abuse

Reblog: Subtle Signs of a Killer: Non-fatal strangulations point to future homicides

The following article, written by Brian Bennett, is very informative about strangulation and research done in recent years.  Some quotes:

An idea was promulgated for decades that there must be external signs of injury such as marks on the neck and/or petechial hemorrhage in the eyes when strangulation occurred. It was believed that without those injuries the assault could not be proven and likely did not occur. This idea is far from the truth.

 

It can take as little as five pounds of pressure for six to ten seconds to render a person unconscious. … Signs and symptoms known to be associated with strangulation now include a raspy or hoarse voice, difficulty breathing, vision changes, fluid in the lungs, vomiting and involuntary loss of bladder/bowel control.

 

If a person loses consciousness because the brain has been starved of oxygen then there is permanent brain damage.

 

In reality, the act of strangulation itself is a lethal act regardless of an offender’s intent. It tells us that the offender has a propensity to use lethal violence and I would argue also demonstrates a mindset that lethal violence is justifiable against anyone. If an offender is willing to harm their intimate partner, child, vulnerable adult or anyone using strangulation, then they can kill anyone….

A study of 300 “choking” cases by the Family Justice Center Alliance in San Diego and Institute on Strangulation Prevention showed that a woman who is strangled even once is 750 percent more likely to be strangled again and 800 percent more likely to be killed later.

 

Research is showing that many of the domestic mass shooters in the U.S. also had a history of domestic violence and strangulation prior to their mass killings.

This worries me because my ex-friend Richard strangled his own step-daughter, who was only 9, until she passed out.  He, by the way, was some 400 pounds at the time, according to court records.  She reported it herself, which must have taken amazing courage–and there must have been physical evidence.  Since so many incidents don’t have physical evidence, and this was the following day (IIRC), Richard must really have pressed hard.

The information in this article makes me worry that 1) he could do it again, 2) he could murder somebody, 3) she had permanent brain damage from this, and 4) his step-daughter could end up with some guy who chokes her again.

Especially since he used to do stuff for the Mafia and once told me his plans to kill an apartment manager.

Especially since, in an e-mail to me, Richard and/or Tracy jeered at me for “not having all the facts” in this case.  Um…Exactly what “facts” make it okay that you strangled your daughter?  Even if they become so-called pillars of the community, I know what kind of people they really are: the kind who would minimize strangling a child and threaten and make fun of and stalk the person who discovered the truth.

But back to the article.  Lots more good information is in the article here.  I encourage you to read it if you’re with an abusive spouse/parent/caregiver/etc.

 

Advice columnist says: No, you don’t have to join your spouse in abusing others

What to do if your wife is abusing someone you love?  I’ve written about this myself, years ago, in my story about being abused by a narcissistic couple:

Just as obeying our parents is good except if they command us to do evil, the same is true with sticking up for our spouses.  While it is good and right to stick up for our spouses and stand by them, if our spouse is doing or saying something abusive or evil to anyone, then it would be evil for us to stick up for them and stand by them.

This means you, too, Richard: It was evil for you to allow your wife’s evil treatment of me, and you became its participant. —Bullying an Introvert and Probable NVLDer, written 7 or 8 years ago

And I wasn’t the only one Richard helped Tracy to abuse.  He did the same to his own friend Todd, story here.  And yes, Todd also dropped the “friendship” after that, so eventually we were able to console each other on being put through the same crap from the same couple.

Recently, Carolyn Hax got a letter on the subject, in this case a man whose wife has been verbally abusing his family.  He feels torn, wondering if the marriage contract means he’s duty bound to pair up with his wife and help her abuse his own family.  Hax says heck no.  Some quotes:

You need to protect your family of origin from your wife. Preferably in the moment, not after the fact. Wow. If I could, I’d demand that you “step in and defend” your sister, with your wife in the room.

 

Is your wife as abusive to you as she is to your family?

