Domestic abuse shatters your self esteem because you are treated in such an inhumam way. No…worse than that…you are treated worse than an animal.
Domestic violence and mental / emotional abuse take away your dignity and leave you feeling heavily weighted with shame. It is hard for people who have not been through abuse to understand the shame, and it is hard to explain to them.
The events which occur behind closed doors, in an abusive house, are dofficult to tell people about. If you try to tell them and they do not believe you, this can be very painful and re-traumatizing.
Because you cannot tolerate any more pain, you will likely give up after being re-traumatized a few times by people you thought would believe you.
Some of the events are harr for people to believe, particularly if they knew your abuser, and the abuser treated them completely differently than they treated you. Not only that, the abuser also treated you differently in front of other people, than they did when you were alone with them.
You will be accused of lying, mis-contruing events, having a bad memory, misunderstanding the abuser’s intentions and of being mentally unbalanced. People do not believe that you interpret, perceive or remember events and situations accurately.
The reason this is particularly painful, is that the abuser also accused you of the very same things, many times. They said they did not really “bump” into you that hard, you bruise easily, and that they have been very patient with your over-sensitivity.
They told you that you have a tendency to forget things, to mis-interpret things and even to be abusive to them and not think you were being abusive.
Your reality was has been so twisted around that it took a great effort to regain your faith in your own perception of reality. Even now, you may have the habit of questioning what you see and heat. But your gut tells you when something is wrong about how someone is treating you.
Sometimes the pain of being re-traumatized, minimized, disbelieved, and humiliated all over again can make you self-isolate. You may have cut off contact with people, or you just do not talk to people about anything personal.
There is a natural human need to connect with others. Feeling alone and isolated can extend the abuse. If you are still living with abuse, then you may be very isolated from other people.
Sometimes hearing your very own story, from someone else who is telling their story, can be surprising, because you feel like you are the only one. The abuser quite intentionally caused you to feel that you were very different from other people.
They intentionally isolated you, for a few reasons. They did not want you to have outside support or objective opinions. They wanted to be able to have full access to your brain, allowing keys to no one.
As you are beginning to read about the patterns, methods, and intentional techniques of the abuser, you will be surprised how they are all the same. That being said….these methods are extremely effective and soul raping.
The feeling of isolation, both during and after abuse can cause extreme depression and it can cause anxiety disorders. You can feel mentally and emotionally isolated in a room full of people.
As you continue on your journey towards healing, you will find your authentic self. You will slowly grow more balanced over time and be able to re-build your self confidence.
You are special and unique. The abuser targeted you because you were compassionate and understanding. These qualities are still a part of you and they make you an important and special person.