Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Regrets? I have a few.

2011 was not my best, in fact it was down right awful. My decision to move back to Johannesburg after living in Cape Town for 2 years was perhaps not the right choice for me. I am very good at ignoring my gut feelings. At the time I had a lot of anxiety about my decision, which I ignored, but I also felt that I wanted to be near my family and perhaps my anxiety was simply because I was 'going back' to everything that had caused me so much trauma. Once the decision was made and my belongings were in the truck, I stood in my drive way and the panic hit me like a freight train.

My arrival back in Johannesburg was fraught with problems, far too many to go into, but by the time I had moved into my new home all I wanted to do was sit on the floor and cry... and I did the tears flowed for the rest of the year.   Being alone and addicted to journalling I have the wonderful opportunity of being able to search deep inside myself. I wasn't sure if my depression was because I had left my PEACE behind in Cape Town, or if I was terrified of being back... I think it was a little of both. No it was more of the latter. I have become completely house bound. Thank goodness the pewter classes I teach are with female students and I am blessed to be able to teach in my home. Going out for me is a huge problem and I try and avoid it as much as possible.

I was diagnosed with Androphobia last year, which is a fear of men. There are only a few men who I feel comfortable with, my son in law, thank goodness and my grandsons :o)  Haven't you ever wondered who 'they' are? Well 'they' always say that healing takes time, shew this PTS has taken a lot longer than I am comfortable with. Thank goodness that in my darkest hours I really have had some incredible insight into my life.
One of the things I cannot seem to do is to walk through a shopping centre. The shops start closing in on me, I feel claustraphobic, my chest closes up, I feel as though I can't breath and before too long I am in a flood of tears. The pain consumes me. I have tried so many times to think about what it is that I am afraid of? Part of it is memories of my ex husband and the way we used to shop like sharks on a feeding frenzie. There are a lot of different things that shopping centres remind me of, the holidays we used to plan the restaurants we went to, the music, the movies everything about shopping centres reminds me of him.
                                           Link for this photo.  Shopping Addict
Now here is the interesting thing. I have been watching Celebrity rehab and listening to the different reasons that people drink or take drugs. Most of these people have serious childhood issues and the drug anethetizes the painful memories, but only for so long and sooner or later the drug gets a grip and those memories cannot be erased instead they are replaced with the addiction. I often hear Dr. Drew telling his patients to feel the pain and don't run away from it. One of the things I did when I got divorced was to give money way. Now that sounds so generous and I am sure if you are reading this, you will wish you were standing in line! I gave away a lot. My decision to do so at the time was because I really wanted to help people in need, but there was more to it than that. I also spent a fortune over a 5 year period and when ever I went to a shop, I came back with more than I needed. I justified everything. If I bought gifts for my grandchildren, I thought ... thats normal. If I bought clothes for my youngest daughter, I also felt, shame she needs clothes, but I also spent thousands of rand on things I didn't really need. I shopped compulsively.

Just before Christmas I had to go and buy my family some Christmas presents. I knew it would be stressful but the shop I was going to was just down the road, wasn't in the middle of a shopping centre and if I was freaked out, I knew I could come home quickly and go back the next day if I had to. I was standing in the shop and all of a sudden I had a complete panic attack... but this time I didn't have any money to throw around to ease the anxiety. I bought what I needed to and while I was paying for my things I began to cry. I rushed out of the shop and on my way home I suddenly realised that this is what I have been doing for 5 years... shopping, using money to ease the pain, only now I don't have that money any more.

Last night I watched a movie called Confessions of a Gambler. The leading actress a Muslim, was divorced and her gay son contracted aids and died. She decided one day to go to a casino with two girlfriends, why I am not sure... but she became addicted to gambling, it seemed to be the only thing that distracted her from her pain. When she had lost everything including the respect of her eldest son, she arranged to have her car stolen and finally hit rock bottom. It was only then that she realised that nothing can take away the pain of losing a son. While I was watching the movie, I began to cry. Something clicked... that is what I had been trying to do for 6 years.

Here I was sitting alone on Boxing Day crying like a baby. I have always been a very strong person and I have survived a lot in my life, but 'this', was something that finally beat me. What was 'this'... the truth that my ex husband was not who I thought he was. I had been duped right from the beginning. All I was to him from the minute I met him, was someone who served a purpose in his life, I was dispensable. I meant no more to him than his car, his golf clubs or anything else for that matter. The abuse I endured for all those years was for nothing. When the time was right for him, he threw me out on the street like an old pair of jeans and replaced me with someone else before my bed was even cold.... I had lost my flavour like chewing gum.

