When an advisor talks to someone about his or her relationship, he is treading on thin ice. A person may say he wants counsel, but when the advisor points out truths that are uncomfortable, the advisee may become defensive and turn on the advisor. Not because he doesn’t know the person is speaking truth, but because the truth is too painful to accept. Instead of admitting his hurt, he lashes out at the person pointing out behaviors because it’s an easier option than facing his reality.
It’s very difficult to watch someone defend an abuser’s actions. That person believes that the abuser’s love for him is strong. He makes all kinds of excuses for the abuser’s behaviors. Excuses such as Sarah came from an abusive family, at least Johnny pays the bills, you don’t know Ralph like I do or that’s just Mary’s way are some of the excuses that make the list.
However, when someone berates you or calls you names, that isn’t love. When someone beats you unmercifully, that isn’t love. When someone threatens your life, that isn’t love. When someone belittles your every effort, that isn’t love. Regardless of what the person says, if he is engaging in these or similar behaviors, he is not demonstrating love.
Covering up an abuser’s deeds will never work. Making excuses about his behaviors will never motivate change. Continually accepting the abuse will make matters worse, not only for him, but also for you.
I know this is a touchy subject, but if you are in an abusive relationship, seek help. Know that you are more valuable than a punching bag or a target for emotional insults. It may be scary to make changes, but with the help of others, you can do it. Just remember, the first step is usually the hardest to take. But you are not alone. Help is out there if you are willing to ask for it.