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Confused714

Is it normal

13 posts in this topic

Is it normal to start and doubt yourself when they start acting nice and caring?  Things were getting really bad and i was finally accepting that I was in an abusive relationship. I never felt that he didn't love me but he has to feel in control or he can't handle it. i have started reading the book everyone recommended and he falls into the Mr. Right catagory. He has explosive anger. That is when you really see the abuse. He found out what I was thinking a few weeks ago. He has been super nice and sweet (although still had a few melt downs- just short lived and not so much at me but about certain situations). He has been telling me he loves me a lot. When I say what needs to change he says he will work on it but every once and awhile he still adds in that I need to do certain things so he doesn't get mad to that point anymore. I know that's not a good sign. 

Is it normal though to start doubting everything I was so sure of just a few weeks ago?  I felt like I know that it was abuse. Now all these thoughts are floating around in my head that I start doubting what I thought before. Maybe he not really abusive. Is it normal to feel like this?  I am still going to move forward with putting things in place because if I do go I need to be ready. I just start questioning things. 

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I think it's typical to feel doubt and a lack of trust when this happens. It happened to me.

It's cognitive dissonance, it's deep confusion over how someone can say they love you and promise that things are going to get better, when you know that what's happening isn't right and can't be healed like that. It's extra hard when they abuse you in sweet, kind, loving tones - the way he's doing now. It's brainwashing. Telling you hey, I know things are hard, but we just have to work together, I'm going to work on me but I need your love and support, and you have a part in this too, because were partners, we're a couple, you're my other half so this is half on you. It's so hard to identify that as abusive, but it is. Manipulation is abuse. He's still trying to convince you that you are responsible for the peace of the relationship, and his actions. He's basically saying "I'm sorry, but it's not really my fault. It's up to you to keep this going. I'll be nice to you as long as you keep me happy".  It's not authentic love. Of course you're feeling confused. 

Keep reading that book :) 

 

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HE is the one who controls his emotions - not you. Telling you that you need to do certain things so  he doesn't get mad to that point is an inappropriate and manipulative attempt to "share the blame" (seems reasonable, because after all you're a couple - but in the case of things like this, it's not reasonable).... and to blame-shift onto you, and to make you responsible for his own actions. 

Being nice and sweet when they get an inkling you might leave is just typical hoovering and doesn't mean they are changing inside or not-abusive.

It's totally normal to get confused and doubt yourself. It's part of the abuse dynamic - and they feed it with their manipulation and the psychological impact their abuse has on you. 

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1 hour ago, Confused714 said:

Is it normal to start and doubt yourself when they start acting nice and caring?  Things were getting really bad and i was finally accepting that I was in an abusive relationship. I never felt that he didn't love me but he has to feel in control or he can't handle it. i have started reading the book everyone recommended and he falls into the Mr. Right catagory. He has explosive anger. That is when you really see the abuse. He found out what I was thinking a few weeks ago. He has been super nice and sweet (although still had a few melt downs- just short lived and not so much at me but about certain situations). He has been telling me he loves me a lot. When I say what needs to change he says he will work on it but every once and awhile he still adds in that I need to do certain things so he doesn't get mad to that point anymore. I know that's not a good sign. 

Is it normal though to start doubting everything I was so sure of just a few weeks ago?  I felt like I know that it was abuse. Now all these thoughts are floating around in my head that I start doubting what I thought before. Maybe he not really abusive. Is it normal to feel like this?  I am still going to move forward with putting things in place because if I do go I need to be ready. I just start questioning things. 

Yes that's why they do that.

 

its called HOOVERING.

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Hi Confused,

The sweetness you speak of is an important part of the cycle of abuse, because it constitutes the reason why we remain in these situations: we want to believe that the other person is changing when they say they are changing, or when they show kindness instead of abuse. So we stay. We hope. We invest in their ability to transform into a better, non-abusive form of themselves, all the while believing them when they tell us it is real. 

If they were abusive all of the time, without any intermittent niceness, we wouldn't be able to tolerate them for very long. It's that kindness that we feel from them at times that makes us think that it is worth holding onto them. Makes us feel like we can put up with the hard times because sometimes they are nice, even loving and gentle and repentant. But, those moments of niceness from them are merely little crumbs they toss out to us to keep us following after them down a trail that leads to more abuse, then more abuse. When we're in these kind of relationships, those tiny crumbs of niceness can feel HUGE, like a whole feast. In contrast with a healthy relationship, though, those crumbs pale in comparison to what it's like to live with someone who is consistently non-abusive, who respects you as a person, who communicates with you in a way that isn't self-serving, manipulative, or demeaning. We just get so used to being fed crumbs that it becomes difficult to recognize how starved we really are. 

