How to detect if he is an abuser.

How to tell if He is an Abuser

Is there anything you can do to avoid abusers and narcissists to start with? Are there any warning signs, any identifying marks, rules of thumb to shield you from the harrowing and traumatic experience of an abusive relationship?

Imagine a first or second date. You can already tell if he is a would-be abuser. Here’s how:

Perhaps the first telltale sign is the abuser’s alloplastic defenses – his tendency to blame every mistake of his, every failure, or mishap on others, or on the world at large. Be tuned: does he assume personal responsibility? Does he admit his faults and miscalculations? Or does he keep blaming you, the cab driver, the waiter, the weather, the government, or fortune for his predicament?

Is he hypersensitive, picks up fights, feels constantly slighted, injured, and insulted? Does he rant incessantly? Does he treat animals and children impatiently or cruelly and does he express negative and aggressive emotions towards the weak, the poor, the needy, the sentimental, and the disabled? Does he confess to having a history of battering or violent offenses or behavior? Is his language vile and infused with expletives, threats, and hostility?

Next thing: is he too eager? Does he push you to marry him having dated you only twice? Is he planning on having children on your first date? Does he immediately cast you in the role of the love of his life? Is he pressing you for exclusivity, instant intimacy, almost rapes you and acts jealous when you as much as cast a glance at another male? Does he inform you that, once you get hitched, you should abandon your studies or resign your job (forgo your personal autonomy)?

Does he respect your boundaries and privacy? Does he ignore your wishes (for instance, by choosing from the menu or selecting a movie without as much as consulting you)? Does he disrespect your boundaries and treats you as an object or an instrument of gratification (materializes on your doorstep unexpectedly or calls you often prior to your date)? Does he go through your personal belongings while waiting for you to get ready? Does he text or phone you multiply and incessantly and insist to know where you are or where you have been at all times?

Does he control the situation and you compulsively? Does he insist to ride in his car, holds on to the car keys, the money, the theater tickets, and even your bag? Does he disapprove if you are away for too long (for instance when you go to the powder room)? Does he interrogate you when you return ("have you seen anyone interesting") – or make lewd "jokes" and remarks? Does he hint that, in future, you would need his permission to do things – even as innocuous as meeting a friend or visiting with your family? Does he insist on a "dress code"?

Does he act in a patronizing and condescending manner and criticizes you often? Does he emphasize your minutest faults (devalues you) even as he exaggerates your talents, traits, and skills (idealizes you)? Does he call you names, harasses, or ridicules you? Is he wildly unrealistic in his expectations from you, from himself, from the budding relationship, and from life in general?

Does he tell you constantly that you "make him feel" good? Don’t be impressed. Next thing, he may tell you that you "make" him feel bad, or that you make him feel violent, or that you "provoke" him. "Look what you made me do!" is an abuser’s ubiquitous catchphrase.

Does he find sadistic sex exciting? Does he have fantasies of rape or pedophilia? Is he too forceful with you in and out of the sexual intercourse? Does he like hurting you physically or finds it amusing? Does he abuse you verbally – does he curse you, demeans you, calls you ugly or inappropriately diminutive names, or persistently criticizes you? Does he beat or slap you or otherwise mistreats you physically? Does he then switch to being saccharine and "loving", apologizes profusely and buys you gifts?

If you have answered "yes" to any of the above – stay away! He is an abuser.

Then there is the abuser’s body language. It comprises an unequivocal series of subtle – but discernible – warning signs. Pay attention to the way your date comports himself – and save yourself a lot of trouble!

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Violence and Abuse in relationships/marriages

Violence and Abuse in relationships/marriages

Violence in the family often follows other forms of more subtle and long-term abuse: verbal, emotional, and psychological sexual, or financial.

It is closely correlated with alcoholism, drug consumption, intimate-partner homicide, teen pregnancy, infant and child mortality, spontaneous abortion, reckless behaviours, suicide, and the onset of mental health disorders. Most abusers and barterers are males – but a significant minority are women. This being a "Women’s Issue", the problem was swept under the carpet for generations and only recently has it come to public awareness. Yet, even today, society – for instance, through the court and the mental health systems – largely ignores domestic violence and abuse in the family. This induces feelings of shame and guilt in the victims and "legitimizes" the role of the abuser.

Violence in the family is mostly spousal – one spouse beating, raping, or otherwise physically harming and torturing the other. But children are also and often victims – either directly, or indirectly. Other vulnerable familial groups include the elderly and the disabled. Abuse and violence cross geographical and cultural boundaries and social and economic strata. It is common among the rich and the poor, the well-educated and the less so, the young and the middle-aged, city dwellers and rural folk. It is a universal phenomenon. Abusers exploit, lie, insult, demean, ignore (the "silent treatment"), manipulate, and control.

There are many ways to abuse. To love too much is to abuse. It is tantamount to treating someone as an extension, an object, or an instrument of gratification. To be over-protective, not to respect privacy, to be brutally honest, with a sadistic sense of humour, or consistently tactless – is to abuse. To expect too much, to denigrate, to ignore – are all modes of abuse. There is physical abuse, verbal abuse, psychological abuse, sexual abuse. The list is long. Most abusers abuse surreptitiously. They are "stealth abusers". You have to actually live with one in order to witness the abuse.

There are important categories of abuse:

I. Overt Abuse

The open and explicit abuse of another person. Threatening, coercing, beating, lying, berating, demeaning, chastising, insulting, humiliating, exploiting, ignoring ("silent treatment"), devaluing, unceremoniously discarding, verbal abuse, physical abuse and sexual abuse are all forms of overt abuse.

II. Covert or Controlling Abuse

Abuse is almost entirely about control. It is often a primitive and immature reaction to life circumstances in which the abuser (usually in his childhood) was rendered helpless. It is about re-exerting one’s identity, re-establishing predictability, mastering the environment – human and physical.

The bulk of abusive behaviours can be traced to this panicky reaction to the remote potential for loss of control. Many abusers are hypochondriacs (and difficult patients) because they are afraid to lose control over their body, its looks and its proper functioning. They are obsessive-compulsive in an effort to subdue their physical habitat and render it foreseeable. They stalk people and harass them as a means of "being in touch" – another form of control.

