|Part of this article was originally written for a local newspaper at the request of Davie Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center (Davie County, N.C.) during the period that I worked for them. This article was sadly rejected just before publication for political reasons. (It was bad for business.) I was later politically terminated from the agency for criticizing the local public school system.|
Our Environment Of Abuse
Whether occurring in homes or elsewhere, this is an era in which a person needs not gander far before encountering abusers and victims. We are surrounded by abuse to such a degree that it has become a common topic with the news media.
For instance, there was a recent case receiving national media attention in Palmdale, California concerning a sixteen-year-old girl having her arm broken by school security for dropping a piece of cake, and the case of a college student at the University of Florida in Gainesville, who suffered a pile-on of police and a subsequent taser attack (after he was already subdued and helpless). The latter attack was apparently done in reprisal for his having asked some tough questions of Senator Kerry. Videos of these incidents are wildly popular on the Internet as outrage about them grows.
It is important to note that the majority of law enforcement officers are reasonably good citizens, but the exceptions provide us with perfect examples of classic abuser behavior. These incidents are far from isolated, and recent nationwide media coverage has featured video footage of several schools in which children were beaten by the very authority figures who were bound to protect them.
The origins are similar regardless of the form abuse takes, when we consider the following. Despite the angle used to view abuse, the very basis behind it consistently remains power. The abusive authorities involved undoubtedly sought an occupation built upon yielding power over others. It is unfortunate that those who crave power the most tend to deserve it the least and abuse power the most: whether the abusers are law enforcement, politicians, parents, spouses, school officials, or even nations.
Abusers Are Not Born. They Are Created One Blow At A Time.
Abusive personalities are most commonly created by feelings of powerlessness stemming from experiences in early childhood, with over-controlling parents. It is the reason why abuse is a pattern typically repeated throughout generations of families. The abuser's sense of powerlessness is wrought by his misguided parents, and it remains permanently unless there is intervention. An abuser's perceived lack of control in his environment causes him to develop controlling tendencies in an attempt to compensate for his sense of powerlessness; and this is especially noticeable in his interpersonal relationships.
His controlling tendencies eventually become an overwhelming drive for more power over others who are the closest to him. His irrational drive to control and meticulously monitor his inner circle are his attempts at escaping his ceaseless sense of impotence. He often literally loses control at this stage, which ironically, is his greatest fear. The great cruelty of abuse is that there are usually at least two victims: with it having grown from the seeds planted by child abuse.
Because of his past, the abuser’s ability to meaningfully relate to others is fundamentally crippled. While being emotionally crippled, he nonetheless feels one emotion constantly and with the greatest of intensity: jealousy. He may be glib and superficial in the public scene, but the dual side of his personality is revealed in private. He lives in a polarized world consisting of enemies and allies.
I contend that love is the opposite of power, but to him, love is power. This is what his parents taught him, after all. Love is his weapon to guilt his allies into bending to his will. His love is shown in protecting the people he loves, even when he protects them in ways destructive to their greater well being, and against their wishes. His every response is foremost about maintaining predictability and control, and in order to maintain these things, the obedience of others is required. In his quest to maintain control of his environment, the whims and ideas of others just get in the way of his making the world right. He is a master manipulator, because he has spent his life learning that controlling others means manipulating them. He has an extreme form of extroversion whereby he is so deficient in soul (for lack of a better term), that his personal sense of fulfillment must be measured in those around him. Others must be controlled for their own good, in a manner akin to the maintenance of personal property, or farm animals.
As the author Judith Herman noted, "his victim is merely an extension of himself; like an appendage. This compares to the way in which people may become sentimentally attached to material objects, or the same psychological way which we feel an emotional attachment to our own limbs. To an abuser, a separation from, or defiance from his object of obsession is as maddening to him as it would be for us if suddenly one of our arms took on a defiant will of its own". His panicked responses to simple disagreements within his inner circle are incomprehensible for most of us. He is everywhere, and you already know at least a dozen people like him.
Some abusers can be redeemed, and thus saved from themselves. This path is very difficult and humbling because it requires that he not only recognize the problem, but also face with painful honesty why he has such a reactionary drive. It is only through self-understanding and acceptance that an abuser can change. It may involve the prospect of forgiving himself, or the parents who made him that way. Foremost, the desire to change must exist in the abuser.
