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Old 01-25-2008, 06:59 AM
NCole' NCole' is offline
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Red face Is it possible to have a healthy relationship, after so much abuse??

So, I guess I have a question...

I will give a bit of background, but I swear...there IS a question in there!

So... every relationship that I have ever been in has been either physically, emotionally or sexually abusive. The men that I chose did whatever they wanted to me, and I let them. People can only do to you what you allow them to. I guess I didn't feel that I was worthy of anything more. I've read so many of the stories in this forum, and they are all so familiar.

I am now in a relationship with a wonderful man who has NEVER done any of these things. He's never called me outside my name, never raised his hand to me, never forced me to do anything I didn't want to do, never talked down to me, caused bruises, busted lips, tears or pain. He's never even raised his voice to me, as we agree that nothing gets solved that way. He is truly good to me, and i'm not sure I can handle it. I'm always watching my back, wondering when he will turn on me. I flinch if he comes in for a hug too quickly. After so many years of being talked down to, and hurt, you start to believe the things you are told.

Example.... He and I were wrestling on the bed, tickling me and such. Nothing that could be construed as anything but fun. One of my arms got pinned, and I went into a state of panic. I flashed back to one of the sexual abuse moments, and started screaming "Never again! No!" and hitting and punching him... Before this incidint, I tried to keep my past relationships as private as possible, but obviously, after this, I had to explain.

He was VERY understanding, and comforted me, telling me he would never do anything to hurt me. I believe him, but i'm wondering ( yes, i'm finally to the question! )....

Is it possible to have a healthy, normal, loving relationship, with trust and honesty when you have been through SO much in the line of abusive relationships? or will I end up sabatoging this relationship?

Any advice... or if this has happened to you, would be GREATLY appreciated..

In order to tell a lie, one must be afraid to face the consequences of the truth..
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Old 01-25-2008, 08:24 AM
Tamitha Tamitha is offline
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Obviously you are now in a healthier relationship. Good for you!! Yes, I believe it is possible. Have you ever been in counseling? It really does help. If he is as supportive as he sounds you can work through what you need to and he'll be there for you. Congratulations on being a surviver and proving that there is healthy relationships out there!! Good luck!

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Old 01-25-2008, 08:40 AM
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ohwhatacruise ohwhatacruise is offline

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Do not let your past hold you down any further..You seem to have a nice guy now. I too have the same flashback issues and yes you can have a normal healthy relatonship..BUT You have to divulge some of your past so he knows why you react so wildly to things that are normal to most people and not a huge problem.

One time My boyfriend called and asked me "How was your day?" I thought he said "How was your Date?" As my last abusive man would Accuse me 1000 times a day..SO I went off on my new boyfriend "WHAT DATE? ETC ETC" like I had to before, ALWAYS defend myself against things I had never done for 8+ years. It is not easy to forget at once....So I sent him (my incarcerated Boyfriend) a 14 page typed letter explaining some of the abuse I had been through and some things I may have issues with..like never come up and put your hands on my neck EVER you may get crippled for that one..SO Be honest and if he is a good man he will work with you to insure your feelings are safe with him...That is what my boyfriend has done and after 7 months I am nearly 100% out of that mind set where the past sets me off...

Go to some counsleing and talk it through because I had to do that for a year to be comfortable in my own skin...You can do it, and please do not tolerate any abuse, the first sign RUN...I think it takes inner peace with yourself to get through this abusive past but you can do it.
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Old 01-26-2008, 11:42 AM
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Ncole', it's not quick but yes, YOU can be healthy in a relationship. Ny personal suggestions are to try meditation and EMDR. You can take control of that flinch, you can stop waiting for the other shoe to drop. Never doubt that you can.
You'll know you've created God in your own image when He hates all the people you do.
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Old 01-26-2008, 11:48 AM
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I agree Numuay! My first relationship after my abusive one was very hard. I kept expecting it to be like that one and would say some pretty stupid things because it's what I was used to. My defense mechanisms were pretty close to the surface.

I told him EVERYTHING - which helped a lot and some of the things that were too painful to talk about I have written down. I think being honest with your now partner helps a lot. If I hadn't told my man what had taken place and what effect that had on me - he might have had some pretty strange thoughts about me.

To this day I jump when doors slam and once he shut the door just as a wind gust came through and the door slammed. I nearly jumped out of my skin - but he knew why and was very comforting when I had my normal reaction to that.

He's home
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Old 01-26-2008, 12:01 PM
SexyChef1 SexyChef1 is offline

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I have to agree with NIM...Ive been in abusive relationships so often I equated abuse with love, it took extensive counseling and soul searching.
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Old 01-27-2008, 11:59 AM
sokiegirl sokiegirl is offline

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I don't even consider getting into a relationship these days not only because I am not healthy inside but what man in his right mind would want to be seen with me.
But I think you have to be okay with yourself, make healthy choices and not fall back into the same destructive kind of situation to be able to go on. I know its going to take me along time not to jump at slamming doors or flinch at sudden movements.
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Old 01-27-2008, 12:47 PM
meganlea meganlea is offline

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You'll only succeed in future relationships if you receive the help to move past the damage that the past relationships have caused you. Get help ASAP so you don't lose the great guy you've found!!! Good luck!
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Old 01-28-2008, 11:15 PM
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1roughblondie 1roughblondie is offline
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I majored in Psychology in college and it sounds to me that you maybe a codependent personality. A lot of people are and they just dont know it. Usually, without knowing it, codependent people have a tendency to fall for Socio-pathic people, whom have a tendency to be, lets say "jerks." Then when a codependent person gets into a healthy relationship they tend to get uncomfortable. You should really do a search on codependency online and see if the info pertains to you. It can be really useful! Good Luck and best wishes
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Old 02-10-2008, 09:37 PM
erinmichaels erinmichaels is offline
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Default You have to consider your SO in this also.....