To the abuser, nothing exists outside himself. Meaningful others are extensions, internal, assimilated, objects – not external ones. Thus, losing control over a significant other – is equivalent to losing control of a limb, or of one’s brain. It is terrifying. Independent or disobedient people evoke in the abuser the realization that something is wrong with his worldview, that he is not the centre of the world or its cause and that he cannot control what, to him, are internal representations.

To the abuser, losing control means going insane. Because other people are mere elements in the abuser’s mind – being unable to manipulate them literally means losing it (his mind). Imagine, if you suddenly were to find out that you cannot manipulate your memories or control your thoughts… Nightmarish! In his frantic efforts to maintain control or re-assert it, the abuser resorts to a myriad of fiendishly inventive stratagems and mechanisms.

Here is a partial list:

Unpredictability and Uncertainty (Intermittent Reinforcement)

The abuser acts unpredictably, capriciously, inconsistently and irrationally. This serves to render others dependent upon the next twist and turn of the abuser, his next inexplicable whim, upon his next outburst, denial, or smile. The abuser makes sure that HE is the only reliable element in the lives of his nearest and dearest – by shattering the rest of their world through his seemingly insane behaviour. He perpetuates his stable presence in their lives – by destabilizing their own.

ADVICE

Refuse to accept such behaviour. Demand reasonably predictable and rational actions and reactions. Insist on respect for your boundaries, predilections, preferences, and priorities.

Disproportional Reactions

One of the favourite tools of manipulation in the abuser’s arsenal is the disproportionality of his reactions. He reacts with supreme rage to the slightest slight. Or, he would punish severely for what he perceives to be an offence against him, no matter how minor. Or, he would throw a temper tantrum over any discord or disagreement, however gently and considerately expressed. Or, he would act inordinately attentive, charming and tempting (even over-sexed, if need be). This ever-shifting code of conduct and the unusually harsh and arbitrarily applied penalties are premeditated. The victims are kept in the dark. Neediness and dependence on the source of "justice" meted and judgment passed – on the abuser – are thus guaranteed.

ADVICE

1. Demand a just and proportional treatment. Reject or ignore unjust and capricious behaviour.

2. If you are up to the inevitable confrontation, react in kind. Let him taste some of his own medicine.

Dehumanization and Objectification (Abuse)

People have a need to believe in the empathic skills and basic good-heartedness of others. By dehumanizing and objectifying people – the abuser attacks the very foundations of human interaction. This is the "alien" aspect of abusers – they may be excellent imitations of fully formed adults but they are emotionally absent and immature. Abuse is so horrid, so repulsive, so phantasmagorical – that people recoil in terror. It is then, with their defences absolutely down, that they are the most susceptible and vulnerable to the abuser’s control. Physical, psychological, verbal and sexual abuse is all forms of dehumanization and objectification.

ADVICE

1. Never show your abuser that you are afraid of him. Do not negotiate with bullies. They are insatiable. Do not succumb to blackmail.

2. If things get rough – disengage, involve law enforcement officers, friends and colleagues, or threaten him (legally).

3. Do not keep your abuse a secret. Secrecy is the abuser’s weapon.

4. Never give him a second chance. React with your full arsenal to the first transgression.

Abuse of Information

From the first moments of an encounter with another person, the abuser is on the prowl. He collects information. The more he knows about his potential victim – the better able he is to coerce, manipulate, charm, extort or convert it "to the cause". The abuser does not hesitate to misuse the information he gleaned, regardless of its intimate nature or the circumstances in which he obtained it. This is a powerful tool in his armoury.

ADVICE

1. Be guarded. Don’t be too forthcoming in a first or casual meeting. Gather intelligence.

2. Be yourself. Don’t misrepresent your wishes, boundaries, preferences, priorities, and red lines.

3. Do not behave inconsistently. Do not go back on your word. Be firm and resolute.

Impossible Situations

The abuser engineers impossible, dangerous, unpredictable, unprecedented, or highly specific situations in which he is sorely needed. The abuser makes sure that his knowledge, his skills, his connections, or his traits are the only ones applicable and the most useful in the situations that he, himself, wrought. The abuser generates his own indispensability.

How to be a person of influence

How to be a person of influence

By Ozias Mucheriwa

www.motivcenter.com

When we go through life the need for rewarding relationships and influence cannot be over emphasized. People in every setting make frantic effort to be liked and attract meaningful relationships into their lives. Sometimes in a work situation employees work towards eliciting their bosses and work mates’ favor. In social settings they try to attract the admiration of highly influential people. Regrettably, more often than not, this is done in desperate and wrong ways. We still have in our societies the majority that believe in pulling others down. They want to play expert all the time while strutting in borrowed plumage. They keep up appearances and they are not themselves. You cannot be a person of influence if you follow their route. I encourage you to refuse to be part of this overwhelming majority and start observing principles that will enable you to be a person of influence thereby attracting good relationships into your life.

If you want to be liked work on yourself. The hardest part of self-development is the aspect of working on yourself. It takes a conscious decision and deliberate effort to start the development of good habits. The same applies if you want to increase your income and your level of success. Instead of expending substantial amounts of energy trying to convince others to like you, work on yourself and they will consequently like you. Mastering this great principle is a big step towards your self-improvement. You cannot change other people or directly influence them unless you first deal with yourself. The beginning of a new year offers that opportunity although many use it for a new start on the old habits. By working on yourself to develop new good habits you indirectly influence others and attract good relationships to yourself. Pull up your sleeves and begin to work on yourself.

Unlike many products where you need to purchase raw material for processing into finished products, you are the raw material that is needed to chisel out a good personality out of yourself. It is unfortunate that self-development is a duty that cannot be delegated to subordinates. You need to personally attend classes, read books, watch educational movies, listen to tapes and apply the information that you get. Make a proper application of the lessons that you learn.

The better you become the more income you attract in your life. The better and rewarding relationships you attract. Why it is important to work on yourself is this fact: In life you attract what you are and not what others are. It is unfortunate that the majority are of the opinion that they have what they have because of what was offered to them, notwithstanding they attract what they have by becoming the persons that they are. Rewarding relationships are not attracted by what you have but by who you are. It is only you that have the keys to lock or unlock the flow of rewarding relationships into your life.

