Anne, Eight in the Morning

Why Doesn’t She…?

A couple of years ago, in one of my stories I wrote in a character who being a survivor of domestic abuse and rape, went on to live a normal life. She completed her education, gained success in her career, grew extremely independent, and also found love again. Unfortunately for her, she was after many years tracked down by her ex-husband and brutally beaten and raped. Numerous situations, events, and other character influences led to that outcome, not to mention the ex-husband himself who did everything in his power to gain that outcome.

It was a difficult piece to write, because for one thing I needed to place my female character back into a situation from her past I had not described in too much detail, yet had to show it as a familiar and devastating fact of her life. It also required me to eliminate the story’s male protagonist completely from the picture and not let the plot line result in the cliched “boy saves girl in the nick of time.” scenario.

The reason I bring it up, is because of the reactions that part of the story received from some of my readers at the time. I received a few comments and emails questioning the victim’s lack of action in that situation, some asked why I had not shown her in a position of strength when she had already overcome so much, a few even held her accountable for her predicament. I remember one person asking why the character didn’t see past the deceit that allowed her abuser entry into her home, another mentioning that she should have at least learned some self-defence during her years away from her abuser.

Why did she let him in? Why didn’t she fight back? Why didn’t she kill him? Why didn’t she run?

It sparked discussions on the chapter, debates, and even a couple of fights. I have to say I was surprised that even in our society (South East Asia) where being a divorced woman is still considered a huge taboo and failure, women are so vehemently expected to do this.

The other day I was reminded of those discussions, when I almost literally stumbled into some intense “living room” conversation on sexual abuse and violence.

The discussion these women were having revolved mostly around a woman they all knew (and I have seen but do not know personally) who apparently has been living in an abusive marriage for the last several years. I sat by quietly for a while, listening to accounts of how sad her situation is, how often her husband abuses her, when he does it, the suggestion that the abuse is sometimes sexual as well, and how things are getting worse for her everyday. She is in her early thirties, has a good job, drives her own car, has a college degree… and so on.

Initially there was plenty of sympathy being shown towards her, and I voiced mine as well. Then, sadly, I waited for the inevitable to happen, sincerely hoping this group of women would disappoint me. But, they didn’t.

“Why doesn’t she leave him? Why is she just taking his abuse?”

Such questions have always made my hackles rise, and send my blood into a slow boil. When I was younger, I was more easily outraged by these thoughts and lashed out badly at people who I heard uttering such garbage. It’s difficult to not do that, even now, harder to understand where it is a lot of women feel they’re coming from when they ask this of a victim.

The question comes eventually because it is a thought, an expression which refuses to fully acknowledge the cause, the effects of abuse. It is I feel a form of denial.

“She should leave him.”

“How long can she keep taking his crap?”

“Why doesn’t she tell someone? Get help?”

“If I were her, I would *insert appropriate life altering action.*”

I have always wondered if the above thoughts are some sort of psychological defence mechanism for many who view abuse from the outside. Are these questions formed in womens minds because they lack empathy for their victimized sisters? Or is it because they are too afraid to actually consider they could very well become victims themselves and therefore assume a position of false superiority?

It is a thought I have never understood, and I don’t believe I ever will.

I don’t believe safety is the issue behind such questions and thoughts, and care for fellow women certainly isn’t. Are people really challenging abuse when they say this, or are they simply promoting more traditional ways which keep teaching women to “save themselves” while allowing the abuser to retain all power?

Isn’t safety basically a function of power? Isn’t power what all abusers really want? Isn’t constantly expecting and demanding that women save themselves just protecting predators?

I am not saying victims of domestic violence should stay put and never leave. But, why is there so much impatience shown towards them when they don’t, or feel they cannot? Why is society so quick to first question/blame the victim instead of questioning/blaming lack of prevention and punishment for the abuser in national laws? Do people really believe this world is just so hunky dory that a victim of any kind of abuse can simply up and walk away from what terrifies, beats and batters at her every single day of her life?

Apparently, many believe it is just that easy. After all, where there’s a will, there’s a way, and women who don’t conquer their abuse simply lack that will.

  • Have you avoided walking down an empty street at night for fear of being assaulted?
  • Have you purchased a more expensive train ticket to avoid being subjected to sexual harassment?
  • Have you worn “appropriate” clothing in an effort to appear “decent” in any situation, and/or because it was expected of you by relatives/society?
  • Have you visited the washroom in an unfamiliar place with one or more female friends, because there is “safety in numbers?”
  • Have you ignored a catcall/sexually suggestive remark from a male stranger on the street, and dismissed it as “one of those things which happen to girls?”
  • Have you quietly disengaged from certain online activity in order to avoid a possible sexual predator?
  • Are you constantly “aware” that there are “rapists out there” and so you must exercise caution while inwardly just praying it will someday get better?
  • Have you ever kept a safe distance from a male relative/family friend because you find his behaviour with you sexually uncomfortable? Have you not spoken up about it in the presence of other family members for fear of what they will think of you?
  • Have you told on a sexual predator and been blamed for “encouraging” him, or been advised to “just ignore/avoid him” which left you feeling frustrated and outraged?

Most women will answer yes to one or more of these questions, and/or know another female who will. These are things we do often, and mostly without even a thought as to what it is we’re really conforming to. Protecting the abuser, and allowing him to feel entitled to his violence against women.

Isn’t avoiding walking down that lonely street really the same kind of precaution a victim of abuse takes when she doesn’t enter her own bedroom where her abuser is sleeping? Instead of wanting her to, we expect her to leave that house, that presence in her bedroom which frightens and violates her. Yet, we continue passing our own lonely street daily, glance quickly towards it and hurry away at the mere thought of what might happen, whereas she knows for sure what is going to happen.

As women we all have this abuser in our lives, and we conform to his rules which enable and encourage him. How many of us can truthfully say we have saved ourselves from him? Isn’t he still out there raping us, beating us, harassing us, instilling us with fear of his power?

He is out there, everywhere. He dictates, and we do his bidding. We tip toe around him praying we don’t antagonize him, hoping we’ll be spared from his wrath, careful to either never challenge him or defy him too much for fear of consequence from both him and the society which protects him.

We are all his victims, he violates us every single day.

“Why don’t we just leave him? Why are we just taking his abuse?”

~*~

 

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47 thoughts on “Why Doesn’t She…?”

  1. I was changing my settings for the frequency of receiving the blog posts when the motif came for this post.

    Oh, there goes my darn sleep now!

    A person who’s in an abusive relationship, finally decides to open up to someone. Now that person would most likely respond with a ,”why are you still in it?” Or “you’re there for the kids”.
    We somehow never liten to just listen. We just want to offer out two cents, every time. If only we stop and ask the person what they feel and what do they want…

    Getting help IS still a massive taboo. But even when some do decide to come for help, it takes years before they can break through it.

    Physical aspect of the abuse, it is physical. The scars may or may not always go away. But the mental trauma , the scars..they’re the hardest ones to heal.