This is yet more validation for my own feelings on the matter, how I was treated by that n-couple.  It is also helpful for anyone in this situation.

You can find the column here.  You can also find it on the Washington Post website, but I don’t have a link because the paywall prevents me from going there often.

Abusive ex Phil has a new bride….

There are certain people I’ve encountered throughout my life who I, occasionally, look up on the state’s court records website, because they have violent and/or abusive and/or otherwise criminal records.  One is my former boss, though he’s done nothing criminal in the past 10 years.

(Speaking of former bosses, I had two at the same time.  The narc one who abused his wife and ended up in jail, was my secondary boss.  My other boss, my primary boss, just died a week and a half ago.  He moved with his wife to Florida 15 years ago when he retired and didn’t keep in touch, so I didn’t know until I saw the obituary a few days ago.  He was as old as my dad was.  Still dealing with the thought that my old boss isn’t on this earth anymore.  🙁   )

Another is this sociopath.  He’s on the sexual offender registry for taking naughty pics of a 15-year-old.  This is a weird guy with fixations on the idea that Christianity is EVIL and that the US government is EVIL and out to get him.  I even found him featured on an episode of some obscure tinfoil-hat Youtube channel.  The police had trouble identifying him because he is a natural-born American citizen but has no documentation, but has several aliases and birthdates.  He says he wrote popular games for Atari and even took down some bank with a computer virus.

He said my SCA group, especially my husband, were somehow persecuting him some 20 years ago, because we asked him to remove his personal religious views from our group’s official website, which he ran.  (Seriously, he had articles about astral projection on there, making us appear to be some kind of religious cult instead of an informal educational group.)

He once threatened to take down Charter Cable with a trojan because of his persecution complex.  He’s made enemies all over Sheboygan in the years since he moved there–One Sheboygan forum even had a whole section full of his haters.

He insists that his conviction is all some big PLOT against him.  He refused to follow the terms of being on his registry, so ended up in jail.  I found several articles about him, and read his manifesto to the court on how he’s being persecuted.

He’s already on his fifth lawyer and STILL has not gone to trial.  They keep withdrawing, or he keeps kicking them out, I don’t know.  He also–many times–refuses to be transported to his hearings, even though he’s in jail.  I didn’t know you could do that???!!!

Another is a person connected with the trolls.  She lives in Wisconsin, and once even contacted me with a nasty message.  She used to be a troll, but turned against them, even though she still stalks their usual target.  The trolls say she died several months ago, but their usual target says her Twitter account is still active, and he doesn’t believe it.  I also have found no record of a death in her hometown newspaper.  She tried a few times to take out restraining orders against him and a troll, but failed.

Another is my ex Phil, the one who abused me worse than any of my other abusive exes.  You can read all about him in my college memoirs, where the stories about him covered two years.  In short, he:

  1. sexually abused me, which included trying to force me into anal sex, and forcing me into oral sex
  2. threatened to physically abuse me, and slapped and otherwise abused his next girlfriend Persephone
  3. verbally, mentally and emotionally abused me
  4. played mindbending tricks on me, playing on my gullibility to manipulate me
  5. tried to separate me from my friends, and even said my family was against him
  6. made his friends believe I was the abuser; one then turned into a flying monkey who tried to lecture me into submission to Phil
  7. verbally abused Wife #2, as witnessed by my friends after I graduated
  8. and probably other stuff which I don’t remember right at this moment

He “had” to marry Wife #2.  My friends called her my “replacement” because not only did she join their group after I graduated, but Phil began dating her.  They said that watching them together was like watching him and me all over again, which disturbed them.  The difference was that she’d lie about where she was, when she’d miss an InterVarsity or sorority event because of him.  They even tried to warn her from marrying him, but she didn’t listen.

Well, it lasted about 10 years.  He posted on Classmates.com that she didn’t “support” him in a job move.  Knowing how he used to throw that word around against me, I suspect it wasn’t so simple.  I also found in the court records that he was convicted of disorderly conduct years ago.  There were no public records of what he did, but there was a victim who gave a statement.  I believe it was before the divorce from Wife #2.  Make of that what you will, since that’s all the information I could find.