To your zenith, Ozias Mucheriwa

How affairs start : Part 2

How affairs start. Part 2

( Is your relationship affair proof ?)

4. Financial Support

5. Family commitments

Will also talk in the next articles on honesty and openness; financial support; family commitments; conversation and affection in detail for the benefit of all.

While with sexual problems cause tension and unhappiness in marriages, these difficulties can be solved more easily by than one might think .In most cases it merely requires education. You will realize that the categories mentioned above may not apply equally to everyone, there could be some slight differences but these are the most common and dominant ones in most relationships. The if the needs of men and women are so different, no wonder they have difficulty adjusting them in marriage .Most of the times we fail because we are ignorant of each other’s needs.

Affairs are tempting :

Affairs are so tempting, it sounds unfair to say so, but this is the reality we have to deal with. An affair consists of two people becoming involved in an extra-marital relationship that does combine sexual lovemaking with feelings of deep love. The relationship that involves sex(usually passionate sex)and very real love threatens marriage to its very core, because two lovers experience real intimacy and it meets at least one need of the spouse outside the exclusive marital relationship. In most of the times, when the other spouse discovers the other has broken the commitment of faithfulness, the marriage is shattered. An most of the cases people are lured into this affair because of unmet needs:

a. In an affair you ignore each other’s faults.

b. You get turned on as never before.

c. You feel sure no one else could be as exciting as a sex partner as your secret new lover.

d. You and your new found lover seem to bring the best out in each other.

Starting Affairs:

Affairs usually start just as a friendship relationship. They rarely start with a stranger or somebody you don’t know. Most of the times your spouse knows your new lover, at times the lover is the husband or wife in a couple you both know and consider “best friends”. It can be a workmate, the lover, a church member or even from your spouse’s family- a sister or brother, or as I said you met at work, as painful as it sounds even your spouse’s best friend, worse even an ex girlfriend or boyfriend, a boss at work, a baby sitter at home, etc. The truth of the matter, it is always somebody close.

The pattern of how they start is almost one and the same, a close person and usually start as friends. You share problems with the other person, and they do the same in likewise. For the affair to blossom you have to see the other person very often, everyday at work or frequently through a friendship being on a committee ,board, or some other responsibility that brings the two of you together more than often. You start giving each other mutual support and encouragement as the friendship deepens especially in regard to your unmet needs. You know in life we face difficulties and many people get extremely disillusioned about their lives. And when they find someone encouraging and supportive, the attraction towards that person acts a powerful magnet. Believe you me sooner or later you find yourself in bed with your encouraging and supportive friend, even before you declare each other’s love. It just seems to “just happens” you don’t intend it, neither does your friend. Many a times the friendship that grows into an affair is not based on physical attraction, haven’t you seen this; a wife get the chance to look at his hubby`s lover and say,” How could he be interested and love her.?” Its very easy why, because the attraction is emotional. It really doesn’t matter if the other woman is overweight, plain really rather ugly. What matters is that she is able to meet an unfulfilled need. The lover in the affair gets regarded as the most caring person the wayward spouse has ever been in love with or met, and then the wife or husband reciprocates desire to acre for the lover at a depth never before experienced.

When you are caught in an affair you and your new lover, share a strong willingness to meet each other’s needs. This willingness eventually binds you into a mutual love that develops into a passionate sexual relationship. This mutual desire to bring each other happiness builds an affair into one of the most satisfying and intimate relationships either of you have ever known. As the intensity of your mutual care and passion increases, you discover yourself caught in a trap of your own making, and you lose all sense of judgment as you literally become addicted to each other in a relationship built on fantasy than reality. And what really turns you won now is not your new partner but the fantasy, as you and your lover plan where and when to meet for the passionate sessions of love making, you leave the realities of living behind. You affair may go on for a long time and the longer it goes on, the more difficult you will find to break it off.

Lastly I want to emphasize this: Many people would deny they could ever get involved in an affair, the naked truth is that, under the right ( or wrong ) conditions, any of us can fall victim, especially if our basic needs are not met. Be advised and warned that it doesn’t take something different or special to fall into an affair. On the contrary, sometimes very normal men and women get involved in one through a deceptively simple process. When your basic needs re not met, you start thinking. This isn’t right, It isn’t fair. Hey good people we all are vulnerable, so take an inventory of your relationships, basic needs and see whether your relationship/marriage is affair proof or else you will have lots of pain, tears and regrets. Remember, affection is the environment of the relationship and sex is the special event.

How affairs start : Part 2

How affairs start. Part 2

( Is your relationship affair proof ?)

4. Financial Support

5. Family commitments

Will also talk in the next articles on honesty and openness; financial support; family commitments; conversation and affection in detail for the benefit of all.

While with sexual problems cause tension and unhappiness in marriages, these difficulties can be solved more easily by than one might think .In most cases it merely requires education. You will realize that the categories mentioned above may not apply equally to everyone, there could be some slight differences but these are the most common and dominant ones in most relationships. The if the needs of men and women are so different, no wonder they have difficulty adjusting them in marriage .Most of the times we fail because we are ignorant of each other’s needs.

Affairs are tempting :

Affairs are so tempting, it sounds unfair to say so, but this is the reality we have to deal with. An affair consists of two people becoming involved in an extra-marital relationship that does combine sexual lovemaking with feelings of deep love. The relationship that involves sex(usually passionate sex)and very real love threatens marriage to its very core, because two lovers experience real intimacy and it meets at least one need of the spouse outside the exclusive marital relationship. In most of the times, when the other spouse discovers the other has broken the commitment of faithfulness, the marriage is shattered. An most of the cases people are lured into this affair because of unmet needs:

a. In an affair you ignore each other’s faults.

b. You get turned on as never before.

c. You feel sure no one else could be as exciting as a sex partner as your secret new lover.

d. You and your new found lover seem to bring the best out in each other.

Starting Affairs:

Affairs usually start just as a friendship relationship. They rarely start with a stranger or somebody you don’t know. Most of the times your spouse knows your new lover, at times the lover is the husband or wife in a couple you both know and consider “best friends”. It can be a workmate, the lover, a church member or even from your spouse’s family- a sister or brother, or as I said you met at work, as painful as it sounds even your spouse’s best friend, worse even an ex girlfriend or boyfriend, a boss at work, a baby sitter at home, etc. The truth of the matter, it is always somebody close.