    And you often need someone to listen to you.
    If we let it all bottled up, our society really has made a way of fucking people over.
    Arrey, what happens if your husbands hits. What will the society think? You a divorcee? No,no,no!
    Silence, again really does more damage.

    Why, a person decides to stay…heck many reasons can be given. And, there can be none too. Why…it really shouldn’t be the question you want to ask.
    They’re will be people like a character, the mother of the mentioned story, who’ve got such resilience that they’ll make. Most don’t.

    I wish we all were more empathic towards others. And not the jump the gun and judge everyone and eveything.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Ands abuse doesn’t always have to what a woman goes through.

      Like how can you even ask a child hey dude, how can you let xyz abuse you?

      Abuse -physical, mental, can happen to anyone,anytime.
      How to decide to look at it, deal with it, is entirely your choice.
      Its how we bring up our kids.
      Do we tell our daughters that don’t go out at night or something untoward would happen and you’d be to blame.
      Or do we tell them to go live the life as its meant to be, free of fear.

      Liked by 4 people

    2. And its about one’s belief in themself.
      Its magical how a few words from a mere stranger can light a spark in one person , to believe in themself
      From years of abuse, how one is made to feel worthless , changes don’t happen overnight.

      I hope we see its more than a Why. I hope we realise there is a person . not a reason.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. “Why don’t we just leave him? Why are we just taking his abuse?”

    I an DW groupie -probably a lot like a 70s flower child who has finally found her fav rock band. I stalk, post and feel the sense of happiness from just being here- its like Home and a school for my soul. Why I mention this, is because you guys not only give me words and wisdom but you aptly present a mirror image which makes me introspect myself and just spend that moment of solitude with just me thinking about my thoughts, beliefs and actions. And this is exactly what this post did to me. It’s rakhi and no matter wherever the crazy lot of us- brothers and sisters be, we make sure to have a great great time and just madhouse fun. But you know what made this made more perfect today especially because internalizing these words and I felt the tears tickling down. They were not for the subject , definitely not about us women but the eyes were moist because this made me question myself .

    I have heard about many emotional abuse victims – it used to irritate me about why these strong willed women were – what seemed to me- “putting up with the abuser”. It made me angry that these women were not making efforts to get out of the house, marriage and I falsely – which I realized now , thought that these women were emotionally either weak or too conditioned to take it all.
    It bothered me when they inspite of all the out doors chose to live in that house and bear it. I regret but up up till this post , I was extremely critical about the women , considering the abuser in my mind is the vile creature who needs to be defeated and destroyed – so I thought if a woman can step out of his house, it would be his first defeat.

    As emotional and economical power seemed to be the most commonly used tools which these A-holes use to keep the women subservient and under their cage. Like you pointed out , I was probably angry at women for not using their preventive measures like education, job , family support to fight this menace . I am fortunately raised by a family where we women especially have the sense of power to run our lives the way we want , so the thought of someone with means of an out still enduring the abuse was bewildering. I have had asked this question a lot in my family while discussing this issue but unfortunately the answer “it’s not easy” was not well understood by me . Perhaps it’s the outsider perspective or just like how my Dad says I am a bit too rigid when it comes to my own core principles that I end up expecting the same from others irrespective of my lack of understanding about the matter. Sigh, my dad would be chuckling away reading this. But this is true, since I am so sure that i won’t be putting up with this ever or I would leave or destroy the abuser , I tend to expect the same reaction from others. Forgetting that not only I am far removed from the horrors but also resilience and fight can be of different kind. I cannot say that i would ever fully understand some of the decisions as I still and would struggle to fully comprehend this situation and the subsequent reactions but I won’t ever be so dismissive. So thank you, Anne. This meant a lot.

    The abuser is not relegated in the background for me but he is someone that I want to personally strangle and squish with my foot. And probably in the victim , i see myself and hence my extreme reactions about making the A-hole suffer , not letting him ever win. It’s like we the outsiders or atleast I , channel our anger towards society and the abusers through the victim, so when we think she is not fighting or doing enough to resist or stop the abuse- in her , we inflict our sense of disappointment, defeat and just anger. Rather than understanding her we seek her to be the crusader of our cause . The one who becomes the poster girl for our imaginary fight against society . Not realizing that not only we are being unfair to that woman but we are also being a coward. Rather than focusing on your actions and resultant change in the society , we look for others to start the march , while we get to slogan shout our way to glory. This is our reality. The sheer confusion of protect or fight is what ales my gender and me. Somewhere by making the woman the protagonist of this change , I am again bringing her as the core of this issue, while the abuser and society smirk and skirt away . Oh holy molly, I unknowingly join the hypocritical society that I criticize when I start dictating the actions, behavior of the woman.

    Why is society so quick to first question/blame the victim instead of questioning/blaming lack of prevention and punishment for the abuser in national laws?—–
    Because question and blaming the national laws grabs headlines for few days and then like everything else, they remain ignored . The lack of faith in administration and law makers to not only make effective preventive measures and punishments but also the inefficiency of their implementations.
    The society particularly women are forced to go for protection because they think by equipping themselves with enough means they can avoid, stop this crime. Yes they believe themselves to be inadequate of something which keeps them suppressed. So they need a false sense of superiority of a career, education , defence classes to believe that these things won’t happen to them. The fact that they have given up on others to prevent the abuse makes them cautious and prepared. The centuries of abuse, gender discrimination has obligated their confidence in themselves. The fact that abuse still continues to be an ill-informed subject shows how women will rather not know about it in detail but would spend hours practicing kick-boxing to prevent such experience. Take the Delhi gang rape case- I was not surprised when i saw young girls living outside the city exclaim and declare that they won’t ever visit the place. Was their reaction born out of a sense of prevention? Was it wrong – that I dunno?
    The laws , governance and punishment seem very long term and unsteady means .This lack of faith (right on many account) in systems makes prevention seem like a safer option.

    Do people really believe this world is just so hunky dory that a victim of any kind of abuse can simply up and walk away from what terrifies, beats and batters at her every single day of her life?
    I don’t know if I believe the outside world would be pleasant and happy place but because the truest effects of abuse remain so alien that the most immediate reaction to the outsider would be to get out of the system . because the thought of someone living that life and loosing the battle – is a very scary nightmare for every woman. I know , and accept that this is one truth that I would always face a difficult time acknowledging. Naivety- in underestimating the cruelties of the outside world, unware of the trauma and the consequence of abuse . It is the fear of seeing a spirit of broken down because it messes up our reality and our happy/safe bubble.

    Her known horror is our unknown nightmare, we want her to run away from it because of fear that some of us would become so defeated that the will to fight would be extinguished.

