Since my post on abuse, I’ve been contacted by quite a few women (one of them said the words above, a glaring neon sign for an emotionally abused woman). I did not expect that. Some want my help. Some want to share their story. Some simply want to connect with another human being because they feel desperately alone.
I’m not a therapist. I’m not a lawyer. But there are a few things I know from experience.
Physical abuse leaves scars on our bodies and our souls. Emotional abuse maims our souls. Whoever the person is who said, “Sticks and stones will break your bones, but words will never hurt you.” That person is an idiot.
I will also say that I went through more than one abusive situation. But that hasn’t happened to me for years. Why? Because of one moment that changed my life into a before and after. The moment when I rose up and said:
No one has the right to hurt me.
I would shout that from the rooftops if I could. I would have it skywritten by a skywriting plane with fireworks and a brass band pounding it out in the background.
In my dealings with the abused, they all have one thing in common, it’s this skittish, hard to pin down “I don’t know what the right thing to do is.” Abusers are experts as sowing confusion and chaos. It’s the equivalent of being lost in a blizzard, with no landmarks while under a constant barrage of pain and fear.
No one has the right to hurt you. Let those words show you where to go.
I don’t know where those words will take you. I am an advocate for marriage when both parties are willing to do whatever it takes to make that marriage work. I’m an advocate for divorce when that is not the case.
No one has the right to hurt you. Let those words change your life like they did mine. Let me show you that there is a way out of the deep dark pit you’ve found yourself in. Though the climb is long, hard, and full of setbacks, there is happiness and light waiting for you. You must find people willing to help you, but you are the only one who can pull yourself out.
I promise you it’s worth it.