The pattern of how they start is almost one and the same, a close person and usually start as friends. You share problems with the other person, and they do the same in likewise. For the affair to blossom you have to see the other person very often, everyday at work or frequently through a friendship being on a committee ,board, or some other responsibility that brings the two of you together more than often. You start giving each other mutual support and encouragement as the friendship deepens especially in regard to your unmet needs. You know in life we face difficulties and many people get extremely disillusioned about their lives. And when they find someone encouraging and supportive, the attraction towards that person acts a powerful magnet. Believe you me sooner or later you find yourself in bed with your encouraging and supportive friend, even before you declare each other’s love. It just seems to “just happens” you don’t intend it, neither does your friend. Many a times the friendship that grows into an affair is not based on physical attraction, haven’t you seen this; a wife get the chance to look at his hubby`s lover and say,” How could he be interested and love her.?” Its very easy why, because the attraction is emotional. It really doesn’t matter if the other woman is overweight, plain really rather ugly. What matters is that she is able to meet an unfulfilled need. The lover in the affair gets regarded as the most caring person the wayward spouse has ever been in love with or met, and then the wife or husband reciprocates desire to acre for the lover at a depth never before experienced.

When you are caught in an affair you and your new lover, share a strong willingness to meet each other’s needs. This willingness eventually binds you into a mutual love that develops into a passionate sexual relationship. This mutual desire to bring each other happiness builds an affair into one of the most satisfying and intimate relationships either of you have ever known. As the intensity of your mutual care and passion increases, you discover yourself caught in a trap of your own making, and you lose all sense of judgment as you literally become addicted to each other in a relationship built on fantasy than reality. And what really turns you won now is not your new partner but the fantasy, as you and your lover plan where and when to meet for the passionate sessions of love making, you leave the realities of living behind. You affair may go on for a long time and the longer it goes on, the more difficult you will find to break it off.

Lastly I want to emphasize this: Many people would deny they could ever get involved in an affair, the naked truth is that, under the right ( or wrong ) conditions, any of us can fall victim, especially if our basic needs are not met. Be advised and warned that it doesn’t take something different or special to fall into an affair. On the contrary, sometimes very normal men and women get involved in one through a deceptively simple process. When your basic needs re not met, you start thinking. This isn’t right, It isn’t fair. Hey good people we all are vulnerable, so take an inventory of your relationships, basic needs and see whether your relationship/marriage is affair proof or else you will have lots of pain, tears and regrets. Remember, affection is the environment of the relationship and sex is the special event.

How affairs start: Part 1

How affairs start. Part 1

( Is your relationship affair proof ?)

Introduction:

Whether you have just started your life together, or you are still dating or in courtship, or have had an average marriage fro a number of years, have a “ bad “ marriage, or even have had an affair, you can still build or rebuild your relationship or marriage, but only if you become aware of each other’s needs and learn to meet them.

My growing up wasn’t easy, especially on matters of the heart, they have been and are still making me. I have so many things that when I look back over my shoulder I wouldn’t want to remember them, not at all. But at the same time I can say they have and they are making me. A lot of my writings on relationships is based on my experiences, brother’s, sisters and people around me friends and workmates. The good thing is that both experience have been extremely valuable and one way or the other they have molded and are molding into to become better. Though others may not need to go through challenges to learn, but they can learn through reading such articles, and hearing from others or by just observing people’s lives.

A couple of years ago my Pastor taught on the message “brokenness”, it was and still is so refreshing to me, it has made a lasting impact on my life. So the same is on reading these articles, some of them you may not need them now, but later in life they will be just what the doctor ordered. So for now some of these articles may not be needed, but later in life, or you can make them available to someone who needs them now.

Demands of marriage and love:

It sounds pretty elementary to advise or tell people in love to become aware of each other’s needs and learn to meet them, cause you may be wondering what’s so had about doing that, but marriage is a complex relationship.

Love, marriage and relationships involve and demand more than just commitment, loyalty, honesty they actually demand your very existence, your life and focus too. Successful marriages/relationships require skill, skill in caring for the one you promised to cherish throughout life. Good intentions are not enough.

When a man and woman marry, they share high expectations, am sure we all do this. Both commit themselves to meeting certain intense and intimate needs in each others lives, on an exclusive basis. Though demanding both strive to do so and they do it with joy and excitement for a period of time. They both agree to” forsake all other” giving each other the exclusive right to meet these intimate needs. But this doesn’t mean that all needs are to be met by a spouse, though there are a few basic needs that most people strictly reserve for the marriage bonds only.

Most people expect their spouse to meet these special needs, since they have agreed not to allow anyone else to meet them. What I mean is this, when a man agrees to an exclusive relationship with his wife, he depends on her to meet his sexual need. If she fulfills this need, he finds in her a continuing source of intense pleasure, and his love grows stronger. But if his need goes unmet, quite the opposite happens. He begins to associate her with frustration, and if the frustration continues, he may decide she just doesn’t like sex and may try to make the best out of it. Though his strong needs for sex remains unfulfilled. Then that opens to options of infidelity, what ahs to be understood of most men is that most give in, others manage to make the best of it over the years. Unfortunately many do succumb to the temptation of an affair. And of recent statistics show that some women are also not able to be put up with sexual frustration they succumb also to affairs, as a result of this need not having been met, to women its several other needs not just sex, that opens doors to them to affairs.

Different needs for men and women:

It is obvious that any marriage has other sensitive, potential trouble spots besides the man’s basic need for sex. In years of writing relational articles, talking to couple’s interactions with couples, and being also a man, I have realized that there five basic needs men expect from their partners and five common basic needs women expect from their men. In my researches, reading, talking to couples` friends and workmates, the needs always surface now and then whenever you talk about relationships/marriage. Although individuals perceive their needs differently, the bottom line is that these are the most frequently discussed needs when it comes to explaining marital/relational challenges:

Five most basic needs for men:

  1. Sexual fulfillment
  2. An attractive(one who take care of her body and has sense of beauty) woman
  3. To be admired-encourages, takes note of the way he is dressed, conducts himself etc.
  4. Support domestically.
  5. Recreational companionship (one who gets involved with him ,fun, sport ectc.)