Yes of course the the truth is painful but finally I am beginning to see clearly. Like any other drug addict, this year I hit my rock bottom. I have spent a fortune with psychiatrists, psycologists, healing workshops, hypnotherapist, Family Constellations,  running away to live in another city, shopping, giving money away... all to try and make me feel better, to stop the pain, in fact even my art was an escape. BUT... I needed to get where I am today. Like all addicts, I have lost good friends and at times alienated my children.

Can I even say that I have regrets? I suppose not, everything happens for a reason and there is a time and a season for everything. Forgiveness? Well I firmly believe that everyone needs to wait for the right time. Other people will say... you need to forgive, and of course we know that. But we cannot find PEACE until we find all the pieces and make sense of our own suffering.

For those of you who visit this blog, I truly pray that you will find the answers as I have, and that 2012 will be a good year, a prosperous year and most of all a spiritually HEALTHY year, a year when you will be kind to yourself and love who you are.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wonderful Testimony

                                                        The link for this photograph              
I have people contacting me from my website often. Most of them are in abusive relationships and they are needing some kind of support. Some people ask how to go about getting a restraining order and others just want to know if they will be able to make it on their own. I do my best to give advice and comfort where I can and more practical advice if they need it like referring them to therapists or legal stuff.
About a year ago a young lady contacted me and she told me her story, not unsimilar to most of the stories I hear, but I could hear by the tone of her emails that she really did want help and she really did want to end it. We communicated for some time. She has a son and at the time didn't have a car or a job, so financially she was in a very bad place.
I don't dig around in peoples lives by contacting them if they don't keep in touch with me. But every now and again I will email someone just to see how they are doing. In this case I contacted this lady a couple of days ago to see how things were going. She contacted me straight back to thank me so much for the support I had given her at the time she contacted me. She now has a job, the abusive relationship long gone. She has bought herself a little car her son is happy and she is with her first love, if I can say that. He is someone she knew a very long time ago. He has a daughter and he recently proposed to her. I could just hear the excitement and happiness in her email.

That is what makes the work I do so rewarding and worth while. I pray that God will continue to bless her and that she and her fiance will be happy together. She tells me he is so opposite to her abusive boyfriend, he is kind and caring towards both her and her son. I wish them well.

Three steps forward and two steps back!

My dream catcher is always out there waiting.

Escaping the past is not easy.

Something wonderful is about to happen and I had an urgency to make a special journal for someone very dear to me. A few days ago I made the journal and then started to document events from the beginning of my first marriage. I was hoping to make it really special and to fill it with good memories... I really have to scratch my brain and show some gratitude for the past but it is so difficult. This was a very important thing for me to undertake but I had no idea how far back the abuse in my life began.

Now that I am on my own and I have this time to heal I am so sad that my beautiful daughters were subjected to so much unhappiness.

I have been doing a lot of reading lately about positive people and their opinions about survival and the different ways that they have overcome adversity. I know that in my own case it was only by the grace of God and my own determination not to be beaten. I have more bad days than good ones unfortunately and still suffer badly with nightmares. I wish that I could have a good nights sleep... that will come... one day.

When I journal about events in the past my heart absolutely breaks to think of what my children went through and how helpless they were to change things. I feel guilty that I put them through so much. I know it wasn't my fault, I just wish I had had the strength to leave and make a better life for all of us. I am now becoming so aware of how much damage is done when we are abused. I survived because I used my external attributes to hide the pain, but now that I am getting older it is very visible on the outside what has happened on the inside... I fell like I am inside out! I still have hope though and I can only trust God that He will complete the work that He began in me, as He promised.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Testimony by Marie Rosada

A wonderful testimony as to how we can all turn bad experiences into good ones. PTS often affects the family of the victim. Marie's sister was abducted and raped and this is her story, it really is worth reading if you are a family member or friend of someone who has experienced a traumatic event.
Marie has a blog and you can follow her here.
It takes courage and bravery to speak out and share your fears and the trauma you have experienced, there will be many people who don't understand and they will have their own opinions about the way you manage your life and it won't always be comforting, but there will be far more people who do understand and who will support you and most of all protect you while you heal.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

