Some of you are going to be able to relate to my story, and some of you won’t. No matter which side of the coin you are on I hope this brings to light some of the very real and scary situations that a lot of Christian women find themselves in. If you are in a healthy Christian marriage and have no idea what I’m talking about, well I think that is wonderful and a true blessing! But chances are you rub shoulders with someone who is not so fortunate. So maybe this blog and some of the resources I will publish on here, will offer you some insight into how you can help those around you who are suffering, or at the very least understand them better.
Now for those of you on the other side of the coin…First let me say I am so sorry that you can relate. No one should ever have to experience ongoing abuse in their own home, at the hands of someone who promised to love you and take care of you. I am so sorry that you are experiencing pain, frustration, betrayal, confusion, anger and a loss of self.
My hope is to encourage you. To let you know that healing from abuse is possible. But I will be completely transparent, and say that only by the power and love of Jesus Christ, is full healing something you can accomplish. He is the only way you will find freedom for your Soul. I believe in trauma therapy, counseling and practicing self-care, but non of those things in and of themselves will truly set you free. When you submit yourself to Christ you will gain what has been lost. You will see your infinite value and beauty.
I will also say that I am not there yet. I am still stumbling through the recovery and healing process. I will probably say things here one week and a few weeks later have to backpedal as I learn new information or recognize a new trigger. But that’s ok. I believe that there is a lot of value in being vulnerable and honest about the process. When all we see is someone who has it all together after they experienced something truly evil, it creates guilt and shame in ourselves. We beat ourselves up for not being better at this healing thing, thinking that something must be wrong with us if it takes a long time to get past something. I am tired of feeling that way and I am tired of pretending. This is me, it is messy, confusing and sometimes down right aggravating. But as much as I want to share my struggles, to let you know you are not alone, I also want to share my triumphs. Because healing is a lot of work, and there will be a lot of little triumphs along the way that no one will ever see. And we deserve a high five or a way to go once in a while when we succeed in doing something seemingly trivial, like find a job after being a stay at home mom for a decade…
I promise to always validate and believe victims of abuse, your reality is valid. One of the first steps to healing is acknowledging that you are actually living with abuse or have been subjected to it in the past. I will be posting some helpful links on this subject to help you identify if your relationship is destructive or just difficult.
So I will share my suffering and share my healing. There can be beauty out of the ashes of life. God is not done with me yet and he is not done with you either.
There is nothing special about me. My story reads like countless others. I got married young, to a man I met at a Bible School, thought we would have a good and happy life together, only to be blindsided with substance abuse issues, other forms of addiction, intense control, manipulations, lies and the kind of treatment that leaves you feeling hopeless, worthless and turns you into a person you don’t even recognize. I became a shell of a person. I was not allowed to have needs, opinions or values. Through all of the years in this environment there was only one truth I was able to count on. Christ. I didn’t always feel close to him, or hear his voice, but I knew He was there with me. He is who rescued me and set my Soul free. And He can set you free as well.