Five most basic needs for women:

  1. Affection-affection is the cement of a relationship

. affection to most women symbolizes security, protection, comfort and approval.

. When a man shows affection to his woman, he is saying to her:

I will take care of you and protect you. You are important to me, and I don’t want anything to happen to you.

. I am concerned about the problems you face, and I am with you throughout.

. I am so proud of you.

*** A hug can say any or all of the above. Men need to understand how strongly women need these affirmations, for the typical woman there can hardly be enough. Most women love to hug and being hugged, they hug their children, pets, even stuffed animals, no, no I am not saying that they will just throw themselves into the arms of any stranger. Affection can be so many things, an invitation to dinner, holding hands, walks after dinner, back rubs, phone calls, as someone once said there are a thousand times to say I LOVE YOU !.

But with most women’s point of view, affection is the essential cement of her relationship with a man. Without it a woman probably feels alienated from her mate. With it she becomes tightly bonded to him. When it comes to sex and affection you cant have one without the other !.Will write a more detailed article on men to learn how to be affectionate.

  1. Conversation
  2. Honesty and openness

How affairs start: Part 1

How affairs start. Part 1

( Is your relationship affair proof ?)

Introduction:

Whether you have just started your life together, or you are still dating or in courtship, or have had an average marriage fro a number of years, have a “ bad “ marriage, or even have had an affair, you can still build or rebuild your relationship or marriage, but only if you become aware of each other’s needs and learn to meet them.

My growing up wasn’t easy, especially on matters of the heart, they have been and are still making me. I have so many things that when I look back over my shoulder I wouldn’t want to remember them, not at all. But at the same time I can say they have and they are making me. A lot of my writings on relationships is based on my experiences, brother’s, sisters and people around me friends and workmates. The good thing is that both experience have been extremely valuable and one way or the other they have molded and are molding into to become better. Though others may not need to go through challenges to learn, but they can learn through reading such articles, and hearing from others or by just observing people’s lives.

A couple of years ago my Pastor taught on the message “brokenness”, it was and still is so refreshing to me, it has made a lasting impact on my life. So the same is on reading these articles, some of them you may not need them now, but later in life they will be just what the doctor ordered. So for now some of these articles may not be needed, but later in life, or you can make them available to someone who needs them now.

Demands of marriage and love:

It sounds pretty elementary to advise or tell people in love to become aware of each other’s needs and learn to meet them, cause you may be wondering what’s so had about doing that, but marriage is a complex relationship.

Love, marriage and relationships involve and demand more than just commitment, loyalty, honesty they actually demand your very existence, your life and focus too. Successful marriages/relationships require skill, skill in caring for the one you promised to cherish throughout life. Good intentions are not enough.

When a man and woman marry, they share high expectations, am sure we all do this. Both commit themselves to meeting certain intense and intimate needs in each others lives, on an exclusive basis. Though demanding both strive to do so and they do it with joy and excitement for a period of time. They both agree to” forsake all other” giving each other the exclusive right to meet these intimate needs. But this doesn’t mean that all needs are to be met by a spouse, though there are a few basic needs that most people strictly reserve for the marriage bonds only.

Most people expect their spouse to meet these special needs, since they have agreed not to allow anyone else to meet them. What I mean is this, when a man agrees to an exclusive relationship with his wife, he depends on her to meet his sexual need. If she fulfills this need, he finds in her a continuing source of intense pleasure, and his love grows stronger. But if his need goes unmet, quite the opposite happens. He begins to associate her with frustration, and if the frustration continues, he may decide she just doesn’t like sex and may try to make the best out of it. Though his strong needs for sex remains unfulfilled. Then that opens to options of infidelity, what ahs to be understood of most men is that most give in, others manage to make the best of it over the years. Unfortunately many do succumb to the temptation of an affair. And of recent statistics show that some women are also not able to be put up with sexual frustration they succumb also to affairs, as a result of this need not having been met, to women its several other needs not just sex, that opens doors to them to affairs.

Different needs for men and women:

It is obvious that any marriage has other sensitive, potential trouble spots besides the man’s basic need for sex. In years of writing relational articles, talking to couple’s interactions with couples, and being also a man, I have realized that there five basic needs men expect from their partners and five common basic needs women expect from their men. In my researches, reading, talking to couples` friends and workmates, the needs always surface now and then whenever you talk about relationships/marriage. Although individuals perceive their needs differently, the bottom line is that these are the most frequently discussed needs when it comes to explaining marital/relational challenges:

Five most basic needs for men:

  1. Sexual fulfillment
  2. An attractive(one who take care of her body and has sense of beauty) woman
  3. To be admired-encourages, takes note of the way he is dressed, conducts himself etc.
  4. Support domestically.
  5. Recreational companionship (one who gets involved with him ,fun, sport ectc.)

Five most basic needs for women:

  1. Affection-affection is the cement of a relationship

. affection to most women symbolizes security, protection, comfort and approval.

. When a man shows affection to his woman, he is saying to her:

I will take care of you and protect you. You are important to me, and I don’t want anything to happen to you.

. I am concerned about the problems you face, and I am with you throughout.

. I am so proud of you.

*** A hug can say any or all of the above. Men need to understand how strongly women need these affirmations, for the typical woman there can hardly be enough. Most women love to hug and being hugged, they hug their children, pets, even stuffed animals, no, no I am not saying that they will just throw themselves into the arms of any stranger. Affection can be so many things, an invitation to dinner, holding hands, walks after dinner, back rubs, phone calls, as someone once said there are a thousand times to say I LOVE YOU !.

But with most women’s point of view, affection is the essential cement of her relationship with a man. Without it a woman probably feels alienated from her mate. With it she becomes tightly bonded to him. When it comes to sex and affection you cant have one without the other !.Will write a more detailed article on men to learn how to be affectionate.

