Friday, October 05, 2012

Poem about Emotional Abuse

Posted by Hannah at 6:23 PM

Poem about Emotional Abuse
In light of Domestic Violence Awareness Month I went back to a poem on emotional abuse, sexual abuse that I wrote one night.  I look at the date of the post - 11/15/07 - and realize how far my life has come.

I wrote it from personal experiences, and those that you hear about often from others.  I have goggle hits on this poem about domestic violence since that date.  It was time of great hurt, frustration, and feelings of being lost.  Why am I the only one that doesn't get it type of thing.

From what I remember about that time I was struggling with how to deal with rages, and then later the push for closeness afterwards.  There was never any discussion, remorse, repentance.  It was the old - forgive and forget.  Act like nothing happened, and lets just go to bed.  If we have to do it another way?  The rage would start again.

I was on a faith board, and a abuse board at the time.  I had been ripped to shreds at the faith board.  I had be told to forgive 7 x 70, and yet the habitual behavior couldn't addressed because it made him mad.  The fact it angered him was enough for them to feel it needs to be left alone.

People too often try to combine trust and forgiveness.  That combination is not a God thing, but a human one.  Its used when they don't know how to deal with evil, and quite frankly don't wish to either.  The result may not fill their formula for a 'happy ending', and fill their testimony wall.

Forgiveness is for the person, and it can bring so much healing.  Trust may never return for a number of reasons.  The two aren't connected no matter how much people want them to be.

There are circumstances in which parties can earn their trust back, but there has to be much humility.  Its not on their time line after all - if there is pressure it takes you back to square one.  It can happen of course.

Then there are times in which trust may never be a good option in certain circumstances.  You can forgive a pedophile, but you wouldn't have them babysit. Its also acceptable to NOT have them in your life anymore as well.  That is just one example of course - you I'm sure can think of others.

Life is full of custom parts and pieces.  God's word is able to work with that. God created our world full of custom parts and pieces after all.

Yes, change can happen when two people are committed and willing to do the work.  Its hard for both parties, but honestly at times I think it is harder for the abusive party.

They have a hard time seeing 'what is in it for them' when they are pretty much get everything now (as they see it anyway) their way.  They have a strange way of not dealing with the pain they are in, and the pain they cause others.  They see no incentive.  When there is no incentive?  Think of the mindset here .... why would they bother?

The one line in the poem, 'You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love' was mentioned to me at the time.  It struck me right between the eyes.  So often you see that happen - be it in churches, or marriages.  You don't have intimacy with intimidation, fear, guilt, manipulation.  They are polar opposites, and yet are encouraged way to often to make things work.

Domestic violence, emotional abuse, sexual abuse are soul crushing experiences.  When I finally had the courage to ask for help?  I told the counselor I wanted my "ME" back.  I lost myself completely, and I would NOT be able to help anything or anyone until 'SHE' returned.  (giggles) Of course a new and improved ME that is!

When you read you can see how people can be completely lost within the realm of abuse.

Thank you Lord for being with me all these years, and helping me find that NEW me!  Thank you for helping me see things more clear, and for giving me the courage to step out
despite my fear.  Thank you for helping me see that I'm not a 'bad' person in anyway, because I see error when others refuse too.  If that makes me a rebel?  THANK YOU For helping me a REBEL!  My journey is not done, and I know you will be there with me for the rest of it.  Thank you for making me feel loved...

You Can't
by Hannah

He comes in that day and you feel your stomach ache.
You shudder and he shames and you wonder what you say.
You know you must say something, but the words do not come.
You been there before, and it’s never undone.

You sit at the table with your children in tow
One glass of juice or a noodle does fall.
The yelling begins, and the tantrums our show
Words not from him are mentioned to solve

You can’t say anything to make the hurt go away.
Silence does happen, but you don’t want to stay.
Your children are hurting, and he still isn’t nice.
You wait for that moment to calm and make nice.

Dinner is done and the dishes put away
Your start the next shift, and go on with your day.
You get the kids settled, and you find your little safe spot.
Inching and wondering, Why is your world so shot?

Then he comes down to greet you with a smile on his face.
He acts like nothing has happened with no shame or disgrace
You sit there wondering what message did you send?
I don’t want you here and I shouldn’t have to bend.

He stands there wanting the distance to be gone
He pushes closer and closer and you just can’t respond.
What do you do? What do you say?
He pushes and pushes and never goes away.

You can’t force closeness to the one you’ve lost
You can’t pressure trust when we never know how you will respond.
You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you say that you love
You can’t have it both ways and think you have won.

Days later problems happen and you just want to hide
You don’t want to talk because it is never very nice.
You wait for the crowning moment nice and relaxed,
You really need to speak to him and you can’t hold back.

It starts is real slow and you try to keep pace,
But the explosion soon starts right in your face.
Nothing is nice!
Nothing is fair!
It’s all your fault and he makes that perfectly clear.
He refuses to help fix or even be kind
He treats you like the enemy and your forced to resign.

As you slowly retreat you have strong feelings of doom.
How could this happen did I talk to soon?
Did I say it wrong, or have a look on my face
I don’t understand why I’m such a disgrace.

You find a safe place to work on the game plan.
You fix that problem and never with him.
You handle the issue – at least parts that you can.
You look over what happened, and you still remain sad.

Evening soon comes and you retreat to your bed.
He comes in and comes over and you just want to gag.
He kisses your face and then strokes your back.
You want to get up and leave and then you’re pulled back.

