During seasons of drastic transition when walking through separation from an abusive or controlling relationship, staying grounded in deep connectivity to God is all the more vital. It’s like holding on to the anchor of the ship that won’t sink, but may be tossed strongly by the waves of the storm all about. You will have to go out to the deck sometimes, but you stay holding onto the rope of the anchor the whole time.
Despite the far superior posts, blogs and entire Facebook pages dedicated to this very topic, I thought I’d at least add some additional encouragement as notation on this blog site.
The first thing I want to do is simply come alongside you and let you know it’s going to be okay. I definitely know there’s a lot going on under the hood emotionally. Just do your best to keep out of the crossfire. Don’t get into wars of words. That makes everything so much worse and counterproductive, and then you have to mop up that along with dealing with enhanced negative emotions that result.
When the weight of sadness descends, don’t fight it. Let it help you to the floor. When the crossfire of torment and attacks surround you, drop prostrate immediately. Don’t keep your head up in the line of fire. Lay low, rest extra, seek God in quiet surrender, and stay there until the storm clears and a Hand from another world lifts you up.
I read poignant comments recently with respect to overcoming abuse. One read as such:
“Emotionally abused partners tend either to take on the criticism and rejection of their partner or former partner, or may be in constant turmoil, wondering things like, ‘Am I as bad as she makes me out to be, or is she impossible to please?’ ‘If I’m as incompetent as he says I am, maybe I can’t make it on my own.’
“Most victims of emotional abuse come not only to blame themselves for all the problems in the relationship but also believe that they are inadequate, contemptuous, and even unlovable.”
This aspect of recovery goes so easily under the radar and isn’t ever addressed because the one who has been abused is so focused on just healing from the immediate wounds, the pain, the hurt of rejection, and other intensive aspects. All the while, this undertone persists throughout subsequent singlehood and future relationships.
This is going to take time to come through, and that’s okay. It will feel awkward, like you’re learning to walk all over again. You will feel a little kiddish…these ‘baby steps’, as some of them refer to it as, may seem juvenile or silly, and you’ll be tempted to say ‘forget it’ and try to just go out there like nothing has happened. But you have to be patient with yourself. Be good to yourself. Be gentle, and take time to relearn the value and preciousness of who you are, and the One who loves and adores you so dearly. Re-establish your self worth and dignity. Come to your baseline identity, who you are, your heart, your dreams, and the One who made you. Let this be your new home base, and operate from here…even well into your healing and recovery. Don’t come away from here. You will be more than surprised at the transformation that takes place on other levels as the mending of your heart and soul takes place.
Along with this, as you reintegrate into areas of sociality, you may feel vulnerable and exposed, like everyone’s watching and sees your awkwardness. Remember, though, since people often don’t really see us, or much care if they happen to, for who we are or what we’re dealing with when we step out, the vulnerability is more with ourselves than with others.
So it’s almost like we are getting to know ourselves, getting reacquainted all over again, with the ends of liking ourselves, and embracing and eventually loving ourselves for who God made us to be in spite of our imperfections and experiences…very similar to the process of developing a genuine friendship with someone else.
And don’t be discouraged when it feels like your progress is slow in your recovery and healing. Remember, progress is often more permanent, more steady, and easier to register and adapt to when it’s slow. The change taking place is more rooted, more surefooted, which makes it easier to absorb and accept the new you that you are becoming.
Allow God’s love to love you by being good to yourself and accepting His truth about you, and don’t be afraid to allow that personal fellowship, even when it’s just you, getting to know yourself and enjoy yourself again. You’ll discover treasures that you had long forgotten or never knew were there, right there, within you all along. 🙂
Grace and abundant peace, beyond your will to endure, be yours now, and persistent in your journey.