  1. Conversation
  2. Honesty and openness

Surviving an affair

Surviving an affair

By Herbert Mtowo

Introduction

Many a times people ask, whether they are married or going through courtship, they ask now and then,” How do you help people to survive an affair, “Tell me what would you really tell a couple when this actually happens to them? I am often asked this so many times in my travels and conversations with many people, black or white rich or poor. We all at one time or the other face infidelity issues of our partners, talk me good people what are your reactions and how do you handle such sensitive relationship matters?

Both men and women have different reactions to these issues, some they go nuts, to even want to kill their partner or the one they were cheating with. With men this might be very difficult to take, some may never recover and others may hurt for a very long time. Others can even begin to abuse drugs, alcohol ,withdrawn from any social activities. With women the reactions vary too, cause of how they are wired, but most women recover early from infidelity than me, not that they would not have been hurt by the cheating of their partners. But it is common knowledge that both male and female experience the same betrayal, and both feel rejected and mistreated. I am going though to dwell not on the reactions or other matters, but mainly on survival skills during this period, and how your relationship can forge ahead despite cheating. What has made infidelity such a thorn issue now is the dreaded HIV/AIDS, so we need to look at it and deal with it, amicably.

It is important to take note that people who are caught in the web of an affair need tender loving care especially the betrayed spouse. At the same time, if you discover that your spouse in an affair, do not resort to hand wringing or hysterics. If you want to save your marriage and relationship it is time to act and act decisively. The first question that you must ask yourself and be able to answer is this one:

Do you want to survive?

Be able to ask yourself if you truly want to survive the storm. Most possibly your marriage/relationship has been in serious trouble for a long time, whether or not you realized it or not. The truth is one of you or both of you had unmet basic needs, which gave the affair a chance to develop. They vary from sexual needs, financial needs, lack of affection etc you name it. Most pf the time the wronged person will be tempted to point an accusing finger and almost always prematurely and foolishly, simply wants to call the marriage/relationship quits. Are you aware that affairs start mainly because the Love bank accounts have slowly and gradually emptied without somebody checking on the love deposits. Difficult to comprehend as it seems but that’s the reality, the victim of an affair often has to ask these questions: 1. How did my account get so low in my spouse’s investment account bank? 2.What are the needs that was failing to meet ?

Don’t put up with affairs.

A lot of religious people tend to spiritualize affairs and most people feel trapped in such set ups. Affairs must be cut in our relationships, it takes you and you alone to cut affairs. You may have failed to meet certain needs for your spouse, but that doesn’t mean he (or she) is not also to blame or responsible for the extremely destructive behavior. Marriage is an exclusive relationship in which two become one and should stay one and three is a definitely a crowd.

The challenge is with most women, whereby they decide to put up with their husband’s affair, in order to stay married. I don’t buy into this theory at all, infact I am one who strongly believes love must be tough. Those who have strong religious convictions tell me; “My church doesn’t allow divorce “ “God wants us to stay married !”Yes the bible clearly teaches against divorce, I agree .I do sympathize with these view points, because they are similar to my own values and convictions. But at the same time people must understand that once an affair has begun, the marriage or relationship has already been breached. The truth is hat God had joined together some man or woman has put asunder. Yes it can be healed and restored but one must be prepared to take definitive action. I encourage and urge women a lot to take a very hard, independent line and be willing to separate from their partners temporarily until they can solve this matter and put their house in order. I tend to think most women are too soft to their partners that’s why affairs will always be tolerated. Women must be able to make it very clear to the straying partner that they will not put up with this lifestyle. Love me faithfully or go after your mistress, men must be told you cant get away with affairs. Most men don’t want to hear this, but believe you me it works.

Know what to expect in affairs.

Am sure we all know that most affairs do not lead to divorcé, they lead to reconciliation. But during the months or years that lead from an affair to reconciliation, the whole process can inflict almost unbearable pain to you. If you do prepare for what is to come you will not only suffer less, but your relationship/marriage has the chance to survive too. Sounds confusing to say this but this is the truth, the best ways to prepare yourself is to know what to expect. There are common threads in affairs, on of them is the spouse’s resistance to give up the lover. Most affairs are addictions, so one must stay from the addiction if they want to control the addictive behavior. The best way to become disentangled in an affair is to avoid all contacts with his/her lover/That’s were most struggle here, to cut ties with their lovers. Time and again, people in affairs fail to make drastic and decisive breaks with their lovers. They can go on the wagon for a while, but they inevitably they find their way back to their lover’s arms. The permanent effect of an affair cannot be ignored. The cheating spouse rarely falls out of love with the ex lover. The feelings may lie dormant, but ready to snap back as soon as they are reacquainted. The investment love account for the ex lover remains very high and vibrant because few opportunities for balance withdrawals exist. It must e noted in relationships that only unpleasant or painful experiences can withdraw love units, and most of the times it’s a proven fact that when a lover is in competition with a spouse, unpleasant experiences are deliberately avoided.

Be advised that the lover will simply never be able to take the place of a spouse, but the spouse can always take the place of the lover. Hope you remember the 80-20 principle from the movie, “Why did I get married, by Tyler Perry.?” Take time to watch the follow up version “Why did I get married too.” Profound truths in these to those I relationships .Don’t lose the 80 % you have for the 20 %,it’s a regrettable swap.

Life With an Abuser

Life with an Abuser (Batterers)

I hope these articles on abusers/batterers will be of help to many women. There is no need to endure the pain, shame, and all that one has to go through y putting up with an abuser. Women are never meant to be abused but loved, that includes men and children they are all meant to be loved and appreciated than abused. The effects and impact of abuse on an individually can be so damaging that it may take a lifetime to recover from it. With a lot of reference from Bancroft, a renowned mental health professional expert, read through and get some insight and help and have your attitude changed towards abuse. Relational Abuse is taking place in almost every country and continent on planet earth, in all races black and white and cultures and tribes all over the world. You and me can play a part in reducing the continuity of this evil in relationships, homes and marriages.

Most men need to go through anger management classes, or therapy as well as some women need to be healed, the challenge is not too big to be dealt with. To men I say we cant love and hate at the same time, we cant be kind and violent at the same time, we have to deal with our inside evils and pain to be able to love freely and wholeheartedly.

