The real miracle

24 Apr 2012

Common things occur most commonly.  Miracles are known to be a bit harder to come by…   And abused women tend to have a really, really bad gambling habit, don’t they?  Inasmuch as they gamble on getting the one miracle they want, which is…

Their very own Mr Nasty shedding his fangs, sheathing his claws, doing a crash course at the School for Model Partners and turning, in a heartbeat, into Mr Wonderful.

A client of mine has just seen the miracle materialize in her own life…  The only thing is the miracle she got, wasn’t quite the miracle she was dreaming of.  It was actually rather better.

Let me explain.  My client had met and married Mr Wonderful.  He turned in very short order into Mr It’s-All-About-Me.  She was understandably heart-broken.  He’d been a wonderful Mr Wonderful… fleetingly.  She wanted Mr Mega-Wonderful back.  But Mr Mega-Wonderful was playing very hard to get.

How she yearned for her miracle!  She worked flat out for it.  If getting the miracle had been purely about working her socks off, that miracle would have fallen straight into her lap.

But, of course, that’s not how miracles work, is it?

The day finally came when my lovely client gave up on MR M-W – and the miracle.

She left, without a backward glance.  She got on with her life.

Now that left Mr Mega-Wonderful/Nasty with a serious void in his life.  But he had options:

  • He could find the next contender for the role of Beauty in his very own, rather dark, fairy tale.
  • He could have continued to harrass my client for the sheer hell of it…
  • He could have polished his phoney: “Darling, I see what a fool I’ve been.  If you just come back to me, I promise I will never, ever be mean to you again… for at least the next three weeks, provided you fall right back into line.”

What did he do?

Well, first off, he developed a taste for Humble Pie: he dined on it, repeatedly, with her parentswithout getting a food allergy.  And he didn’t promise her the world.  He honored her intelligence too much for that.  But he has been behaving much better ever since.  He has been owning responsibility for his own behavior, for the first time ever.

So, was that the miracle​?  

No.  That wasn’t the miracle, at all.  This is the miracle: 

She changed.  She’d come to realize she didn’t need him.  She discovered she could – and would – be perfectly happy either with or without him.  For as long as he fitted – comfortably – into her vision of her life, she would be with him.  And if he turned back into Mr The-Sun-Shines-Out-Of-My… she would be gone. 

It had stopped being all about her all consuming love for him, and her need to be with him. 

Instead, she’d learned to love and value herself.  That was the miracle that made all the difference.  In fact, that was what brought Mr Wonderful out of his hidey-hole.  

Her transformation had a big effect on him.  And that had happened, in part, NOT because she wanted it to, but because she’d stopped desperately trying to control the outcome, and turn him back into her fantasy. 

Now, this is one of those: “best not try this one at home” things.  It will NEVER work if you try to create the outcome you desperately want.  You’ll never out-manipulate – or control – an abusive man.   Besides, there is no earthly value in manipulating anyone.  

What happened with my client was very, very different.  She’d gone through the pain.  She’d done the work on herself.  And she was finally living the win-win situation. She could be happy with him, provided he stayed in Mr Wonderful-Enough mode; and she also know she could have a perfectly happy life without him.  She doesn’t need him for anything. 

Will they be happy together for the rest of their days?  There are no guarantees ever – and she knows that.  But she knows she will be happy for the rest of her days, with or without him.  That’s the true miracle.


Annie Kaszina, international Emotional Abuse Recovery specialist and award-winning author of 3 books designed to help women recognise and heal from toxic relationships so that they can build healthy, lasting relationships with the perfect partner for them, blogs about all aspects of abuse, understanding Narcissists and how to avoid them and building strong self-worth. To receive Annie’s blog direct to your Inbox just leave your details here.

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