Traditional methods of helping abusers to recover through forced therapy and rehabilitation have rendered entirely unsuccessful results. These methods merely fuel an abuser's sense of powerlessness and personal violation more, leading to additional problems with rage in his relationships. Thus, incarceration is likely to merely transform him from an abuser into a monster. In the worst abuse cases, domestic violence and child protective service agencies save lives, and provide last resort assistance for victims, but it is ever important that they keep in perspective the dire consequences of unnecessary legal interventions.
Feminist Empowerment Policies: Making Certain To Break-Up Families (The real enemy of feminism)
As with the standard approaches toward treating abusers, the same can be said for the conventional empowerment method of helping victims. It regularly succeeds in the self-defeating task of creating an abuser out of a victim. It is yet another case of misguidedly replacing love with power, as its very name betrays. Empowerment is a victim's reactionary response to pervasive feelings of powerlessness at the hands of a controller. It is a pathologically unhealthy philosophy promoted by feminists; replacing fear with hatred, and exchanging one type of lopsided relatedness for another, in regard to the opposite sex. It often involves the highly destructive suppression of the more submissive feminine qualities, depriving relationships of their warmth, color, intimacy, gender roles, and natural equilibrium. Whenever a relationship has someone empowered, one partner is an abuser and the other is a victim. Abuse is always for the enforcement of power.
"Marriage has existed for the benefit of men, and has been a legally sanctioned method of control over women... We must work to destroy it. The end of the institution of marriage is a necessary condition for the liberation of women. Therefore it is important for us to encourage women to leave their husbands and not to live individually with men.... All of history must be rewritten in terms of oppression of women. We must go back to ancient female religions like witchcraft.”
-- The Declaration Of Feminism, 1971
Empowerment is a bogus cure which perpetuates the disease; setting up another sexual us-versus-them scenario in which there can never be any winners. No healthy relationship is ever based upon power. True love is a process of surrender; not conquest.
Love is the opposite of power, and this is the core theme of my upcoming book about my own abuse experiences. Most of the so-called abuse “survivors” have been empowered by the complete wrongfulness taught in current books -- and if these people were indeed healthy and recovered, then they would not feel such a need to constantly remind themselves, and everyone else, that they are survivors.
“Since marriage constitutes slavery for women, it is clear that the women’s movement must concentrate on attacking this institution. Freedom for women cannot be won until the abolition of marriage."
— Sheila Cronin, leader of N.O.W.
“Men who are unjustly accused of rape can gain from the experience.”
-- Catherine Comins
"She Was Asking For It"
We have been trained by the feminists to immediately react with hostility upon hearing, “she was asking for it”. It is difficult to know which is more tragic: the fact that feminists have had such a profound influence upon our society, or the fact that the statement is sometimes true. Sometimes even decent and intelligent women do actually ask for their abuse. I know first-hand, because I existed as such a woman over a period of years. My experiences mirror those of thousands of women around the world, so perhaps this difficult topic will be easier for them to digest if I discuss my personal experiences instead of generalizing, as before.
Because of the death of my mother, I was raised by my Aunt and Uncle from the age of six until my middle teens. While in their care, I experienced practically every type of abuse that a person can experience, and amazingly, these two people were police officers who worked with troubled children. (Child abusers like to place themselves in occupations that give them access to children.) It would be many years before I would realize the effects of their abuse, and how it would later effect my relationships.
I learned as a child that I was a good and loving person when I not only accepted abuse without resistance, but when I actually expected it. They taught me that close inter-personal relationships, families, and people who loved one another operated in master-servant like relationships. They taught me that love was about power, and their love was demonstrated to me whenever they enforced their power over me. Whether it was choking me into unconsciousness, or lewd sexual acts, I was always told that they only did such things because they loved me, and because it was for my own good. It would make me a better person, they said. I believed them. I was only a child.
Because of the lessons that they had impressed upon me, I had numerous close calls with pedophiles during my early teen years. These chilling encounters are understood clearly now in retrospect. Most girls would have immediately seen the warning signs of those predators, but I naively missed them all. I suppose it was because the flirtatious behavior of those men seemed like normal behavior to me. It is what I had learned to expect from guys; especially the older ones. At some unconscious level I believed that this was the sort of behavior that one should expect from a father figure, for instead of romance, I was seeking the father that I never had. Through all their flirtatious encounters (sometimes stalking), I believed that their behavior demonstrated love, because I had been taught that this was love. My Uncle Gary had taught me this well at a very young age.
