, and at another time 1 single peice of cake (to a family of 6). I did not think it reality that someone (even a batterer) would go that far; i do not think in those terms and find it difficult to think others do. this woman also had a nurse background, although she is on a fake disability, and had a friend that had an animal clinic, as when I stopped she was taking a large slug from a huge bottle of amoxy. that was used for animals. I was in danger and didn't realize it, and then when i did, couldn't prove it. I also had the hard drive on the computer transferred, as they were busy on the computer, but e-mails were gone.
my children, he tried to get custudy by saying i was crazy, and i have peace, the first in 23 years and we are struggling financially, as he cancelled accounts, took all money, and is hiding funds, although with my support we paid 150,000 on his financial mis-conduct, financial messes (as he tried to farm) and he makes 65,000 a year. I have $20.00 but much peace and serinity. I've been in counseliling, taking my little boy, when he will get out of the car, and doing well. I am borrowing a car, as shortly after he was arrested, the brakes went out on the vehicle i was driving. He is now putting on this show of being this good guy around town, going into the restaurant, helping coach baseball, telling lies. His threats, vulgar language and talk of killing me rings in my ears, but our home is smiling on us and the walls are silent with happiness.
i have great faith and the Lord is holding me up.
if anyone can be of help in the solutions i am seeking, i would greatly appreciate it.
I also have financial questions with what he is trying to do, but will post again.
thanks and you are a godsend to many.


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 Post subject: Abuse
PostPosted: May 2nd, 2004, 9:50 pm 
I am a therapist who has worked with victims of violence for 15 yrs. Unfortunately your story is NOT uncommon. Not all batterers go that far but many do, especially those that are pathologically disordered. NOTHING is out of their realm that they will attempt. I would say you need to respect that he will go to ANY length to do whatever he wants to do or feels he needs to do. So dont take it lightly.

I would contact your local DV shelter for several things: free counseling, free legal advocacy and case support to help you find community resources to begin again. Of course they offer safe shelter too if needed. The workers might be able to find a pharmacist who could answer your questions or a medical specialist who has treated other attempts. Also find a support group you can physically go to. Alot of the women who are further into recovery might have the resources you are looking for. Above all us, be safe. Sandy


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