Month: January 2013

Why Not to Rush a Victim’s Recovery From Abuse

Insensitive remarks from others are quite common when victims of abuse try to share what’s happened and the pain of recovery.

But many people who have (thankfully) never been abused physically, emotionally, spiritually, or sexually often ask: “Why can’t you just get over it. Why can’t you just let it go already.”

The answer is simple: it’s impossible and defies science. Even if the last blow was inflicted weeks, months, or even years before, if the victim/survivor has not reacted, the last blow continues to inflict pain as if it happened seconds ago.

The act of communicating what happened IS a necessary REACTION to the ACTION of abuse. Allow your friend to communicate what happened. Do not judge your friend. Do not tell your friend to move faster or get over it faster.

It may take many days, weeks, months, or years of communicating the story before peace is found, because I believe the length of time a person suffers alone in their pain is proportional to the amount of time needed to communicate the pain and suffering.

If they suffered alone for 20 years, it may take 20 years to purge themselves of the pain. If they suffered for 6 months, it may only take 6 months to purge themselves.

Recovery should never be rushed or forced. Like grieving the death of someone you love, the process is different for us all.

–Read more at Newton, Pinball and Abuse–Oh My! by Paula Carrasquillo


It’s Perfectly Normal to Dread Seeing Abusers Again

…And not only is it normal, but that terror validates your impression that you’ve been abused.  Why would you be terrified if you had not been abused?

Vanci describes very well–and the commenters back her up (my own comment is at the bottom there)–that it’s perfectly normal to dread seeing your abusers again:

I used to be terrified of running into my Former Family Members.  Seriously, I’d be in the grocery store and see someone who looked like one of them and I’d turn on a dime to head a different direction.

I reacted to even the thought of running into them viscerally.  Nausea, headache, cold chills, hot flashes, muscle weakness, shakes; basically all of the terror reactions rolled up nice and neat into a gut bomb and dropped on me.

Then I had a couple of close calls, fast moving brushes of the shoulder type of deals.  I’d get out of the public place I was and slide in my car and then think, “Hey, wasn’t that….?”

I wasn’t given time to react until after the fact in those situations, and I noticed that I did feel the horror reaction, but to a lesser extent.

Then I realized one day that GCYB and my nephew were right behind me in line at the convenience store of all places and I just didn’t give a crap.  You can read about that here.

I saw the progression of my evolving reaction and interpretation of these events as a plus, a sign of healing, and I was grateful for that.

To feel nothing, to detach, is really the only option I have when it comes to these people.  There won’t ever be any relationships there, and my acceptance of that fact as a matter of small steps has been crucial to my journey to get well.

But this was different.  It felt a bit like the brass ring.  My ‘reaction’ wasn’t really that at all.  I didn’t get nauseous or scared.  I didn’t have to ponder or contemplate what I should do.  I didn’t have to run away….

But my point is this.  I used to be terrified of them.  Then I was scared.  Then I was sort of indifferent.

And now, as I was reminded earlier today of my favorite Kurt Vonnegut line ever, “You (they) can take a flying fuck at a rolling doughnut!  You (they) can take a flying fuck at the MOOOOOOOON!”  —Standing Ground (With Tired Feet)

I tensed in anticipation of that familiar gut-dropping, guilt ridden constriction of my chest.  In the past when I’ve suffered these brief interactions with the NFOO that come as part and parcel of living in the same small town that they do, I’ve been immediately terrified.

A lifetime of being the scapegoat, the reason for the problem, the cause of all harm does not, after all, disappear in four brief years of LC followed by NC.  I was waiting for that terror for a split second  before I realized that it didn’t come….

I thought for a brief moment of what I would say if GCYB initiated a conversation.  And realized that I would say nothing at all.

I mean, really, who is this person to me?  He’s a user and a fraud who claimed to love me but immediately blamed me for all the NFOO’s problems as soon as NM was cut off from her access to me as her primary source of narc supply. —Who’s the Brave One?

The best part is reading, at the end there, that you can eventually get to the point of not caring anymore.  That you won’t be frightened of running into your abusers, for the rest of your life.