    He is getting away with it because of my inability to trust anybody but myself to fight him . Because even with the full awareness of “I” the nagging feeling of me being bested by him makes me want to be safe and away. It is because my voice is not one with the other million victims of his , which makes me fear the strength of his gender and his kind. And then it is the sad reality that somewhere we women have come to believe ourselves as the deprived second hand members of this society who don’t have the power and influence of changing this society – by running behind the tangibles of education, career etc we are falsy trying to establish an equality which we believe we lack. In the rush to protect, we have forgotten our power of nuture – we need to start inculcating the girls and the boys around us about what equality truly means. We need to realize that education or a paycheck doesn’t make a woman superior to other , but they both are equal-emotionally , physically and otherwise. And they both stand on the equal power sharing mechanism of this society. Women lawmakers, housemakers and the women with voice or not, all need to start from within themselves about how they want the others to view them. It is time to change the meaning of “be safe” – rather than advising the girls we need to drill the abuser and his kind that – Be safe or you will be severely punished, exterminated from the very society . We need to turn the tide and instill the fear of shame and society in these abusers. I know this is going to be a long long battle but the rather than being cynical we need to work harder at ourselves and around us to make that time come sooner and now.

    The woman in that story – was and will always be a Hero. She taught me alot and she lives in a my heart. Because she bears the testimony of my darkest fear.

    There in a Archer book I noticed Anne D written in one of its pages, a smile appeared and I thought of this place and you. Still don’t know how and why you manage to keep my soul writhing for hours and days but I am not complaining. This is my coming of age party .

    So to you Queen A , Chani and DW readers, I will forever be in debt.

    Much love and big giant hugs. Few sloppy kisses as well.

    Gracias.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. “I don’t know if I believe the outside world would be pleasant and happy place but because the truest effects of abuse remain so alien that the most immediate reaction to the outsider would be to get out of the system . because the thought of someone living that life and loosing the battle – is a very scary nightmare for every woman. I know , and accept that this is one truth that I would always face a difficult time acknowledging. Naivety- in underestimating the cruelties of the outside world, unware of the trauma and the consequence of abuse . It is the fear of seeing a spirit of broken down because it messes up our reality and our happy/safe bubble.

      Her known horror is our unknown nightmare, we want her to run away from it because of fear that some of us would become so defeated that the will to fight would be extinguished.”

      And, THIS is precisely the problem with a large part of society today.Because what much of society is saying to the victim is “Shame on you for not protecting US.” People (women) on the outside have their reasons either conscious or not as to why they are quick to place judgement on a victim. However, from where I sit, if they are not victims themselves their reasons are irrelevant, invalid, and downright selfish selfish. Not fully understanding is one thing, but where is this entitlement coming from? (Also, is there really an excuse for lack of knowledge these days?) As I said, my lack of tolerance for this bubble ensconced tribe of judges has worn thin. There is no “fear” as it seems there is more a “Oh for heaven’s sake deal with your problem and don’t bother us with it” mentality in play here. A reader here just gave a pretty clear account of how it happened to her friend in the workplace. That wasn’t fear, it was intolerance of her situation. They WANT her to fight her battles without their knowledge just so that their bubbles remain intact. How is this human in any form?

      A victim who is facing horrors should take pause and say to herself “Oh gosh darn it, another bruise,some broken bones this time, my mind is messed up, I don’t know how I feel, how I’ll save myself, if I even can, BUT what is MORE important is how can I stand up to my abuser so all those non-victimized females out there stay happy?” – For this and this alone I lose all patience. The ones on the outside are not the issue here, SHE is. Their fears do not need to be pacified, HERS do. Their pretty little bubbles go bust and the world comes into focus when they hear about abuse? Who cares? Her LIFE is being ruined.

      If they’re expecting a victim to put on her big girl panties against physical/emotional/mental abuse just so she can pacify them that the monster in their closet has been dealt with, then this society is beyond help.

      Liked by 9 people

    2. This goes back to the question we were discussing sometime before, ” Don”t Judge!” We have NO, NO fucking idea what it is to go through this kind of abuse. Some of us have relatives friends but NONE of us unless we have experienced it ourselves know the fear of that situation and the boundaries it builds within us. Especially in the case of domestic abuse. I have so often met women at lunches and parties who talk about some poor relative or friend who goes through this and emphatically state “she should leave that looser. I would have left instantly”. Then she would sneak a look at her husband who is frowning at her and immediately cow down and change the subject into something else where her opinion is not needed

      How can we assume just because someone is educated and has a job she can march out and do on her own? and after that does life turn into a pink hue and the man behaves like and angel and lets her be. People who do walk out .. walk out to fight the world alone. No one is there most of the time, None of the champions who told her to do it would be there to help even with a kind word. How many of us can boast that no matter what we decide our families will stand by and support us 100%?

      I wont even go to discuss about rape because there is no question of anyone asking for it. Nothing asks for it. What we must work on is pushing for legislature and society to take more responsibility starting from us before we start telling the victim to stand up and be a hero and be a role model for all of us. First of all we as women should start by not labeling the victim and judging her. Start by treating her as someone who is not some helpless animal but a human being who had something terrible happen to her. Not from “oh no poor thing she is ruined for life”. If you stop with the judging and start from a point of a friend you will start with an ocean of positivity.

      What people fail to realize is that there are there are many emotional, social, legal, practical boundaries that stand in the way of someone who is in any type of abusive situation from leaving that situation. Just saying DO IT doesn’t cut it. This is not a Nike advert.

      Start by NOT judging the victim.

      Liked by 7 people

  3. Donno what 2 say … Ur articles always make us think beyond the normal … Always an eyeopener … U read n thn u question ur own sensibilities … Its so true whatever u hav written … Yes the only option v all give the abused is leave the abuser … But v all r a third party. .. Never exactly able to understand what exactly the abuser is going thru … Walking out doesnt seem 2 be the best option initially n u try 2 wrk things out … Hav a cousin who is going thru somthn like ths … With 2 kids now she has filed for a divorce but the shit being thrown at her by her inlaws is terrible … God give strength 2 her n all such women … Go girl v stand by u always ….

    Liked by 5 people

  4. That was wonderful post Anne

    It truly touched my heart…..

    The constant refrain we hear is its better to safe than sorry!!!

    I remember when in recent news a girl was raped and then beaten to death….the constant refrain was it was a deserted alley and why did she not take her office cab or any other public transport!!!

    I mean what the heck ….but in the end of the argument all the person who was blaming the girl said was wouldn’t you better be safe than sorry!!!

    Ah how I hated those words then…partly because they were true!!!

    As for abuse another factor i can see is ease with which people think taking those life altering decisions are

    One of my ex-colleagues who managed to walk away from one such marriage….still used to wear her Magal sutra (it is more like gold chain) and wear kumkum in forehead parting….one day he came to office created big scene and hit her….

    All her colleagues did was stare at it as if some Serial or movie is playing live and after that justify that jerk’s act saying she sent him signals by wearing the symbols of marriage while the poor girls said she wore them just out of habit and sense of comfort…..before marriage she used to wear a plain chain with fancy pendant and now since it was replaced by this…she is just used to wearing it!!!!

    But i don’t think anybody can understand her because thy were all more comfortable finding a reason to blame her for what happened to her!!!
    They did not want think on the fact the guy was psycho it was better to blame her in the case!!!

    After much convincing from some of us then she filed a police case…and then divorce which she luckily got!!! But so much happened in the meanwhile….he almost ruined her career!!! (She actually fled form his house and he burned all her qualification related certificates in front of her!!! )

    another aspect people fail to understand it emotional abuse!!! As long as the abuse doesn’t have any physical marks women are supposed to bear it which happened in her case as initially it was emotional abuse….
    She used to feel totally depressed and all pessimistic…. Only when she joined work did she started retaliating to the emotional abuse which then became physical!!!

