Abusers are liars. On some level we all know this. Yet, at times, they are able to trick us into forgetting this fact. I will give you few examples.
Example A –
You are divorced from your abuser. He* has week on/week off custody of your two-year old son. Your son carries his baby blanket (“baby”) everywhere with him. It is the original “Linus” blanket. Smelly, dirty, ratty, with holes and everything. Your ex sends you a long email telling you that your son doesn’t use the blanket except for bed time at his house. He wants to know if you would like some pointers on how to get your son to move away from using “baby” at yours.
Immediately upon reading this you begin wondering why you are such a bad mom. Why does your son feel more secure with his abusive dad than he does with you? The answer?
He doesn’t. Your abuser is LYING!
The entire email is a lie, designed to make you feel like a terrible mother. Ignore it!!
Example B –
You and your abuser are getting along pretty well. You are beginning to think, “Maybe he really is changing.” You share with him that you are really enjoying the new women’s bible study you started about three months ago because the women there seem so real and kind. Your husband smiles, and nods in all the right places. Then he says, “That’s really great honey. You really need some new friends because I know Jennifer (your lifelong best friend) really is no friend to you. She told her husband in confidence that she thinks you are overstepping yourself and getting stuck up lately. That’s why she hasn’t called you to get together in a so long.
You have in one minute gone from feeling confident and great about yourself to second-guessing yourself, thinking your best friend hates you, and wondering who else thinks you have become stuck-up. In reality?
He never spoke to your best friend’s husband. Your friend hasn’t called you because her mother is ill and she has spent every waking moment at the hospital. In fact, she is wondering why you haven’t called her!
Example C –
You’ve been married to your abuser for 22 years. During all those years, you’ve been forced to eat Sunday dinner with his mom once a month. At every meal, she made homemade apple pie because your husband loves it so much. He raves about his mom’s apple pie to everyone he knows. You have spent 22 years trying to perfect his mom’s recipe, but have never quite managed it. Finally, she becomes terminally ill, and she shares her recipe with you. You are overjoyed! One day when your husband is at work, you spend the entire day in the kitchen perfecting his mom’s recipe. When you finish dinner that night, you bring out your pie with a flourish. You are pretty excited, because it LOOKS exactly like his mom’s pie! Your heart is pounding with anticipation, at last he is now going to have something to complement you for! He takes one look at your beautiful creation and says,
“Oh, I never liked apple pie. I just ate it to make my mom happy.”
You are crushed beyond measure! All your striving for 22 years to please him seems like a cruel joke. Why did you spend so much time trying to make that pie if he doesn’t even LIKE apple pie? Guess what?
He really does love apple pie, but he doesn’t want to give you the satisfaction of a job well done. He knows you will be incredibly hurt if he claims he doesn’t like the pie, and he won’t even try it. Next week, when you return to Mom’s house, he will be taking the biggest piece again. And you will wonder why you feel so awful and useless.
Why Oh WHY do abusers like to manipulate their victims in this cruel way? Because it gets them what they want! Tweet This
And what DO they want? They want to have power and control over YOU! By making you second guess yourself, they are able to feel more powerful. If you are spending your time feeling bad about yourself, you will have less time to look around and realize what jerks they are! The next time your abuser wants you to do something you think is wrong, or tries to take advantage of your kind nature, you will be less apt to stand up for yourself because you will be thinking,
- I’m a terrible mother, or
- No one cares about me, or
- I am an idiot to try to do something well.
When really NONE of those things is true. You
- Are a great mother, and
- Many people care about you, and
- You do many things well!
Is it possible he does these things without being aware he is hurting you? Is he just mistaken? Um . . . no. He DOES know what he is doing! Check out this blog where I describe this further.
What does God say about this? Does the bible have anything to say about this? Yes, in Matthew 7:15-16, (NLT), Jesus warns us to look out for people like this:
Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves. You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. Can you pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
Do you have any examples where your abuser lied to you to try to manipulate you in this way?
I pray this blog will help open your eyes to the tactics of these wolves dressed up to look like sheep.
May God bless you.
* In this blog, the abuser is portrayed as male, and the victim female. Abusers and victims could be male or female