I want to start this blog by saying thank you to Anita for your comment about the post called Freedom? You thanked me for reminding you that you're not alone and you in fact reminded me of the same thing! I went back and read the piece again and it is so true...things go well for a while then something happens and you end up frustrated and upset. Let me explain...
So this weekend my kids are at their dad's house. The access is supposed to be Friday evening 5:00 until Sunday evening at 7:00 but there is a problem: my nine year old son won't sleep the night there and hasn't for months (he has had a few bad experiences waking up in the middle of the night). For the last three months he has come home in the evenings to get dropped off again the next day and because he feels badly about this, and because he thinks the world of his dad, he wants to go back as early as possible the next morning. Makes sense right? It's his dad's weekend to spend time with him. His dad pulled a power trip last night, saying that he will open the door at 9:30 and not before. ????!!!!! What to do? I had explained that I had things I needed to do early today and that they needed to come before 930 but nope, no deal. The door will be unlocked at 930 and not before. That my friends is an example of power and control. Check out our resources tab for some more information.
It's easy sometimes to look back and see things for what they are but it doesn't make it any easier. I mean, this stuff is just incredible...why NOT be flexible and kind and considerate? Why NOT tell your son that you want him back as early as possible, heck you will be at the house to pick him up at 6:00 if that's when he wakes up? It's because my children's dad is abusive.
Domestic Violence is not just about hitting. The need for power and control is central. My husband never hit me, he never stabbed me or choked me. Because of this I didn't think I was a victim of domestic violence. He became increasingly intimidating and threatening and in the year before I left he had escalated to breaking into rooms that I had locked myself into and blocking my way so that I couldn't get past him. This was terribly frightening for me. I used to hear him come home while I was lying in bed and just pray over and over again "please don't let him come in,please don't let him come in"...what a relief when he would fall asleep watching the TV in the living room.
If you can relate to anything I have said, specifically if you have not left the relationship or don't know what to do, there IS help. That help can be as simple as a phone call to a crisis line, it is anonymous and you can ask questions and get anwers from people who really care about your safety ( see main page for crisis line information). At 1infour, we care about your safety too. We are just like you, maybe at a different place along the path but we are all on the same journey. We get upset and frustrated and need encouragement just like you do and we want to be safe as well. Just so everyone knows, none of our ex-partners know about this website yet......but you will be sure to hear about it when they do. Thanks for the comments, they encourage us in doing what we are committed to doing: breaking the silence.