Saturday, October 14, 2017

Saturday's Seminar - We Must Be Informed - Deadly Topic - September 30, 2017

My eyes are opened. My ears hear differently.  My heart hurts.

Twenty-five percent of marriages are abusive.
One in four women report being in an abusive relationship.
Twenty-four percent of women and thirteen percent of men report experiencing severe physical violence from an intimate partner.
Every nine seconds a woman is assaulted or beaten.
Fifty percent of men who assault their wives frequently assault their children.
Forced sex or sexual assault occurs in forty to forty-five percent of battering.
Mothers in abusive relationships said that their children witnessed twenty percent of the sexual violence the mother experienced.
Eighteen percent of Intimate Partners of Sexual Violence (IPSV) said their child witnessed their rape at least once. 
(Source-Darby Strickland's Notes) 

I will never let bad-awful, uneducated advice come out of my mouth ever again to any woman who is struggling with abuse. I have learned way too much.

Two weeks ago in Lancaster on a Saturday, with my soul-friend, Pam Hopkins, I attended an Abuse Seminar at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Lancaster. Here is a smattering of what Darby Strickland had to share.

Smattering of Saturday's Seminar:

Emotional abuse is a heart problem, stemming from an abusive person's un-Christlike drive to attain and maintain dominance.

God designed marriage to be a place of mutual trust, sacrifice, care and honesty.

Your calling is not to submit to and accept rampant destructive behavior. The opposite is true. God cares about safety.

Domestic violence is a pattern of coercive, controlling, or abusive behavior that is used by one individual to gain or maintain power and control over another individual in the context of an intimate relationship. This includes any behaviors that frighten, intimidate, terrorize, exploit, manipulate, hurt, humiliate, blame, injure, or wound an intimate partner.

It is not that the perpetrator of the violence is 'out of control' it is quite the opposite. They are using violence to maintain control. 

It is not about anger management. When a man is selective about when , where and to whom he is abusive, the problem is not he looses control...it is that he takes control.

The oppressed experience being owned, confused, enslavement, crushed, alone, physically ill, feels responsible, devalued, angry, guilty.

Oftentimes what we see is not what is! This is the kicker for me. This is where I failed so many.

Do you have the freedom to be yourself, make decisions, give your input and to disagree?
Do you ever feel fearful around your partner?
Have you ever been threatened or physically hurt?
Have you ever been an unwilling participant in a sexual act?

Violence only escalates and it always picks up from where it left off.

One Love is an app and it is all about safety planning.

You might know just enough to be dangerous and put a victim at more risk - 1.800.799.SAFE (7933)

The Bible does not say to stay and suffer abuse and violence.

Sex Abuse: Rape - Unnecessary Roughness when you clearly say something hurts and it does not stop - Unwanted actions - Causing damage - Duration and or frequency with insistence and punishment.

Marriage does not equal consent.

Hyper-headship is a satanic distortion of male leadership...

Does he exhibit control-oriented leadership?
Demand submission and unquestioning loyalty or obedience?
How does he utilize Scripture in daily life and in conflict?
How does your spouse pray for you?
Are guilt, fear and intimidation used control and manipulate you?

Is he closely watching what you buy? Hiding assets? Using your social security number to obtain credit without your permission? Running up debt? Refusing to give you money? Not including the victim in investment or banking decisions? The list goes on...

Abuse doesn't start out looking like abuse: whirlwind romance, gifts-obligation, jealousy, show up unexpectedly, check your phone, see you all the time, sexual pressure as can't help myself.

What happens when you give negative feedback? When you have needs? When you have a different preference? When they are disappointed? When there is conflict? When he interacts with his family? When there is physical intimacy?

You, the oppressed, you are not responsible for another's sin. Your oppressor will blame you for their anger and rage. But God clearly says it is never your fault. You do not deserve this. You are being oppressed not because of your part or current sins but because of your oppressors current sins.

The oppressor needs to admit fully to all past patterns, admit behavior was wrong without blame-shifting, understand it was a choice not lack of control, recognize effects and show empathy, identify in detail past entitled and controlling attitudes, develop respectful behaviors, replace his distorted view of spouse, make amends, accept consequences, commit to non repeating, give up past privileges, understand lifelong process...

Signs of not changing - he tells you that you are the one that is abusive, uses counseling sessions or info against you in any way, pressures you to to go therapy for yourself, he is minimizing the abuse, he demands a second chance, he says it is impossible to change without your support, he expects something in return from you for attending counseling, he is pressuring you to make up your mind about the relationship or to move back in together, he is pressuring you to drop criminal charges.

Resources:
~Bancroft, Lundy. Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men -2003
~Holcomb, Justin and Lindsey Holcome, Is it My Fault?: Hope and healing for Those Suffering Domestic Violence - 2014
~Strcikland, Darby Entitlement: When Expectations Go Toxic Journal of Biblical Counseling - Winter 2015, p. 19-33
~Vernick, Leslie. The Emotionally Destructive Marriage, - 2013


Verses:
Zephanaih 3:19 - Psalms 119:34 - Psalms 11: 5-6 - Proverbs 22:3 - Luke 4:18-19

And to help us distinguish between God's voice and Satan's voice here is an excellent list:

God stills you, 
reassures you, 
leads you, 
enlightens you, 
forgives you, 
calms you, 
encourages you, 
comforts you.

Satan rushes you, 
frightens you, 
pushes you, 
confuses you, 
condemns you, 
stresses you, 
discourages you, 
and worries you.