So, it is hard times right now. We are avoiding contact with others, we isolate and hide in our homes, much of the time. And I have noticed that it affects me in a way I didn't realise.
Many who read this knows I have been in a relationship with mental abuse. Not everyone knows how long the relationship was, or how sever the abuse was.
Or, that there was also other kinds of abuse.
When experts talk about abuse in close relationships, they talk about a few different kinds (that often overlap and is intertwined). Physical, mental, sexual and ecomical, for instance.
I have experiened all but direct physical abuse. I say direct, because, when I went to therapy, my therapist told me that threats about physical violence also counts as physical violene. At first I didn't understand what he was talking about, but then he explained that for instance, when my ex got mad and smashed a hole in a bookshelf door, that was a threat. He didn't have to say it or even hint it by then. I got scared, I paniced. I became easier to control again. He probably didn't even think of it or plan it. They don't always do that. They are so in tune with you, it goes on instinct.
The whole relationship I felt unsure and afraid. The later years I was actively scared, 24/7. And I didn't know why. I didn't know at that point what was happening to me. I was so brainwashed, I thought there was something wrong with me. That I was doing something. My ex used to call me egoistic and self centered. I even went to see a psycologist to help me not be so egoistic. He probably didn't understand why I was there. (Also, he was an idiot, he should have understood what was going on by the things I told him.)
I have been brainwashed. I mean that litteraly. It's in the medical journal about my stress diagnos I think. I have been subjected to gaslighting. I have been raped. I have been controlled. I have trauma. PTSD. CPTSD. I have repressed memories. I get flashbacks. I have had people telling me that I sound so emotionless when I talk about this. That I dont seem to suffer from it. That maybe, I am exaggerating or even lying.
If you have no experience of trauma you should shut up.
It is so hard to talk about this, so very hard, you have no idea. Sometimes, I have to focus all my will power to say these things. And I want to talk about it, sort of naturaly, if that makes sense. I don't want it to be a ”forbidden” topic. This hurts people. People die from mental abuse as well. Just not in the same way. But..
… Have you ever been in a car, on the highway, going at about 120 km/h, and your abuser is talking to you, using all his skills, and you feel dead. You feel like you are already dead. You don't see a way out. You grab the door handle of the car and you... just want to open it. Throw yourself out in the highway. You don't want to exist anymore.
I have had my hand on that door handle many times. I have unbuckled my seatbelt about three times, I think. I don't remember. I have quite a lot of memory loss from those incidents. The thought of my kids helped me to not throw myself out in the traffic.
Why am I writing this now you ask? Isn't there more important things in the world right now? Shouldn't we all focus on the pandemic instead?
Well.. the pandemic is actually what made me write this. Since this whole thing started, most people have likely been feeling (in addition too all other things they've been feeling) a low key, constant stress, of the fight or flight kind. Quite natural under the circumstances. But for people with trauma this can be really devastating. When you are used to live with that low key fight or flight stress, panic etc, from before, it takes a rather big toll on you. It awakens memories. It makes you react to things in weird ways.
I am developing a depression. My stress is getting worse again. I am not well.
But it doesn't really show. Unless you know me very, very well. And, I am not the only one with these experiences. We are many. And then there are the people that right now are in an abusive relationship. They are many. So many you wouldn't believe. And, again, we hear a lot of how domestic abuse has gone up horribly during this time of isolation. This is scary, horrifying. and, again, the reports mostly show physical abuse. only.
The hidden numbers are uncountable. The different kinds of aid, and help solutions and ways to secretly report are so wonderful, but also, not always the best way for all kinds of abuse. We who have no physical scars are often overlooked. And sadly (which is not Corona related), we are often not believed or seen as abuse victims at all.
I just want you to be aware. Be there. Look out for your fellow humans. We are all valid and we deserve to be treated decently.
Oh, and btw. 20 years. That's how long my abusive relationship was.