Friday, April 26, 2013


Yeah, you really have to watch the video.  I know it might not be your cuppa tea in terms of music style.  However, I also know you can suck it up for a few minutes.  If you don't watch it, the rest of this blog won't make sense.  This one is about Life Lessons.  Actually one of the Most Important things I have written in this entire challenge.  This is not a fluff piece on euchre, umbrellas, movies, a TV show, or even a great book I  read.  So, did you watch it?

Anyone who has ever been in an abusive relationship will actually look back and see a pattern of abuse.  That last abusive relationship is probably just the WORST relationship.  Or maybe just the most recent.  This song will ring like a Battle Cry for every person who has ever survived an abusive relationship.  Until the next time.

Did you get the part about patterns? 

Until you figure out the pattern, you have NO HOPE of stopping the pattern.  Until you understand that you are attracted to abusive personalities, you have no hope of stopping the pattern.  Until you understand what it is about that abusive personality that you are attracted to, you have no hope of changing anything.  You will stick with that person until you scream, "No more."  Then, there will be some Down Time until another Abusive Person steps into your life and the entire Scene rolls again. 

You will never change the Abusive Person.  Obviously.  The person who needs changing here is YOU.  If you are attracted to Abusive People, YOU need to figure out what is going on so that you can break this pattern. 

I knew that after several abusive relationships that I was in a Pattern.  I knew that I had to figure it out.  It wasn't a coincidence that every long-term relationship I'd ever had was Not Good.  There was some sort of emotional or verbal abuse in all of them.  The last boyfriend introduced the" joys" of being with a liar, cheater, and someone who would steal from you (on top of all of the other qualities I had already experienced).  I was already laden with a chronic migraine, so I knew that the stress of that relationship Was Not Helping.  It still took me YEARS to untangle myself from that Nightmare. 

I dated a Pretty Nice Guy after him.  There was zero chemistry there.  It is only now, with my current therapist, that I understand that he was not messed up enough for me.  Had he been a Hot Mess (and I don't mean this in a good way), I would have jumped back in.  He had potential.  He was rather aloof and emotionally not a "sharer."  However, that was not enough to hook me.  I needed someone who needed major rescuing or was constantly in and out.  Meaning he really loved me one day, but was then not into me at all.  You know... someone who could really wreck me emotionally.   This guy was simply pleasant.  My mom liked him a lot.

Now I understand that the dynamics in my family were not good. ::understatement::   My grandfather was a verbal and emotional abuser.  My dad tended to withhold affection from my mom, but never from my brother or I.  My dad's extended family were big believers in divorce and didn't take any junk from anyone.  All of the women just divorced their  husbands if they were liars, cheaters, abusers, or unpleasant people.  My great-grandmother divorced 5 times.  My grandmother divorced 5 times.  My aunt divorced 3 times.  Then she started living with men and kicking them to the curb.  Now, let's swing over to my mom's side of the family where it is a totally different story.  My mom's side of the family was filled with tales of abuse all the way around.  Every woman on my grandma's side was being verbally or physically abused by their husbands, and possibly their grown sons. However, No One Left.  It was a major dichotomy that I couldn't wrap my brain around. 

This is important; my parents each married someone just as screwed up as they were.   (In other words, both of my parents were the products of an abusive/dysfunctional household.)  However, they picked someone from the opposite end of the spectrum in terms of the "crazy."  My dad vehemently didn't believe in divorce and remarriage (after watching his side of the family), but this also caused him to be emotionally withdrawn.  My mother simply didn't want to marry a verbal abuser like her father.  She went to the other end and got someone so far out that he couldn't give her anything.   With these role models,  I involved myself with men like my grandfather, trying to resolve that relationship, or withholders of love, like my dad to mom, every single time.  Or possibly a combo of the two. 

People who are in abusive relationships are almost always trying to fix another relationship with a family member that is Unfixable.  The relationship with my Grandfather: Unfixable.  He passed away a long time ago, but even if he were still living, I could not make him suddenly become not emotionally or verbally abusive.  He was that way his entire life.  The relationship between my mom and dad: Unfixable.  I could not make my father become more emotionally available to my mother.   So, my pattern has been to get involved with people just like my grandfather, and father, to heal things that can never be healed.  It is the hamster on the wheel scenario.  The healthy person figures this out and decides to get off.  The unhealthy person never figures this out and relives this pattern the entirety of their life.

I am now on a quest to get me right.  I will know when I am there.  I will actually be attracted to the Right Guy from the start.  The one with all of the issues will no longer be the one who draws me like a Magnet.  So, I won't have to sing Wrong Song like a Battle Cry every few years into my relationship.  I will start choosing better because I will have taken the time to fix ME.

Rating: Life Lesson(s)

Have you ever been in an abusive relationship?  More than one?  Have you ever stopped to reflect on the pattern?  Has this post made you think about changing you so that you change the kind of person to whom you are attracted?  If you have never been in an abusive relationship, do you know anyone who has, and does this information help you understand abuse at all?


  1. I've never been in an abusive relationship, thank God, but I feel for you and what you had to go through.

    I think you hit the nail on the head when you said you've taken the time to fix you.

    That's where it all starts and, without starting there, you'll never be able to move on.

    Best wishes as you go down this path...

  2. Never been in an abusive relationship. But I do understand the Law of Attraction. Many people attract the wrong people because they don't feel worthy (deep down).

  3. Mark ~ It does all start with me. There will always be abusive people out there. Taking a pass on them shows that I have grown.

    Jay ~ I am very familiar with the Law of Attraction. We get we think about. We get what is familiar. We get what we understand. If something is beyond our scope, we can't possibly accept it into our experience. When we say it is "all about me," that really is true. We allow everything in. For the good or the ill.

