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BEYOND THE CLOUDS OF OUR PROBLEMS
SEXUAL AND PHYSICAL ABUSE
If you have been or are in a situation where you are subjected to physical and/or sexual violence try to find a friend who will believe you and help you. If there is no-one you know who can help you, try a nearby hospital for help. Someone there should be able to refer you to an appropriate source of help and support. You don't need to put up with being abused.
This article is written especially to provide help where there is violence in the home situation, but I hope that anyone who is being abused will find assistance too.
Domestic violence takes many forms, but it all has a common thread, that is to exercise power and/or control over one's spouse and/or family. In many cases it is most evident when a man endeavours to exercise power over his wife, but it is not limited to this direction. There are plenty of cases where the reverse is true. But whichever the direction of the violence and abuse, mutual love cannot flourish (or even exist) where there is this ongoing attempt to dominate. Its probably fair to say that in many cases one who chooses to dominate another is unaware of how offensive and damaging this type of behavior can be to his or her spouse as well as to their marriage and family.
This article is written to highlight some of the more obvious methods used by persons who dominate another, in the hope that it will give both husband and wife the basis for discussion, and after talking things out, the resolution of their problems.
If you haven't yet read the two articles in this website entitled: "Beyond Your Problems There Is Hope", and "God's Incredible Promise", may I suggest that you do so now. Domination and violence in its many forms never originate with God, but always with the one called the Devil, or Satan, who is the cause of all the heartaches in the world. It's important to realise this fact right at the beginning.
Here is a check list to see if you can identify any methods of domination or violence in your own home and marriage. May I suggest that you work through these and consider them together - without bitterness or recrimination. Keep your own score!
Do you treat your spouse and/or children as chattels, viewing them in about the same way as you would a car or a piece of machinery - something that you own?
Do you like to make all the big decisions in your marriage and expect your spouse to agree to what you decide?
Do you see yourself as top of the domestic pyramid, with everyone else subservient to your every whim - much like a servant?
Do you control all the family's finances and "very generously" give your spouse an allowance? And if that is exceeded, making him/her grovel for more?
Are you making so much money or are you so proud of your own "status" that you prevent your spouse from getting a job?
Or if your spouse is working, (or for that matter if he/she is not working), do you use your spouse's money without permission because you see yourself as "the boss"?
If you choose to commit yourself and your spouse to a mortgage or other debt, do you forge your spouse's signature on the documents?
Do you keep your spouse in the dark about the family finances? When discussing a financial deal with a business person or adviser do you refuse to allow your spouse to be involved?
Do you try to limit who your spouse sees, who your spouse talks to, even the things that he/she does? What about involvement outside the home - do you seek to restrict your spouse's involvement in anything?
How do you speak to your spouse? Do you address him/her much as you would a disobedient dog?
Do you try to embarrass him/her, trying to make your spouse feel bad about himself/herself? Do you tell your spouse that he/she is useless,worthless, hopeless? Not good for anything?
Are you into name-calling?
Do you try to make your spouse feel guilty - or worse still, feel as though he/she is going mad?
When your spouse complains about the abuse, do you refuse to admit that you are abusing him/her? Or do you try to shift the blame for the abuse on to your spouse saying that he/she caused it?
Do you have or have you had sexual relations outside your marriage? Do you see this as your right to do as you please because you regard yourself as the "boss"?
If you have had sexual relations outside your marriage have you lied to cover up your deception?
If you have had sexual relations outside your marriage and your spouse finds out, do you try to con him/her into believing that after all, you were the innocent party and that you were seduced?
If you have had sexual relations outside your marriage have you been dishonest enough to say that your spouse caused it - that he/she drove you to it?
If you claim to love your spouse, do you see any anomaly in making this claim
while you may be having sexual relations with someone else?
Do you refuse to speak to your spouse, using your children to relay your wishes?
Do you hate your spouse?
Do you use the children as a ploy to ensure that your spouse does what you require - threatening to take the children away if you don't get your wishes?
Do you smash plates or furniture or possessions - especially if they belong to your spouse?
Do you frighten and threaten your spouse, even to showing weapons - implying that they could be used?
Do you blackmail your spouse to cause him/her to do illegal things and then report him/her?
Do you carry out your threats of physical or sexual abuse?
Do you threaten to leave him/her in the lurch by committing suicide?
If you have been charged with some offence as a result of your violence, do you try to con your spouse into lying to support you and then dropping charges against you?
None of the above describes a very pleasant picture. If these problems exist in any marriage, that marriage is in jeopardy. No marriage can survive if these problems continue, and unless abusive and violent behaviour is not only recognized and changed, the recipient of the abuse can't reasonably continue to stay in such a violent environment.
I have listed these issues above in the hope that couples who are having a rough time may recognize the problems and do something about them. They say that happy marriages are made in heaven. Well, not quite. But they are made by heaven's influence. May I suggest that you re-read the articles: "Beyond Your Problems There Is Hope", and: "God's Incredible Promise," ( several times if necessary ).
If both of you are prepared to believe in Jesus Christ and that His whole mission has been (and is) to save people from their sins, then know too, that He can change your lives also. Ask Him to do so, and He will. You can have a happy home if you both choose to have one.
Wouldn't it be great, if after reading these articles and learning what God wants for you, that your home became a place of ongoing peace, where genuine love and respect for each other motivated you both to make a heaven on earth? Think of what your influence, guided by God, could do for your children. It can happen, if you both want it to.
Here are a few extra pointers which can help you. In what is known as the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus stated a great piece of advice. He said that whatever you would like people to do to you, do also to them.
You want to be happy? Go out of your way to make your spouse/family happy. If there are chores to do, do them - even if they are normally done by your spouse or children. Try asking your spouse regularly, "What can I do to help you?" or "I can see that you have had a rough day - let me help you."
Make time each day to do things together with your spouse and children. They desperately need your love and affection - and your time. Walking together, sharing each other's company, can do much to defuse the typical family tensions that exist in today's fast lifestyle. Turn off the TV. Would you really want to trade time watching the idiot box for making your spouse and children happy by being part of their lives?
If you have mood swings and they are related to alcohol or drugs, ask yourself which is more important to you - a happy family bound for heaven, or a hell on earth. If you have a problem in this area get some help immediately. Start with your doctor who can direct you to appropriate sources of help.
If you are overweight, as millions of people are, and this problem causes you to be perpetually listless and tired, even bad tempered, it may be time for you to review what you are eating. Perhaps the article in this website; "Healthier and Happier", can be of help to you.
If you are working so many hours that you are perpetually tired and worn out, consider what you are doing. Are you working all those hours to provide a better future for your spouse and kids? Maybe more of your time with them today would be better than a lavish lifestyle later. You don't get a second go at it. Slow down and spend time with your spouse and family. Make sure that they enjoy life - and you'll enjoy yours too.
There is no follow up from this website and no email address. May I suggest that you check out all the links on this site and read the material several times if necessary. I wish you well, and hope that you and your spouse and family will soon find peace in your home and that you will have a happy marriage, as well as kids that adore you.
Just one other thing. If you want to add to your new found happiness refer this website to your friends who may have also been having a rough time in their marriage.
May God bless you.
Copyright © G.S.BOARD 28 July 2003 All Rights Reserved.
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ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO MAY BE GOING THROUGH A DIFFICULT TIME.