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AIBU to think that I must just naturally attract abusers? [Edited by MNHQ]

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MNHQ have commented on this thread.

nananoon Sun 10-Mar-19 07:34:31

I'm in my late 20s, single with one child.

Partner number 1: lovely for a year, then spent 3 years angry, abusive, violent towards me. Punched the wall next to my head, screamed at me, slept with my friend (I caught them in bed together) all whilst I was the most attentive, kind girlfriend.

Partner number 2: visited escorts repeatedly behind my back, used drugs on nights out and would come home demanding sex, had an addiction to pornography, used to masturbate in bed next to me every morning.

Partner 3: turns out was using steroids, slept with his clients behind my back, all unknown to me.

Partner 4: angry, aggressive, has temper problems, emotionally abusive.

You might think that I must have something wrong with me, but I'm a very normal, very kind compassionate person. I'm not thick, I have 3 university degrees and have a professional job. I'm a good mother, I adore my family, I volunteer with the homeless. I'm generally a nice kind person. None of that is a boast, I just want people to see I'm not an arsehole that deserves these kind of men.

They all seem lovely to start, but then end up abusing me or mistreating me. So AIBU to think that as well as these men having something wrong with them, that I must have something wrong with me too? A sign on my forehead maybe? I'm a single mum to a 6th month old, I'm absolutely desperate to know what it's like to be in a loving relationship...

ColeHawlins Sun 10-Mar-19 07:37:15

Woah. That's a lot. Try long term counselling (not CBT)?

(That thread title isn't great, BTW.)

nananoon Sun 10-Mar-19 07:39:31

@ColeHawlins sorry, I didn't mean it to be offensive. I'm talking about myself. It's all become so normal for me. I can report and ask for it to be changed.

Iggly Sun 10-Mar-19 07:39:37

Maybe there’s something in your childhood that means you are attracted to certain men.

It isn’t your fault. I would get counselling

And change the thread title.

GroatGruff Sun 10-Mar-19 07:40:47

It sounds like you've been through a lot OP. I've heard the freedom programme recommended - might be worth a look?

I don't think it's that certain women attract abusers, it's that they don't filter them out. They miss, or ignore, red flags which make others run.

Qsandmore Sun 10-Mar-19 07:41:24

I wouldn’t disagree with you. And I don’t have an issue with the thread title.

Fiveredbricks Sun 10-Mar-19 07:41:43

You need to get counselling to help with your 'attachment style'. People repeat the same cycles because of the one they formed as a child. Read up on it and you can help break the cycle by recognising the path you're going down before you get too far down it. You're not 'attracting' them as such but both will have codependent traits where one feeds off another and vice versa.

nananoon Sun 10-Mar-19 07:42:01

I've reported the thread title as I don't want to cause offence.

BikeTart Sun 10-Mar-19 07:43:13

Are you still with partner number 4?

TapasForTwo Sun 10-Mar-19 07:43:39

I don't think they attract abusers, but I think some women with low self esteem put up with bad behaviour from their partners for too long. Many women just wouldn't tolerate any kind of abusive behaviour and would just end the relationship at the first sign of it. So I think it is mainly down to how they deal with it.

nananoon Sun 10-Mar-19 07:44:00

No, I left him a month ago. Hardest thing I ever did because I was so scared of him but I had to protect my son.

BikeTart Sun 10-Mar-19 07:45:04

Ah sorry, didn't properly read the last bit of your post, OP.

What are you hoping for from your thread?

Flyingfish2019 Sun 10-Mar-19 07:45:32

Well done for leaving him to protect your DS.

Polarbearflavour Sun 10-Mar-19 07:45:44

I do get annoyed when the default response is get counselling.

Unless the OP can afford private therapy, the NHS waiting list is really long, that’s if her local area even offers it!

TapasForTwo Sun 10-Mar-19 07:45:54

How long do you spend getting to know them before you move in together?

ColeHawlins Sun 10-Mar-19 07:46:19

No problem OP, I was just saying.

* Maybe there’s something in your childhood that means you are attracted to certain men.*

I would think there's often something in this. Something that's set your expectations and boundaries askew.

But if you don't know what it is, you'll probably need help to figure it outs. It's tricky to commit to therapy with a small baby, though, I realise.

mistermagpie Sun 10-Mar-19 07:46:32

I work with a service a gives support to victims of domestic abuse. Seeing the same woman return for support with multiple abusive partners is actually quite common. I think it's more that these types of men tend to prey on women who are vulnerable, and who is more vulnerable than a woman who has just left an abusive relationship? It's more them than it is you.

That said, it does sound like you have no clue what a normal, loving relationship looks like (not your fault), so probably miss a lot of 'red flags' early in the relationship. Again, not your fault but it might explain something about it.

RiddleyW Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:06

Have you read about the shark cage metaphor?

www.psychotherapy.com.au/fileadmin/site_files/pdfs/SharkCage.pdf

Oakenbeach Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:28

I’m sorry you’ve had such shit partners... Thr fact you stayed with your first partner for three years after the abuse started, whilst remaining kind and attentive throughout this time, implies you’re passive, non-confrontational and lacking in confidence... I think abusive people pick up on this - that could be the reason you attract such men.

Siameasy Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:31

I think you should take a break from men and seek counselling.
There are several ways of looking at it. Are you unconsciously attracted to these sorts of men? The counselling will help you break the cycle and understand why.

Yes I do believe that these abusive men do seem to prey on women who have been abused before. It’s like they know. You’re not an arsehole but it sounds like you’re caught in a negative cycle and making bad choices but with help you can break free of it.

nananoon Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:31

@BikeTart advice? Someone to tell me I'm not the only one and that I'm not a fool? Help understanding maybe? I'm not sure. I need comfort and to know that I can meet someone kind but I for some reason feel like no normal nice man would go for me. That I'm kinda destined to be with an abusive man as it's all I've ever known.

JenniferJareau Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:40

then spent 3 years angry, abusive, violent towards me.

I don’t think you 'attract' abusers but at the first signs of abuse, many other women would have walked away. I would suggest counselling to help you identify why you stayed in that relationship (I am assuming you could have left it) and those other relationships.

ColeHawlins Sun 10-Mar-19 07:47:57

Do you know about the freedom programme online?

ColeHawlins Sun 10-Mar-19 07:48:38

https://www.freedomprogramme.co.uk/online.php

DecumusScotti Sun 10-Mar-19 07:48:51

I second the Freedom Program. It’s supposed to be excellent, is free, and can be done online.

www.freedomprogramme.co.uk

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