Fierce anger against Phil and PTSD from the abuse–College Memoirs: Life at Roanoke–The Long, Dark Painful Tunnel, Part 15
My friends were disgusted with how Phil had been treating me. This included at least two guys–Mike and Charles–so it wasn’t just the female perspective saying he was an a**hole.
I later learned that James, too, thought he was a creep, and that Phil and Persephone deserved each other because she was the most negative person he ever met.
Sharon said Phil was domineering and possessive. It was funny because he or his “friends” had been saying I was possessive! I sure couldn’t remember being possessive. She (the Psych major) said he had a psychosis, and that his whole family was psychotic, so she tried to stay away from them all.
Though I still had trouble letting go of all my feelings, I think this time I got so angry that I lost all the love I ever had in my heart for him. Though at times the feelings returned, in my heart it was over.
The times I wanted him back, were probably denial of the truth, or fear of ending up alone. His true self had been shown to me in vivid technicolor.
I hope I haven’t done too much ranting in these blogs, but I felt I needed to show what happened, just in case one of you finds yourself in similar situation. You don’t have to stay there. I also wanted to tell people what really happened.
I’ve read that women who’ve been abused in some way often have trouble with anger management. That might explain why I got incredibly angry with Phil–more angry than I ever was with Peter or Shawn–and to this day still struggle with residual anger. My friends and family heard me say things about Phil that they never heard me say about anybody else, and it shocked them.
Quoted from Abuse in a Christian Marriage:
“The feelings you’re likely dealing with Crystal are anger, pain, betrayal, fear, trauma, sadness, shame and more. These are very common feelings for abuse victims, and in order to get past them they have to be acknowledged and dealt with.”
Also see later on, “Healing from past abuse.”
What also didn’t help me get over the anger: Recently [this was written in 2006], Dr. Phil McGraw said on his show that if a woman does not feel heard, she keeps saying it over and over until she does feel heard.
I did not feel heard, so I said what I needed to say in letters. Still, I got no apology, just a guy who acted like I had nothing to be angry about. Why on earth did I not want to say hi to him when he said it to me? Gee, why do you think?
It’s hard to forgive and let go when someone never acknowledges they did something horrible to you, when they never show remorse. Years later, it still burns you up, no matter how much you pray for the strength to forgive.
The only thing to make forgiveness easier is to finally receive an apology. Even if it takes many years, that’s still better than never.
Bullying causes Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, lower self-worth and feeling helpless. It is a psychiatric injury, which traumatizes a person.
When a bully is supported by his friends, when authority figures aren’t interested in stepping in–even resorting to blaming you for the bullying, when the bully “gets away with it”–this makes it much harder for the bullied to reach “closure.”
Here are listed traits of complex post-traumatic stress disorder and of psychiatric injury; I especially identify with these traits:
An overwhelming desire for acknowledgement, understanding, recognition and validation of their experience
A lack of desire for revenge, but a strong motivation for justice
A tendency to oscillate between conciliation (forgiveness) and anger (revenge) with objectivity being the main casualty
A constant feeling that one has to justify everything one says and does
A constant need to prove oneself, even when surrounded by good, positive people
An unusually strong sense of vulnerability, victimisation or possible victimisation, often wrongly diagnosed as “persecution”
Feelings of worthlessness, rejection, a sense of being unwanted, unlikeable and unlovable
A feeling of being small, insignificant, and invisible
An overwhelming sense of betrayal, and a consequent inability and unwillingness to trust anyone, even those close to you
The person is by now obsessed with the situation (or rather, resolving the situation), cannot switch off, may be unable to sleep, and probably has nightmares, flashbacks and replays
These things either have affected in the past, or still do affect, me. [This was written in 2006.]
“Sometimes Always” by The Jesus and Mary Chain played often before, during, and after the second time Phil and I were together: A guy breaks up with his girlfriend. He comes back, she refuses at first, then takes him back.
I liked to mentally sing along with the female singer when she said, “You went away; you can’t come back.” When Phil came back to me, I identified with the line, “You went away, but now you’re back.” I also liked the image of the groveling ex-boyfriend.