My secret place

Part of dealing with life as a whole is to find time to be quiet. There is a beautiful scripture in the Bible that says.... Be still and know that I am God.
When life gets really tough and I need to escape, I take myself off to some very secret places which I have never shared with anyone ever, but I am willing to share with you. For a long time I found it really hard to go to my secret place without my ghosts coming with me and haunting me on the journey, invasive thoughts fear and terror. That doesn't happen anymore and last night I had a full nights sleep which hasn't happened in years.
My ritual was no different from the many times before, but this time I was very relaxed, exhausted and fell into a deep sleep after my bath.
I lit this candle that I always use when I meditate and it has lasted months. I had smaller ones all around my bath, some incense and some soft mediation music playing in the background. I rolled up a towel to place behind my head and closed my eyes counting down slowly from 10 and taking big deep breaths.
My journey starts with the first step... I find myself in the forest where there is a gentle stream with stepping stones which I follow step by step. Concentrating to relax and taking in all that is around me, it is so pretty. When I hear the noise of traffic, or a person comes to mind, I gently turn to put my hand up and stay 'stop', this is my secret place where only I can go.
I am not aware of time but I walk deeper and deeper into the forest. I can hear in the distance a waterfall and my heart quickens, I know where I am going, to one of my favourite places on earth.
Everything is so green, the air is fresh and all I can hear is the sounds of nature. I am not afraid and I am alone. This is my little spot where I remove my clothing and leave it folded on the rock. I don't try and hide my nakedness, no one has ever been here before and never will. From this point on I am completely naked and alone, momentarily I am anxious, but I take a deep breath and let it go. As I do so, thousands of butterflies appear from no where, my favourite colour of purple and turquoise.
I am overwhelmed with joy when I see them all around me. As I begin to continue on my journey there are so many beautiful things to see, touch, smell, and feel... I am happy.
I have transformed and beginning to feel that I am one with nature, but I remind myself of why I am here and I continue to climb even higher into the forest and the sound of water gets louder and louder. In the clearing just ahead.....
Stopping for just a while I need to listen to the music, and pray a while. I pray for my own healing and those of all the people I love, there are many.... my tears begin to flow with out thinking about anything or anyone I can't seem to help it. I know that each time I come here my tears are less and less.
One of my favourite places on earth and I have actually been here so this is very real for me. It is so hot and the water is cool not cold, I have no idea how long I stay here. Sitting in the pools and meditating on nothing in particular except the place where I am.
The sun begins to disappear and the waterfalls become silent in a strange way. Is it because I am completely at peace where there is no noise at all in my head.
This is where I stay when I am away from the world and all its troubles.  I have left nothing behind. The wine is in the fridge, my paints are on the patio waiting for me to settle in for a few days painting. The only people  I wish could be here with me are my children and my grandchildren, one day I will invite them.... but for now I am going to relax in a nice warm bath and slip between the sheets and fall into a deep sleep.... ZZZzzzzzz

I am busy renovating the bathroom area which I will show you when you come and walk with me next time. I shall not be here tomorrow when I awake.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


We have all heard someone say... I love him with all my heart and soul. Personally I think it is natural and desirable to love someone with all your heart, but not all your soul. Tell me what you think about this?

The reason I say not with all my soul, because I think my soul is a holy sanctuary where only God is invited. My soul is the inner core of who I am, my inner most thoughts and feelings are in my soul. My soul is the place I meditate on when I invite God in, to show me my faults and help me see where I might be going wrong and disappointing Him. My soul is the place where God keeps me whole, where He loves me and has created me just the way I am. 
If I allow someone into my soul, no one is perfect and they will more than likely hurt and disappoint me, they may cause me to struggle with my relationship with God. My insecurities and fear may cause me to hold back and stop communicating with Him especially if my life isn't right with the other person.
My soul is a space in my heart which has a beautiful bright white light... His light that shines with in me. It is the place where I can leave the world outside and be quiet and listen... to what I am thinking and feeling and what He is saying to me. I cannot be distracted with more than two of us in that Holy space. My soul is my essence.

When I have allowed people into that space they have come in with all their imperfections and I have lost my peace and serenity, I become confused about what they speak into my life and what He wants me to hear.  My soul is where I am at my most vulnerable, where my inside shows on the outside. Since the garden of Eden my soul is covered over with His love.

If you would like to read a preview of my book you will be able to read the first 60 pages on this link. When we are in an abusive relationship our soul is being violated so badly that the abuser takes up the  space where only God should be.


