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tabi (@tabi)

Depression and abusive marriage

Depression & Anxiety | Last Active: Apr 12, 2021 | Replies (16)

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@smilie

It’s nice to know that I’m not alone. I’ve suffering since I was 12 years old and I left two abusive marriages, but I had two children with my second husband.

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Replies to "It's nice to know that I'm not alone. I've suffering since I was 12 years old..."

Hi @smilie, welcome to Connect.
I moved your message to this existing discussion “Depression and abusive Marriage” so that you could meet @tabi and @heatherf316. I’d also like to bring @blindeyepug @janinehomewood and @amberpep into this conversation.

Smilie, You are not alone as you will see from the discussions here on Mayo Clinic Connect. We look forward to getting to know you. Can you tell us a bit more about yourself? You mention your children. Do they live with you? How are you doing today?

@smile Hi. I am a survivor of abuse from my first marriage (mental, physical and sexual) . I will attempt to make a long story short. You are not alone – and that is what is so sad. At the time, I was young, educated and attractive with a good job an an extremely low self-esteem. I am also an incest survivor. I was sexually and physically abused from ages 10 to 13 (as were my three older sisters). I found what I thought was a strong, intelligent man who would take care of me. He also made me laugh. I saw clues that he was abusive before I married him, but there were always reasons and, besides, at least he seemed better than what I had known growing up. The abuse got worse when we married. But it was always “my fault”. If I wasn’t so stupid or clumsy or whatever that “made” him mad, everything would be fine. He also could be extremely nice when he wanted to – buying me flowers and signing to me with his guitar. He was also an attractive man. I put up with the abuse for years until I got pregnant with my first child. Then the abuse got even worse. When my daughter was born, he started being abusive to her. In fact, he almost killed her. I decided that I needed to get a divorce. He told me no one would want me – especially with a child – and I was lucky he put up with me. I was told I was too stupid to be without him, that I wouldn’t last on my own. I was told I was fat and saggy (skin) and ugly. I felt horrible, but I knew in my heart that I would not raise my daughter in the type of environment in which I had been raised. I was alone. I had moved to a new city and state with him, hundreds of miles from family and friends. But there was one woman at work who knew what was happening. With that support, I got an attorney and filed. When he was served, he came home and put a gun to my head. To this day, I will never forget what he said “You’re willing to leave me, but are you ready to die?” I just cried and apologized and kept my cool until the next day. Then I got an emergency restraining order against him. I had to sell my house and move. His parental rights were eventually removed. I remarried and had two more children. My husband adopted my first daughter. I will tell you now – abusers lie! They are mentally ill but refuse to think anything is wrong with them. It was my faith that got me through and to where I am today. I have been through therapy (which I strongly urge you to do). I decided that living alone was better than living with my abuser. It took faith, time, patience, legal help, mental health help and finally believing that I was worthy of good things for me to break from that abusive marriage. I learned that if I can’t enjoy my own company, who else could? It took time before I started dating again and got remarried. I had to heal myself and be strong before I moved forward. The biggest first step is leaving the abuser. Staying in the marriage for the “sake of the marriage” is so unhealthy. They don’t care, they don’t change. They will keep using you as a punching bag – be it emotionally or physically – until YOU decide enough is enough. Life is too short. There is nothing to salvage in your marriage. Perhaps you’re like I was and other women who I’ve spoken with – what if he does change and ends up with someone else?! Well, chances are he isn’t going to change. And if he does – good for him and his new partner because I wouldn’t wish the old “him” on my worse enemy. I am happy! I have traveled different places around the world, I have moved up in my job, and I have four wonderful grandchildren. I did not want my daughter to have the example I had. I wanted her to see me strong and healthy and confident – as that is what I want for her and all my children and grandchildren! YOU CAN LEAVE HIM. YOU ARE CAPABLE. YOU ARE STRONGER THAN YOU THINK – OR THAN HE HAS LET YOU FEEL YOU ARE. YOU ARE WORTHY! I am keeping you in my prayers. Keep us posted on your progress. There are too many kind, loving, worthy women who hang on to sharks thinking they are going to some how change – all the while getting bitten to pieces and loosing more and more of themselves. It is never too late. Live the rest of your life FREE.

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