Especially if your SO is a former prisoner.

We, ex-con´s come out with our own baggage train, and it can be just as unhealthy to a relationship as your own demons. We, myself included in this, tend to respond to conflict as if we are on a prison yard and dealing with other prisoner´s. It is how we have trained ourselves to respond to things, and these things MUST be let go.

I personally have NEVER victimized a woman, physically or sexualy. BUT......to treat your girl as a man on the yard, expressing anger in the same way, being aggressive in how you argue.....IS a form of emotional abuse whether we want to admit it or not. And this is unacceptable in a healthy loving relationship.

The problem is.....we receive no help for this before release, and sometimes get out without even realizing we are doing this. And when it is brought up to us, we deny it because "I AM NOT AN ABUSER!"

Maybe not......but the only thing that matter´s is the hurt we cause, not our idealized view of ourselves.

Maybe your problem´s are your´s and your´s alone. Maybe your man is doing what I myself have been doing-without really realizing it-and sending you those familiar signals that have lead to pain in the past. Only you can answer that. I know the answer to mine.........I have to let it all go. Those traits that I hung onto so tightly in prison, are detrimental to my life out here, my relationship, and any hope of happiness.

If your man does this too, you have to figure out a way to tell him. He may not realize it, and will need your help and understanding to "see".

I dont know if this was helpful at all. I just wanted to say that it may not be just YOUR past that is the problem.
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Old 02-11-2008, 04:17 AM
patticake patticake is offline
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NICOLE', good for you, you are a survivor! Do get some counceling, still having flashbacks after 15 yrs....sometimes just little stupid stuff triggers them off. Sounds like you are in the right direction, you are starting to notice the difference!!! Good for You!!!
"The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me...to bind up and heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the [physical and spiritual] captives and the opening of the prison and of the eyes to those who are bound."
Isaiah 61:1
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Old 03-01-2008, 08:28 PM
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lilithinwaiting lilithinwaiting is offline
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Yes, it is possible but first you must heal and then get counseling as to why you tend to pick those types of men so you don't repeat it .

It is not instant , it take alot of soul searching and work.
~There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires.
Nelson Mandela ~
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Old 03-03-2008, 05:49 PM
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love_me4ever love_me4ever is offline
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In my opinion I do believe it IS possible to have & maintain a healthy relationship after being in an abusive relationship. However I do believe that it takes several positive steps in ones life to be able to do that sucessfully. U deserve a great man at your side, & it sounds like from what U shared here 'U finally have captured the heart of a good one...' A man who is patient, kind, understanding, & compassionate to U as a whole, & with what U have also been thru 'is a KEEPER'! ...Now in order to HELP insure U maintain a healthy relationship w/him I would strongly suggest highly here that U seek into ANY & ALL offered out here in order to better support, guide, & heal U in your continued recovery from the past abuse U endured. Such as for example some agressive one on one therapy/counseling, I also think some support groups are of great value too ( ya know, in order to share/release what U have been thru, while also hearing others share their stories AND advice as to what they themselves are doing to help better guide them in their path of recovery, & I also suggest too re-searching into what SELF HELP Books may best suit U, As well as checking into some books too that discusses 'what U have been through regarding ABUSE' ,and as well about the men who abuse. ALL of these things CAN be of tremendous VALUE to U I believe. It's not a bad idea either to perhaps have some counseling shared with your current BF involved, so he too can better understand what U have been through, as well as it might help him to know too what he himself can possibly do to help keep your relationship as healthy & happy as possible. It could be a GREAT bonding experience for U both.
Now I know I don't know U personally, but know that I'm very happy for ya that U were able to find what sounds like a good hearted man. NEVER hesitate to reach out for support/advice, afterall alot of us here on PTO 'do care'............... U ARE WORTHY & deserving of not only a GOOD MAN, but also of a life filled with happiness within & around U, now it's up to U to decide what steps U are willing to take to help insure that for yourself.
Now I will leave U with one of my Favorite quotes
****Friends are the angels that give us wings when our own wings have trouble remembering how to Fly****
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Old 03-09-2008, 07:57 PM
MaMaPaPa4Life MaMaPaPa4Life is offline
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Wow thanks for asking that Question Ncole.. I always wondered the same thing

And there is some good replys..and honest ones at that..thanks!!
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Old 10-31-2010, 12:39 AM
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tnm8 tnm8 is offline
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I think you can but it takes a lot of time and adjustment to getting used to a healthy relationship..
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Old 11-02-2010, 01:45 AM
Brandy Brandy is offline

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Originally Posted by NCole' View Post
Is it possible to have a healthy, normal, loving relationship, with trust and honesty when you have been through SO much in the line of abusive relationships? or will I end up sabatoging this relationship?

Any advice... or if this has happened to you, would be GREATLY appreciated..

I believe that you can have a healthy, normal, loving relationship, with trust and honesty.

The best thing that helped me was a DV group, I also sent the print outs, etc that was gave at group in to my husband so he knew just what page I was on. I also explained everything to him, what happen, etc. So he knew. I didnt want to sabatoge me and him so I had felt that if I came clean it would help and it has. More than I will ever know.

The group also helped me see that I am not what my ex said I was, I was worth more than he ever could see. There's books out there too, that would help too, and you got alot of great advice in this thread for you.

Hang in there
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