I am completely and utterly sleep deprived, nightmares every single night or talking in my sleep wakes me up constantly. I will not give up on myself. Last night I started a program to try and help me with this problem which I have had for 6 years, but has slowly become worse when I moved back into the same city as my ex husband. I have lots to share with you so please pop back, I am just on my way out to an appointment and will be back later today... much later :o)

Hang in there, we are going to get through this.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


Whether or not you are reading this post because you have PTSD or not this is a website that I think would benefit anyone who has been the victim of Domestic Violence. Plough your way through to find the solutions to your particular situation.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Aha moment

Website for this image, worth reading.

When a person is in an abusive relationship, friends and family will always ask... but why don't you 'just' leave, why do you keep going back? Seldom can the victim, 'just' leave. Women who leave straight after the first sign of abuse are usually women with a healthy self image, they might have a strong support system i.e family and good friends, they are usually financially independent. Most victims who stay in abusive relationships have experienced abuse in childhood, do not have a healthy self image, and are not financially independent. I excluded family because sometimes abused women do have a supportive family and friends, who might not understand, become exasperated and run out of patience with the victim but they have offered to help.

When women are stuck, notice I didn't say trapped although they might feel trapped I am using the word stuck because victims often cannot understand or see a way out of the situation. Often outsiders beg the person to leave, offer to help and cannot UNDERSTAND the dynamics of abusive relationships which causes the victim to become silent about the severity of the abuse, which is why victims need therapy and support in a safe environment from professionals. Not all professionals, Lawyers, counsellors, psychologists, religious leaders etc understand abuse therefore the victim and her family have to seek out the right person who DO understand.
Abuse can happen to anyone. Website for this image.
SILENCE for the victim is wrongly perceived, as creating for themselves a safe place to survive or at least exist. Speaking out can cause more abuse by the perpetrator who will deny the abuse and outsiders who don't understand and lack compassion and they may blame the victim for what he or she has been through.

I repeat, surviving an abusive relationship goes way beyond 'just' leaving.
The link for this image.

When the victim is out of the abusive relationship, family and friends will be supportive for a time and a season and then they will EXPECT the victim to move forward with her life with forgiveness and a cheerful smile on her face. After a certain amount of time, which differs for each person, the family and friends will tire of the situation if the victim doesn't move on with her life, find a new relationship and be thankful that she is no longer trapped in the abuse. Outsiders may not understand the severity of the trauma that has been caused and become frustrated with the victim.

AHA MOMENT: In both the following situations, the VICTIM may remain silent because of FEAR. Fear of the abuser and fear of not being understood by outsiders, vulnerable to criticism.
The SURVIVOR may also become silent and withdraw, as a result of not being understood by family and friends as to why she struggles so much and can't move forward. Perhaps they cannot afford therapy and struggle to regain their financial and emotional independence and find healing. There maybe no support, financial struggles to focus on, children to take care of, and lack of understanding by the victim, as to the role she played in the abusive cycle. ABUSE IS NO EXCUSE but the victim is part of the pattern of abuse.

The dictionary translation:

1. A means of healing or restoration to health - remedy.
2. A method or course of remedial treatment as for a disease.
3. Successful remedial treatment, restoration to health.
4. Means of correcting or relieving anything that is troublesome or detrimental.

1. An event that is contrary to the established laws of nature and attributed to supernatural cause.
2. Being in or seeming a miracle: a miracle cure.

Leaving an abusive relationship is not a miracle cure. Healing will take time depending on many variable options mentioned above and depending on personality, length of time suffering the abuse and the severity of the abuse.

If you are reading this as a victim I strongly suggest that you protect yourself and join a support group and get professional help. Don't waste your time speaking to people who you KNOW will not understand you and they may hurt you even more by offering the wrong advice.
If you know someone who is a victim make the same suggestion, you may not be the right person to help, and can cause further damage forcing the victim to withdraw and become SILENT.

We are always told as victims, break the silence, speak to someone. As survivors we are told, move on with your life, be thankful the abuse has stopped and you should be happy.
If you are a friend or family member and you are becoming angry and frustrated, then encourage the victim or survivor to get help and you must step back.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

PTSD - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

The link for this photo.