So many experts write on this subject the world over, but we seem to having more and more victims of abuse in our time than any other time in the history of mankind. Bancroft, like numerous other mental health professionals, fails to identify pathological narcissism when confronted with it. Astonishingly – and tellingly – the word "narcissism" is not mentioned even once in a very long text on abuse.

"Although a percentage of batterers have psychological problems, the majority do not. They are often thought to have low self-esteem, high insecurity, dependent personalities, or other results from childhood wounds, but in fact batterers are a cross-section of the population with respect to their emotional make-up."

PROFILE of the TYPICAL ABUSER

"The batterer is controlling; he insists on having the last word in arguments and decision-making, he may control how the family’s money is spent, and he may make rules for the victim about her movements and personal contacts, such as forbidding her to use the telephone or to see certain friends. He is manipulative; he misleads people inside and outside of the family about his abusiveness, he twists arguments around to make other people feel at fault, and he turns into a sweet, sensitive person for extended periods of time when he feels that it is in his best interest to do so. His public image usually contrasts sharply with the private reality.

He is entitled; he considers himself to have special rights and privileges not applicable to other family members. He believes that his needs should be at the center of the family’s agenda, and that everyone should focus on keeping him happy. He typically believes that it is his sole prerogative to determine when and how sexual relations will take place, and denies his partner the right to refuse (or to initiate) sex. He usually believes that housework and childcare should be done for him, and that any contributions he makes to those efforts should earn him special appreciation and deference. He is highly demanding. He is disrespectful; he considers his partner less competent, sensitive, and intelligent than he is, often treating her as though she were an inanimate object. He communicates his sense of superiority around the house in various ways.

The unifying principle is his attitude of ownership. The batterer believes that once you are in a committed relationship with him, you belong to him. This possessiveness in batterers is the reason why killings of battered women so commonly happen when victims are attempting to leave the relationship; a batterer does not believe that his partner has the right to end a relationship until he is ready to end it. Because of the distorted perceptions that the abuser has of rights and responsibilities in relationships, he considers himself to be the victim. Acts of self-defense on the part of the battered woman or the children, or efforts they make to stand up for their rights, he defines as aggression against him. He is often highly skilled at twisting his descriptions of events to create the convincing impression that he has been victimized. He thus accumulates grievances over the course of the relationship to the same extent that the victim does, which can lead professionals to decide that the members of the couple "abuse each other" and that the relationship has been ‘mutually hurtful."

CONTROL is the root cause of violence..

Control is the root cause of violence, those who violently behave and cause harm and injustice, first control their victims before they can abuse them. You cant put up with a control freak forever, God never intended any human being to control others. Not that violence is not bad, it sure is, but we must be able to deal with the root cause which is control, before we can be able to deal with violence properly.

"A significant proportion of batterers required to attend counseling because of a criminal conviction have been violent only one to five times in the history of their relationship, even by the victim’s account. Nonetheless, the victims in these cases report that the violence has had serious effects on them and on their children, and that the accompanying pattern of controlling and disrespectful behaviors are serving to deny the rights of family members and are causing trauma.

Thus the nature of the pattern of cruelty, intimidation, and manipulation is the crucial factor in evaluating the level of abuse, not just the intensity and frequency of physical violence. In my decade of working with abusers, involving over a thousand cases, I have almost never encountered a client whose violence was not accompanied by a pattern of psychological abusiveness." "An abuser’s desire for control often intensifies as he senses the relationship slipping away from him. He tends to focus on the debt he feels his victim owes him, and his outrage at her growing independence."

RIGHT vs. NEED

"Most batterers do not have an inordinate need for control, but rather feel an inordinate right to control under family and partnership circumstances."

But the distinction Bancroft makes between "need" and "right" is spurious. If you think that you have the right to something, you concomitantly feel the need to have your right asserted, accepted, and enforced. If someone violates your rights, you get frustrated and angry because your need to have your rights respected and enforced hasn’t been met.

I also strongly disagree with Bancroft – as does a huge volume of research – that control freakily can be limited to home. A control freak is a control freak everywhere! Control freakily, though, manifests in a myriad ways. Obsessing, acting compulsively, and being overly inquisitive, for instance, are all forms of exerting control. We have control freaks at work, in the church wherever there are people control freaks will always want to dominate. Sometimes controlling behavior is very difficult to identify: a smothering or dotting mother, a "friend" who keeps "guiding" you, a neighbor who compulsively takes out your garbage … This is exactly what stalkers do. They cannot get someone to commit to a relationship (real or delusional). They then proceed to "control" the unwilling partner by harassing, threatening and invading his or her life. From the outside, it is often impossible to identify many of these behaviors as abusive control..

NURTURE vs. CULTURE

Bancroft observes that "…battering behavior is mostly driven by culture rather than by individual psychology." Though I strongly believe that both culture, society and psychology play an important part to abuse/violence against women, children and men or workmates. "The abuser may be functional or dysfunctional, a pillar of society, or a peripatetic con-artist, rich or poor, young or old. There is no universally-applicable profile of the "typical abuser". "Abuse and violence cross geographical and cultural boundaries and social and economic strata. It is common among the rich and the poor, the well-educated and the less so, the young and the middle-aged, city dwellers and rural folk. It is a universal phenomenon."

Still, it is wrong to attribute abusive behavior exclusively to one set of parameters (psychology), or to another (culture-society). The mixture does it. Lundy Bancroft on batterers, David Hare on the subject of psychopath (and, modesty notwithstanding, others on pathological narcissism) represent a breed of mavericks, rejected by the "experts" and "professionals" in their fields. But they are both, to my mind, authorities. Their experience is invaluable. Whether they are good at constructing theories and generalizing their experience is a different matter altogether. Their contribution is mainly phenomenological, not theoretical. There has never been anytime that you and me can stand up against abuse, gender based violence, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse than now. We must stand up, speak against these and other evils on abuse that can negatively shape future generations. The need to respect human life is never debatable. Read 1 Corinthians 13,and understand what Love is.

Unmasking Abuse

Most abusers are men. Still, some are women. We use the masculine and feminine adjectives and pronouns (‘he", his", "him", "she", her") to designate both sexes: male and female as the case may be.