On the 29th, I wrote in the new Journal my friends and I started,
There’s also this emptiness, like a part of me is missing. Especially when I’m alone and doing mechanical, everyday things. “Meaningless, everything is meaningless.” (Ecclesiastes)
It makes friends and (Mike will recognize this) “future hope” so important. [I think “future hope” must have been a term from Intro to Christianity class, probably meaning Heaven, hope that things will get better.] The emptiness starts to go away a little bit.
Maybe this is really a cry for help. You guys’ll have to keep an eye on me. I’ve found myself not caring how close the cars are on the drive[way]s, and it’s scaring me.
I’ve been through bad times before but gotten through them. [namely, Peter and Shawn] Things always get better. But how long until they do?
…Someone who accused InterVarsity of being a clique [Dirk] also said that maybe I should pull away from it. He couldn’t have been more wrong.
I need InterVarsity–an oasis of spirituality and learning how to get closer to God. My faith is really being tested since a couple nights ago.
I feel like God told me one thing but the exact opposite is true. Which can’t be, because God doesn’t lie. He wants me to trust Him, even in all this when I can’t figure out what He’s doing or if He’s even doing anything. I’m sure somebody should be able to relate.
For years, He’s been telling me time and time again, “Trust Me.” Which is so hard to do, when it should be so easy to trust someone as trustworthy as God is. That Psalm 13 really fits.
(For those of you who weren’t at Pearl’s Bible study last week, that’s what we studied. David crying out to God in desperate circumstances, and finally saying that he knows God will help him.)
…I saw a poster in Counselor Dude’s office that asked, If you couldn’t write, would you die?–In my case, I think so. There’s just something about putting words on the page that makes life worthwhile for me. Another reason why I think this journal is such a good idea. Probably also a reason why I write such long letters!
Written October 2011:
After doing more research into abuse and narcissism, thanks to dealing with two narcissists who abused and maligned me in 2010, I now believe that Phil’s first breakup with me was not intended to be permanent.
I believe it was actually his attempt to control me. Because I wasn’t submissive enough, he wanted to force me to submit, to show me that the consequences of not submitting meant losing him–to break my spirit.
And it worked, for a time. For the week he was back with me, I was afraid to do anything that would make him go away again. I was very submissive, giving in to anything he wanted, no matter how baffling (going to Thailand for a year), outlandish or distasteful (oral sex, which he knew I hated, and he had not washed himself, so it smelled awful).
Even during the two weeks between the first breakup and week back together, I was submissive during our negotiations:
For example, he asked if I would object if he started smoking and drinking, and I said I would not. During the negotiations, if I started saying or doing things he didn’t like, the rage wall went up again, and he would ditch me, go off and tell Dirk what I was doing wrong, etc.
During those two weeks, Dirk (Phil’s puppet) came to me and told me to distance myself from my friends. So Phil was, once again, trying to control me by separating me from my friends, the ones who saw him for what he really was.
And when we got back together but I “screwed up” by not “supporting” him as he bashed me to my friends, he left again. It disgusts me to think of how submissive I was just to hold onto this controlling man.
(For more on the above-described situations, see here.)
Cast of Characters (Work in Progress)
Table of Contents
- Meet the Suite
- Meeting Shawn–and a Ninja
- Campus Stories, Wisconsin, Campus Radio Station
- Campus, People, First College Boyfriend
- Dating a Ninja
December 1991: Ride the Greyhound
January 1992: Dealing with a Breakup with Probable NVLD
March 1992: Shawn: Just Friends or Dating?
April 1992: Pledging, Prayer Group–and Peter’s Smear Campaign
October 1992–Shawn’s Exasperating Ambivalence:
Summer 1993: Music, Storm and Prophetic Dreams
- Classmate a stand-in for “Rudy”; Jigging at College Dance
- Library Tales
- Happiness Returns
- Living with Friends in Krueger
- Funny Library Stories
- Shawn Calls
- Psycho Roommates and Bug Wars
- Return of Rick
- Adjusting to New Dorm
- Spitball-Throwing Teacher
- Rat-Obsessed Teacher and Doctor Zhivago
- A Teacher Dated a Student; InterVarsity Fun
- Charlie Peacock Concert
- Random Stories
- Letter to Shawn
- Erotic Vampire Dream (Inspiration for Alexander Boa)
- I Ask Out James
- Peter Calls!
