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Joined: 12/2/2013
Msg: 22
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?Page 2 of 2    (1, 2)
OP, I'm so sorry for what you endured. Unfortunately, a lot of men will view you as damaged goods which I think is ridiculous. It shows you had some cojones to extricate yourself from that relationship instead of continuing to be a punching bag. I say bravo to you!! I have a friend who had been in an abusive relationship and she had serious trust issues with men. And that may be part of the reason they're reluctant to get involved -- some of those walls are just to high to try to overcome.
Joined: 1/4/2013
Msg: 23
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Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/8/2013 12:25:11 PM
mushortgurl03 wrote:

This is a general question for both the males and females out here on POF.
I was in an abusive marriage that I was luckily able to get out of almost 2 years ago with my life and no kids. I have since received my divorce and have almost been divorced for a year (2/2/12 are my official lucky numbers! :-) ).
I often have men ask why I am divorced and I try very hard not to divulge such information until we've been on a few dates. However once that question comes up again, and I answer truthfully, I fully feel like it's the end of that potential as afterwards I never hear from him again.
Does one being in a prior abusive relationship scare you away? I personally wouldn't be scared as I am a very nurturing kind hearted woman who would treat a man the way he should be treated, and I would never lift a hand at a man. But this is me we're talking about. I want a generalized perception and opinion on this topic as I'm not sure if I should ever tell any of such potentials the truth anymore.

Your input is greatly appreciated.

I suppose it may depend on the kind of abuse involved. A woman who has been sexually abused (especially when she was a child) can be very off-putting to men. Usually a young girl sexually abused grows up to be a woman with conflicted feelings where sex is concerned. In such cases, without the benefit of councelling, she tends to have "love/hate" relationships with men she becomes sexually involved with, and this can drive the men in her life crazy. As for "simple physical abuse", this can spawn trust issues in the context of future relationships. Perhaps I give too much credit to the common man, but I think men in general can see these issues as potential problems where a LTR is concerned.

I think that when you bring up such a subject, it may be prudent to also state that you have had councelling to get past it, and also that the man you are with is totally different. That you can see he would never be like that, and how foolish you were when you were younger to have not recognized your ex for the kind of man he was. I think perhaps such an approach may quell any fears that a current lover may have concerning your current state of mind. IMHO.

OH yes, and what's up with the lucky numbers?
Joined: 10/30/2013
Msg: 24
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/8/2013 12:40:25 PM
Considering this thread is a year old now I'd imagine the OP has worked her way through this - but I'll opine anyways. I'd be cautious like others have said, because now that I knew, I'd be worried I'd inadvertently set off some triggers so I'd probably be censoring and scrutinizing my behavior - maybe to the point where the relationship would not feel natural. We would have to have a pretty frank discussion about what triggers I'd need to avoid etc.

I found this curious:

<div class="quote">I was in an abusive marriage that I was luckily able to get out of almost 2 years ago with my life and no kids.
Based upon the post date she got out of her marriage in 2009 and yet it shows she's been a member here since 2007. Hmmm.
Joined: 9/17/2013
Msg: 25
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/8/2013 12:42:18 PM
Message 17:

you people really shouldn't judge subjects you know NOTHING about!!!!!!

Actually, they do know something about the subject. They know they don't want any part of an abusive relationship.

Message 15:

Again, you cannot judge until you have been in those shoes.

Actually, by your own admission, you were a textbook at-risk candidate:

I was too blind to see at the time because I didn't think I could honestly do better. When you're a "fatty" you really don't have too many options now do you? Not so much.

To answer your initial question, I too would be concerned about someone's lack of judgment and lack of self-awareness and lack of self-esteem to allow this type of situation to occur beyond an initial exhibition of abusive behavior, unless of course they grew up completely isolated from society and had been unable to formulate any worldly knowledge and reasoning.
Joined: 11/19/2013
Msg: 26
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/8/2013 11:08:33 PM
My father was a foundry worker turned professor. Despite all his education at top universities he used to say: "I learned the most about life in the foundry. Humans are a lot like steal. You take a lump of dirt and metal and you have to burn all the impurities off in the hottest of fires before it's worth a shit and gets strong. Until you suffered you don't know what you are made off, the burns take impurities off."

OP: don't you be embarrassed of surviving abuse, it means you are strong. People who don't understand this aren't experienced or knowledgable enough about the world and humanity to be of any benefit to you. "Used goods" is the term pampered ignorant idiots employ, not moral intelligent beings who are aware of the statistics concerning how rampant domestic violence, poverty, molestation and other hardships are. I never conceal what I have survived because frankly: those experiences wisened me up, built my character, expanded my empathy and made me an activist for others. I am better than the person who passes judgment and does nothing to alleviate the misery of their fellow human beings. I laugh in the face of folk my age who still don't have compassion, I see them as emotionally stunted freaks.

Time for you to demand the respect you deserve, cut off those without the emotional intelligence to understand being a victim is part and parcel to the mortal coil.
Joined: 8/23/2013
Msg: 27
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/9/2013 7:09:38 AM
I used to think like a white knight but eventually came to understand that they are usually not the victims they pretend to be. It is their fault for getting into and staying in such a relationship, and that speaks volumes about their character. Sure some eventually learn from their mistakes but I've decided to only date people who can support me in my journey in life, meaning unless her baggage is totally handled and then some, it generally isn't worth the effort.

moral of the story, have your shit together.
Joined: 11/13/2013
Msg: 28
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/9/2013 12:50:44 PM
It really depends on the person and how much of a baggage it would be for me to deal with. But personally I prefer not to date someone who was abused in her last relationship or by a family member because I have absolutely no history whatsohowever abusing, raping, beating or cheating on a woman and with that being said, why should I have to prove to someone that I'm not like their last boyfriend. Not saying you don't have to earn trust but I don't want to have to prove myself when I'm innocent.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 29
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/9/2013 2:42:18 PM

but I've decided to only date people who can support me in my journey in life,

Why? Because you can't support yourself in your journey of life?
Ideally, a paired couple provide one another with MUTUAL support. This doesn't include abuse.