I also agree with the gaslighting idea. My H likes to have conversations with me about the terrible implications of divorce on the psychological health of children and the utter mess of divorce on adults who have to pay child support and alimony. He speaks in general, or in response to other friends or family going through a divorce (he never refers to us). He says this with a kind smile, humility, and a sense of respect towards me and my contributions to the conversation. From the outside, it looks as if we are having a very peaceful and edifying and general discussion about divorce, but he brings it up (I think) for a reason. To disorient me. To send me negative messages about divorce. To even underhandedly threaten me about the kids and how bad it would be for them to go through a divorce. It's divisive in a very covert sort of way, so it derails me and confuses me. Every. Time.

How does his niceness make you feel? Does it make you feel like your head is spinning around and you cannot understand what you feel or what is going on? Confusion is evidence of hoovering. I think because we know who they really are, and their niceness contradicts what we know deep down about their character.

 

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On 7/31/2017 at 8:18 AM, Confused714 said:

Is it normal to start and doubt yourself when they start acting nice and caring?  Things were getting really bad and i was finally accepting that I was in an abusive relationship. I never felt that he didn't love me but he has to feel in control or he can't handle it. i have started reading the book everyone recommended and he falls into the Mr. Right catagory. He has explosive anger. That is when you really see the abuse. He found out what I was thinking a few weeks ago. He has been super nice and sweet (although still had a few melt downs- just short lived and not so much at me but about certain situations). He has been telling me he loves me a lot. When I say what needs to change he says he will work on it but every once and awhile he still adds in that I need to do certain things so he doesn't get mad to that point anymore. I know that's not a good sign. 

Is it normal though to start doubting everything I was so sure of just a few weeks ago?  I felt like I know that it was abuse. Now all these thoughts are floating around in my head that I start doubting what I thought before. Maybe he not really abusive. Is it normal to feel like this?  I am still going to move forward with putting things in place because if I do go I need to be ready. I just start questioning things. 

Yes it is. I've gone thru this over and over again. It becomes the norm unfortunately. What I did that helped was write down the hurtful things said, and all the ways I'm being abused. When you start doubting yourself go back and read it.

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You know what though? Let's flip it around. Even if you think, oh he's being nice, it's ok.... Is there ever going to be a time in the future when you'll feel you'll be able to absolutely trust that the "nice" is permanent? Is there ever going to be a time, when you won't feel doubt and feel uncomfortable and unsure?

Does past history give any indication that it's feasible that, in the future, the nice will stay and you will be able to feel comfortable and safe and happy?

 

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On 7/31/2017 at 10:39 AM, Melinoe said:

I think it's typical to feel doubt and a lack of trust when this happens. It happened to me.

It's cognitive dissonance, it's deep confusion over how someone can say they love you and promise that things are going to get better, when you know that what's happening isn't right and can't be healed like that. It's extra hard when they abuse you in sweet, kind, loving tones - the way he's doing now. It's brainwashing. Telling you hey, I know things are hard, but we just have to work together, I'm going to work on me but I need your love and support, and you have a part in this too, because were partners, we're a couple, you're my other half so this is half on you. It's so hard to identify that as abusive, but it is. Manipulation is abuse. He's still trying to convince you that you are responsible for the peace of the relationship, and his actions. He's basically saying "I'm sorry, but it's not really my fault. It's up to you to keep this going. I'll be nice to you as long as you keep me happy".  It's not authentic love. Of course you're feeling confused. 

Keep reading that book :) 

 

:sick:  Those sentences in the middle...barf.  My ex used to say that crap all the time.  It's 50/50 blah blah blah  you play a part in this too blah blah blah...

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They sure love that language of shared responsibility when it comes to that, don't they? It was like Homer Simpson's line to Marge: "It takes two people to lie - one to lie, and one to listen!" 

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32 minutes ago, Melinoe said:

They sure love that language of shared responsibility when it comes to that, don't they? It was like Homer Simpson's line to Marge: "It takes two people to lie - one to lie, and one to listen!" 

Oh God yah they do.  I heard that BS all the time.

 

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2 hours ago, 6245 said:

:sick:  Those sentences in the middle...barf.  My ex used to say that crap all the time.  It's 50/50 blah blah blah  you play a part in this too blah blah blah...

Oh my goodness, what melinoe said and ditto what 6245 said!  That's exactly what my h says to me, like verbatim.  That is what I'm finding so shocking, and so valuable for me right now, is how exactly, literally, verbatim my h and all the others say the exact same freaking lines.  They are, literally, classic textbook abusers.  It is valuable to me, because there's no denying it for me anymore.  He doesn't just fit the pattern, he is a carbon copy! I'm just continuously astounded, and at the same time, it's totally validating.  

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They do do pretty much what the books say.

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That was the biggest impact the books had on me too. Word for word the same things. It was obvious at that point, and just freaky.

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