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to find the martyr level here surprising?

93 replies

achieve6 · 10/08/2015 11:58

I love MN but I'm honestly shocked at posts saying things like

  1. I do (insert list of 100 items) for him but he does nothing for me, what should I do

  2. I am being taken advantage of financially but want to buy a magic wand rather than sort it out or leave

    I might need a break from MN already. I think my blood pressure is going up. I don't know women like this in real life. The odd one in my 20s...but not now. Maybe because I don't have the tolerance.
OP posts:
Redshoes55 · 10/08/2015 12:03

There are lots of vulnerable people in the big wide world op. Both sexes but obviously mumsnet tends to attract women posters.

I agree some of the posts make me want to scream 'leave the bastard' but things arnt that easy with mortgages, kids etc. Life can get complicated and anyone can find themselves in circumstances they wouldn't dream of a few years ago.

When people say 'I would never put up with that crap' it usually means they havnt had to face it in RL.

Redshoes55 · 10/08/2015 12:04

And I think the term martyr is harsh.

TenForward82 · 10/08/2015 12:11

Going to the more extreme end of the 'dysfunctional relationships' scale, I was speculating about the causes for this yesterday with my DH. Why do so many women marry men that are awful?

My mum grew up in an abusive household - she taught me never NEVER to put up with anything like that. It's know I'm lucky to have such a strong mum. But domestic violence awareness is everywhere today, and there's so much help available (I had a friend who got away from her abusive controlling husband - and she had 3 young kids at the time. If she could do it, anyone could). It frustrates me.

CharleyDavidson · 10/08/2015 12:11

I do know someone who was like this in rl. She was a sahm who did everything. Her 'D'h never lifted a finger, not even to make her a cup of tea. He expected the house spotless at all times and she had no money of her own apart from if he deigned to hand her some money if he was doing well. He was an Arthur Daley type who ponced around naming very little as an artist, antiques dealer and occasional forger. I wouldn't have minded, but he had lean times which meant their cupboard was bare and through one winter there was no money for gas, so no heating.

We did what we could to help but she was embarrassed and he was super - proud.

Then one day he was physically violent and with the help of friends she was able to dig deep and kick him out.

MrsGentlyBenevolent · 10/08/2015 12:13

I think there's a large difference between those who have a severe case of being a 'martyr', and those in abusive relationships (but cannot see it for a variant of reasons). Seen plenty of both types on here.

LazyLouLou · 10/08/2015 12:13

I now what you mean.

In your 20s you do find yourself in situations you dearly wish you'd had the sense to stay out of. But you learn from them and keep your finders crossed you manage to avoid them in the future.

Then you get to about 30/40/50 and think 'hang on a minute... what happened there?'. Then you are supposed to use your previous experience to help you get it sorted.

It is really hard to do, that is obvious. But I do see what you mean on some posts. OP says 'Is he being U?' unanimous opinion is yes, but OP cannot get her head around it and defends her man like a lioness.

Admirable in the movies, perhaps. But it can get tiresome here. And yes, I do find myself muttering pity party/martyrs/fgs get a move on sometimes.

It does help to bear in mind that the posters may well be exaggerating sometimes, just venting their frustrations. Other times they may well be utterly trapped and only just feeling able to do something about it.

And when that doesn't work, I go out and talk to real people. And I get to talk about their real problems Smile

AuntyMag10 · 10/08/2015 12:14

Yanbu, I think the same but remember that not everyone grew up in homes where healthy relationships were modeled to them. Some just continue the cycle, think it's the norm and there are some who just want to do it.

achieve6 · 10/08/2015 12:14

I used those two examples because I'm not referencing the posters who are vulnerable for whatever reason.

It is shocking to me to see that they are perfectly financially able to leave, not ill and dependent on the man in some way and still behave like this.

I could rethink my definition of "vulnerable" but ultimately, adults make choices. Keep making someone's dinner when they never cook yours - hardly a surprise when things don't turn out well is it?

OP posts:
mrsdavidbowie · 10/08/2015 12:16

There are also the " mummy martyrs" who would never leave their child for a nano second, even with the child's father.

TenForward82 · 10/08/2015 12:19

My best mate is like this, her man is a layabout POS, no job, won't tidy or cook, belittles her, flits from one project to the next. She still won't leave him because she's scared of "being alone" even though she's got a queue round the block of men of who'd love her.

EponasWildDaughter · 10/08/2015 12:21

RedShoes said Life can get complicated and anyone can find themselves in circumstances they wouldn't dream of a few years ago. When people say 'I would never put up with that crap' it usually means they havnt had to face it in RL.

And i agree with this.

No one here is asking YOU to sort their problems out OP. I'm glad you'll never be the one struggling as you can see the world with such clarity. It must be almost blinding.

It can take time and patience to support a person out of a shitty situation. Martyr is a horrible word to use.

achieve6 · 10/08/2015 12:25

mrsdavidbowie "There are also the " mummy martyrs" who would never leave their child for a nano second, even with the child's father."

also don't know of these IRL, thank goodness. that must be bizarre.

I used to be on another website that was mostly women and the type of thing that pops up often here used to crop up very occasionally.

OP posts:
Heels99 · 10/08/2015 12:25

There is a thread on relationships currently where a woman bought a £25k kitchen as her new partner moved in and doesn't like hers, she borrowed the money from him and has to pay it back!