I can only advise the OP that until she knows someone quite well, the reason she is divorced is because the marriage became irretrievably broken down. If someone expects you to pour out our whole life history on the 2nd date, they have some boundary issues and probably need to get a REAL life of their own.

Long ago, I had the experience of returning to dating after a couple of failed serious relationships, and I don't recall anybody grilling me for details of why those relationships ended.
Cindy O
Joined: 9/14/2013
Msg: 30
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/9/2013 9:59:54 PM
The flag you are talking about is excess emotional baggage. Some men may fear you have too much and therefore be a bad bet as far being good relationship material.

You can't lie in a relationship, honesty and trust is paramount. However, don't offer the information if they don't ask for the first two months if you can help it. Honesty and openness are two different things. If you feel the need to be open, try to search out a friend or counselor first.

Why two months? - love grows over time... the more they are in love with you, the less important it will be to them.
Joined: 11/4/2012
Msg: 31
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/10/2013 2:23:46 AM
OP, my instinct was to say it's none of their business. But, you really want to not waste time,
root out attitudes like those displayed in the thread calling you to blame, questioning your character.
You were guilty of nothing, and anyone who would judge you, you'd be better off knowing so.

The reality--more people than you know have become that stat, but they can't talk about it, or they are diminished. So, they hide.

I'd be inclined to be matter of fact, you have nothing to apologize for, and let them reveal who they are. Why find out later?

Live long enough, you become the statistic others dismiss as somehow "damaged goods"-often from unfeeling misfits, or oppressed people, who should have sensitivity but only extend it to themselves, and their specific concerns or issues.

Msg 28 beautifully stated--you spoke for me, especially " I see them as emotionally stunted freaks. " I omitted the age part. I don't think age really factors- really young children can have compassion, or they are devoid of it.

In my youth, I thought abstractly about these issues-they hadn't directly touched me. I might not have understood the whys and hows of abuse but could never condemn victims. I always saw the blame in the perpetrators of violence.

That blame of the "weak"(might is right) takes a certain ignorance, a person void of any understanding or human awareness that I'd conclude they never had relationships and don't understand abuses of trust, misplaced attachment and loyalty, people who aren't manipulators or predators being educated the hardest way.

These threads show spurious attitudes I see displayed over and over. It's all about them-if abuse/whatever "affects them", not that she valiantly rebuilt her life and she wasn't an abuser, just a survivor. They need to condemn because they deserve a perfect slate. They have their illusions they deserve it, and will get it.

If the thread was men who suffered priest abuse..--"well he'd have sex/trust issues"--"not good candidate" for dating!
I'm sure some said that. They overcame struggles and that is courageous, strong and doesn't diminish them.

It seems people just don't want to be told the truth. As long as they are lied to, and can retain the fiction we are living a fairy tale, they seem content in their ignorance.
Joined: 12/28/2012
Msg: 32
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/10/2013 7:32:07 AM
Bottom line for someone who is abused is that they get out of the abuse and that in time and counseling, they heal and can lead a great healthy relationship with their partner. When people do that, it doesn't matter about the past, it is over and the person moves on. However, if the abused person still has issues and goes into a relationship, that is not healthy at all and one that I would not want to be in.

I have been in a relationship where the woman was mentally abused in the past and to begin with things seemed fine but over time, you could see and feel the "walls" come up around her. To begin with, I knew about these things but there were no signs of problems or lingering effects. With time it began to show and things made sense that she was still not over the past and it definitely strained any kind of a good relationship and ended.

So for me, no, doesn't matter about a past that may have not been pretty or a woman has been hurt and abused. But along with other great qualities a woman has, she also needs to be healed from any negative past. And if she hasn't healed, the best thing is to find a way to heal and definitely not get into dating with the possibility of a relationship with that person. I think lots of posters care for any abuser and for most, they want to know that the person has healed and it has to be important that she has healed if the man is interested in a relationship with her. It's crucial.
Joined: 9/9/2005
Msg: 33
Does abuse from one relationship scare potentials away?
Posted: 12/28/2013 3:07:55 PM
mushortgurl03, I was in an abusive relationship for over seven years and when I say abusive, I mean getting out alive.

There are certain traits that someone who has been abused will exhibit, and one is to be low self confidence, and another is to have a short temper/extreme self preservation instincts. This comes from both pushing buttons to get the other person to react, as well as the reaction you have when you are cornered in anything. It takes a lot to leave, and the damage can be sometimes extensive and mostly hidden.

If you lived close to me I would offer to buy you lunch somewhere and talk, because a year is not long enough to be out of this kind of relationship, not by a long shot. Two years, possibly, but I'm thinking that it may just be a start. But I am willing to talk with you at any time, both on the net and on the phone, if you need an ear that has seen abuse.... but don't expect me to pull punches, it takes honesty and determination to recover.

I can tell you that it is only partially the comments about abuse that are keeping guys away. Most guys have met the former abused girl and know that it's sometimes like walking in a landmine of uncertainty. You may not be like that, but my guess is that you are in some ways.

Look, send me a message and say hello. Let's talk a little, swap stories, and chat a little.
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