I have struggled with this disorder for many years with out much success in any kind of therapy. The Trauma counsellor that I am seeing at the moment is only one of 3 specialists in the country and for the first time I am seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.
All the side affects of this disorder are horrible but for me one of the worst is the inability to have a solid good nights sleep. I have nightmares virtually every single night. I was searching on the internet to see if I could find anything that would help. I came across this site and think that there a lot of really good tips if you are struggling with the same problems. I followed a lot of the links and it was fascinating and I am very keen to get started. What annoys me is why none of the professional people who I have spoken to in the past 6 years have helped me with any of the advice that is on this particular website, one of the first things I tell counsellors is that I have not had one night of uninterrupted sleep in 6 years. I would think that would be a good starting point to deal with PTSD... getting a good night sleep?

If you are living in Johannesburg you can contact a Trauma counsellor at this link SAITS South African Institute for Traumatic Stress.

Friday, September 2, 2011

I want to vent

I have been on my own now for 6 years. In 2005 I was fighting for me life to keep things together long enough for my divorce to go through.  If I thought the abuse was bad when I was married, it escalated dramatically once we were separated. Many websites will tell you, that the day you decided to leave the relationship is the most dangerous time to the victim and her family and this is when deaths increase.

I knew that my abuser would stop at nothing and he didn't. He did every single thing that he possibly could to continue the abuse if not physically then he would find other ways. He still lived in the matrimonial home that I had a 50% share of but it was me and my daughter who had no where to live. I was 55 , two of my daughters had left home but I still had one daughter who was in matric.  We always want to know what support the family have and we had no one. I didn't have relatives here in South Africa and my children where hardly any support to me when they were traumatised themselves.

My divorce went through in 2006 but every single day was a battle to counteract his attempts to discredit me, manipulate me at every turn I needed to be wide awake and on the ball  24/7 to fight back. I didn't have time to really consider me health. I lived in fear. I looked over my shoulder every second of the day, I had anxiety 24/7. I can't recall one minute that I didn't feel I was fighting for me life. The night mares were constant and I think if I had to describe the worst of everything was that he was in my head like torture 24 hours of every day.  I remember trying to sleep and before I had a chance to wake up he filled my brain with absolute terror.

I had no time to think about anything else other than getting through the divorce, and getting my daughter through her matric year which was a miracle. My abuser was ordered by the courts to provide accommodation, so small that my youngest daughter and I couldn't live together, she had to stay with my married daughter and she and my precious son in law made sure she got to school and they helped her through her matric year.

I started to write my book during 2006 because I really wanted everyone to understand why women chose an abusive relationship and why they stay.... mostly I wanted to understand my own choices.

Everyone always wants to know.... why didn't you leave . But until everyone understands leaving an abusive relationship goes way beyond just leaving. It is at this point that there is very little if any help at all.

Once my own divorce had gone through and all the details of making a new home, writing a book, starting an organisation  ABUSE IS NO EXCUSE I hadn't realised yet at that point that my own trauma had not been treated. I thought it would just be a case of time heals all ! Most friends expected me to be happy it was all over and so did my children but what I didn't realise was that finally Complex Post Traumatic Stress had set in, good and proper, and no one close to me could understand what hell I was going through.

There are many websites that will tell you what the symptoms are, but because of this organisation and my original intention to help other victims I am going to share my own story.

2010 I set off for Cape Town. I really felt that I needed to get away from everyone who was in any way associated with my ex husband. For a few months things went well. I am an artist so I was able to spend time painting and marketing my work in local shops and galleries. Things seemed to be going well except that finally my body was able to surrender. Survival is just that, and we all do many things on a daily basis just to get through another day, another stress, another problem or disappointment. But for me I was finally in a place that I didn't have to fight to survive, but to live. It wasn't nearly as easy as I thought it would be.

I walked on the beach and cried so hard sometimes that I thought my heart would break. I painted, but my paintings had no love in them. When I tried to sleep I had night mares that woke me up every single night. I would wake up crying. The night mares weren't always repeats of the abuse, sometimes they were just dreams of him telling me how happy he was with his new girlfriend. The nightmare for me, was that I couldn't sleep with out him in my dreams. I started staying up later and later trying to exhaust myself enough to sleep.... It didn't work. I would just wake up in the early hours of he morning usually between 2am and 4am and then I couldn't go back to sleep so I felt constantly exhausted.

During the day I noticed that I started to feel very anxious in shopping centers so I avoided them. I also suffered with extreme anxiety if I was invited to a dinner party for example. I would force myself to go, but the anxiety and desperate need to leave was huge and sometimes I did. I started cutting people out of my life, refusing invitations to socialise and started becoming more and more reclusive.