    If only her parents had listened to her earlier!!!! All they felt was she was not compromising!!!

    I don’t know if my rant makes sense but hats off to your write up!!!

    Liked by 10 people

    1. Thank you very much for sharing your friend’s story with us. It wasn’t at all a rant in my opinion, rather an extremely clear picture of the reality that many survivors face, of what our society is. Women have lost their lives when they have walked out, their childrens lives get threatened… all sorts of things. I’m happy your friend was able to find her way out of her situation and come out stronger. I wish her the best.

      Thank you again.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Thank you actually!!!!

        There are some perspectives we need to wake up to!!! Thank you for that!!!!

        Loved your other posts regarding victims also…..does a video of that female journalist really exist and has it not been reported or anything!!!

        I for one found even Mardaani trailer offensive…

        Liked by 3 people

  5. This is a very thought provoking topic Anne … thanks for activating and stimulating our otherwise dormant grey cells with such intense discussions …
    The malady of abuse be it sexual/physical or mental is a serious problem in our society … and I feel that all of us have whether knowingly or unknowingly been abused sometime or the other in our lives 😦
    I blame it on upbringing … right from the time a boy is born he is made to feel that he a superior being while his sibling ( a girl) is the inferior one … even when the two fight the girl is supposed to give her favorite toy to her brother because either he is “chota bhai “or he is the ” bada bhai” … this disparity begins at childhood … is carried forward till adulthood where the boy is the sole inheritor of his fathers property as the girl will be married off and will be going away to another family and the family wealth should stay in the family … and all that she is entitled to is what she gets from her parents during her marriage … some jewelry … perhaps a car if her parents can afford it … and a few things to set up home ( if they are setting up a new home ) and more affluent parents gift the couple a flat …
    The boy of the family thinks that he is a king and everyone including his wife is his subordinate ( paon ki juti ) and has to obey to her masters every whim and fancy … and God forbid if she happens to voice her opinion and she retaliates … she has had it … then starts the physical abuse and the dissatisfaction of not getting enough from her parents home and so forth … It is just a vicious cycle …
    So I totally blame “The Mother ” for creating this beast in our society … by giving birth to a boy she thinks that she has created God incarnate himself …
    Sad to say that this is still very very common and happening all the time around us … the daughter is just a daughter while a “Son” is a “Son” so he is forgiven even the gravest of all mistakes …

    Anne … I seriously feel that the root of all our problems lie with our childhood and upbringing … if parents AND grandparents think of a daughter and son as equals and openly show their beloved sons that girls are to be loved and respected too I seriously think that the problems that we face will be lessened considerably … 🙂

    Never written such a lonnnnnng comment 😉

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I agree. Upbringing matters most of all. However, if the blame is to be placed, I would more likely place it on “The Father” than on the mother. We still very much live in a patriarchal society, and the role of “mother” is basically viewed as the bearer of children and then on to raising them according to the rules set by the man. She is considered a second class citizen who must submit to her husband and later to the whims of her sons. How many families do we see even today where brothers have a say over their sisters lives more than even their own mothers do? She is forced to allow him the privileges he enjoys, forced to treat him like a king and so on. Of course there are some who indulge their sons, but most are allowed to do nothing else BUT that. I know of men who as adults sit at dining tables and expect their mother/sister to serve them a meal, then clear up, later their wives have to do it. And, they do it why? Because they watched their fathers do it, they observed their dads using their male authority over their mothers and learned to do it themselves. It’s a cycle, and once again it is being left up to the women to make the changes. No one will hold the man accountable for treating his wife like shit. The movie KKKG brought this to light in more ways than most care to admit. His wife was his doormat. Once the male decided, it was decided. His wife could not even share her thoughts, leave alone oppose him. His son was treated like a God till the father put an end to it because he was pissed off about his son’s gf/wife. What could the mother do? Not a damned thing. His word was law and that was that. 10 years of silence and the godly son became a ghost to his own mother. There is a saying that the best gift a father can give his children is to love (and respect) their mother. Wise words.If he respects his wife, his daughters will be more likely to expect men to respect them, and his sons more likely to respect women.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. True Anne … very well said … and you’re so right … it is the MAN who thinks that he is the be all for everything … and a woman who has produced a son is considered a Goddess because she has brought a dickhead into this world …
        I know of one such family … the lady had four daughters before finally giving birth to a “Son” jai ho … and when her daughter in law gave birth to a son the very first time … her husband went and told their daughter in law that you have achieved what your mother in law couldn’t at the very first attempt itself ! How obnoxious could he have been !

        Liked by 4 people

    2. I don’t think upbringing is the sole reason… I would have agreed if these were occurring only in societies like India with patriarchy and being a male is held in high esteem… It happens a lot in free societies like US as far as I have read about these issues… The women here also stay in abusive marriage for a lot of reasons…it is not easy to leave – emotionally the foremost…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Not the sole reason, although a large part of the problem I feel. Mainly, because I don’t believe free societies are as non-patriarchal as they appear to be. The average sentence for a rapist in the United States is approx 5-7 years if I’m not mistaken, and survivors of rape there are STILL asked what they were wearing prior to the rape. Women are constantly objectified in the west and more blatantly than they are in the east. Domestic abuse victims fall under the same umbrella, and since many women there also don’t leave due to the same fears as their counterparts in the East, I’m thinking the problem exists everywhere. Society as a whole is raising a bunch of power hungry freaks and refusing to accept it. Like that American woman who just earlier this year wrote an open letter to “young teen girls” telling them how to behave in public and on social media so that her precious sons would not succumb to temptation. She could be called a kook, but thousands agreed with her stance. That is just raising bullshit in my opinion.

        Liked by 4 people

  6. A little more thought , perhaps the lack of acknowledgement , understanding about the Battered wife syndrome or victims syndrome could among others be a reason why we turn immune to emotional turmoil of a victim?

    The thing is in South Asia( India in particularly) psychological , emotional traumas, PTSDs and depression are not considered as a disease, there is a lot of taboo attached to it. So it is unfortunate that mental health of a human being let alone of a victim is ignored. Hence the psychological part of the trauma never is understood.

    Could it be possible that even with all the support in the world the emotionally fragile victim might find it difficult to walk out? If so , then her regrouping as an individual would not only need her loved ones support but also the society. But then there should be no judging if she would need tangibles like job, education, money to rebuild her confidence on her own.

    I doubt there is much faith in legislature- especially when they even refuse to acknowledge marital rape and domestic violence.
    But validation is very important to a BWS patient and it is essential and most important that the victim is never made to feel like the cause.

    I do think the labeling is also due to the reactions of closed ones of the victim. The very ambiguous way they deal with this situation further makes the victim feel tainted or lost. Upbringing and family structure is very varied and perhaps becomes one of the reasons why we would never be able to understand the true extent of the surroundings a victim goes through.