It was easier the last time I saw my bullies at church.  I set boundaries, posted on my blog for them to read, which they actually respected for once.

And things went–fine.  Even when they were just inches from me, things went fine, and I could chat and laugh with my fellow parishioners and friends.  I was in a good mood.  It was amazing.  So it can happen.

Also see:

Seeing Abuser is Rough for Abuse Victims, Especially When Abusers & Enablers Blame the Victim: Annie’s Mailbox

Fighting the Darkness: Seeing the abuser again

Needing to Feel Safe: Going to same church as abusers

Fighting the Darkness: Mutual Friends


My book “The Lighthouse” just got chosen for a little book club

I just got a notification from Pinterest that one of my pins–The Lighthouse–was re-pinned into a board called “book club book ideas.”  It’s not a big one–32 followers–but I’ve just sold three Lighthouse e-books and one Tojet e-book.  The e-books are free, so I don’t get any money from this, but I wanted to be read even in such a sluggish economy.  [Update: The e-books now cost $3.00.]

The Lighthouse

Enter the world of the Lighthouse, a club for supernatural beings and social misfits.  In this Gothic story collection you will find castles, ghosts, vampires, romance and terror:


Bedlam CastleAn American college girl loses herself in the hallways of a 900-year-old castle.  Eccentric characters invite her to dinner.  One is a genie, one is an undine, and most of the others are ghosts.  One man intrigues her the most–but is he a mortal man or a supernatural creature like the rest?


JarkinBecky Stevens falls in love against her will with Archibald Jarkin, an eccentric, austere and charismatic preacher.  Their passionate marriage is tested when Jarkin’s TV ministry turns into a witch hunt.  When Becky discovers the Lighthouse, their life together takes a startling new path.


Alexander Boa: Or, I was a co-ed vampire slaveWhen a young woman’s college is taken over by a vampire, she becomes his secret mistress.  Will she be torn apart when her friends decide to kill him?


CandidaA young man is stricken with a girl who falls under a vampire’s spell.  Soon married and pregnant with the vampire’s baby, she has no idea what danger she’ll be in if the baby is a boy.


All Together NowThis story combines characters and settings from the other four stories.  Jenny, a social misfit, is introduced to the Lighthouse, supernatural creatures, and a deceptive man.  When he leaves her and then accuses her of stalking him, she can only vindicate herself by facing the horrors of a haunted cave.  Will she survive?  Will she fall in love again?


Anne Lamott and others on telling your abuse story

You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better. —tweet from Anne Lamott, April 23, 2012.

A blog based on this quote, by Sophia Dembling.

“Note to Narcissists~ If you think you recognize yourself in something I write, then YOU owe somebody an apology. I don’t owe YOU one. It’s not MY fault if your own behavior embarrasses you.

I never identify the lowlifes I’m writing about, and if you behave like that, not to mention being arrogant and idiotic enough to actually think YOU are the star of something I write, then you SHOULD be ashamed of yourself.

So quit whining and start apologizing for acting like a jackass and hurting people who love you.” ~Rev. Renee Pitelli, originally posted on, but now removed

Now a couple of other bloggers have been “found” by the subjects of their abuse blogs.  And they’re not backing down, either.  They’re posting things just for the benefit of their narcissists, just as I do.  And not taking them overly seriously.  In fact, one is laughing at her blog stalker.

As Paula wrote on one of her blogs:

I am 100% supportive of outing these fools by name. Unfortunately, there are many who don’t understand that outing them is a direct consequence and they should deal with it. They don’t.

Instead, they seek low-life attorneys willing to send cease and desist letters to scare us into thinking we’re committing a crime.

We’re not!! It’s called freedom of speech.

If they think we’re lying and hope to sue us for defamation, libel, or slander, they need to prove that in court.

The burden in U.S. courts is on the complainant, not the defender. I believe it is opposite in some countries, including Canada and the UK. 🙂

…Not that I’ll be doing this.  No, that information is for my friends, not the Net.

Also see: Anne Lamott: We stuffed scary feelings down, and they made us insane


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