You can’t force closeness to the one you have lost
You can’t pressure trust when you can not resolve.
You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love
You can’t have it both ways and think you have won.

After years of belittling and verbal attacks
You find it hard to get your self esteem back.
You search for the answer and fix that you need.
Until you have realized that you really need to flee.

Nothing will change
Nothing will be good
Nothing will happen until you are gone.
You live in denial with all you have left
Then finally hear the “snap” of that old camel’s back.

You fear the reactions of family and friends
Will they take your side or then befriend him.
They will think you the wimp
Will you lose their respect
For trying to keep peace for so long
Or for finally stopping to fight back.

You work to improve yourself
To change your way of thinking
You fight the doubts without even blinking
You sit and worry if you have really done it.
Or if he is right and you will really plummet.

What will he say?
How will he react?
Will in be nice or some sort of attack.

You hear the sad story of how sorry he is
He has seen the errors of his ways
And now the change can begin.
You hesitate a little and wonder what is right
That hesitation now starts a new kind of fight.

Always Remember when the new this assault on your back:

You can’t force closeness to the one you have lost
You can’t pressure trust when we never know how you will respond.
You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love
You can’t have it both ways and think you have won.

Keep saying:

You can’t force closeness to the one you have lost
You can’t pressure trust when you can not resolve.
You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love
You can’t have it both ways and think you have won.

Additional Poems: You can't
What It Means To Be A Victim
A Chosen Vessel
Will You Love me To Death
Shattered Pieces
Recycled Rose
Saturday Night Special

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Anonymous said...


You can’t force closeness to the one you have lost
You can’t pressure trust when you can not resolve.
You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love
You can’t have it both ways and think you have won.

I feel your pain.

Anonymous said...

you've just described my life to a t!

Anonymous said...

this is great work it really speaks to me.

Hannah on 5:33 PM said...

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Yes!Yes! Thats me! For the past 5 years!

Hannah on 9:39 AM said...

Thank you Anonymous. Its very validating to hear from others like you.

Anonymous said...

Hannah, I am moved to tears.

There are so many elements of my life here too. I feel sad though. Because as much as I relate I know tomorrow will come and he will pretend he never yelled, never threw Or worse it will be silence. I'm not sure which hurts more.

But for now...Thank you. Your words are poignantly beautiful. Never doubt your talent.


Hannah on 7:25 AM said...

Thank you C.

It helped that night to get it out, and I felt like I was busting to do so that night. lol!

I know the feeling about not knowing which part hurts more, and I pray for all those broken abusive people and their victims everyday.

Anonymous said...

Amazing... this gives me chills. I hope you got out of your situation... good for you for being strong!

Anonymous said...

Thank u. U just describe my marriage. I feel pain 'cause that's what is happening to me

z on 7:10 AM said...

That is ME!!! I ALWAYS THOUGHT I WAS WRONG he called me a liar and made me feel wrong all the time and always when he cheated or lied he blamed me!!! oh my god Its amazing. although theres no marriage involved he was married and had an affair before me too! i was stupid to believe he loved me

Hannah on 12:54 PM said...

Sadly, z abusive people always project their 'traits' onto others it seems to me.

Thank you for dropping bye and commenting!

Anonymous said...

So real, so true, and so painful.

Unknown on 11:08 PM said...

I am always told I'm damaged goods and no good because I was raped and molested for years by a family member.

Unknown on 11:09 PM said...

Mine as well, does it get better?

Hannah on 3:30 PM said...

I don't believe that about the 'damaged goods', and honestly its a very cruel thing to say. I mean WHO things like that! You don't say things to someone that is hurting to make them feel worse in this type of circumstance for goodness sakes.

With time, healing, education, and working on yourself? It does get better, and God is right there to help you on that path.

Julie Anne on 9:46 AM said...

That is so powerful, Hannah. Wowwwwwwwww!!! Thank you for sharing this deeply personal poem.

Anonymous said...

This could describe my life perfectly. Thank you for having the courage to write and share this. It clearly depicts what emotional abuse feels like. So many people ask, did your husband hit you as if that is the only way to hurt a human soul. This clearly describes the fear, disgust, anger and intimidation one can feel without ever once being hit.Hopefully it will help educate people to the damage emotional abuse causes. The bruises and scars are not visible but they leave a mrak on ones heart and soul.

Anonymous said...

For 13 years I lived like that. I'm divorced now and left the church. We were members of many different churches (he was military, so we moved around) and I asked for help so many times. But the answer was always for me to somehow change. I needed to "pray for him," "be more available sexually to him," and etc. Sure, they told him he needed to control his anger, but since the abuse didn't involve hitting, no one ever considered it abuse. The sexual abuse wasn't even acknowledged. I was told that the things that he did that would be considered molestation or rape in any other situation were not wrong because I was his wife. I feel like I was as abused by the church as I was by him, since they perpetuated it. And when I left him...I was the one they said was committing sin.

Hannah on 11:24 AM said...

Anonymous 19: First off I want to say how sorry I am. That pain must be enormous.

I don't understand it either. They know its wrong, but have no clue on how to approach it. They say we are the ones confused as well. That makes no sense at all.

Please know that the Lord knows the truth, and he does stand by you. I will never understand WHY they don't see that they are enabling sin by not standing up to it. They seem to see a grey area, and it certainly is NOT!

You aren't alone in feeling abused by the church, and I hope you check out my resources or link section for further support of YOU and your decision. You did nothing wrong. Nothing.

My prayers are with you today.

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