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A "new" man?
September 8, 2002
2:48 am
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moonglow
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I left my husband 9 months ago because of domestic violence. Since then he has been taking classes for alcohol abuse and for domestic violence. My question is, will this help him overcome his problems? Do these classes really help people? As dumb as this may be I still love him and want to be with him(we live in different states at the moment)and he wants me to move back with him. I don't want to live the way we lived before and I need some advice on this, please.

September 8, 2002
4:13 am
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Jadedragon
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Speaking from expereince, and in the same boat as you. TAKE YOUR TIME!!!!FIND YOU FIRST. You lost a lot of that when he was around. My ex is saying the same thing, fortunately we are in differnt continents, and 8 time zones apart. We "talk" everyday , BUT we still fight even online..........? Maybe see if that will work for you. Communicate via PC, and see how it goes. Please be careful, I know how much it hurts. Good luck Moonglow.

September 8, 2002
11:27 am
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gingerleigh
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Moonglow, Jade has a great point. Start comminication up again slowly, and if you do decide to move back, keep separate places for a while.

So you still love him, eh? Of course! He may very well have changed, for the better. Take it slow, just like you would with a completely new person, and make sure that you love the person he is becoming, not who you hope he has turned into, or who you think he still might be. And I imagine that you've done some growing and some changing over the last 9 months too... are you still sure that the new you will love the new him? Go slow to make sure.

Can the leopard change his spots. Yes, he can, I've seen it in my own family. But this spot changing tends to work only when brand new people are involved. When you get two people *back* together, the same old behviors from one can trigger the same old responses in the other, before you can say "Let go and let god." Know what I mean? If he is really serious about doing this right, the two of you might want to consult a couple's counselor or a church official you trust.

Good luck, Moonglow.

September 8, 2002
1:34 pm
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Ladeska
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Can't add a whole lot the these great lady's advice, but would just say - men who abuse - seldom change. Some do but it usually takes a great deal of time in order to do that. Some men really need their abuse victim because you become an outlet for their rage, their guilt - they need you for that. And often, they SOO disrespect you if they can charm you back into their web after you have made such a bold stand. Then they say to themselves, well you really deserve whatever I give you because you were so stupid! I've heard men say that. Men who had a side to them that was incredibly charming, sweet, romantic - the whole nine yards to their woman - wooing them back to them. Was sickening to watch. But, I guess it's fair to say - we want to believe "we are worth it to them to change" and therein lies a nasty hook. It clouds our judgement alot. When our worthiness as a woman gets involved - they pretty much have a choke hold on us and they know it and will use it to the maximum advantage.

I think you need to ask yourself - how good is this guy at charming and manipulating me? Look at the past and you tell me. How many times was he successful in hurting you and then wooing you back in close to him? And can he turn up the heat and be even better at it than he has before? People do - do that.

The thing here is - IF he's changed you need to be able to "view" that from a real safe distance. Words are useless! And actions are everything and I strong advise against the thing of "Oh sweetheart, you have to come back so I can show you!" Um no.....he can do the showing all by himself without you getting back into unprotected territory. IF it's real....he would demand or strongly suggest you come back. He'll be able to just DO what he needs to do without you holding his hand. That's the proof in the pudding here. What is counterfeit in this world can never hold his glitter, if you intently watch....it starts falling off and you need to wait for that and test the authenticity of what you're looking at here. If he's true blue - he'll pass the test of time AND he won't mind doing it. If he gets more and more frustrated and desperate with you and pushy even - because you want to wait and watch more - then major RED flag. Time is your friend...watch, look and listen. Put him to the test and you stay behind your protective boundaries doing it, okay?

September 8, 2002
1:36 pm
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Ladeska
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Dang it, can't type - correction...

IF it's real....he would NOT demand or strongly suggest you come back.

September 8, 2002
7:01 pm
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moonglow
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Thanks to everyone and their feedback. He is very good at charming and manipulating me. I've left him a few times before but always went back within days because of the promises he made, which is why now I am hesistant to live together again. He doesn't push or demand that I go back to him which I see as a good sign. We talk everyday and have visited each other over the past nine months and each time I see him it's like our honeymoon all over again! Which is frustrating because I wish he could be like that all the time. Anyhow, he seems to really like his counseling classes and feels they are helping him find out a lot things about himself and his behavior. Any thoughts on this, anyone?

September 8, 2002
7:22 pm
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Ladeska
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Hm,m,m.....well, being pushy has many faces, many forms. It's just called being manipulative in a new and improved fashion. Just because you haven't seen this level of "charm" from him - don't think it hasn't been there. Maybe he just hasn't needed to whip it out "yet"...

It's not uncommon at all - for an abuser to say to himself - hm,m,m...this tactic won't work on her so I have to use another one. The game of control and manipulation is where the thrill is. So, of course he can be so very charming....

