For those abused with words, for those who have never been hit, starved, or denied what most of their family and friends had, it is hard to understand that the worse kind of abuse leaves no telltale marks except for those that ravage ones heart.
Each patient that I worked with as well as the recovery groups I led were filled with walking wounded. The kickback I received from patients I worked with in the Dually Diagnosed Chemical Dependency Unit was due to the fact that they thought my overeating eating addition didn’t measure up to what they were going through. When I asked them what would happen to me if I abstained from eating, they got it. I now I hope you'll get what I'm saying because I believe that the very worst kind of abuse is the one that makes the victim wonder if they were making it all up.
Having needed to report some to Child Protective Services, I know that the system is so inundated with calls that those who visit the homes look for outward signs of abuse. Sadly many abusers never leave a mark. Sadder still, they can verbally accost their victim one moment, become loving the next, and are able to become moreso when they open their front door and realize that they have been reported and the gig might be up.
When the abused is faced with the choice of sharing the reality of their life, they don't for they know that to respond in any way that throws suspension on the perpetrator (usually a family member or friend) will make things far worse. Even if a victim wanted to tell, their fearful self-talk, which says, “If they don’t want to love and take care of me who will?” keeps them mute, shaming them to the core while they try to act normal.
The fear of being found to be less than in the world outside ones prison forces the abused into the role of helpmate for by being silent, they enable the abuser and a vicious cycle of ever increasing degradation ensues. Caught in this cycle, should the abused choose to deescalate the situation by become a willing victim, fear and loathing keep them trapped even when they could leave.
Into this morass of depravity the only words that can reach into the pit of despair and show another life, a better life, are the words of healing and hope Messiah spoke from the cross when He said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). These words apply to the abuser, and I believe even moreso to the abused because of the self-inflicted wounds they caused are the most grievous of all.
Think this post doesn't relate to you? Watch this video, listen carefully.
This song may also speak to your heart. As you list, please know that God created you to be loved, for you are worthy of love, just as you are dear one. Jesus died so you could spend eternity with God. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xe4qk7Mijlo
If this song describes you, please begin by forgiving yourself. If you don’t know how, let the above Scripture light your path as you walk towards healing and peace in Messiah. If you’d like help, my first LAMB Ministry book “How Did We Become Angry? Biblical Recovery for Women Suffering from Trauma and Abuse” on Kindle http://amzn.to/1gljnYV
About Paula Rose Michelson