PTS. She said that she was surprised that I was still on one piece! but I wasn't. She also diagnosed that I had ANDROPHOBIA which is a fear of men. I had never even heard of that phobia before.


I have recently been treated FINALLY by someone who really does know what she is talking about. I was in hospital for a week, and I did need to go on medication something I had been avoiding for 6 years, not wanting to empower my ex  or anyone else with..."you see she is nuts"!  We have to understand PTS if we want more survivors and a successful end to this abuse that so many women fall victim to.

We want to help people understand the power of these relationships and why it is so hard to leave.
We want to educate everyone, victims and their families.
We want to offer legal advice, so many women have no idea what they are entitled to.
We want to offer help emotionally with professionals who understand PTS.

Most women who leave an abusive relationship spend 99% of their time trying to hold things together just to function and prove to everyone that she was not the problem and didn't deserve the way she was treated, but she is not being treated herself.

6 years later, I am finally getting the right help. I still have nightmares, flashbacks, anxiety attacks, avoid certain people and places and fake most of the time that I am okay. But please if you need help.... don't hesitate to contact us we will most certainly refer you to the right people.

I wish I knew her name

This is probably one of the most horrific photo's I have seen. I don't know her name and I don't know her situation except that she was beaten up by her husband.... who I hope is behind bars... which I doubt. I understand when it comes to court cases there are 3 sides to the story, but I will never be able to get my head around a man being able to do this to a woman. During court cases the defense is usually, she was drunk, she threatened me with what ever, I find the arguments absolutely pathetic. I can't stand seeing two men fighting in the street but this !!!!! I am speechless.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What does Domestic Violence look like?

Thank you Karin for sharing these photo's, I am just so sorry that things had to get this bad, you could have lost your life. The gentleman on the left is not Karin's husband but a friend who came to her rescue and got in the firing line.
The night this happened Karin had a baby with her who was only 22days old. I cannot begin to imagine what was going through her little mind, hearing shouting and screaming, crashing and breaking things around the house. She must have been terrified, but too young to speak. We have to stop this violence for the sake of us all, but especially the children who are in these homes who are trapped, terrified and with no other alternative but to be in the middle of it all.
Victims might escape from this violence, but the memories linger forever.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sanctuaries Dreams and Shadows

"We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us." Joseph Campbell

Words have been few and hard to come by recently, but tears have been abundant. I have discovered that letting go is not a simple matter of moving on...going becoming foot in front of the other...or one day at a time. Before I knew it, a year had passed, then two, three....time faded into thin air. So many yesterdays are gone, yet my heart still bleeds, refusing to know what my mind now concedes.

Questions from decades past that have become interwoven into the fabric of my DNA, the stirrings of my soul, will remain unanswered. The ever haunting echo has finally broken through the encrustation that has surrounded my calcified heart for so long, and will be silent no more. No longer can I refuse to hear, to see what has always been true, what I have always known..somewhere.

But how does one let go of a lifetime when it is tied to one's soul? Like a balloon, it's string once tightly clasped in a trusted hand, now forgotten, let loose to drift away - unheeded - to become just a memory. Where does it go? Will the bleeding ever stop?


Having spent so many years in a relationship,
Having invested so much of yourself and your treasure,
Having loved ones you don't want to cause pain to,
Wanting so badly to believe, to succeed, and to not be alone,
One comes to accept however little is given in return
as if
it were

Choosing to live in denial rather than truly see
One rises every morning to put on
the false belief that
Because to admit otherwise
would be

Sanctuaries Dreams and Shadows. Please pay Maureen a visit and leave her a comment if you can, to let her know that you stopped by.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

When my bark is as bad as my bite!

I have struggled with un diagnosed PTS for most of my life and you can't heal what you don't know, understand, and accept. When I was a little girl and my mother was married to a really awful man I went through hell. They weren't married for long, but the damage he did took a life time for my mother, my brother and I to recover from... and I don't think we ever did. My brother went into denial in a way but perhaps he didn't remember much because he spent a lot of time away in boarding school and during the holidays he was with my cousins on a farm in Zimbabwe. But, I do think that what little memory he may have, he pushes those memories down deep down into his subconscious.

