Being married to an abuser is soul-destroying. No matter how hard you work you won’t get it right for long. Your every move is monitored or you are completely ignored. Whatever you do is misconstrued and the most innocent action or sentience can be pounced on. The typical feature of an abusive relationship is that meaningful conflict resolution is impossible.
THE RESULT OF THIS IS RESENTMENT
You are angry and hurt and bitter and it has nowhere to go. Any attempt to discuss it with the abuser is futile. Your efforts to be heard or understood will result in you being called “insane, paranoid, pre-menstrual, menopausal, stupid or a liar”.
One of the greatest challenges of living in an abusive relationship is managing your resentment so that you don’t become a bitter woman.
RESENTMENT IS YOUR DAILY POISON. ONLY YOU SWALLOW IT AND ONLY YOU ARE HURT BY IT. ONLY YOU CAN GET RID OF IT.
Being creative is one way to attend to your resentment. Please don’t say that you aren’t creative and so this is not an option for you. Cooking and baking is creativity. A beautiful bowl of flowers is creativity. Gardening, sketching, writing, moving the furniture around the room and making anything beautiful will reduce your resentment.
Women have proved to me over the years how unbelievably resourceful they are. Anna wrote her resentment away with beautiful letters she wrote to herself. They were called “Love letters to Self”. Another woman who happened to be an artist painted her resentment in an effort to get it out of herself and onto a canvas. My partner, my former client and dear friend Philippa cooked her way from survival into transformation. I have asked her to post photographs of her beautiful table settings and napkin holders. Whenever I see the napkin holders languishing elegantly on the table I smile quietly to myself.
They look like napkin holders but actually they were her life lines to sanity. Here is the proof of the resourcefulness of women in the face of resentment and hurt. Each gorgeous napkin holder is a symbol of the fight to survive and the deep desire to overcome resentment and pain with creativity. Beauty beats anger.