By: Lynda Bustilloz To: Fredric Rice Re: ABORT ALL THEM Promise Keepers! (Then eat Staal's

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By: Lynda Bustilloz To: Fredric Rice Re: ABORT ALL THEM Promise Keepers! (Then eat Staal's remains.) FR> I must opine that women don't leave abusive men for the primary reason FR> that they have nowhere to go, no skills to market, and have their FR> children's health and safety in mind (and thus continue to play FR> herself and her children in danger.) FR> Is it really low self-esteem that keeps women inside rather than FR> financial bondage to the male? Both -- but the low self-esteem comes first. I hate to be giving lessons in how to be a successful abuser, but the FIRST step is to convince your victim that they are utterly dependant on you -- there there IS nobody better out there who would have them, that what they get is all they deserve, that they're too stupid/dingy/disorganized/crazy to be competent to deal with the nitty gritty details of life -- like having spending money or access to the bank account, or any knowledge of what the household's financial resources are. Thus the abusers first set themselves up as PROTECTOR from the bad cruel world, and deny access (or the ability to gain access) to any sort of financial or emotional independance. Once the victim is in that position (and by this time completely convinced that it is for her own good, and that she really IS incapable of anymore), it is an easy step to begin verbally and sometimes physically -- because she seriously has nowhere else to go, not financially and not even emotionally. The biggest threat to the abuser's status is for his victim to gain emotional support even more so than financial support. And they know this - that is why such a large warning sign of the potential for abuse is finding the victim very limited in her outside contacts. There are rifts with the family, so that they can not see (and point out) what is happening. Friends become a burden, because the abuser doesn't "like" them, and gives the victim hell everytime she sees them. So the friends fade out of her life. He wants her home where he can "take care of her" (and not coincidentally, where he can more closely moniter her contacts). My ex's big mistake was being so cocksure of himself, he pulled a Cinderella's stepmother on me. I wanted to go to college and he said fine, but HE wouldn't be paying for it. He thought that was the end of it. I got 2 jobs and went to school evenings, paying for everything a Pell grant didn't cover -- and found out that in the eyes of the rest of the world, I was intelligent and of considerable value -- something that was directly at odds with what he'd led me to believe. The contradiction was too much to deal with, and something had to go. It was him. :) I moved out with a grand total of $650.00 (Part of which had been stashed by me, and part that was "stolen" out of our joint account -- which he'd never let me have access to) and moved into a trailer that was one step up from a cardboard box. I so badly wanted away from him that I didn't even get a lawyer. I signed over a house and two cars, and settled for an initial settlement that was *just* enough to by a $700.00 heap that probably hadn't been a good vehicle when it was new -- but it was MINE. And when I shut the door to that trailor, it was MINE, too. And it felt like a castle. The financial hardships of leaving were enough to make me have to delay leaving, but it was the emotional garbage that put me there and kept me there as long as it did -- it wasn't until THAT part was lifted that I could picture myself overcoming the monetary burden. Lynda Bustilloz


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