The Loneliness of Abuse

So if you are aware someone around you is hurting, take the time to care and ask questions. Try to listen and understand. It could make a huge difference.

No matter how many times I attempt to move on and start fresh, somehow the ghosts of that pasts always return nipping at my heels to remind me of all that’s been lost.

I can deal most of the time with my own memories by reminding myself of the truth that God has forgiven and forgotten my sins. But just because God forgives and forgets, it doesn’t mean that people do. And when people remind me of the past, it’s almost too much to bear.

Yesterday my husband’s brother called bringing up the past. He was calling on behalf of my father-in-law who wanted to give my husband some money to make up for all the ways he’d hurt him in the past. Triangulation is the normal unhealthy pattern in his family. But there was a stipulation, he didn’t want me to know about the money, because he knew what I’d done and he didn’t trust me.  My husband turned down the money, because he knew it would only complicate things. He also told his brother that he would not keep secrets from me. Then my brother-in-law said he didn’t have any problems with me, that he’d forgiven me, because his mom had asked him to before she died. So yesterday I learned for the first time that both of my in-laws knew what happened, but never talked to us about it. Although I wasn’t surprised, I was crushed.

I read somewhere that the hardest thing about clergy abuse is that others don’t understand, and the isolation this causes victimizes those harmed even more. To have it confirmed that my husband’s family has known what happened, but never mentioned it to us was overwhelming. What’s even worse is that they all feel the need to forgive me for “having an affair.”  

When I got home last night, my husband was hurt and angry with no one but me and our oldest son to talk to. We’ve supported and gotten one another through things the past two years, but it’s been very lonely.  

I wish I knew the answer to how to make this slip into despair better, but I don’t. The best thing to do is get the hurt out, and to pray. I’m reminding myself that God doesn’t waste any of this pain, but I also know it grieves His heart as well.

I think the most important thing to remember is God is a good Father.  He’s with us through this pain, and He will never leave. We are not alone, nor will we ever be. 

But can I just say, too? This isn’t the way God intended it to be. He created us for connection and to help one another through the hard things in life. And when we talk about one another rather than to one another we only make things worse. So if you are aware someone around you is hurting, take the time to care and ask questions. Try to listen and understand. It could make a huge difference.

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

Ecclesiastes 4:9‭-‬12 ESV

8 thoughts on “The Loneliness of Abuse

    1. Thank you for reaching out. That means a lot! Isolation is not good, and I’m continuing to attempt to find connection, but it’s a challenge especially with all the betrayal we’ve experienced. I’m sorry that you are there.

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  1. Everyone’s story is a little different. I, too, know the pain of abuse and the resulting loneliness. My first post tells the story of healing. Then I plan to tell my story starting at the beginning. Perhaps you can find a key to healing there. God be with you.

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    1. Thank you for reaching out. Every time I hear another story of someone brave enough to tell it, it’s an encouragement. I appreciate your courage. God bless!

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      1. Many people need emotional healing. Even believers who have forgiven others still have not experienced healing. There are several Bible passages that I would like to point out as markers on a path to healing.

        First is the Lord’s Prayer:
        Matthew 6:9-15 (AKJV)
        9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. 14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: 15 but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
        People have a hard time forgiving because they think forgiveness is a feeling, but it’s not. There are a couple of references about forgiving that are helpful. One is the parable of the king who forgave a man his considerable debt. But the man forgiven of his debt then went out and found a very poor man who owed him a very small debt and had him put in prison until he paid the small debt. Forgiveness is God’s heart. He forgives us all we owe and He wants us to forgive others just as freely as we have been forgiven.
        1 Peter 3:9 (AMP)
        9 and never return evil for evil or insult for insult [avoid scolding, berating, and any kind of abuse], but on the contrary, give a blessing [pray for one another’s well-being, contentment, and protection]; for you have been called for this very purpose, that you might inherit a blessing [from God that brings well-being, happiness, and protection].
        Romans 12:19 (AMP)
        Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave the way open for God’s wrath [and His judicial righteousness]; for it is written [in Scripture], “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.

        After forgiving someone, you still have the wound, and it will last as long as you live if you don’t know to ask the Lord to heal it. Let’s look at Isaiah 53:3-6.

        Isaiah 53:3-6 (AMP)
        3 He was despised and rejected by men,
        A Man of sorrows and pain and acquainted with grief;
        And like One from whom men hide their faces
        He was despised, and we did not appreciate His worth or esteem Him. 4 But [in fact] He has borne our griefs,

        And He has carried our sorrows and pains;
        Yet we [ignorantly] assumed that He was stricken,
        Struck down by God and degraded and humiliated [by Him].
        5 But He was wounded for our transgressions,
        He was crushed for our wickedness [our sin, our injustice, our wrongdoing];
        The punishment [required] for our well-being fell on Him,
        And by His stripes (wounds) we are healed.
        6 All of us like sheep have gone astray,
        We have turned, each one, to his own way;
        But the LORD has caused the wickedness of us all [our sin, our injustice, our wrongdoing]
        To fall on Him [instead of us].
        According to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance “deliver, save” is Feminine of a derivative of soter as (properly, abstract) noun; rescue or safety (physically or morally) — deliver, health, salvation, save, saving.

        Phonetic Spelling sode’-zo
        Parts of Speech Verb
        Definition
        to save, keep safe and sound, to rescue from danger or destruction
        one (from injury or peril)
        to save a suffering one (from perishing), i.e. one suffering from disease, to make well, heal, restore to health
        to preserve one who is in danger of destruction, to save or rescue
        to save in the technical biblical sense
        negatively 1b
        to deliver from the penalties of the Messianic judgment 1b
        to save from the evils which obstruct the reception of the Messianic deliverance
        http://www.biblestudytools.com/lexicons/greek/nas/sozo.html
        I’ve taken the trouble to be as clear as possible with documentation so that your faith can be in God’s Word rather than my words.
        We hear about “by His stripes we are healed” but I don’t think I’ve ever heard a teaching about emotional healing based on Isaiah 53 where Isaiah says He took our griefs and sorrows. If one is true, so is the other. So when I was begging the Father to heal my emotional wounds, this phrase came to mind and I snatched it quickly. Because it is an aspect of salvation it depends only on one’s obedience to the condition of confessing and forsaking one’s sins and iniquities – then forgiving others as we are so freely forgiven.
        For example, I have forgiven the person who said malicious things about me, but I still feel the wound of being devalued. So I come before the Father and tell Him how that person is forgiven but I want Him to heal the sense of being devalued. He willingly takes that hurt. If the hurt doesn’t go away, then check your heart for complete forgiveness – it’s not about that other person, it’s about you. Then go back to Father and ask again for the hurt to be healed. There is no shame in repetition. Repeat this request as many times as necessary, until you are free of the associated pain. Do this for each painful memory and be patient with yourself in gaining the emotional healing Father God has promised through the suffering of His Son.
        There is another aspect of healing from sexual sins and/or violation that is overlooked very often. That is the breaking of soul ties with the individual you were involved with. Again it is done simply. Just ask Father God to forgive you for your part in the sin and then ask Him to break the soul tie. Ask Him to cauterize both ends of the broken bond with His precious blood, and the bondage is broken.
        God’s Word and His ways are beautiful and even a fool shall not err therein (Is. 35:8).
        You are so blessed to have a husband who stands with you. Ask him for his help, as I’m sure you already have.

        Feel free to answer me at my email address.

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      2. Thank you for the encouragement from the scriptures. It’s been a long journey, and one that I’ve discovered is a process. God has healed so much and continues to heal. Thanks for reaching out. God bless.😊

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