Floating the Abyss
by SoulfulSurvivor
Page 1 of 3

"Crazymaking"   10 y  
What "crazymaking" actually is, and how it further disables a victim.
I have made mention of this tactic, often, and it’s a very difficult concept to convey to human beings who are unfamiliar with it. Another reminder: my use of CAPS is not intended to convey screaming or shouting. In my case, the crazymaking was constant, even during the ”good times.” Of course, the ”good times” were those days, hours, or minutes when it seemed that abuse or violence wasn’t active. This tactic also reiterated and intensified the former abuser’s campaigns of fear and suspicion. An actual example of the abuser’s crazymaking went like this: Me: I think I want to go ...   read more

Climate of Fear & Suspicion   10 y  
Generating suspicion and fear is the abuser's constant game.
When I recollect who/what I had become when I was still living in an environment of abuse, it’s almost astonishing that I had sunken so low. Fourteen years after my exit seems like a whole lifetime away, and still I will carry the scars of my experiences to the end of my days. On the positive end of my Survival, every day that carries me further from those dark, desperate days is another day of gratitude and learning for me. The darkest times were a smothering blanket of fear and suspicion that were deliberate machinations of the former abuser. Sometimes, threats of violence and retr ...   read more

Children & Domestic Violence   10 y  
Children in environments of domestic violence and abuse are systematically destroyed.
This topic addresses how and why the cycle of domestic violence and abuse is growing at an exponential rate. Once again, CAPS do not indicate shouting, but a strong underlined, bold, italic. It is a statistical fact that a full 90% of ALL REPORTED ABUSE is perpetrated in the presence of children. This means that undeveloped minds are forced to witness emotional and verbal abuse, physical abuse, spiritual abuse, financial abuse, and sexua| abuse. The undeveloped minds of children cannot PROCESS what they are witnessing, and their fragile and impressionable psyches are altered from wha ...   read more

Withold/Reward = Power & Control   10 y  
The most insidious tactic of an abuser.
”If you don’t get that money from your parents, the kids won’t have Christmas presents, and it’ll be YOUR fault! This is a statement that I heard on every special occasion, birthday, holiday, ”family” vacations, and so forth. In order to be provided with gifts, school clothing, groceries, field trips, and the like, I had to either beg money from my parents, trade sexua| favors, or submit to, and endure, verbal and physical abuse. The tactic of withold/reward is not only used by abusers, but also an intentional tactic of interrogation and incarceration. Do what is demanded, and we’ll ...   read more

Don't give UP!   10 y  
Stockholm Syndrome and how friends and family can support and encourage victims.
Stockholm Syndrome - when we hear that term, we immediately associate it with a situation in which hostages develop sympathy for their captors. The psychological dubbed this phenomenon ”Stockholm” after hostages in a bank robbery in Sweden demonstrated bizzare emotional attachments with their captors. Personally, this association with that specific event gives the general population a very narrow and misconcepted idea of what it really is. This psychological condition can develop as a method of survival by victims of domestic violence/abuse, cult members, kidnap victims, torture victi ...   read more

"The Only One"   10 y  
More on my personal experiences of attempting to gain the approval of a predatory abuser.
I’ve noted that I had a number of interests and goals prior to involving myself with the former abuser. Sounds as if I was a pretty well-rounded person, right? Well, I also had a good number of faults and character defects which enabled the abuser to cut me off from nearly every friend and source of emotional support that I had. The one friend that I did maintain contact with was a childhood friend that apparently posed no threat to his control. Among these character defects, my need for acceptance and approval were probably the most profitable to the abuser. These needs were nearly ...   read more

Please, share!   10 y  
Sharing this blog, and any other resources may help to break someone's cycle. If I was able to Survive, so can others.
Please, share this blog and any resource links with friends and family! Education is knowledge - knowledge can facilitate hope, change, and healing. With domestic violence and abuse growing at an exponential rate, if ONE person can break the cycle, it’s a positive effect upon them, their friends and family, their community and local economic resources, and their culture. Brightest blessings!   visit the page

Spirituality, Religion, and Abuse   10 y  
How an abuser will use religious and spiritual beliefs to exact control
Spiritual and religious abuse are powerful weapons for an abuser, regardless of whether the relationship is romantic or platonic.  Many of us are raised with core spiritual/religious values - we are comfortable in rituals, prayer, or meditation.  When that comfort is called into question and ridiculed, it’s unkind and based upon prejudice.  "Witches are all evil," was a statement that the former abuser often made in reference to people who practice Wicca.  Well, I didn’t really see it that way.  I am comfortable in exploring all cultural systems of belief ...   read more

The "Sex Factor"   10 y  
How sex and sexuality factors into the arsenal of an abuser.
Okay - this particular topic will require several posts, perhaps, and I’m starting it out on the hand-held device. I apologize for any typos, in advance! Words and phrases in ALL CAPS should not be construed as shouting. It’s important to discuss sex, sexuality, and how they factor into my situation, but domestic violence and abuse, in particular. Although my personal experiences may have seemed unique, they were typical of nearly all situations of domestic violence and abuse. Even situations of abuse that are not romantic relationships can experience the Sex Factor. Any time that ...   read more