  4. I'm extremely thankful that I have never been in an abusive relationship. However, I do know more than a few people who are. At present, a couple of these are trying to get themselves right. And I'm very much their cheerleader. Two separate people, not a couple. When the will is there, it's possible. I'm happy to be your cheerleader, too.

  5. You are one smart cookie. You may have had some help but you recognize the patterns of abusers and they all think they are sooooo unique but they're like peas in a pod. I've read, probably, all the books on narcissism and they are easy to spot because of their patterns. My friend, Marilyn, (the friend of 50 plus years that I often write about) and I were running into so many narcissists that we decided to study them in the "real." We called them, "our lab rats" and then compared notes with one another. We had enough material for a book but after a couple years, we got tired of "wackos" and went on something else.

    But you, my dear, coming from dysfunction, thought it was the norm and I fully understand that. But I'm really proud of you for breaking the chains to that pattern and coming out the winner. It sounds like you and your Mom are close like best friends.

  6. Carol ~ People who come from abusive places need all of the cheerleading they can get. It takes a strong will to break those old patterns. It also takes a good friend to call them out when they are falling back into an old pattern or Stinkin' Thinkin' as I have been known to call it.

    Manzanita ~ You are right in that all abusers are essentially the same. And all people who have been abused will keep choosing them. They might be slightly different in their form and function, but they are at the foundation the same animal. You will not change the abuser (aka narcissist). However, you can always change YOU. And, yes, my mom and I are close. Funny that you would pick up on that from this post....

  7. Robin-

    I hear you about being drawnto the wrong type....story of my life. Every relationship was with someone who was happy to let me give (I am way too giving and way too trusting) as long as I did not require much in return.

    Fortunately, I never made the mistake of marrying one of them.

    After fifty-one years on the planet, I have learned that there is no fixing or changing people.

    The behavior at the start of a relationship is the BEST IT IS EVER GOING TO BE. It is all downhill from there.

    The slope of the decline may vary, but that is absolutely a fact*.

    So when you are just starting to date someone, make sure the pedestal they put you on is high enough to weather future storms.

    And make sure you remember you deserve to be on a pedestal.


    *To any readers in good relationships-I am not saying love does not deepen and grow over time. But even in a fairy tale marriage there is behavior that is happened after several years that did not happen in the first few months. If you choose wisely, those behaviors are not a big deal. Choose poorly, and you find out that the "loan" that depleted your savings account was a charitable contribution.

    1. All I know to say to you is this: what about that person is attractive to you? I know that you are thinking "nothing in the end." But there is something, because you are drawn consistently to that type of person. It is a PATTERN. Until you figure out the Why of it, it isn't going to change. You will not be drawn to someone who isn't a taker, while you give. There is likely some family dynamic of taking and giving (or some family dysfunction) that you are trying to heal that is Unfixable. When you sort that one out, you are on the Right Road. It is a long one, but it is the right one. Be well, my friend.

    2. Well at this point I believe I have figured out the why, but I've also reached the age of "what's the point?"

      The last time I chose to pursue a relationship past a second or third date, there still hadn't been an African American in the White House who wasn't in a Secret Service blazer.

      I think everyone has some dysfunction they need to work through, and the lucky ones figure it out earlier in life.

      It took me into my fifth decade, but by that point I was also pretty accustomed to living alone.

      But I am well....and life is good!

      failure isn't about falling down,
      failure is staying down


    3. So long as YOU are happy with your life, that is all that matters.

  8. I've never been in an abuse relationship but I credit my role models. My parents were devoted to each other, together for 65 years before my mom died. They showed me how it's supposed to work so I knew what to look for. Hopefully you'll know it this time when you find it. God bless.

  9. LD ~ You were blessed to have such wonderful role models. Unfortunately, the world is becoming more and more dysfunctional. So, keep up the good work. In other words, keep being you for as many people as possible to see.

    JJ ~ I don't really understand your comment. I think you mean that you don't tolerate abuse, but this post is about understanding the pattern and getting better. So, one could interpret that you have zero tolerance for THAT. Brevity=confusing.

  10. Robin, you know how much I get you on this one! You and I had a wonderfully meaningful conversation touching on this subject when we met irl. That is still a moment that I treasure and use to 'check' myself in certain situations. It's nice to have a moment of reality to relate to when it comes to these nasty patterns!
    For those of us who were 'born into it', the abuse is no natural and anything else just feels weird... you know?
    But then there is that moment when we realize we have been seeing it all so backwards and everything we ever thought we knew when it comes to relationships is oh so wrong!
    These days I struggle more with being a bit aloof. I think I am somewhat gun shy. My husband gets the best of me and everyone else is kind of treated to the me 'lite'. I'll get there to a place of trust and enjoyment. For now, I'm dipping my toe in and once in while I let myself take a dip!

    1. I remember that conversation, too. I don't think I understood at that time precisely how much my family dynamic had messed up my head and decisions. I knew that I had made terrible choices in terms of boyfriends/husband, but I couldn't see The Big Picture completely. I knew that my Grandpa was playing a major role in it all. I didn't see how the dysfunction on my dad's side was contributing... In other words, I wasn't getting a "healthy picture" anywhere. I also didn't see that I was trying to "fix" these broken relationships by trying to recreate them. It's funny how you can be so smart about other people's dysfunction and not see your own at all.

      In seeing MY pattern, tapping out my issues, finally having a therapist that is really getting to the root of all MY junk, I feel like I am making progress.

      All that said, I understand why you have this desire to hold back. Relationships are scary. However, you are so awesome that if you meet anyone who is worth knowing, you should treat them to the you "full-bodied" because you are full of flavor and a treat to know!!! I certainly wish you lived closer!!!!


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