It takes two to tango – and an equal number to sustain a long-term abusive relationship. The abuser and the abused form a bond, a dynamic, and a dependence. Expressions such as "folie a deux" and the "Stockholm Syndrome" capture facets – two of a myriad – of this danse macabre. It often ends fatally. It is always an excruciatingly painful affair.

Abuse is closely correlated with alcoholism, drug consumption, intimate-partner homicide, teen pregnancy, infant and child mortality, spontaneous abortion, reckless behaviours, suicide, and the onset of mental health disorders. It doesn’t help that society refuses to openly and frankly tackle this pernicious phenomenon and the guilt and shame associated with it.

People – overwhelmingly women – remain in an abusive household for a variety of reasons: economic, parental (to protect the children), and psychological. But the objective obstacles facing the battered spouse cannot be overstated.

The abuser treats his spouse as an object, an extension of himself, devoid of a separate existence and denuded of distinct needs. Thus, typically, the couple’s assets are on his name – from real estate to medical insurance policies. The victim has no family or friends because her abusive partner or husband frowns on her initial independence and regards it as a threat. By intimidating, cajoling, charming, and making false promises, the abuser isolates his prey from the rest of society and, thus, makes her dependence on him total. She is often also denied the option to study and acquire marketable skills or augment them.

Abandoning the abusive spouse frequently leads to a prolonged period of destitution and peregrination. Custody is usually denied to parents without a permanent address, a job, income security, and, therefore, stability. Thus, the victim stands to lose not only her mate and nest – but also her off-spring. There is the added menace of violent retribution by the abuser or his proxies – coupled with emphatic contrition on his part and a protracted and irresistible "charm offensive

Gradually, she is convinced to put up with her spouse’s cruelty in order to avoid this harrowing predicament.

But there is more to an abusive dyad than mere pecuniary convenience. The abuser – stealthily but unfailingly – exploits the vulnerabilities in the psychological makeup of his victim. The abused party may have low self-esteem, a fluctuating sense of self-worth, primitive defence mechanisms, phobias, mental health problems, a disability, a history of failure, or a tendency to blame herself, or to feel inadequate (autoplastic neurosis). She may have come from an abusive family or environment – which conditioned her to expect abuse as inevitable and "normal". In extreme and rare cases – the victim is a masochist, possessed of an urge to seek ill-treatment and pain.

The abuser may be functional or dysfunctional, a pillar of society, or a peripatetic con-artist, rich or poor, young or old. There is no universally-applicable profile of the "typical abuser". Yet, abusive behaviour often indicates serious underlying psychopathologies. Absent empathy, the abuser perceives the abused spouse only dimly and partly, as one would an inanimate source of frustration. The abuser, in his mind, interacts only with himself and with "introjects" – representations of outside objects, such as his victims

To embark on our exploration of the abusive mind, we first need to agree on a taxonomy of abusive behaviors. Methodically observing abuse is the surest way of getting to know the perpetrators.

Abusers appear to be suffering from dissociation (multiple personality). At home, they are intimidating and suffocating monsters – outdoors, they are wonderful, caring, giving, and much-admired pillars of the community. Why this duplicity?

It is only partly premeditated and intended to disguise the abuser’s acts. More importantly, it reflects his inner world, where the victims are nothing but two-dimensional representations, objects, devoid of emotions and needs, or mere extensions of his self. Thus, to the abuser’s mind, his quarries do not merit humane treatment, nor do they evoke empathy.

Typically, the abuser succeeds to convert the abused into his worldview. The victim – and his victimizers – don’t realize that something is wrong with the relationship. This denial is common and all-pervasive. It permeates other spheres of the abuser’s life as well. Such people are often narcissists – steeped in grandiose fantasies, divorced from reality, besotted with their False Self, consumed by feelings of omnipotence, omniscience, entitlement, and paranoia.

Contrary to stereotypes, both the abuser and his prey usually suffer from disturbances in the regulation of their sense of self-worth. Low self-esteem and lack of self-confidence render the abuser – and his confabulated self – vulnerable to criticism, disagreement, exposure, and adversity – real or imagined.

Abuse is bred by fear – fear of being mocked or betrayed, emotional insecurity, anxiety, panic, and apprehension. It is a last ditch effort to exert control – for instance, over one’s spouse – by "annexing" her, "possessing" her, and "punishing" her for being a separate entity, with her own boundaries, needs, feelings, preferences, and dreams.

In her seminal tome, "The Verbally Abusive Relationship", Patricia Evans lists the various forms of manipulation which together constitute verbal and emotional (psychological) abuse:

Withholding (the silent treatment), countering (refuting or invalidating the spouse’s statements or actions), discounting (putting down her emotions, possessions, experiences, hopes, and fears), sadistic and brutal humor, blocking (avoiding a meaningful exchange, diverting the conversation, changing the subject), blaming and accusing, judging and criticizing, undermining and sabotaging, threatening, name calling, forgetting and denying, ordering around, denial, and abusive anger.

To these we can add:

Wounding "honesty", ignoring, smothering, dotting, unrealistic expectations, invasion of privacy, tactlessness, sexual abuse, physical maltreatment, humiliating, shaming, insinuating, lying, exploiting, devaluing and discarding, being unpredictable, reacting disproportionately, dehumanizing, objectifying, abusing confidence and intimate information, engineering impossible situations, control by proxy and ambient abuse.

his comprehensive essay, "Understanding the Batterer in Custody and Visitation Disputes", Lundy Bancroft observes:

"Because of the distorted perceptions that the abuser has of rights and responsibilities in relationships, he considers himself to be the victim. Acts of self-defense on the part of the battered woman or the children, or efforts they make to stand up for their rights, he defines as aggression AGAINST him. He is often highly skilled at twisting his descriptions of events to create the convincing impression that he has been victimized. He thus accumulates grievances over the course of the relationship to the same extent that the victim does, which can lead professionals to decide that the members of the couple ‘abuse each other’ and that the relationship has been ‘mutually hurtful’."

Yet, whatever the form of ill-treatment and cruelty – the structure of the interaction and the roles played by abuser and victim are the same. Identifying these patterns – and how they are influenced by prevailing social and cultural mores, values, and beliefs – is a first and indispensable step towards recognizing abuse, coping with it, and ameliorating its inevitable and excruciatingly agonizing aftermath.