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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

[For women] How much love do you have to have for a man to stay with him if he physically assaults and verbally abuse you?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26798points) September 22nd, 2014

There are a few couples around town that have legendary relationships (as they always put their business out in public). It is no secret that these women get slapped around, it is either witnessed, or the bruises are not convincing as having been done tripping in the bathroom. What is less left to the imagination is the dress-down their men give them in front of people in public, or heard at high level volume while they are speaking privately. How much love do you have to have for a man to endure the name-calling, punches, slaps, and other abuse? Do they love these men that much and that is why they don’t leave, or are they too afraid to go it alone? In other words, would they would rather be with a bad, abusing, someone then be with no one and be single. Does being married make it able to endure treatment like that more than just cohabitation with a lover?

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18 Answers

syz's avatar

That’s not love.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central, as @syz wrote, that’s not about love. It’s much more complicated than that. More likely it’s about lack of self-esteem, fear of what will happen if they leave, having limited support or not being aware of choices available to them. Abuse isn’t just about visible bruises, the emotional bruises are often what prevent abused partners from leaving. If a man is hitting and verbally abusing his partner in public, what’s he doing to her in private? I’m saying her, but abuse affects men too. However, look how many women and children are killed by jealous abusive partners.

Certainly there are shelters, but how safe are they? How protected are women who go to those places? I really don’t know. I’d guess a vulnerable woman who has been beaten down and has children to protect, might also not know but might be more afraid of what would happen if she did leave than what she knows will happen if she stays.

I get that it seems logical that a person should leave and especially if they have children. However, it just isn’t that simple. Until we’ve walked in their shoes and understand their individual circumstances, I’d rather not judge.

jca's avatar

I wouldn’t stay. No doubt in my mind about that.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@jca Until we’ve walked in their shoes and understand their individual circumstances, I’d rather not judge.
Who is judging? I feel bad for those women. I could easily say they get what they get because they chose him and are keeping him, but what I really feel is pain and pity for them (for lack of a better way to say it), when you hear a woman screaming to a man calling her everything but s child of God, to please not be put out in the middle of the night. It is a no-brainer these women are living miserable lives. It is as if they know they are living with a 50 pound hornet nest in their house with a loud buzz from within, wondering just was action or word will set him off on as tirade. It is just so sad to see and what can you say? If you even try to say something in a glancing way they need to change, they go into denial mode or “defend-the-douchebag” mode. It is just sad, sad to watch, and sad to hear.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

I can only imagine because I haven’t had to experience either situation @Hypocrisy_Central. Where would they go @Hypocrisy_Central? If they left, are there places they can go where they are really safe? I read a story yesterday about a woman who hid her baby in the toilet after being shot by her partner. When I say judge, I mean I’m not going to judge the decisions they’re making without understanding their circumstances. I’d like to say I’d leave. I hope I would. I haven’t been put in a situation where I’ve been abused and perhaps had nowhere to go. In relationships of that type, my understanding is the abusers often go out of their way to isolate the abused. From family, friends and anyone who might help.

jca's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central: I didn’t say that. Read again.

trailsillustrated's avatar

It’s not always easy when you and your children are financially dependant on the abuser. The shelters, the aid, the protection in real life is often non- existent. A skillful and affluent abuser can often gain sole custody.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Assault not love.

linguaphile's avatar

I stayed with my ex, but it wasn’t because of love. I despised him to the point where I’d gag if he wanted to touch me.

I stayed because I didn’t think I deserved better, didn’t think I could function on my own, didn’t think it was “really happening” to someone like me (intelligent, educated, etc) and because the hell that I knew was more comfortable than the hell I didn’t know. I was worried about finances and where I’d go. I had zero support system left.

I finally looked at Suicide in the eye and decided I wanted to live. It took 2 years of slow, careful planning and a lot of acting. I built a support system of 2 people, got out, got safe and haven’t looked back since. And I’m well able to take care of myself after all.

Not once was “love” a reason for me to stay.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

response self moderated (what’s the point?)

KNOWITALL's avatar

knowing why he does it (his issues) makes it hard. We want to help, nurturing instinct. You have to love yourself more.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@jca I didn’t say that. Read again.
My blunder, I could blame it on a twitchy touchpad, but it was all me.