Now I decided to check again.  Turns out that, just yesterday, his own sister filed a harassment restraining order against him!

I also found, through his Facebook, that he has a new fiancee or wife.  I looked her Facebook over as well.

Don’t worry: It’s way too long ago–24 years–for me to be jealous or otherwise adversely emotionally impacted by checking out my ex’s profile or his new bride’s.  In fact, he and I have exchanged a few messages via social media, not recently but in the past 10 years.  So I can handle it.

But what shocked me was his new bride’s posts about him.  There were a lot of them, of course.  She is besotted; he clearly is, too, despite a huge age difference.  Her friends say how great he is, what a great couple they are.  And I wonder–

Has he changed CONSIDERABLY since I knew him?

Or is this just the lovebombing stage?

They’ve only been together about a year or two from what I see, and either just got married, or will soon.  He and I were together far less than that, but we had a whirlwind romance and a nonlegal marriage after only two months.  It was longer than that before he married Wife #2, during which time I could tell–from what she said at a party one Christmas–that he was lovebombing her.  My friends heard him yell at her in the dorm, but he can still sweet-talk you so much that you forget about it.

Well, marriage #2 ended after only 10 years, so obviously the lovebombing didn’t last.  It didn’t last long into our marriage, either.  And now he has just married Wife #3, or will soon.  So it’s still lovebombing time.

So I wonder, looking at new wife’s Facebook timeline–Has he changed considerably in 24 years?  Or is he just putting on the usual show until he has the new woman hooked?

Persephone saw the same issues in him that I did.  My friends saw him as controlling and possessive.  My friends hated him not just for how he treated me, but for how he treated Wife #2 in their presence.  This pattern tells me that the problem in our relationship was not me.

As I struggled for many years to work through the emotional trauma Phil put me through, using writing therapy and research into abuse, I began to identify all sorts of ways that he manifested signs of narcissism.

And then there’s that new fact that his own sister just took out a restraining order against him yesterday.

BTW, I also saw on his sister’s Facebook that she works and fights against child abuse, just as I do.  It makes me wonder if she ever saw the signs that Phil himself was abusive to his wives.

So–Has he really changed?  Is he really the wonderful, sweet, angelic man that his new bride and her friends think he is?

Maybe check back in a year or two…..

Update 7/14/18: 

The court date finally came.  Then they rescheduled because Phil was never actually served.  Seems they made his sister do the serving, which I don’t understand because wouldn’t it be dangerous to have somebody serve their own restraining order?

Anyway, the second court date finally came this week.  Turns out Phil was still never served, and neither he nor his sister showed up at court, so the restraining order was dismissed.

Since none of them are posting about it on Facebook, the online court records have no details, and maybe Phil didn’t even know about it since he was never served, I guess I’ll never know what th’ heck that was about.  All I know is that Phil does not appear to be Facebook friends with his brother or sister or even his own mother.  Weird.

Also see:

Is this why my ex Phil was so abusive?

So Phil, my abusive ex-husband, is back in the hospital

A couple of notes: Spanking and No, the new girlfriend did NOT change my abusive ex

Abusive Ex: Blame it on him, not mental illness

From 2012: Blogging the Parasite out of my Head: Writing about the abuse

(One of my favorite post titles.)  This is a much-shortened version of a post I wrote in March 2012.  For the full post, see here.  Yes, blogging my story did indeed help me to finally get it out and start to heal from it:

I hope this will be cathartic, get the truth out, so that I can heal from what has emotionally and spiritually traumatized me.  I hope to make it (and my private account) a repository for all the hurt, pain, anger and bitterness, so that I can transfer it out of my heart.

I have dealt with previous abusive situations in this way, putting them into writing and then posting them on the Web, and it has been largely successful in helping me move on past those times.