    The outside world would never be easy , especially considering the fragile state of the survivor , yet we as a society have to make it easier in whatever way possible. So that – this “out” does not become a bigger horror. The society shaming of single women needs to stop.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Spot on!… And I’ll say one more thing from my life in the lines of @uniquebluerose ‘s comment about her colleague… I had an Indian colleague who went through the same – physical abuse (came to office with a black eye one day), emotional abuse and infidelity by her husband while being pregnant with her second child with him… She doesn’t have parents and was brought up by her grandparents and did not want to burden them emotionally in their old age with her issues or leave him…To be honest, I didn’t know how to help her or even offer support… For all I know, he might come and attack me or my family (the fear you are talking about)… So I just listened to everything she had to say without commenting… We are not working together now/ not much in touch…

    They are still together.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I followed some of the story you referenced. The way I looked at the character back then is a lot different than how I feel after going through a rough phase… Getting away isn’t easy…. Sometimes, I think you never get away.

    Liked by 4 people

  9. I read this post the same day you posted, Anne. I wanted to take some time before I gave my point of view. Now reading through this post one more time and the various comments that followed, I couldn’t help but wonder –

    How many women reading this post, the writer herself included, will confront a man who they know is an abuser? By confronting, I dont mean you have to go all Phoolan Devi on him [would be awesome though], a simple phone call to the police could also save someone’s life.

    I ask this question to all of you, because from where I come from, women hesitate to stand up for each other in a situation as grave as this. Reasons are various. Their own safety, for example. I am guessing you all come from the same place as well, huh?

    I have known women and worked with women who have been through this abuse. Heaven only knows the years of therapy I had trying to understand this stuff. When that failed, I took up a course to educate myself on human behaviour. And no, I still haven’t been able to figure it out.

    Some of us have passed judgements like the women you referred to in your post, Anne. Lets not kid ourselves. I spent the better half of my 20’s trying to figure out this shit. The shit being “How long can she keep taking his crap?” And I have an answer too. An answer from the victim’s point of view –

    Because she might love him? Because she thinks she can change him? Because her self confidence took a severe beating? Because she thinks its a nightmare that will cease when she opens her eyes? Because she hopes the rapes will cause enough blood loss for her system to shut down and die? Because life just isn’t worth living anymore? And that she just doesn’t care for herself? And that she is angry at the world and everyone around her? And that she doesn’t trust anyone anymore?

    Also, its not your shit to deal with till it happens to you?

    I can go on, really. And it won’t be pretty, ladies.

    Dont ask me how I know or who gave me the right to give an explanation from the victim’s point of view. How, who and why are not important. I just had to. I want this judgement to end. Effective, immediately. Next time any of you come across a woman or a girl who went through/is going through this horror, please don’t ask this question. Even if its inside your head. Unless you are ready to confront the man in question or actually DO SOMETHING to help the woman in question, dont even bother mentioning about the incident to anyone.

    Keep it inside like every other shit you have taken in your life as a woman and let it die a natural death. We are anyways next in line for extinction.

    Sincerely,
    Angry and Vulnerable.

    Liked by 8 people

  10. The only thing i want to say that its not easy, no their might be no ,lack of resources n help.
    The only thing that holds an independent woman from coming out of her situation is FEAR…
    Fear of the unknown, fear of being judged, fear of losing the trust of the most important person of her life, fear of facing the society(not for herself bt her family or children)
    Its not easy, it is hell difficult n only those who have encountered this fear can understand this…

    Liked by 3 people

  11. “Why don’t we just leave him? Why are we just taking his abuse?”

    ^^While I was still haunted by the above statement, a friend mailed me an article http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffbercovici/2014/08/07/what-its-like-raising-money-as-a-woman-in-tech/ .

    The article’s writer works in a sector which is somewhat part of the industry that I operate in. It is pretty infamous for its skewed male : female ratio. Mind you , even though the job contract says no discrimination on the basis of gender among others, the fact that I can count most of the females working in my organization on my fingers while men would need a hundred hands and some more to have their final count in.

    The people in my sector are pretty much married to the jobs. We spend weekends, nights and moon shines moaning about the job. Since work environment basically comprise our domestic life, so it seemed relevant to talk about the abuse here.

    The reason why I turn to this article here is because it shows how we are abused in every walks of life and sometimes we are not able to recognize it. A while back someone asked if the reason why I was so accepted at my work place was because I spoke “their” language – sports, jokes, basic shenanigans. At that time I dismissed it and said but I have always been like this and my “buddies” just are awesome fun lot. But then now I don’t think that dismissive argument will come off easily to me , there is a nagging feeling that perhaps because of my hobbies which might seem more boyish , it could have worked in the work bonding and allowed me entry to all the non-formal gatherings like squash matches, football viewings etc. So a girl who might not share similar taste could have felt isolated, she might have intentionally or unintentionally overlooked by this male-dominated field. Even though her talent might have trumped all others in reality. I do confess that I have had worked and seen days where I had to work harder just to prove and make my presence relevant , because of the initial dismissive attitude towards my gender. Clothes, after-work hours, investor meetings , travel – they might sound glamorous on paper but they like a good concealer hide the marks of gender discrimination, abuse etc.

    Another point which made this article very important for me was that like many victims of Domestic Violence , women like this author walk a fine line where the price of the “out” is too heavy for them to pay. They compromise because a lot of what matters to them are at stake. It could be kids, stability, family pressure, society etc. So they compromise and prefer the grey-ness of their lives. Now the author here is educated, strong-willed and clearly a very very determined person , yet she preferred not to voice her disapproval because neither the society, law makers would have stood by her. I think to someone like me this does explain why some women struggle to opt out from an abusive marriage and how it is never an easy option.

    Interestingly a gender less image not only stop stereotyping but also gives a fair opportunity. I wonder how would our society be where its not my gender defining my identity?

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Now reading back to back kind of emotional posts n coming to this WORTH SOME AWARD. Love u for coming up always with awesome post trust me I will owe u big time for all the learnings I m having. I m like guilty as caught coz I do the same ask the victim to leave that man. But reading this I was doing question answer in my own head like really why we do that y not instead of asking we just let them pour their heart n give the shoulder they needed. Why they don’t leave their husband. one thing u told that divorced woman has no place in rhis society. the women who r asking her to leave the abuser will b the ones who will start criticizing her for leaving her husband n at some point may be they will weven start saying that may be the fault wass in the women.

    Why is she stayimg still with him?

    now if I just give a little of thinking I realize that more than sympathizing wid the victim what we do is pouring our frustration that y is she standing for herself. We don’t want to understand her her situation its more like why r u disturbing me by sharing why don’t u just end it. There can be so many reasons like she is doing it for kids to save them from the pain of broken family. May b she knows the pain the society will put her through. The labels she wll get.May be she is too optimistic for her own good and so on. What we should is confront that man. His or her family should stand for her. if we think this question itself is abuse for her. Why she needs to justify what’s she is doing what I m visualizing is a tortured soul again being tortured.

