I have been separated from my kids father for over 9yrs now. Our relationship has always been abusive in one form or another from the start. When we were together it was all the above, now that we don’t live together it is emotional, verbal and mentally abusive. It has taken me this long-9 yrs later to realize that the phrase“Well what you say is very different than what he says…” is a HUGE trigger for me. When I hear those words I instantly start crying, my body feels heavy, and I struggle to breathe, my anxiety goes through the roof, I panic involuntarily . The conversation can be going ok, and then I hear that phrase and its all down hill with little to no chance of recovering from it.
You may ask why do those words hold so much power. I would say it’s from constantly hear them over and over for 9yrs and knowing that you have to defend your actions, thoughts, choices or the situation. It’s incredibly exhausting. Your mind is tired, your body is tired, its frustrating, and its such a hopeless phrase. It shows how little you have come despite how much efforts you have put in previously. There has NEVER been a time where my ex took any responsibility for any of his actions or choices. It all is somehow my fault 100% of the time. (or others when I’m not involved) According to him: I never did enough or did anything right. That I’m just plain wrong or he denies things that happened. That if I made a different choice then he wouldn’t have had to do …whatever it may be. (choke me, push me down stairs, refuse to give me back our kids, harass me, etc..) the take away is that I somehow brought his actions on myself.
The fucking phrase means now I have this person in front of me, getting information from a man who is very good with his words, very convincing on the surface and great at lying and here I am crying, possibly struggling to hold back the onset of a panic attack, a huge hot mess. Who are you gonna believe? Chances are at first glance I look “unstable”, a word I have heard a zillion times from my ex, and funny enough only my ex. That person you are talking to, doesn’t know your history, doesn’t know what you have been though and currently still dealing with. Depends who they are, they may not even take the time to check out the facts of what is being said, they take whatever is easiest.
What do you do now? Its easier said than done. You trust! You trust that you made the right choice, that your intentions are good, you know what you are saying is true. Don’t defend, he wants a rise out of you. He said that stuff knowing it will get back to you and will drive you crazy like all the times it has done in the past. Ask yourself is it worth it to get into it with this person? If you have to, then simply state the facts and move on. It’s so hard to trust yourself especially after going through a dysfunctional relationship like that and for so long, plus having any past baggage on top of that as well. You need to remember you are not the crazy one here. You need to trust that if you did do something wrong, you would own it and move on. If you have facts or documents, use them to provide the proof you need. If he gets caught in one lie it will get under his skin so much, that more lies will become noticeable. He may create new lies on top of it and it will be hard to keep track of for him. If you don’t have hard proof, don’t worry someday, and it maybe be a very long day away, but someday he will be seen for who he truly is. Their lies will unravel and they won’t be able to talk themselves out of it anymore and you will continue on with your happy life.