I remember the very first time I was ever told "why that's emotional abuse!"
I thought, "well yea, but at least I'm not beaten or starved."
Though I've often wished I had been. A black eye seems preferable to a broken heart, although that's easy for me to say having only suffered such superficial injuries at the hands of those I've loved so few times in my life. Still, it seems as though at least the scars may not have been so very deep.
I suppose it's really no different when you think about it. Somehow a child who is beaten always feels as though it were deserved, by some fault or flaw of his own and somehow the women always go back because at least he tells them he loves them the next day.
And all of it leads to the same type of bullshit — accepting that way of life simply because it is familiar, and so somehow even the pain is comforting because at least it is something you know. Often it results in a vicious cycle as the abused become the abusers. I have tried so desperately to escape that cycle, tried to shield my boy from those who would subject him to such and tried to explain why Mommy tries so hard. Nevertheless, I feel as though I have failed.
I struggle not to let it define me, but we are, after all, the sum of our experiences and our perception of the world is so often blurred by the memory of tears long since shed.