    Isn’t avoiding walking down that lonely street really the
    same kind of precaution a victim of abuse takes when she
    doesn’t enter her own bedroom where her abuser is
    sleeping? Instead of wanting her to, we expect her to leave
    that house, that presence in her bedroom which frightens
    and violates her. Yet, we continue passing our own lonely
    street daily, glance quickly towards it and hurry away at
    the mere thought of what might happen, whereas she
    knows for sure what is going to happen.

    so true

    He is out there, everywhere. He dictates, and we do his
    bidding. We tip toe around him praying we don’t antagonize
    him, hoping we’ll be spared from his wrath, careful to either
    never challenge him or defy him too much for fear of
    consequence from both him and the society which protects
    him.

    tell u honestly at the end of this have tears in my eyes thank u Anne for always coming up with these posts u have no idea how much I love u for this. Thank you!
    lots of love n hugs

    Liked by 1 person

  13. The number of women who walk through the Drs door, or seek out help is very small. And out of them, very few actually make it out ‘alive'(physical AND emotionally) from abusive relationships.
    Denial.
    Its takes around half a dozen sessions at times to just get them to accept that yes, its happened. Yes, it happened to you.

    I still vividly remember watching this one Oprah episode that was on rape victims. There was a police cop who’d dealt on numerous cases on rape, battered spouses. Yet, when her husband physically abused her…its took that cop a long time to get out that relationship. She kept saying I couldn’t believe it that it was happening to me.

    It’ll be centuries or millenniums before we’d ever see the women be treated as an equal.

    The fact that some countries made marital rape illegal only a couple of decades ago, speaks for itself.
    The fact that women aren’t allowed to visit holy places when they’re menstruating. So yes, there is more focus on a proactive approach now, and yes, for women.

    We might say why should we be the ones taking kick boxing classes ..why us? The reasons have been given by so many of us.
    It is unfortunate but then it does help save someone’s life. Their own maybe. It does help them feel- stronger. Makes them feel safe
    Yea, there’s no guarantee that they’d be safe for ever.

    We might feel very strongly about these issues and like its been mentioned by couple already, how many would be willing to take a stand when the time comes?
    Why can’t men be taught to respect women? Why aren’t they brought up that way?
    But then why the men? Why aren’t we telling our daughters that, go be yourself. You’d just as much as a person as your brother. You stand equal?

    I guess there’s also this need to justify everything.
    We know something so wrong yet we’ll find a way to justify it.
    ~Oh it must the work stress. Or its the alcohol. I love him. What will the society say? What will happen to the kids? ~

    We really need to focus on acceptance too. Ignoring or being in denial will not get anyone, anywhere.

    I’m not fully equipped to deal with such cases. So many times you’d cry. And yes there is that frustration, you wish you could get them out. But you can’t.
    I do always tell my friends and cousins and family members, store certain hotline numbers.
    Not everyone is equipped to deal with such issues. And these hotlines can be accessed on an anonymous basis. If not you, then if you know someone, you can always get help from them.

    When you come across someone who’s in a abusive relationship, you juat never tell them to either deal with it or get out of it already.
    Confrontation does no one any good. It moreboften that not exacerbates the situation.
    If its a close someone, should ask them how they are and what they plan to do? It has to be gradual . They should always feel that someone is there for them. Having been in abusive relationship will lead to them being in severe depression. Suicide, oh god, the unfortunate end. We have to be careful of what we say? Just listening would make a whole lot difference.
    For a work colleague, let them know you’re there if they need help. Shouldn’t come across as preaching, or imposing.
    It always starts with a plan.
    The cases where we hear someone made it out when they confronted as compared to the ones that didn’t, is extremely low. Its always dealt in an individual basis. my story will be different to yours.

    Its amazing how much out body speaks for us. Our tone makes a massive difference.

    Instead of us being taught WHAT to think, I hope in the future its just HOW. I’m not a parent yet but I dread it when I’ll have kids of my own. Under my care I can Toba large extent make sure they’re being given a good understanding of things. But what happened when theysbtep out? On the bus they’ll maybe come across a kid who’s parent abuses another and for that child violence is OK? We cannot control that, can we?
    Heck I’ve family members who accept domestic abusers. Its OK for them?

    When ibtalk to people or family and friends… Its saddens me how lowly we think of our own selfves. How we can let a sexist remark pass Sooo many times because , well why bother. That person IS like that. Yada yada.

    Before we ever ask the why, think of even, remember there’s a person(s)on the other side.

    P.s I really should start using the laptop to comment.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. HELP!

    right i want all of u to help me i have a serious problem right now a friend well she’s a neighbour has 5 kids age 38 she has decided to decorate her house sadly her husband the control freak he is what he says goes has driven me up the wall

    she’s an educated girl her parents bought her house as a gift so her house is in cash unlike me where i pay my mortgage every month

    i had to push and bug her to refurbish her house, her husband has got her under his thumb, 2 days go she wanted to pick up some paint called me and asked if i would like to go i agreed once we got there (her 2 daughters had chosen the colour from the catalogue) i asked her to pick silk paint rather than matt affect her reply was she had to call her husband, i asked the shop assistant to educate her on silk affect verses matt affect, assistant walked away i turned around only to see her calling her husband again who replied u purchase the matt affect cause ‘I’m” painting I decided to keep calm and we came back with me giving her the silent treatment.

    my mother visited her twice yesterday, both occasions she cried her eyes out telling my mum her husband is a nice guy just gets influenced by his sisters

    she also said he had replied to her by saying ‘don’t try to order me about, I will do something when i feel like it’

    i sat down with my mother and tried explaining that this friend or should i say a neighbour of mine has serious issues which i don’t know how to handle

    she calls me at weird times to talk, dissects her problems and bores me to death where i get close to pulling my hair out

    never listens to the advice given ends up doing or should i say what pleases her husband in the end

    i honestly feel for her she’s living away from her family but i fail to understand what can i do apart from now walk away cause i get drained out

    i told mum i wont answer her calls because i fail to understand for someone who is highly educated how the hell did she end up marrying such a bastard

    his never physically abused her, but i mean at the age of 38 with 5 kids i told her to kick him out because his only there for sex

    he goes out to see his friends she’s happy staying at home, he never does food shopping the only thing he contributes towards is sleeping with her and paying the utility bills

    i don’t have the energy to judge her anymore because in 2012 she gave a birth to her son i realised then she’s one of those women who believes sleeping with husband and giving birth to a child will save a marriage

    her husband happily spent in 2012 £5,000 re-doing their back garden when it was not needed, went ahead and brought a dog and 2 chickens to look after but he failed to pay towards a holiday which she went last december 2013 to see her brother in Abu Dubai which her brother and father paid for

    her husband only gave here £400 to spend on the kids and herself

    on his weekdays off he never drops the kids at school i mean wtf if that was my husband i would have kicked him out long time ago

    she mentioned how he goes out to get food and feeds the animals but has never fed his own 5 kids!