I was incredibly lucky not to get entangled with any of these men despite the fact that I was too naive to understand them or their true motives. I continued to be lucky until I met Richard. Richard Huneycutt Jr. was a 33-year-old ex-convict from North Carolina, and I was a 14-year-old English girl when we met. He had been to prison for abusing and kidnapping his own wife, but it would be a long time before I learned his true history. He had spent a long time searching the Internet for someone like me: a young girl who was seeking her next abuser. The games immediately began, and he was soon bragging to his friends that I was “young enough to be trained”, without ever admitting my true age to them. Thus began what is known as the “grooming the child” process used by pedophiles to beat down their victims into absolute secrecy about the nature of the relationship, and to foster absolute obedience.
This obedience was at the core of everything, because all abuse (even sexual) is a matter of a power-drive out of control. He went so far as to have me call myself his “slave” and I had to address Richard as “Master”.
He explained to me that we had a rare and special kind of love that the rest of the world would never understand, so my absolute loyalty and obedience had to be unwavering. It would be me and him standing against the rest of the world if necessary, because the rest of the world was immoral. Several years later, as I contemplated suicide, Richard plotted his journey to England to slaughter me and all of my friends as punishment for my disobedience. This is when I finally began realizing what I had gotten myself into.
It would be easy and tempting to place all of the blame onto Richard for the tragedy, which helped bring about his death, but I would have learned nothing if I had taken that easy path. Certainly he was evil, but he was exactly the sort of evil person I had been seeking to abuse me. Twisted as it may be, Richard was giving to me what (at least unconsciously) I had been taught was love. In fact, it was not until the very end that I ever doubted that he had been showing love to me. He was the new father figure replacing Uncle Gary, and he would have made Gary proud.
I was an enabler like so many other abused women. I did everything I could to enable the abuse, so I could get some “love”. Whether it was jealousy games, intentionally getting myself caught lying, or playing the role of a basket-case, I worked tirelessly to fuel his anger. With my lack of self-esteem, it was never a problem to believe that I deserved all that he could dish out and more. In fact, because of my self-esteem problems, I used him to get the punishments that I felt I deserved. I asked for it, time and time again. Thousands of women are doing exactly the same thing without ever realizing exactly what they are doing, or why they are doing it. It is the dance of abuse. It is why the cycle repeats for them.
Recovering From Abuse
True recovery comes from the self-understanding of painfully and honestly appraising what happened, how it happened, and why it happened. This is impossible for most abuse "survivors", because like their antagonists, they are too busy looking for blame in their partners to ever be truly honest about themselves. Forgiveness is not always easy, but without forgiveness, they tend to perpetually live in their self-imposed hells. Empowered people are those who are still locked in their former power structures, for it is still about “winning” against their abusers, and proving that their abusers no longer have any power. Of course, this obsession only proves that the abusers do in fact still have a power over them. Moving on means: moving on.
In flashbacks and dreams, victims are reminded that they were a part of something that went terribly wrong, and something needing serious reflection by them. These are not merely cruel tricks of the mind. They are the painful manifestations of victim’s guilt (even if undeserved). More often than not, these fuel rage to lead victims down the same abuse path again as the cycle repeats. They never understand why they are perpetually attracted to so many of the bad guys, who initially seemed so good. The recovery process for both abusers and victims is remarkably similar, as both require the harsh realizations about their true roles in the relationship, and the unconscious drives which ultimately led them into such dastardly situations.
The exceptions to what I have written are the sociopathic abusers and ritualistic abusers. The first category entails those who were born without the capability for a conscience, or at least without the emotions necessary to truly empathize with the suffering of others, and the latter category of people willingly harms others (usually children) to satisfy pagan gods (in some cases the Devil himself) in religious rites. Both these categories of people do exist, and much more so than most of us would like to believe. The prisons are full of them. These two exceptional groups of abusers are the true monsters, who are unlikely to ever redeem themselves.
Recovering from the past (even the present) can be a difficult thing, but with faith, love, forgiveness, and God's help, you and your loved ones can weather it. Understanding, self-understanding, and enormous amounts of patience are required.