I feel that if I just make it vanish, hide the story, it will do no more good than it did with my previous abuse stories.

For example, right after college I began writing College Memoirs, which were a combination of good things and life during that time, and the terrible things that happened with guys who used and abused (I hesitate to refer to them as “men”).

I was going to publish them, but feared libel suits, so I began putting the stories into my fiction instead.

But since the demands of fiction are that you don’t put your own life stories into your stories exactly as they occurred, or else your stories will appear pieced together like Frankenstein, I didn’t feel like my stories of abuse were quite dealt with yet.

I also read an article in Writer’s Digest about writing and publishing abuse stories, and the healing it can bring:

Harrison told her editor that she wanted to write a nonfiction book about her relationship with her father. Because the editor had published Harrison’s autobiographical first novel, she asked if she was sure she wanted to do that.

Harrison was sure. In fact, she’d been trying to write about her father in an essay but felt she was trying to do too much in too short a space. Feeling as if she’d betrayed herself and her story by first writing about the affair as fiction, she had a compelling need to set the record straight.

…“One of the solaces that art can offer you is the chance to make something out of what’s hurt you. You can objectify an experience, put it on paper, craft it and shape it. There’s perhaps an illusory control over it. But it is significant.” –Sandra Hurtes, Spilling Secrets

So I posted a public version of my College Memoirs, first in e-mails to friends, then on a Myspace blog, then on my website.

Even though they don’t get many hits, the stories have been read by some, and in the past several years, I feel myself finally moving past these things that happened 15-20 years ago.  They are on the Webpages now and don’t have to be carried around inside me.

I also have a full account of what happened in this new case, but it is so personal and private that I keep it locked away from anyone but myself.  Just as with the College Memoirs, I have a personal and a private version.

My hope is that this blog will have the same effect as those public Memoirs.  It has been said many times that the abused need to get their stories out into the open, not hide them for fear of “airing dirty laundry,” because that just victimizes them further.

I’ve been revising a full account of the abusive situation with Richard and Tracy.  As I work on it, it answers questions that come up.  For example, I was starting to feel like Tracy was right and the disagreements were my fault.  But as I reviewed the details of the time we lived in the same house, I began to remember what really happened.

It was about all the crap I saw her doing to Richard and the kids every day.  It was about a battered man defending his battering.  It was about her smacking his arm and giving him looks so full of anger and threat, that he looked scared.

It was about her overhearing me telling my husband not just about her jealousy, but about her abusive behavior of Richard and the children.

It was about her starting a smear campaign against me, deliberately to drive a wedge between Richard and me.

No, she had to put the spotlight all on me with all her ridiculous “rules” which I couldn’t possibly meet–

–so she could continue doing her bad behaviors in the darkness–

–so that Richard would never break free of her control.

The trouble is, she so successfully convinced Richard of her smears, and so successfully turned things around on me, that on 7/1/10, she still made it all about me, still tried to insist that I was the one in the “wrong”–

–not because I was actually wrong–

–but to take the focus off her and her own abuse and bad behaviors.

The other trouble is that abusers can so worm their way into your head, that even though a part of you screams that you’re not the one in the wrong, you’re not the one behaving badly–another part of you keeps thinking, “What if she’s right?  What if I really am the one behaving badly?”

I’ve been fighting this for years, not since 7/1/10 or the e-mails she sent me 8/1/10, but since January 2008.

It gets imbedded so deeply that it almost seems impossible to get out.  It’s like a parasite.

Blogging is helping me to get it out, finally, because:

  • not only can I write about what happened,
  • but I have all sorts of private writings which I can look back at later and see what I wrote,
  • and I also have this foundation already written, on which I can build with more memories and insights as they come to me.

I thought maybe I shouldn’t blog about this, just keep it under wraps.  But now I see that it must come out, that silence is just what bullies want out of their victims.

And if Richard or Tracy sees it, so be it.  This is what Richard and Tracy are truly like.  I am not lying. 