    he sleeps in the spare room if now her 2 yr old son has an upset night, whats sad when her 2 yr old sone was teething last year the bastard husband was sleeping in the spare room cause he needed his sleep

    worse part is she keeps on saying his alright when he doesn’t mix with his sister’s which she doesn’t get on with

    i’ve read some comments and yes i agree we shouldn’t judge but I’m asking u strong women what do i here? i’m spending an hour on a daily basis listening to her ranting on the phone or via watspp abt her sister in laws or how her husband has behaved i accompany her if she needs some advice to buy something but also neglecting ‘my time’ when i can do my stuff or most importantly watch tv in peace when my kids r asleep

    i know its not easy for her but wtf did i do in my life to end up feeling miserable because I’ve had enough of someone who won’t make a stand or change her ways the really sad part for me is she lives right opposite me so i can’t even lie and say I’m out or I’m busy with the kids since she knows my schedule

    please note her house from inside was in such dire condition that i told her she should be ashamed of living in such conditions, her elder daughter is 13 years old I don’t want to be mean but i need help in telling her to stay away from me

    when she gets along with her husband i never hear from her

    feel sorry for me guys i need some support and advice

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Needless to say I was shocked to read this rant. And since you mentioned my point about ‘Not Judging’ let me start with that. Seems to me you are angry with this woman for not keeping her life, house and her husband in a standard YOU expect. Your friendship towards her and your frustration seems to stem from the fact that she is not doing what you have told her to do.

      What we are discussing about in this post are cases of abuse and how often a victim does not feel empowered enough to help themselves. From what I have read in your comment you view is that this lady has a marriage where she is not an equal to her husband. He seems controlling and demanding and she has adjusted perhaps out of duty, helplessness or love. But like any of us when the situation frustrates her she comes to you to talk about her problems perhaps because that’s her only release despite knowing how futile it is. You seem more angry that she is listening to her husband more than you.

      It intrigues me that you talk of her walking out or kicking this man out when you yourself cant tell this woman who is across the street not to bother you anymore. I am sure this is because you feel certain obligation, saving face, neighbors and unpleasantness and all that. Take that and look into that woman’s life of telling a controlling husband to fuck off. Imagine that? Does it look so easy as it sounds in our heads? It seems this woman does not work and how do you expect her to do that and fend for herself and her five kids saying because her neighbor told her to? How simple do you this that would turn out? You cant tolerate her speaking to you and she is a nuisance to you…if she took your advice would you be there all the way? Perhaps she loves this man and has come to terms with what her life is. No life is perfect and completely happy. No wife I know has never bitched about her husband including me. I do not know how abusive this situation is going by your comment but this seems more of their way of life is not what is yours or what you want them to be.

      What you keep saying is, this woman is a problem to ME! What we are talking about is the exact opposite.

      We are no one to judge anyone’s life, home or relationships. This is not about you vs. her husband and she has to chose in order to have your friendship. Whether he decides on the paint, how he takes care of the kids, what he spends on, where he sleeps and how many children he decides to have is not something an outsider can dictate and hold for ransom.

      This is NOT about YOU. If you feel she is not a friend you want I would say withdraw and tell her fuck off like you have asked her to tell her husband. We should not impose our ideals and judgement on another. This is not a case of abuse. Imagine in the case of a brutality raped, physically abused women and their mental condition and how much patience and care they will need. Imagine the fear and the complete loss of self. Just imagine trying to help someone who is so withdrawn that they are not even normal. If we are so quick to dismiss them then what?

      Liked by 4 people

    2. Your call for help at the start turned my blood cold. When you went on to mention a friend with five kids, I had a sinking feeling of despair, so I read on more quickly. Now, I am finding it hard to believe that you are asking for advice on this particular post, and that too on how to rid yourself of a woman who is a possible victim of emotional/mental abuse, because she is interrupting some of your TV time as well as peace of mind.

      I posted this article in an effort to raise awareness and understanding for victims of abuse. In response, our readers carried on the discussion, women here have shared their stories, young female readers have reacted positively and shared this with their friends, others have emailed me personally to share their own stories of survival. That was the point of the post. I am highly insulted as well as disappointed that this is the platform you have chosen to air what seems to be an ongoing but silent tiff you’re having with your neighbour’s husband through his wife.

      Normally, I would not post such a comment, since it clearly speaks of intolerance towards victims. That is something I have never tolerated on my blogs and a lot of people know it. However, since your comment is the perfect example of the point I spoke about in my post, I’m letting it stand.

      Liked by 5 people

    3. Hmm, I think this post should be the answer to your Help call. The person who needs intervention is not your neighbor/friend but you. This post was about us making the cardinal mistake of underestimating the abuse and the victim.

      Your neighbor has no regular job and has five young kids, so the option of kicking her husband and harm the stability is a very very difficult option for her. I don’t think it would be right for you or anyone else to suggest this option unless you are willing to help her in a hands down manner – even then she has every right to not heed your word. Because you don’t know her circumstances on why she is putting up with this . I don’t think the house and it’s condition would be her top priority when getting through each day is a pain for her. In you she sees her out and gets her frustrations on a medium so that she can have a few moments of solace. If you do consider her as a friend then be patient with her, stop advising her and just be there for her venting. You by giving her idea about something as menial as wall colors might make things difficult for her at home. There is a reason why she consults her husband – it is fear.

      But if you think you are not cut-out to be listen to her or you feel its messing with you. Then please you walk out of your thing with her. It would be immensely useful to both of you. She won’t have to go through judgement and disappointment through you. And you won’t have an unnecessary worry.

      This post was a reflection on us, the outsiders about our own actions and there consequent influence on the victim. Think it through and you would understand where you are going wrong with this one. Help is for you, not her.

      Liked by 4 people

    4. I am a silent reader but could not hold back today. After reading your comment I was disturbed and outraged. What does this even mean?!? Your neighbor is having problems at home and you are fed up of listening to her, fine. but someone posts about victims of abuse and you use that to complain and on top of it ask for help as if your being killed by this unbearable torture? are you for real? I am a survivor annd went through hell of lot of years to get out of my situation. By the grace of God I was able to save myself and my children from further harm. but it took me years to finally find the courage to do it. for almost six years I did not even feel I had a problem or that i was being abused. it was just a way of life for me. i’m sure my friends and even neighbors were upset because all of them told me to “leave him” but you know what? when i did they did not even call and ask if we were ok. but i’m sure they were happy to not hear of my troubles again. that is what you want with your neighbor isn’t is? you want her to just stop bothering you. if that’s what you are as a neighbor then what kind of friend would you be? you have even said you will lie to those who won’t be able to find out. but you know what? she’s better off without you in her life, so go tell her its over. take the stand, be the “strong” woman you claim you are. begging for help on websites is for the weak.

      Liked by 5 people

    5. @undercoverhappy, has it ever occurred to you that maybe, just maybe, this woman you are referring to you in your post, considers you as the only person in the world who could offer a patient ear to her problems? The only person in the world she would ever trust her problems with? You must understand that not all people are AWARE they are being emotionally abused. Emotional abuse is just as bad as physical abuse and probably the worst because it takes time to register. Your friend is doing it wrong. She is doing it wrong by talking to YOU about her problems. I hate to be the person to break this to you, but you do not have it in you to deal with something like this. And you don’t have to feel about bad about it. Not all are emotionally equipped to deal with the responsibilities that comes with friendship.