- The Fateful First Meeting of Phil
- The Birth of Dolphin Philosophy
- Our Group of Friends Splits Apart
- Spring Classes
- Big Red Flag: Phil’s Dysfunctional Family Life
- The Drunken Stork (Phil’s Controlling Nature Manifests)
- Idealizing Phase and Early Sign of Control
- Phil Tries to Control my Friendships, Unfair Accusations from his Dad and Brother
- Phil Gaslights Me with Fake Dreams, Ridicule and Psychological Abuse
- Another Pre-Engagement
June 1994–Bits of Abuse Here and There:
- The Abuse Worsens in the Summer of Hell
- Phil rapes me anally
- Phil tries to control me through refusing everything I want–even proper hygiene
- Phil’s cruel hoax on me: his “subconscious” coming out to be with me
- Phil’s “subconscious” explains why he’s coming out to talk to me
- The lies unravel as Phil admits to conning me; also, fright as my periods turn wacky
- How Phil’s behavior fit the signs of abuse
- Phil Mindscrews Me: changes history, blames me for things that were not my fault, treats me like an idiot during games
- Phil says if he abuses me, it takes two people to sign the divorce papers
- Pearl reveals that Phil is costing me social invitations
- Hints that Phil is checking out of the marriage
September 1994–Divorce: The Long, Dark, Painful Tunnel:
- Phil picks fights and avoids responsibilities to make me feel like a shrew
- My husband Phil, Dave and Pearl call me a party pooper for getting a Grade II concussion
- I’m ecstatic to be back with my friends (the ones Phil hates); I meet Charles
- Phil vanishes without a word of why
- Phil wants a divorce
- My friends tells me that Phil is controlling and possessive
- My first Pentecostal church service: They speak in tongues
- Phil refuses to accept responsibility for the divorce
- Phil cuts off contact
- Attack of Phil’s Flying Monkey and Sycophant: Dirk
- Phil the narcissist admits to manipulating people and using them as pawns in his game with me
- Phil comes crawling back to me–and we put our marriage on paper
- Phil demands my complete submission and forces me into oral sex–and my will is broken, for fear he’ll divorce me again
- Phil walks away from me again–because I dare to have my own mind, opinions and needs–and because he’s a sociopath
- Fierce anger against Phil and PTSD from the abuse
- My friends tell me Phil is psychotic
- “Soul Ties”
- I return Phil’s things and he skewers me; consolation from friends
- My letter to Phil
- Phil shows my letter to his friends; I’m triggered by reminder of forced oral sex
- I start dating Charles
- Friends tell me Phil is controlling
- I feel stalked by Phil
- Poem about being stalked by Phil
- Fury at Phil stalking me and rubbing my face in his new relationship
- A Date with the Vampire
- Celtic Class: Knotwork, Tin Whistles, SCA–and Drinking from a Skull
- The Teddy-O Incident; Birth of These Memoirs
- We Hook Up to the Internet–and Shawn Fixates on My Sex Life
- New Guy Begging at My Feet
- Life on TCB
- Meeting Cugan (Hubby)
- Learning my ex Peter was a love-fraud; New Men
- Before Tracy, There Was the Avenger (Sociopathic Female Bullies Pt 1)
- Torn between three men as Catherine pushes me toward Cugan
- The Love Rectangle
- Torn between FIVE men! Me?
- Persephone’s Own Outrageous Stories of Phil’s Abuse
- College-style living
- Online Shenanigans
- Phil Finds TCB; Meeting a Hit Man
- Gypsy’s Party: Healed friendship with Peter
- The Avenger Starts a Flame War (Sociopathic Female Bullies Pt 2)
- Meeting the elusive Speaker
- First Date with Future Hubby Cugan
- On Breaking Up with Kindness
- Loony Roommies and Flying Gargoyles
- The Goddess of Pleasure and Salt
- A Conversation with Oscar Wilde
- My First SCA Event
- Cugan: a vast improvement over Phil
- Easter with Cugan’s family and SCA
- Cugan breaks up with me
- After breakup: Phil’s return and trolls
- Cugan comes back
- SCA hippies; college senioritis: anxiety!
- Or should I move back in with my parents?
- Peace with Phil
- Defending my Thesis; Graduating with Honors
- Graduation: Trapped at school
- Epilogue and Apology from Phil