Love's "Tender Trap" and Violence   10 y  
The lure of "love," crazy-making, and physical violence.
When I began dating the former abuser, I was physically strong, ebullient of nature, a burgeoning artist, a passable equestrian competitor, on the college Dean’s List, a fair musician, and one heck of a hard partier. After we began dating, my interests and positive attributes began to erode and disappear. The abuser was careful and extraordinarily calculating in this process of erosion - I recognized that long-termed relationships were terminating, but there was always a ”good reason” for this. My female friends had propositioned the abuser or were attempting to ”break us up” because th ...   read more

Divide, Conquer, Surrender   10 y  
Isolation and the removal of a safety network.
So, what does that really mean? Is it a concious thing that an abuser does? How (and, why) do they do it? Over the year in my healing processes, I’ve engaged in counseling therapy, working with Survivors, and researching/discussing the epidemic of domestic violence and abuse. One of the unwavering similarities in nearly every abusive relationship is the isolation factor. Victims often have a sudden epiphany that they have no truly close friends and are often sundered from family. The latter is particularly true when family members recognize the abuser for what he/she is and refuse ...   read more

On being "trusting"   10 y  
The abuser plays on open trust.
In reference to my gullibility and need to feel needed, it never entered my mind that a) there are human predators, b) the predators are adept at contriving ”facts,” and c) that said predators intend, with malice, to target and destroy all manner of targets for all manner of purposes. As I’ve mentioned that my youthful assertion that my trust was freely given until such time as someone’s actions damaged it. My former abuser played on my trust like Yo Yo Ma plays a cello. The tales that the abuser told me of his childhood were withou corroberation - he was estranged from his mother and ...   read more

Typos   10 y  
I apologize for the myriad typos! I’m using a smarass phone and...well...if I were 12, this wouldn’t be an issue! Blessings!   visit the page

Contract of Marriage   10 y  
Abuse and the marriage contract.
Right - I cannot stress this point enough: marriage is a legal, binding contract and is a very expensive contract to break. Glamour weddings and limousines may cost a bundle, but dissolving a contract of marriage is expensive, ugly, and horrific if children are involved. This is compounded times 100 if the marriage is rooted in domestic violence/abuse. Bringing a child into an abusive relationship is, in and of itself, the height of abuse against an innocent. A child does not have the luxury of choosing their parents and an abusive environment will either produce another gemeration ...   read more

How did the abuser work it so well?   10 y  
My personal experiences with regard to the crazy-making of an abuser.
 "Why didn’t you just leave, then?" was a question that many, many people have asked during my healing processes.  If there were a single, simple answer to that, I’d be on the talk-show circuit to save thousands from their situations and to prevent tens of thousands of new victims from making the same mistakes that I did.  I didn’t leave because I lived in denial.  The denial was carefully constructed and nurtured by the abuser through actions, choices, and behaviors that are commonly termed, "crazy-making." When people generally think of "do ...   read more

Slow, but sure   10 y  
Some of the tactics that the abuser employed and my own responses.
 So, I’m an intelligent, educated individual.  If I was as smart as I thought I was at that age, why didn’t I just walk away from someone who displayed so many red flags?  I wish that there were a clear, concise answer to that question - it’s one that victims of domestic violence and abuse hear, frequently.  "Why don’t you just leave?" is echoed by family, friends, coworkers, associates, and others.   One of the tactics in my situation was causing me to believe that I wasn’t worthy of anything better.  That began with the purely physical aspects t ...   read more

What were the red flags, and why did I ignore them?   10 y  
The red flags that I ignored.
 To say that I was gullible would be a gross understatement.  I was a trusting, loving, giving human being that only wanted to love someone and be loved back.  I believed in the goodness of all Mankind, and I also was ignorant of the fact that there really are some "bad people" out there whose only goals are to use and dispose of other human beings.  I also wanted to be needed and appreciated, almost to the point where it was an emotional pathology.  I would often take up the causes of the injured and hurting because, perhaps, I believed that my concerns ...   read more

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An average person’s journey from domestic violence into peace and safety. more...

Last Activity: 8 y ago
44 Messages   Last message 8 y ago
18 Comments   Last comment 8 y ago

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Created: 10 y   Mar 16 2011

Comments (10 of 18):
Re: I stayed becau… msavo… 8 y
Re: Non-romantic N… Soulf… 10 y
Re: Accepting "Tru… Soulf… 10 y
Re: Accepting "Tru… Athin… 10 y
Indeed, no remedy.… Soulf… 10 y
Re: False Hope kerminator 10 y
what the heck?! SoulfulSu… 10 y
ACK! Double post… Soulf… 10 y
Re: Fear and Explo… womba… 10 y
This IS a touchy s… Soulf… 10 y
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