      What your neighbour needs is a “friend”. And you cannot be that for her. And its not your fault at all. Friendship should never happen out of coercion.

      However, I have to say that initially I was upset at how you worded out your comment. But then I got over it quickly considering I have had former friends and relatives who have let me down with their behaviour and reactions. And I don’t even know you personally to feel bad.

      Since you called out for help, here are your options –

      1) Tell your friend bluntly that you cannot be her friend anymore. She is 38 years old. She is a big girl. Trust me, she will deal with ‘breaking up with you’ much better than you would ever give her credit for. These women, like your neighbour? They are much stronger than the entire world would give them credit for.

      2) It appears to me that you are under the assumption that you “want to help your neighbour”. If that is indeed what you intended, direct your neighbour to this blog. Perhaps some of us are better equipped to give her a patient hearing than you could. She could do with some genuine friends in her life who can actually care for her problems. There are plenty of support groups on Facebook and other social media that can benefit your friend. A stranger can probably help your neighbour much better than you. Help is out there. You just need to have the patience and the heart to offer it.

      Nothing more to say, undercoverhappy. I am mourning Robin Williams and the slow, but inevitable extinction of the female Homo Sapiens.

      Good luck with everything in your life.

      Liked by 2 people

  15. @undercoverhappy… only a completely selfish woman can take any issue serious or not and make it about herself. this is a very very serious post about women going through trouble and turmoil within their homes, the very place they are supposed to be safe and what do you go and do? Whine and play the victim! That’s what.
    What is it with women like you and the me me me attitude. Get a life . The world does not have to revolve around you ALL the bloody while.
    Secondly, what the husband does, how much he spends, the color he chooses for his walls etc come under a category which may shock you called “NOT YOUR FUCKING BUSINESS” . If he chooses to wear purple underwear and dance in the moonlight with dandelions pouring down, it’s still not your beeswax. If you have the guts to walk in, pull her out and support the 5 kids and her, then maybe it’s your business , otherwise it’s just a bitching session or a ‘woe is me me me ‘story. your choice.

    Thirdly, and I pray I’m wrong….reading between the lines ,it looks like you have a crush on the hubby and since you cannot have his good parts , you are focusing on his bad parts ( figuratively speaking i.e)
    I’d love to hear back from you.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Anne, this post is a thought provoking topic and one which touched me in a deeper level. Yesterday also I was lingering here in this page trying to express my thoughts…There are certain links which you mentioned here which is revolving in my mind and I am not able to express it into words.It is making me more disturbed and angry when I am not able to exactly express the emotions or thoughts with clarity. I will come back to this post and the discussion later, when I am in a better frame of mind. Thank you for sharing the link of the hotlines. It was a nice thing to do, madness at certain moments push people to the edge, if that time, if someone is there to listen to them, soothing words, which could calm a mind, a presence of mind and willingness to help is a great thing…

    Liked by 2 people

  17. True true true totally true…
    Yes to most of the questions. .. becoz all have a tendency to blame the victms
    There s a saying in my language “ela vannu mulle veenalum mulle vane ele veenalum kede elakkanne”

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I’ve come in a little late & completely agree with @charminggenie’s insightful perspective on this initiative by Anne. All those who are vocal about walking out & questioning a passive acceptance of domestic abuse are looking for their crusader, their poster girl.
    The dilemma of choices, decisions, outcomes would have to be her own cross to bear. For a person already bruised emotionally & physically maybe it would mean another long drawn out battle with the unknown which she may not have the strength to see through. It may be a choice of opting for a lesser evil.
    A confidante, a friend or friends to make life easier to live by imbibing it with their own warm moments could be more helpful in building her.

    As usual Anne, you have initiated a lot of thoughts from different perspectives. In today’s busy & full world, such opprtunities to discuss something serious are rare. I hope we are able to take something back in either understanding people better or being inspired to do something meaningful or productive.

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  19. I just came across this post

    At the age of 21… I married a guy my parents chose for me from India – I was born there too but raised for most of my life in England.. The wedding was a grand affair as is any.. Three weeks , that’s all it took…- I was home after being forced into a degrading sexual acts, beaten for refusing to participate and then when he wanted to sell me to make money.. . I simply walked out. He very calmly told me he would have married me even if I had limbs missing, as I was his ticket out of India. As I left he laughed at me saying I was tainted goods and no one would want me.. That’s all I was to him – a commodity.. I always prided myself on never accepting anything that was not right.. yet I felt defeated, broken, this scumbag had reduced me to a feeling of helplessness – had I let my parents down.. Would people judge me with out listening to what I had endured.

    At first I was too scared to even tell my parents what had transpired in those three weeks.. My Father, may he RIP.. surprisingly was my biggest supporter, for a the briefest moment my Mother was worried about ‘what people would say’ … I was the first girl in the family to be married and now divorced..would I be a bad influence on others…but my Mother defiantly said to all who ever asked, she would rather have a divorced daughter over a dead daughter..

    Wounds, bruises healed over the next year, the nightmares would take a little longer…divorce papers were filed, then out of the blue ‘he’ turns up on the day that would have been our first anniversary with flowers to ‘ make amends’ .. I sat at the dining table with sweaty palms and my heart beating so fast .. My Father refused to let him into the house . He told my father that he had hoped I was now mature enough to be a good Indian wife and would try to make our marriage work..he claimed he had given me time to grow up..My Father told him to leave quietly before the police were called.. He shouted at my Father threatening him with bodily harm.. Later we found out the only reason he came to the house was that his visa for his stay in the UK was due to expire..I was his golden goose….

    I will not lie and say I recovered and that it was all a bad dream.. I do still wonder what if I had not left…. what drove him to that behaviour, was it his upbringing, was he smothered by his mother .. how many more became his victims after me…
    For 4 years I refused to even go on a date with anyone..yes trust was a really big issue, would he want to know why I was divorced …what happened, or what was I made to do….to this day those vile acts make me nauseous …

    Today I have been married for 23 years to my soul mate.. We have two beautiful kids, 21 and 18 years old… a puppy and we live in the USA..
    Yes there are days when my husband and I disagree, we argue, but only verbally.. It’s what makes the relationship tick , our difference in opinions lets us stand as individuals.. My husband allows our daughter to stand up for what she believes in.. Encourages her to travel independtly …Lately she has been saying she never wants to marry but would rather have a live in relationship.. His answer to her is, no matter what you do in life , who you become you will first and foremost be our daughter and we will always be here for you..

    At the weekends I help at shelters for abused women.. I share my story with them to give them hope of moving forward… Your post allowed me a trip back in time to appreciate what I have today…

    Sita

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for sharing your story with us. I really appreciate and greatly admire you for it. I’m sorry you faced what you did, there is no excuse for such pathetic behavior from anyone, and credit to you for enduring and overcoming as much as you have.

      Really, I feel words are inadequate, so I will just thank you again.

      I hope you visit us more often.

      Hugs,
      Anne

      Liked by 1 person

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