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Domestic abuse stemming from parental dysfunction/neglect

(2 Posts)
awana Mon 06-May-13 14:02:57

Hi all,

When i posted a while ago about the domestic abuse I was experiencing, a lot of you mentioned that victims of DV often end up there due to parental dysfunction/neglect.

I'm still having not great time with ex, and also my mum continues to be really awful and unsupportive towards me (although she is ok with my son). It's got to the point where I no longer want to see her as the abuse is so bad. In fact, my relationship with her is far more upsetting to me now than with the ex. At least with him it's over.

Having been in TWO DV relationships now, I'm thinking of not ever having one again! One was openly violent, and emotionally scary, the latest one has been the worst - emotional and later physically abusive in an insidious and undermining way.

Although I'm getting counselling and support from the local DV group, they haven't mentioned anything about the connection between domestic abuse and parental dysfunction/neglect. What are your thoughts on it? Any advice?

Is it cos i'm such damaged goods that abusers can see me a mile off? How can I protect myself from these sorts of people?

Any advice would be great! thanks all

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 06-May-13 14:11:14

Parental neglect and dysfunction can leave some people (not all) as 'people pleasers' who are so anxious for affection/attention and so lacking in self-esteem, that they can overlook the small, initial 'red flag' traits that others might find alarming enough to reject. Abusers can't 'see you a mile off'. Please read this article which has a good explanation, I think for what you are describing.

"If you've experienced multiple-victimization, please understand this: The problem is not that you attract only resentful, angry, or abusive suitors; it's that, by and large, you have not been receptive to the gentler, more respectful men you also attract. This is not due to your temperament or personality; it's a normal defensive reaction. After you've been hurt, of course you'll put up subtle barriers for self-protection. Non-abusive men will recognize and respect those barriers. For example, suppose that you work with someone who's attracted to you. But he senses that you're uncomfortable with his small gestures for more closeness. He will naturally back off and give you time to heal, or he'll settle for a non-romantic friendship. But a man who is likely to mistreat you will either not recognize your barriers or completely disregard them. He will continue to hit on you, until he breaks down the protective walls that surround your hungry heart."

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