The thing is - if this change is real.....why wasn't he "motivated" to do this before Now? How about all the times he saw you hurt by him and he did nothing. Apologized, got you back in the web and did it again, right? How come seeing your hurt and your brutalization by him - didn't send him a wakeup call "all this time"? Why is it that all of a sudden - you leaving has now given him motivation to - want to change? This bothers me...........greatly. And is another one of those red flags you should really pay attention to.

Because IF he has the character that it takes to Change like he would want you to believe he is doing, has done - then he would have done it before now, right? But because he got his candy taken away, his victim, his dog to kick removed........then it's all out war with how WELL he can charm you and get you back and then really make you pay.

I always look at the motivation factor for "change" in anyone. Alot of really good con artists/psychopaths get out of prison and right before they do - Oh My God - they just became a Christian! Then they have this great cover and dare you to say a word against the fact that God can't change them. They then move into the best picking grounds of them all - Church - where many an unsuspecting vulnerable single woman abound in great quantity and ready to embrace a "changed man".

Many of those women either end up dead or have their life wrecked from pillar to post because - they didn't see what hit them - when it was coming - at them.

We're really quite stupid about this part of some people's nature. We think we can handle it, we discount countless red flags and govern with our touchy feely emotional side or the sexual side. Predators who are good at what they do - know All this about us and they play it - to the hilt. Is a passtime for them.

So, I'm not surprised one bit that he can pull off this big charm thing with you. He's done it before and you're not living with him now - you can't see him up close and personal and he can charm your pants off when you are together. Not hard. You say words and he just gives you - the slow hand routine.

When women who have been abused are seduced by their "now good boy" they become silly putty in their hands. One thing I'd advise you to do like yesterday is stop all physical involvement with him because that's gonna blind you like no tomorrow. And - it will turn up the pressure on his "glitter", too.

I know I'm not giving him a break here. And I don't apologize. Seen it play out too much. Just can't be a sucker anymore and hate for other people to be suckers as well. Like I said - stay behind your shield and wait him out.... His success at doing what he's doing shouldn't depend on you. It should be - for him. And because he has done what he's done already to you - I'd say an at least two year wait to see how he lives his life - is well in order here. If you go back any sooner - you haven't made him even break a sweat. If he's conning you - all he's going to do is laugh at you and disrespect the hell out of you - which means - even worse treatment of you. Be Wise.

September 8, 2002
7:30 pm
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Ladeska
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....and don't let him involve you in "his therapy" either. It's about him........it can be about you two when and if ever - you get back together. So, let him do his work all by himself. I would completely pull back from all these discussions and all these wordy talks about this and that because the bottomline is - action is what's needed here, not alot of promises, flowers, good intentions, backrubs, candy, good sex, saying all the right things.... I'd cut him off at the pass on all that and say - that's nice but - you got work to do and I will leave you to it. IF he just seems to fall off the wagon after all that - it's not your fault - it just means - it never was real. He can risk losing you at this point and he needs to feel it, too because even if he is sincere - what he has done to you thus far does not need to be so easily dismissed or forgotten by you. He should be way back in the arena of trust with you and he needs to EARN it back with you - IF it is real - this change. He is now not even in the place of meeting you for the first time - he's behind that line - he's in the place of someone who has attacked you, hurt you and who has kept doing it. That kind of person - you really don't trust and have good reason - not to, right? If you love him blindly then your love has little to do with him and alot to do with your own problems and your own need to live in pain and to be degraded. Just wanted to add this.

September 8, 2002
7:56 pm
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gingerleigh
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Doesn't really matter what any of us thinks, Moonglow. Really, what do *you* want? What is your gut telling you? If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.

If he were not in the picture at all, what would you be doing? Do you have a career, or are you going to school? Why not chart a path for yourself, and then see if he fits into that path? If so, great! But if not... what other sources for happiness do you have outside of him?

September 8, 2002
7:59 pm
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gingerleigh
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Sorry Ladeska, posted right over ya... great advice.

Moonglow, no sleeping with him, sex really can muck up your head like nothing else.

September 8, 2002
9:47 pm
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Ladeska
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Hey Ginger! That's okay. We hop over each other alot on here. Carry on!!

It's interesting, isn't it - how we can be so - not connected with our "gut" that questions like you raise are just - foreign. Not a good sign - but sign enough - to get back out on the highway of being "pro-you", huh?

September 9, 2002
1:14 pm
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beenthruthat
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Moonglow, I have to agree with Ladeska: Two years living separately and avoid sexual contact. For me that would be the toughest part. But if you let him under your skin that way you will definitely be right where he wants you.

I am not sure to what extent he was physically/emotionally/verbally abusing to you. I agree with Blondie that if he did all three you won't be able to change that leopard's spots. That requires a whole new person.

Of course, I already let the husband move back in with me and I'm about ready to get him to move out again. He was gone for 8-9 months and has been home 3 months. Now that the newness has worn off, it's the same old bad attitude. The abusive language is down, but the passive-agressive behavior is there. He's actually gotten better at the passive-agressive manipulation to compensate for the lack of release for his anger.

You are in a much more dangerous predicament than I, so tread lightly.

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