My memories on the other hand are vivid. He made my mothers life a living hell and at 6 years of age, I went where my mother went at all times of the day or night. We often seemed to be running away from him. This man caused me personally, so much fear that I had night mares for years, during and after the relationship he had with my mother.

He was charming always seemed to be smiling when people were around and he was life and soul of the party, but not to us. When we were alone with him, he was an angry, shouting, accusing evil man. He drank a lot and beat my mother regularly. His behavior with me was also highly inappropriate. I really hated him. I remember for almost two years having night mares. I would wake up crying and screaming but I was always affraid to wake my mother up... because it would mean seeing him.
I used to lay in bed for hours with my blankets over my head and I could hear myself breathing deeply. It was hell. I couldn't focus at school had very few friends and it was a lonely time for me. We didn't rush off to therapists in those days so I just learned to live my life with all the anxiety that went with it.

My mother divorced him after only 2 years but the damage was done. The impact of that man in our lives affected my mother and I for many many years. Several years later my mother married another idiot who was the same personality type as the previous one, and the roller coaster, of heart ache started all over again. I wasn't living at home by that time, thank goodness, but I saw what my mother went through.

Yes.... you guessed it... I went on to make the same choices my mother had. I don't want to go into why that happens, because it does... over and over again... the children make the same bad choices their parents made. What I do want to mention here is the TRAUMA that we all go through at the hands of these abusive men.

In the past 6 years I have worked hard to heal my own life and that of my children, but as the layers are peeled back from years and years of abuse, so the pain becomes worse and worse, which is why so many people resort to substance abuse to escape the pain.... but trust me... it soon catches up. I am thankful that alcohol and drugs have not been my choice of escape route... but I do have my own addictions.... art funnily enough. Now that sounds fine and dandy... art! but the impact is much the same. I become isolated, live in fear and deny all the pain that has been burried for so long. I just paint and paint somemore.

I don't think we are meant to live with pain in any shape or form. I am busy dealing with mine head on at the moment.... and my instincts make me want to close the door and stay away from people, but I know that if I am ever going to be free... I have to TRUST and that's the hardest part of all.

I know who I am in the deepest part of me... a very kind and gentle person... and when I growl and snap something inside is hurting. I have only bitten a few times in my life... and I live with that regret. The recipients have mostly been my children... who I love with all my heart and soul... but they did get the bites which should have been targeted at the perpetrators of all my pain and not them....! I know where I make mistakes and I try hard to make things right... but sometimes when people have been bitten... they don't come too close in the future.

I am always a work in progress, willing to appologise when I have been wrong, but why do people find it so hard to say... I AM SORRY I HURT YOU.

If we all knew at the end of our lives what was important and what wasn't, who is important and who isn't..... perhaps we would be kinder to one another.

My struggle has always been, not to bark and certainly not to bite, so I was only kidding when I said my bite is as bad as my bark, but I knew it would get your attention.

Monday, July 4, 2011

A survivor story.

I wanted to do some art work to reflect some of the things I am feeling right now and while I was searching on the internet for art work done by other survivors I found this website which I wanted to share with you all

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pattern of abuse

Double click on this picture if you are unable to read the content. If you are reading this blog then you have questions? Please go through all these points and be honest... is this you? If it is, or if it is someone that you know... you have to get some help. Being the victim of domestic violence is the most painful experience I have ever had and I wish that I had known more when I was younger, but we didn't have so many self help books, Dr. Phil and Oprah. We didn't have the internet and there really was no one to talk to, but that is not the case anymore, there is lots of help available for those who really want to end the violence.
I am fully aware that my opinions may be controversial, but I have been through two abusive marriages for a total of 25 years, I learned a lot! One thing I want to say at the outset and that is that victims need to realise that they are part of the abuse, it takes two. I am not saying you deserve it, but what I am saying is that as long as you stay, you are accepting it.
I had a thought today and that was that if a drug addict, or alcoholic, addicted gambler or someone with an eating disorder, went to their local police station with a complaint like this....

I am here to file a complaint. I want to get a protection order against the drug dealer where I get my drugs, or close down the bottle store where I buy my alcohol, or I want you to close down the casino near where I live, or close down all the cake shops.... what would the reaction be... it is too ludicrous to even contemplate. As long as there are people buying pornography those who participate in the act will continue.

Yes I know you are going to say... what is your point? Are you saying that the abuse is my fault? No what I am saying is that you are choosing to stay in the abuse. As long as an abuser has someone to abuse, he will continue. With all the above examples, those things start out being fun, eating drinking and being merry. People take drugs because it starts out feeling good. We as victims of domestic violence stay for the good times which become few and far between.
Until you say... enough and  NO MORE you will always be a victim.