And I have online court records and newspaper reports to prove that I am telling the truth about them. 

[Update: They found it just two months after I posted this, and both accused me of lying and threatened me, as you can read here.]

I must keep blogging to get the parasite out of my system once and for all, so I can be free at last of Tracy’s influence, and:

  • to defend myself and my innocence
  • to break the silence which abusers want their victims to keep
  • to get Tracy’s parasite out of my head
  • to have peace and remove Tracy’s destructive poison through this surgical removal (ie, writing about it) out of my heart and onto the [digital] page
  • to warn others about how narcissists and other personality disordered persons can work
  • to sympathize with those with NLD, Asperger’s and introversion who are bullied by those who do not understand them
  • to stick up for all abused and bullied people
  • to provide help for those abused people who feel driven to read the abuse stories of others

I recall how hard it was to find stories of people who had been abused by friends or spouses of friends rather than by family, co-workers, classmates or significant others; this adds one more.  I know what it’s like to constantly search the web looking for stories of other people, in various stages of their healing journey, who have been through abuse in some way.

Here is a story for such people.

(Because this is a story about my healing journey and some people on the Net can be cruel, I’m switching off comments.)

 

Reblog: Narcissists, Phones and Your Right to Privacy

First, please note that I don’t endorse *everything* on the site I’m reblogging.  I agree with a lot of it, but occasionally there are things that bother me.  Still, I came across the following post which validated me after dealing with the ex-friend Richard‘s wife.  For example, from Narcissists, Phones and Your Right to Privacy, by Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD:

If your abusive narcissistic, borderline, histrionic, paranoiac, psychopath spouse, girlfriend or boyfriend has demanded your passcodes and logins, that’s not normal. It’s controlling and tyrannical. If you’re in an abusive relationship, you don’t have to be “hiding anything” for them to have a rage episode or make wild accusations about infidelity or anything else they can manufacture out of thin air.

Your sister could text you to invite you for coffee and the borderline or narcissist control freak-abandonment fear switch is activated:

Why does your sister want to have coffee with you?! Why wasn’t I invited?! Why can’t I be there?! What are you hiding from me? If there’s nothing to hide, why wasn’t I invited? Your sister is being disrespectful to me! She should’ve asked me if I could go at that time before she asked you! You love your sister more than me! Is there something going on with you two?!

Wow.  This sounds SO familiar, the rage episodes just because I wanted to go out for coffee with Richard, the insistence that if I didn’t follow these unspoken and unknown “rules” I wasn’t “respecting” her.  Then there’s:

If you’ve surrendered your phone to your partner, please consider doing your friends, family and colleagues a courtesy and let them know your partner reads all incoming and outgoing messages. You may not care about your right to privacy, but some or all of your friends and family probably do. Also, they may want to bypass written communication with you altogether because, as previously, noted, there doesn’t have to be anything to hide. An abusive asshole can turn nothing into something with the misfire of a synapse.

Last sentence: And yes, yes she did just that after snooping, leading to the end of this “friendship.”

When I found out that not only did Richard have to “clear” all his friendships with his wife, and going out with them for something as simple and innocent as coffee, but that his wife also had a habit of checking his phone records and e-mails–I was appalled.  I would tell Richard things about my past experiences or about things I currently dealt with (such as fears or philosophical questions) which were not meant for his wife to see.  Nothing “affair-y,” but things I only wanted my trusted best friend to see–and I did not trust his mean wife with these things.

It all struck me as being very abusive and controlling, but she kept insisting that these things were all her due, that it was showing her “respect.”  Over the years, I’ve perked up whenever friends on Facebook or some TV show or Internet article goes into the issue of friendships and a spouse’s right to privacy.  And over and over again, the same thing is said: Don’t try to control each other’s friendships!  Respect each other’s privacy!  Run from anyone who tries to control you!

Comments are turned off because this is a reblog.

%d bloggers like this: