Time Heals All Wounds

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I’ve decided to write this post about how time heals. I can honestly say, with a flood of relief, that I no longer miss him. Every time I feel that stab of loneliness, that familiar wave of anxiety, those annoying whispers in the back of my mind that tell me I’m better off with an abuser rather than spending every night alone, I find myself reminding myself almost reflexively that it is not him I miss, but having someone.

I’ve been on a brief hiatus from this blog because of some drama DVP (Domestic Violence Perpetrator, a.k.a. my abuser) was causing. It has been two months now, and I’m ready to dive back in head first in the deep end of my very deep pool of experiences, grief, and emotions in hopes I can help others cope with theirs. I have to say, though, that the deep end is slowly becoming more shallow!

I bet you are asking, “What was the drama about?” DVP somehow found out about my blog. I thought I had deleted everyone on Facebook that was connected to him, but after closer review,  I found that I was still friends with a few of his friends and even some of his relatives. I’m still unsure who told him, but the fact is, he read it and decided to comment on my posts. He’s probably reading this right now, but it doesn’t worry me. My intent is not to bash him, though it may seem like it. I truly mean it when I say my intent is to help other victims. It is this reason that I have not used any names and locations. He was foolish enough to post with his name, and claim in his comments that he was the DVP.

I was going to let the comment go, but after it turned into three, hurtful comments followed by a nasty threat text message to my father, I had to report his repetitive violations of the protective order to the police. I knew that it would be best to lay low after that, and I’m glad I did. I was able to focus a lot on healing and becoming happy again, and I’m on my way to making a full recovery.

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One piece of advice that always annoyed me after a break up is what I’m about to tell you now: time heals all wounds. We’ve all heard it. It annoyed me because it felt like a cheap “go-to” piece of advice people use when they don’t know what to say or don’t care enough to offer sympathy. Regardless, I am going to say it to you, because (dare I admit it) it is absolutely true. Truthfully, part of it is owed to the anti-depressant I am taking, but looking back on the last two months, I can see a huge difference.

Leaving an abuser is one of the most difficult break-ups a person can go through. Breaking up with any companion is hard in itself. It’s like a part of you died. All the memories, feelings, experiences, etc. suddenly come to an end. All the time you invested in and with that person now doesn’t matter because it becomes too painful to think about and you know you won’t be spending any more time with him. Someone you saw and spoke to everyday is gone. As far as you’re concerned, it’s like you are dead to him, and him to you. You may lose mutual friends and people in his family you’ve grown to consider your own. You lose part of your possessions. Your children are confused about why they have to split time between the two of you, and are just as heartbroken as you, if not more. You have to spend thousands of dollars on lawyers and fees. You have to move out, get a new bank account. The list could go on.

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As if all of this isn’t enough to swallow, there’s a whole other side to leaving an abuser. You are left with a lot more emotional, physical, spiritual, and even financial damage than the average breakup. You are left with feelings of self-doubt. Are you at fault for the abuse? Could you have done more to fix your relationship, to fix him? Is leaving him really the best thing for you? What will my family and friends think when they find out the truth? Am I broken?

You are left with physical scars and marks. How many times did he choke, slap, hit, pull your hair, smack, leave bruises, break bones, leave black eyes, or push you down or against a wall? You probably can’t even keep track anymore. How many times did he call you names, tell you to kill yourself, threaten to kill you, threaten your kids, harm your kids, threaten to take them from you, tell you that you are worthless, tell you that you are nothing without him, tell you what to think, isolate you from friends and family, and so much more?

You are left with court dates not only for a divorce (for my married victims), but for a protective order and the countless domestic violence and other related charges. You have to listen to people pick apart your personal relationship and relive horrible experiences nobody should ever have to experience to begin with. Worse, you have to hear him lie through his teeth to a judge. You get to hear his lawyer twist every abusive situation into being your fault or not as bad as it really was.

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When you realize you must go through with leaving him no matter how hard it is, you will eventually go through all of this. It’s overwhelming, and it plain sucks! It’s unfair. Haven’t you suffered enough? I’m here to reiterate that time does heal all of that suck.

I have been seeing two counselors. I took a group class on domestic violence. I am on an anti-depressant. I meditate, listen and watch motivational videos, read motivational books, use a diffuser, run way too much, lift weights, binge-watch Netflix, surround myself with family and friends that love me, spent quality time with my daughter, focused on college classes, experienced the true meaning of retail therapy, and have immersed myself with my religion.

All of those things and more really helped me get through each day, but at the end of the day (and often random times during the day), I would still feel like it wasn’t worth living another day. I’d feel like it would be better to be miserable with my abuser than to experience this type of pain. I felt like I had no friends, that no one understood what I was going through. I misinterpreted everything people said or didn’t say to me. I felt like people were going out of their way to ignore me. I felt like no one cared. I felt embarrassed about my situation. I felt ashamed.

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I’ve been out of my abusive relationship for nine months now. My divorce still isn’t final, but I’m patient. I know that it was the best thing I could have done for myself and my daughter. It has been two months since my last post about how much I struggled to not call him. Time has passed. Each day, though I struggled, I grew stronger. Did I realize it at the time? Definitely not. I learned about my self worth through counseling, reflection, spending time with myself, serving others, making new friendships, becoming self-reliant, and most importantly, discovering my new-found freedom. Admit it, you didn’t (don’t) have freedom in that abusive relationship. Did all of it happen over night? Did I wake up one day and pick which aspect of my life I was going to work on? Not really. I knew that I couldn’t return to abuse, so I pushed forward. I lived one day at a time. Before I knew it, nine months had passed, and I can see the significant amount of change in myself, and others have noticed too.

If it’s been nine months for you, or longer, and you don’t feel like you are at this point, that is perfectly okay. Everyone has their own timeline. The most important thing is to not give up, and please do not return to your abuser! I promise it gets easier. One day I realized that I could think about him and not feel hurt. I mainly feel anger, but even that is passing. I read one of the comments he left on my blog, which used to make me cry and long for him, and now I can read it and laugh at how absurd it is. I can look at his profile picture (which is all I can see of his Facebook since I blocked him) and not wish I could see him in person. I can drive by our old apartment and not care that we used to live there. I used to avoid that place, and now it’s just part of my past life. When I see his features in my daughter, it used to eat me up. Now, it doesn’t bother me. She is beautiful. She looks a lot like me too, and without him, she wouldn’t be here.

Eventually, my divorce will be final, and I’ll be able to date again. Once that happens, I feel like I won’t put as much thought into my abuser any more. I’ll be in a healthy, wonderful relationship that I always deserved, but didn’t have. However, I don’t need a new relationship to feel better either. I am learning to love myself and my daughter, regardless of having a companion.

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Time will pass regardless. Make it count. Try to find happiness, but don’t beat yourself up if you can’t find it. You’ll have good days and bad days. You will go back and forth on your decisions regarding your abuser. Just remember that before you know it, you’ll be able to look at your life as it is now and compare it to how it was with your abuser and see how far you’ve come. In a year from now, I’ll be able to see more progress. I promise, things will get better. Hang in there.

Amanda

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34 thoughts on “Time Heals All Wounds

  1. I just wrote a post about some of the lies I had to face after leaving my abuser. It’s tough living in abuse, but the struggle doesn’t end even after you leave. Your situation was much worse than mine, but I want to thank you for sharing because it is nice to know you’re not alone. Keep fighting!

    Liked by 9 people

    1. I like what Dr. King said about ‘ it’s a tragic misconception that something about the very flow of time that will cure all ills” time has healed some things for me along with prayer, but not others. Whatever works for you I guess in your situation. I liked all of what I read from you and will continue to read on! God Bless

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not sure you’ve had enough time to really “heal.” How many years of abuse did you suffer? That kind of abuse will not heal in a few weeks or months.
    You have a wonderful attitude though and I hope the healing comes quickly and without fear or regret or self-doubt.
    Here’s an idea…..since your abusive asshole is reading your posts, maybe he’ll read the comments. You don’t want to trash him?
    I will. Hey…you. You are a piece of shit scumbag!

    Liked by 4 people

  3. You are an incredibly strong woman! My abusive parents read my blog. When I found out, I wanted to shut it down, but people pleaded with me to keep going. I managed to block their ISP (email) address, so they can’t send commentary anymore. It is hard, knowing that they read your posts. I am not giving in and I am so pleased that you aren’t either! xxx

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Thank you so much for sharing your story and for stopping by to check mine out.

    Every time you share about your progress, you give hope to those of us who are not as far along in their journey. While this relationship never became physical, it is still hard to walk away after 11 years. I have been through the physical violence in my other relationships. All of it hurts.

    I have realized that in each relationship, I gave my power away. They didn’t take it. That being said, they are usually so subtle in the beginning that most of us never see it coming. I need to go back to a DV group for a refresher course.

    It took me six long years to find the courage and strength to tell him I wanted out. This was just a few days ago. I hope that you continue sharing your strength and courage. I know there will be times of weakness ahead but I will be able to read your posts which let me know there is hope and it will be okay. Just don’t turn back.

    Thank you.

    Hugs,
    Leah

    Liked by 4 people

  5. The cycle of DV is so hard to break out of. And it is not until you do that you realise the full extent of what you have been through and the damage it has wrought. I’m glad you have done that and are now moving on and healing.
    Thank you too for reading and liking my post “do’ – much appreciated 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Thanks for sharing! This is sometimes a difficult situation for those who have been through it to understand. And even when you follow the No Contact rule, the drama can still continue! You are strong!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Well written, but you don’t need to be with abuser rather I’d say its better to spend night alone. It is indeed shameful that in this century too, we need to fight for the rights of women. Your consent to write this blog is really great. Keep going, keep writing but make sure you fight for your rights.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Beautifully written and well done on leaving. Like you said, it’s extremely hard and there are always things and feelings that try to draw us back into the relationship. One day at a time. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Amanda, today in the morning I opened the notification about you following me. As always, I went to check out your site like I do with my other followers, but I found what your blog was about. I read every single post you wrote and I don’t have anything to tell you but four words: you are really brave. Brave for having the energy to write this. To let people know about it. And I admire you. Yes, you are right. Everything will be better. Remember that after the night comes the dawn. You are amazing Amanda. Can’t wait to read more posts from you. Blessings 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  10. Wise words. Unfortunately I understand better than I would like to say. When you come out the other side, at least you realize what a strong person you are. Thanks for visiting my blog.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Thank you for sharing. I know a lot of people who have gone through this and haven’t made a lot of the realizations that you have made. Being in an abusive relationship is hard, getting out of one harder. Keep it up.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Wow, I am speechless. You are amazing and strong and a bunch of other stuff you already know (or are in the process of discovering about yourself). I worked for over 35 years with many young woman escaping this horrifically addictive cycle. I feel so proud of you even though I have just discovered you! Thanks for visiting my blog so I could meet you!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Beautiful, Amanda. With each passing day, we grow stronger. We may not think we can walk through this horrible time, but we can. Like Jill said, on the other side, we realize how strong we are. May you continue to heal and learn to love again. Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Beautiful words my fellow Blogger. “Not only does time heal the wounds, which the scars are a reminder of how far you have come, but to be able to find the words and talk/write about also helps heal the wounds, which in the long run will make you stronger and better moving forward”

    ” we all walk a path through this journey of life, we all go through some life events that will change who we are if we let the events control us, but when we fix what is needed before the event controls us, then we can control our own destiny and truly be who we really are”

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Thank you for liking my blog. I just read this post and I do hope you are right. The pain I feel is immense but I know in time I will overcome but damn could I use a friend right now.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Thanks Amanda for your thoughts on “time heals all wounds” – and how “scars” are left to remind us of what we’ve gone through. I came upon a quote by Mark McMinn that goes, “Time heals all clean wounds. Soiled wounds fester and infect.” That got me thinking about the way memories need to be healed – and how, very often, we find Jesus in our memories to touch the tender part of our wounds. It also got me thinking about what forgiveness is and what it is not. I try to speak to this here: https://moreenigma.wordpress.com/2015/01/16/getting-historical/.
    Thanks for your courage and skill.

    Liked by 1 person

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