Question: Dear Luise: I have had a lifetime of physical and emotional abuse (and so have my three children) in an off again/on again marriage to a monster…years and years of broken promises and broken hearts; not to mention broken bodies. We have had endless legal battles and the final result is that my grown children have sided with their dad without knowing the whole story. I am finally free and will never believe another lie or go back to that living Hell but I am unwell and alone. Is there anything I can do? This is totally unfair and my life is a shambles. S
Answer: Dear S. I radically condensed your question and can only hope that I have retained the essence of what you’re up against, now, and what you have been up against all of your adult life.
First, I want to congratulate you for pulling yourself out of that horrible, “abused wife” existence and making a final break. Many who suffer as you have, can’t find the strength and courage to do that. It gets beaten out of them.
The physical and psychological damage to your adult kids is probably something you can’t do anything about. It is typical in abusive relationships like yours that the abuser lies his way to the top and appears to win. He hasn’t. You have…because no matter what he has led others to believe, you are the only one who is in a healing pattern. You have acted in your own behalf and that is always founded on self-love and inner dignity. No one but you knows what it has cost you to pull yourself up by your bootstraps and go on.
Your children may have turned on you but they have something even harder to face and that is sorting this all out and healing them selves. They may never be able to do that in his shadow.
Build yourself a new life and let his lies about you go when you can. There is nothing “fair” in any of this and there never will be. Also, please look for a battered women’s group and give yourself all of the support you possibly can. Your life isn’t over; it’s just begun. Blessings, Luise