Why domestic violence victims don't leave

  • 88 Replies


  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • 15739
    • http://www.gawalters.com
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #80 on: August 06, 2015, 09:08:25 PM »
I've tried to stay out of this thread and basically I will be because if I were to post what can happen when they don't leave and give descriptions of what I have seen in autopsies and were able to post some of the crime scenes i have photographed I would be banned but I believe anyone still in one would not be tomorrow.

This thread will probably be locked soon anyway due to the page count.

So I'll leave it with a poem I wrote that comes from a true story:

"I'll never forget that look in your eyes, forgot your name,but not your eyes."

You used to call me on the phone crying.

I would always rush over to see what was wrong.

You would invite me in to your torn up home and you would show me the red marks and teary eyes.
So we would sit and talk and you never took me up on my offer to spend the night with a relative or just leave with me right then.

You would tell me that it would be ok and tell me to leave so at that time I had no choice but to leave.The laws didn't premit me to just take you with me back then just for a few red marks or I would have.I promise ,I really would have.

Then you called me again and again and again.Again I would look into your red eyes and even held you a few times while you cried on my sholder.Even did talk you into leaving once but you went back that same night , said you loved him and he loved you and you were going to work on it.

I didn't like him and often got in his face but you would attack me from behind for trying to defend and protect you.You would yell at me and call me names and make me leave again without you.I would see you as I drove away looking out the window at me with his shadow lurking in the background and I would know that I would be seeing you again.

But this last time it was him who called me and said to come over but there was no rush this time.When I got there I saw why.I knelt down and closed your eyes for you for the last time but you couldn't see me.

I'll never forget that look in your eyes.  ever.

I may have forgotten your name.Maybe you were # 7 or #12 ,there have been so many.but I won;t forget the way you looked at me the last time, when I zipped you up right before it got dark.

« Last Edit: August 06, 2015, 09:13:43 PM by gary »
" A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because its trust is not on the branch but on its own wings.

Believe in yourself ".

Josh S hipp



contorted willow

  • New Member
  • *
  • 26
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #81 on: September 03, 2015, 07:57:49 AM »
Hi Gary

That's a powerful poem and I agree with your statement about crime scene photos, maybe it would have awoken me!

Hi Ladywolf

You're absolutely correct! The hundreds of articles on the "the victim that stays" is sickening. I've even read some vile suggestions that we must have been masochistic and enjoyed the experience!

The emphasis should always be placed on the abusers NEED to abuse. And your quote encapsulates this NEED beautifully.
In Lak'ech Ala K'in



  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 342
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #82 on: September 27, 2015, 03:30:27 AM »
Thanks for this link. It is helpful to see this. I am getting ready to leave my PD and this feels like a potentially dangerous time for me. I am glad for the reminder that this can happen to anyone and is real. I need to be reminded of the potential for danger. The comment about her ex making her seem like the dominant one in our relationship, this is true in my relationship and it now helps him seem like the victim to his friends. I am going to share this with my friends.
"Communication is to relationship what breathing is to life."  Virginia Satir



  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 206
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #83 on: October 20, 2015, 07:41:41 PM »
This is a very moving talk. 

I think the key point was when she said she did not see herself as a victim of abuse.  She saw herself as a strong woman in love with a deeply troubled man. And she was the only person who could help him face his demons.

This is exactly how I felt in my abusive marriage.  But my abuse was mental/emotional, not physical.  If it had been physical I would have known it was abuse.  If it had even been overt verbal aggression, I would have understood it as abuse.  But in my case it was passive-aggression - the systematic withdrawal of affection, the silent treatment, the constant accusations of hurting her feelings, the walking on eggshells.  This is much more subtle but still abuse - if your perspective on the situation is always brushed aside; if you can never ever have a meaningful discussion about what is going on in the relationship; if somehow you have become responsible for their happiness - but nothing you do is good enough.

I thought that I was being strong by putting up with her treatment, because I was convinced that eventually I would "get through" to her.  To the person I fell in love with, who still seemed to be right there but trapped behind a glass wall. 

But in the end I was just a Martyr.   "Rescuer" is the name for this pattern of behaviour, I think. You believe that if you hang in there long enough, you will eventually rescue the princess (or whatever fairy tale you are living in) and live happily ever after.  And the more abuse you endure, the more they will eventually thank you.  You feel NOBLE in your suffering. 

I now know this to be CO-DEPENDENCE.  (The book that opened my eyes was Toxic Parents by Susan Forward).

In a nutshell, the reason victims stay is - they cling to the fantasy it will get better.  As I said, she touched on this briefly in the lecture.  But then moved on to describe the dangers of leaving.  No doubt this is true, but I think it is a red herring.  I think most victims stay because they cling to hope, not because they are scared of reprisals.

Also, I think people with a healthy upbringing walk away from this kind of behaviour.  He gave up his job - without consulting her, his partner.  WHAT?  He said he did it for her.  WHAT?   He wanted to move and she agreed - because you have to make sacrifices.  WHAT?  He beat her up days before the wedding - but she still married him.  WHAT?

She talked about the relationship as an elaborate trap.  But not why she willingly walked into it.  So really this lecture hardly touched on the question it promised to answer.  Just those one or two sentences I mentioned.