I know from my own experience that leaving can be the easy part, surviving and staying away is the hard part. Each time he comes back saying sorry, we open the door again to more abuse. I have met an spoken to many people in 50 years, I have never yet heard anyone say to me... my husband or boyfriend used to be abusive but he stopped. Oh sorry I do know one, but then when he stopped beating his wife, he escalated the emotional abuse.
A man who abuses women has never learned how to treat a women with respect and he is unlikely to seek help because it is your fault remember!
I speak of him, or he throughout what I will be sharing, but that doesn't mean that women don't abuse men. I will be speaking about ways that women abuse men in the future.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

SHE by Matthew

Title: She

She was a strong,
loveless woman.
She said,
"He doesn't love me no more.
He doesn't hold me down or beat me against the concrete floor,
doesn't hit me with concrete thoughts as he slams the bedroom door.
He doesn't deliver fists as gifts that fit my tits nor feeds the kids
with love from lips,
nor takes my hints not to brake my ribs,
he's got skills but kills my emotions when he breathes from gills,
HE doesn't love me no more."

She was the type who bragged to friends
about his jealousy, his strength and the power in his hands.
Yet the same hands transformed into fists,
fists that tore her body into bits,
bits that disfigured her body kits.
His hands transformed into fists that beat, bruised, abused and used
her face as a comfort zone.
His hands... landed on her ribcage,
but she wasn't on the same page.
So his rage landed on her ribcage,
told her her friends, "This is love,"
but her friends weren't on the same page.
"Dump the bastard he's got rage,
like an animal he belongs inside of a cage."
"No, no, no," she said.
"He's my man and...
without him I'd go mad and..
he didn't get love from an early age."
Her excuses made him and exclusive explosive in her existence,
but her persistence will ensure that woman like her face exstinction.

You see, if beating a woman was a test,
this man had passed it with distinction.

Every night neighbors had front row seats,
if they missed it today, tomorrow the movie repeats.
This piece depicts,
how on a daily basis a womans life depletes,
how the cycle of her life becomes complete.

See, she grew up in a society where heart attacks
were a result of a very fat attack
caused by ignorance of bioslim.
A society where woman believed a knife should be used for cutting,
buttering and terminating unborn life.
I prayed that this type of woman would never be my wife,
but had Eve aborted...
maybe, just maybe,
the Cain's in us wouldn't have survived.
He doesn't love her no more...

                                                    DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS UGLY

Do you care.

In just a single day my life changed

his eyes were so blue

his smile was so genuine

he said he loved me

we laughed a lot and had so much in common

or so I thought

beyond tomorrow there was hope

he made me believe that love was real

that passion is out there for everyone who looks for it

he promised the world and didn’t deliver

Do you care?

My heart was open and willing

to try and trust again

it was broken once before

they say forgive and move on

and I did a thousand times

this time I wouldn’t hold back

I would give him all I had

and hope and pray

that honesty and openness pays

and he would care

enough to do the same

he didn’t

Do you care

He lied

he betrayed

he gave others

all that he promised me

he angered and raged accused and withheld

he beat,  kicked  swore and punished

he controlled

he gave gifts to show he loved and cared

and took them all away whenever he chose

Do you care

He said I was his soul mate

he made love to me

with passion and intensity

he did that with other women to

he told them I was crazy

that he wanted to leave

and I wanted to stay

he forgets that he did to

we danced

a macabre dance

but we danced

we loved and laughed and cried

he lied

Do you care

It was over and I cried

my heart was broken

shattered into tiny pieces

there was no sleep

there was no tomorrow

nightmares torment pain and anguish

memories that haunted day and night

good and bad

they said move on with your life

forgive him

but the trust was gone

I couldn’t he could

he promised her the same

Do you care

The years have passed

he surrounds himself with people

who all believe the lies

he doesn’t cry

there is no shame or remorse

of course he doesn’t care

the children saw the pain

the screaming accusations

they said nothing

and died inside

they kept their secrets

from their friends

and lived in fear

now they are torn between

what’s right and wrong

who is good and who is bad

will they choose the same

will they find real love

with trust and understanding

kindness and compassion

or choose to fight and kick and punch

or lie betray and say I love you

who the hell cares