Here in the UK it has NOT been a good time with 4 terrorist attacks in what seems like no time at all. That forces a person to think about the nature of terrorism. That, in turn, got me thinking about the nature, and not-so-hidden agenda of emotional abuser, narcissists and all emotional terrorists.
The aim of all terrorist attacks is, of course, to strike disproportionate terror into the hearts of their victims. Murder and mayhem are the tools they use in order to achieve their goals. In order to do what they do they have to be callous in the extreme. You could call them monstrous – and there can be no doubt that what they do is monstrous. However, I am always wary of straying down that path.
If you decide that these people are monsters rather than human, how can you blame them for what they do? It is, after all, in the job description of monsters to behave monstrously.
For me, the same holds true of domestic terrorists, otherwise known as emotional abusers, and narcissists. They do the deplorable things that they do to exert maximum fear and power over you.
The terrors that you feel, as a result of being around them, are exactly the terrors that they want you to experience. They have worked to create those terrors in you. They do so with the intention of making you feel powerless.
When they do their work “well” – from their point of view, at least – you don’t even realize quite what has happened, or how you got to feel the way that you feel. You simply know that you are terminallly unsafe. Then, your emotional abuse/domestic terrorist starts to look like your best protection.
Your world has become topsy-turvy.
What follows are the Top 10 Terrors of every emotionally abused woman that I have ever worked with. They all had those terrors because their partners had all used the same basic techniques to instil those terros into them.
Every kind of terror is equally deplorable.
#1. “I’ll never survive without him.” Like your emotionally abusive partner been good for your physical, mental and emotional health so far! A powerful subset of this fear, is
#2. “I’ll never survive financially without him.” Like #1, this is a direct result of the propaganda your emotionally abusive husband has fed you. What makes him a fair, unbiased and objective judge of the value that you bring to the workplace, and the people around you?
#3 “Nobody likes or values me – or ever will.” When you last looked at an emotionally abusive man’s passport, and/or birth certificate, where did it say his middle name was Everybody, or The World? The man seems to be laboring under a delusion that he is Spokesman for The Entire World. Much as it pains me to say this – NOT! – he appears to have a rather nasty case of egomania. Do not underestimate the significance of the second half of the word: “mania”.
#4 “Nobody else will ever want/love me.” See #3 Love is, of course, not just many splendored, but very precious – especially the occasional crumbs of love bestowed on you by Prince Alarming. It’s an awful, sobering thought that nobody else will ever love you as BADLY as he as – provided you learn from this awful period of your life… (Of course, it’s debatable whether the emotionally abusive relationship you’ve been in even merits the name of “love”.) I sincerely hope that nobody will ever love you again the way that he “loved” you. You deserve a much healthier, more nurturing relationship than you could ever have with him, otherwise why bother. What you need to do now, is start learning what makes you lovable and worthy of the very best. You already are lovable and worthy of the very best. He was just the idiot who could not see it.
#5 “It’s all over for me.” That could be your wake-up call. With him, it is all over for you. When did you last feel happy, or safe around him, for more than 5 minutes. Besides, how do you know what your future holds, anyway? If you have such an extraordinary capacity to read the future 100% accurately, how come you aren’t employed by government. For what it’s worth, the psychics I’ve met tell me that reading their own future is NOT their strong point.
#6 “It’s not safe out there for a woman on her own.” Of course it isn’t! Actually, other women manage it – rather a lot of other women but here’s the thing, whether or not it’s a snake pit out there, being with an emotionally abusive man surely is.
#7 “It’s different for me.” This is the single most dangerous belief any emotionally abused woman could possibly entertain. Correctly speaking, this belief goes: “It’s different for me because…” Reasons why it’s different for you can include anything you can possibly think of: “it’s different for me because I’m (supply your age).” “It’s different for me because I’m (supply any fact, or adjective that springs to mind).” “It’s different for me because… I only have one head.” Distinction, please: “It’s hard for you, because…” That’s absolutely true. Saying “it’s different for me” is, actually, just finding a form of words to explain why you’re stuck and don’t think you can move forward. How is that helping you?
#8 “I’m not good enough.” Good enough for what? If people had to pass their Nice Person Qualification before they were allowed to trot round the Universe, Mr Nasty wouldn’t be here. If everyone had to look like a Supemodel, the World population would be drastically reduced. The same goes for if you had to be capable of winning a Nobel Prize, bringing about World Peace or, say, writing a New York Times best-seller. You are more than good enough to be here, and be you. You’ve just been hiding your light behind a rather big bushel – you know the one I mean.
#9 “I’m worried about how People will judge me.” And so you should be!!! NOT. The people who don’t truly care about you will cheerfully vent to their Inner Beastliness. You can’t control them, and you can’t stop them. But, equally, you can’t make them truly care about you. That’s not how it works. So, why would you want to put up with the intense misery of an emotionally abusive relationship to avoid the – slightly less intense – misery of being judged by people who more care the sound of their own voice than they do about your best interests?
#10 “I can’t break away because I’m terrified of what he’ll say about me.” Let me guess; he’s a beacon of charm, and reasonableness, isn’t he? You’re frightened that if you upset him you’ll be responsible for turning Mr Sweetness and Light into a nasty, foul-mouthed, intimidating bully of a man. That would be too awful to bear. Therefore, you might as well as stay put. Better the bully you know than… the chance to have a life worth living. He’ll only ratchet up his tactics if he knows they’ll work. Otherwise he’ll have to look for fresh entertainment, and just come back to poke and prod you when he has an easy shot at you. Sorry to have to be the one to tell you that. You can’t stop him doing that, but you can become immune to the nonsense he comes out with.
If you still wonder why you can’t make your emotionally abusive relationship work, here is your answer. Your domestic terrorist is doing what works for him. He neither knows nor cares about shifting your relationship onto a democratic footing.
You cannot change him. However you can, and should. liberate yourself.
If you are struggling and need professional help, contact me.
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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