I don't think we should "blame the victim", but my own experience is that the reason I stayed in an abusive marriage turned out to be my own co-dependency due to my dysfunctional childhood.  Specifically my (suspected) NPD father.  My (suspected BPD) ex had previous partners who had the good sense to walk away from her.  So the question of why I stayed has to be a question about myself, not her.



  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 432
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #84 on: October 21, 2015, 05:56:35 AM »
Solid, I'm right there with you, but I can tell you why I stayed with my ex for so long... our children, and yes I saw myself as her rescuer. Sad thing, I broke up with her...yes this time I broke up with HER, last summer, shortly there after, after we made a mutual promise of no new partners around the kids just yet, just days after I left she brought a guy home she just met that night, sleeps with him in the same room our 3 yr old daughter is in. She started drinking and picking fights with everybody about a month before I left, I warned her I would leave if it continued. I t continued, I left....with the children, well the two oldest anyway, the 3 yr old had to stay because she faked medical papers saying she couldn't leave. Sorry I know this is long and I'm getting to the point. Fast forward to now, she has lost custody of the kids to her parents, I know I'm an awful parent, I have nowhere for my children right now, but will soon I hope. She tried multiple times to kill herself last summer the last was nearly successful. A month ago she and her dad started begging me to forgive all her "transgressions" and take her back, more or less give her a "get out of jail free card" To her dad, I seem to a knight in shining armor that can whisk her away and keep her from all harm, or as you put, her rescuer. I lifted that mantle off of myself last summer, *sighs there is no rescuing her, she is already going back to her old ways, and has already let me known she intends to drink again (alcohol and pills were her weapons of choice last attempt).  But her amd specifically her dad are forcing my hand, he wants me to send the money for court costs so she can take the kids back, even though I do not want them at the apartment complex she lives at, I have reason to believe my daughters 4 and 5 were molested there and she knows by whom and is protecting them. So I feel forced to take her back just so I can get my children here to me and protect them, our children then, that is why some of us wont....cant leave. Sorry I hijacked it again.



  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 263
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #85 on: November 24, 2015, 07:07:01 PM »
Thank you for sharing! I cried when she said "victims don't leave because they feel isolated". My husband has taught me to not trust the outside world and that I am safest with him. I left him once just three weeks ago and returned due to manipulation and with in 3 days of being back he was shaming me to the point where it seems like he'd be happiest if I cried everyday hating myself.
I do not hate myself and it's hard for me to cry anymore when his narcissism flares up. I feel dry because I've been through it so many times.
What makes me sad is it is hard to leave. I hear the women in the Ted video talk about physical abuse. My husband is not physically abusive. He is mentally abusive. Although my first husband was both physically and mentally abusive.
I had a thought last night as I was falling asleep that sometimes it seems getting a slap to the face is a lot easier than the mental abuse. But I know that's not true. They're both painstaking.
However because my husband now is only mentally abusive, I find myself saying, it's not as bad as a gun being pulled to my head. And so I keep moving forward moment by moment, wanting out so desperately, but too afraid to make the leap.
I have children. I worry about them. My current husband (they're step dad) has taught them to blame me. However I've worked hard to let the kids know they can trust me. I've always nurtured my children with all my love (until I met him) and then I had to nurture them when he wasn't home.

I work. But I don't have enough money to afford housing for my children and I. I also don't want to rip them out of their schools.
So for now, I will know inside I'm doing the best I can regardless of his abuse. I will honor him as he demands until I can stand on my own two feet.
And maybe I'll start opening up a bit more to peers regarding the mental abuse.
That can be hard to do though, because in reality it can scare people away.
So confusing.....
"Without training, they lacked knowledge. Without knowledge, they lacked confidence. Without confidence, they lacked victory" -Julius Caesar

"Only until we can replace the negative history with more positive new history will the scale from then on be in our favor" -Gary



  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • 58
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #86 on: November 27, 2015, 12:09:16 AM »
Yep, lots of institutionalized sexism with DV.  And repeating the lie-that men are the typical abusers is not helpful.   The reality is that DV ON men is most comparable to rape.   That humiliation, that embarrassment, thus the failure to BE REPORTED.  Doesn't mean it happens more BY men, it means it's REPORTED MORE by women-women are ALLOWED to be victims, men are NOT.   And worse-you almost are guaranteed to be laughed at by police, ignored by a judge, and not taken seriously and quickly learn there is nobody to help you, and you give up and don't even consider things like "safehouse" which is a safehaven for an NPD woman to learn really evil stuff...

So keep that in mind when you repeat things like that sons grow up to be abusers and daughters the abused-nonsense.  Both can abuse and both can be abused.

THE TRUE DIFFERENCE, and the indoctrination, the fallacy is all over this thread... is that women, and girls ARE ALLOWED to be victims.  Men and boys? Not so much. 

Doesn't seem very fair to me... and tell you what-with a Covert Narc... the more she abuses  you-the more she convinces you it's your fault... like that if you defend yourself - THAT is "abuse" but nothing she does ever  could be... this thread reinforces that ridiculous notion in places... nobody should be an "acceptable victim", even men.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2015, 12:11:24 AM by UtterlyWasted »



  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 432
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #87 on: November 29, 2015, 11:50:10 PM »
I couldn't agree more utterly



  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • 14958
Re: Why domestic violence victims don't leave
« Reply #88 on: December 06, 2015, 01:17:19 PM »
this thread is being locked for two reasons, moderator/admin review and length.