@Earthbound_Misfit Where would they go @Hypocrisy_Central? If they left, are there places they can go where they are really safe?
If they have nowhere to go, then that is a problem for society as well as them. Some have family but because they burned all the bridges to the ground, can’t use them. Others have family they can use, but won’t out of pride (having to admit they choose the wrong dude), or won’t use family because said family will make them dump dude like a load of dirty baby diapers, and they are not willing to do it.

@linguaphile […and because the hell that I knew was more comfortable than the hell I didn’t know.
What would have been the ”hell you didn’t know” that would paralyze you to remain in the hell you were in?

trailsillustrated's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central what if said family doesn’t care, or if the victim has no family? The reality for many women is homelessness and loss of custody of her children. Many women will stay because they have nowhere to go, they know the shelters have a year long waiting list, and abuser earns 500k a year, enough to drag it through the courts (remember the victim has no resources but legal aid.) it’s a very, very daunting task for one who may be very vulnerable at this point.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@trailsillustrated @Hypocrisy_Central what if said family doesn’t care, or if the victim has no family?
That is not always the case, I have seen a few instances where the family does care, and have room for not only her but the baby she will have or the young child she had had, but don’t want to get involved until she cut bait and leave the douche bag. It is not like there is no bridge out, she just doesn’t want to take it because she has to give him up, cut all ties, and start fresh. Why would a family want to inherit an anchor that is just going to cause disruption under their roof even if to help her?

Many women will stay because they have nowhere to go, they know the shelters have a year long waiting list, and abuser earns 500k a year, enough to drag it through the courts (remember the victim has no resources but legal aid.) it’s a very, very daunting task for one who may be very vulnerable at this point.
OK, a lot there, in all of the cases I have experienced the man is nowhere near Middle Class, in fact most are homeless, or jobless sponging off her; that is until they mess her up so much that she does lose everything and become homeless—yet she still sticks with him. If there were any children, (even if he stuck her with them and they are his too), providing for them financially or anything else is by compulsion, or just because they come with the territory (her). The kids more than often are lost in the system, and yet she stays with him instead of cutting bait and getting her kid(s) back. In these cases she has little or no legal retaliation to contend with.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central “It is not like there is no bridge out, she just doesn’t want to take it because she has to give him up

“yet she still sticks with him”

If you think that this is happening because of love, you have utterly failed to understand the dynamic. Please re-read everything everyone else has posted here.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@dappled_leaves If you think that this is happening because of love, you have utterly failed to understand the dynamic.
I read it, and all that means what?
A. She is in a miserable state.
B. She understands she is in a miserable state.
C. She knows she has a family willing to help.
D. That help is on the condition that she gives up the ”anchor”.
E. She doesn’t believe she should have the love and support of a family that has not trashed her because she believes she should be with an ”anchor” that will, thus making her accepting of the fact she should be stuck at step ‘A’?

If, as what is said is true, no money, no support, afraid to be on the streets where he can find them, loss of kids, etc., paralyzes a woman from leaving, I can see that. But if none of that exist, she has family to give her shelter, support her, insulate her from douche bags, and have a stable place for her to support her child but she don’t take it because of him, I can’t see what hold he would have once all plausible weapons are nullified?

linguaphile's avatar

@Hypocrisy_Central What would have been the ”hell you didn’t know” that would paralyze you to remain in the hell you were in?

I was working a full time job with good benefits, had a place to live, had a shared vehicle, and life was predictable enough. However, I knew I would have to go through a lot to get out. My classroom was right next to my ex-husband’s, which meant our divorce would be very public and would involve a lot of spectators. I also needed to get my own car and had to be very, very nice to get what I wanted in the divorce knowing I was at great risk. His counselor had sent him to an intensive treatment center and he was dangerous.

But I did it- I got my own car, had a very public and humiliating breakup (people thought he was the good guy in the divorce), was painfully nice, saved up enough money, got what I wanted in the divorce and got the hell out of that job and state. All that took 2 years.

I was mostly afraid of not being able to take care of myself. I’ve surprised myself over the past 2 years and am doing just fine. The “hell” was the imagined hell created from being fed constant fear and doubt.

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