MesservyMiles · 10/08/2015 12:26

I guess lots of people just cant get out of the sort of situations you mention - maybe nowhere to go, no money to escape, abusive/intolerant partners, etc. I'm not shocked by those kinds of posts, but feel sorry and frustrated for those involved.
I divorced my first husband for things like that, but then I'm financially independent, and a very strong and determined (bloody-minded!) person. Also my sister is a lawyer, and she advised me about what I could do!

grapejuicerocks · 10/08/2015 12:28

I suppose it's because things happen so gradually, they get sucked in. Or because they know no different if that is how they were brought up.

It's very sad that so many people think it is normal to be treated this way.
I'm not sure martyr is always the right word. For some the word is normality.

Pandora37 · 10/08/2015 12:29

I used to think the same thing. What's wrong with these people? Why don't they just leave?!

Then I got into an abusive relationship. Not physically but emotionally and sexually, to an extent. Something I thought I'd never put up with. Yet I did. Why? That's very hard to answer. We weren't married, didn't have children so I had no excuse. I've posted a bit about this on the relationships board but there were many reasons. A lot of abusive relationships are co-dependant. Abusive people are very good at manipulating others. Everything was always my fault. He was always the victim. I was constantly questioning myself. Fear of what he'd do if I left. Pressure from family to stay with him. Not recognising what he was doing was abuse as it was so subtle. Thinking he couldn't be really abusive because he had so many nice qualities. I felt loved with him most of the time. Maybe this is just what relationships are like? Telling myself what he did wasn't really sexual or emotional abuse, it was just a misunderstanding because otherwise I'd have to face up to it. I was too ashamed to accept that because I'm a feminist, surely I should know better? He had a very good way of making me feel guilty for everything. Even when we split up, I still went back to him a few times.

It's very easy to say oh there's loads of domestic abuse awareness. I've had domestic abuse training as part of my job. I still ended up in that situation. Because I didn't recognise it as abuse. A lot of women don't. Plus, it's also very easy to say, oh just leave. That's actually the most dangerous time for women - men are more likely to stalk them, turn violent, even murder. I had threats of violence, not against myself but against a male friend of mine. I didn't want to be responsible for someone else getting hurt so I stayed. That's why so many end up going back. Obviously pregnancy is another one. Nobody wants to be homeless and pregnant.

I do hate this kind of attitude. You could easily say the same about sexual abuse or rape victims. Why don't they tell someone? Why don't they fight back etc. etc. Shock plays a large part and I think the same is true in abuse situations. You might sit there and think it would never happen to me, I'm too strong, I was brought up by a feminist mother. So was I. She still thought the sun shone out of my ex's arse and tried to persuade me to stay with him. It can happen to anybody, regardless of intelligence or mental strength.

MintJulip · 10/08/2015 12:29

I know what you mean Achieve but I also used be the martyr but didn't realise it. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. I thought the things I did were what I had to do, even though it made me feel utterly miserable, put upon, worthless.

Its a process we go through and this is why MN is so useful, as you get so many opinions from such a variety of people - one sentence is usually all it takes to un lock that blindness we have. Poeple can write reams but one sentance somewhere hopefully resonates with the op, and gives that small grip to get climbing out of the issues.

Sadly I did not have MN when had my own in law issues, wish I had.

achieve6 · 10/08/2015 12:30

Miles - maybe I should have been clearer but I'm not talking about those who can't. I'm talking of those who have no exit barriers, no financial vulnerability.

that's why i used those two examples. I'm not surprised by people who are nervous of a violent partner, of course they're terrified. But that is not what has surprised me here.

OP posts:
Sometimesjustonesecond · 10/08/2015 12:30

I agree OP. There are people being walked all over by partners/ILs/'friends'/neighbours and they seem utterly unable to say no to any demand, no matter how unreasonable. Some people must enjoy being doormats because they are so good at it!

achieve6 · 10/08/2015 12:33

MintJulip "Its a process we go through and this is why MN is so useful,"

that's why I posted on those threads initially but now I think it's not worth it. They're going to ignore the advice they asked for.

I also think I've seen some repeats under different names, esp with regards to finances.

OP posts:
WorraLiberty · 10/08/2015 12:33

I get that it's frustrating to read that sort of thing OP

But I think threads like this are probably more likely to silence those women, so then they don't end up getting the help/advice they need.

So you don't know women like that in RL - so what?

I agree, you probably do need a break from MN if these women are bothering you so much, that you felt the need to start this thread.

Theycallmemellowjello · 10/08/2015 12:34

I don't think using the word martyr is helpful. Yes there are a disproportionate number of people who are being taken advantage of posting. But given that it's site where people post their problems, it's obviously going to attract people who have problems in the first place. And yes, of course, many people would never allow themselves to be taken advantage of, but again, it's obviously the people who have allowed this, for whatever reason (often because they are in some way vulnerable) who need advice on how not to let it happen. If you don't feel comfortable giving advice on that, fair enough. But don't berate people who need it most. And it's not exactly a surprise that it's the people who need help who are reaching out for help!

MintJulip · 10/08/2015 12:35

Things dont happen over night - people mull over things.

sometimes though the op wants a pat on the back for being so sweet and lovely and to carry on as before - rather than recongise whats actually happening, but I had seen too many wonderful out comes - esp in some longer sagas where op has come through to stick up for themselves.

Owllady · 10/08/2015 12:36

Labelling people-other women-in turmoil, martyrs is very unfeeling, lacking in imagination and rather immature.sorry.

Sometimes stuff is outside of our own life experiences but it goes a long way to try and understand how and why, otherwise you always view life in a 2 dimensional light and life isn't 2 dimensional.

Sparklingbrook · 10/08/2015 12:36

Hide Relationships topic. It will mostly disappear.

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