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Compassion is also what kept me in an abusive relationship for 2 years. Too much compassion smells like codependency to me. Actually, I believe that's exactly what it became. My abuser knew I was compassionate, loyal, loving, hopeful, and he exploited all of these attributes as well as my weaknesses for his own personal, financial, emotional gain.
Couples fight, and I agree with one of the other posters here that this article seems to refer more to highly escalated and volatile arguments between two normal individuals who's actions at the time may be considered abusive.
I also entered my abusive relationship like I had all of the other healthy loving ones. Hopeful, kind, compassionate. Every time he'd rage out on me verbally (out of nowhere), physically, demean me in sick and twisted ways too dark to detail, violate my body, assault or attempt to murder me (2 counts of strangulation until unconscious, multiple physical attacks, being thrown from a moving vehicle, and much more), I would feel "compassion" for the pain he must be suffering, for whatever dark and twisted plagued his mind and prevented him from being able to love.
It is in our nature to want to nurture, to want to fix. He knows this and exploited it, would come crawling back each claiming to have changed but it was always just a matter of time before he'd rape me financially, abuse me verbally and physically.
Honestly, the insidious psychological abuse was probably worse than the physical abuse (except for maybe the couple of incidents where I actually thought he would end my life).
I lied for him! Because he made ME out to be the bad one. Told everyone I was crazy so that nobody would take me seriously if I DID come forward with the gory details of his psychotic abuse.
Did I go crazy and lash out in retaliation when I finally broke free of his mind-control and through the denial to the anger phase? OMG, yes! I did some things I am not proud of. I also needed that anger as another poster said.
So let me get this straight...THIS is an acceptable reaction to abuse:
• Underreport or hide their partners' abusive behavior
• Not label obviously abusive behavior as abuse
• Blame themselves in part for the abuse they reveal
• Make excuses for the abuser's behavior
• Bend over backwards to see the abuser's perspective
• Describe the abuser at least partially in sympathetic terms
• Exhibit self-doubt
And THIS opposite response makes YOU the abuser?:
• Label their partners' behavior as abusive
• Attribute malevolent intent to their partners' positive behavior (manipulative, deceptive)
• Pathologize their partners (emotional or personality disorder, incompetence)
• Use negative labels (nag, irrational, hysterical, lazy, unreliable)
• Have great difficulty describing their partners' perspectives
• Show little or no compassion
• Exhibit self-righteousness
Sorry, but the latter list to me describes breaking through the denial and SHAME induced SECRECY into the ANGER phase of grieving. Breaking the silence. Did I eventually start fighting back? Hell yes, crying and pleading with him to reason only seemed to make him MORE abusive.
So I'm supposed to deny this behavior is abusive and accept equal responsibility in this? See their attempts to take my life as anything but pathological? USE POSITIVE LABELS FOR THIS PERSON AND BEHAVIOR (WFT are you smoking, for real?). Describe his perspective (what exactly IS the perspective of someone holding you down screaming you're a worthless whore and that's why your parents were alcoholics/unavailable and abandoned you as a child and you were in foster care?).
That being said, WTF? Really now...
Know what your partner is reacting to when you argue.
It’s not “meet my needs.”
To get the partner you want to have, be the partner you most want to be.
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