The short way to sum up this entire entry is with a very simple, concise line. *ahem*
“NO HE WON’T!! OPEN YOUR EYES!!” … *clear throat and fixes tie*
Allow me to elaborate.
It’s a story heard and told a thousand times from thousands of people. I’m going to write this in the tense of the female being the victim because although it is not as uncommon as you think for the male to be the abused in a relationship I don’t want to be flipping to and from genders here, it’ll get confusing.
There is a group of people who just love going for the bad boy. They usually live a life pretty straight and narrow and it’s a refreshing deviation, or they just feel like they can fix him and it becomes a pet project. Sometimes the guy actually starts off as sweet and caring until he’s sure his position is secure then subconsciously he realizes he doesn’t need to be that guy anymore and slowly it drifts away and his true nature comes out.
There are so many scenarios that I can list to explain how these things start but realistically the end result is always the same. Misery.
This doesn’t really make any sense though, some of you ponder “If someone is being mistreated in a relationship, why do they stay with it?” It’s really a position that you can’t truly understand unless you’ve been put in it. I have not been physically or mentally abused in any of my relationships personally so I cannot speak from first hand experience, however I have been primary counsel to a number of friends that found themselves in this purgatory, all of varying degrees.
One friend cannot really be herself in public. Anytime they leave the house as a couple it looks more like a master/pet relationship then a loving one. Her eyes always downward, she’s quiet and appears to be slightly afraid to make the corny cheesy jokes she used to make when we hung out. The relationship is not dangerous at the moment because she doesn’t normally deviate from what he expects. If she has to be at a certain place at a certain time instead of dealing with the fight that will occur if she doesn’t make it, she just tries to stay within his expectations. Not so much out of fear, but more of out of a desire to sidestep a later headache.
She doesn’t see this is a type of manipulation in and of itself, but I know her well enough to know that one day she’ll have enough and when that happens she’ll be fine. Hopefully that’ll involve her moving back to Newfoundland. 🙂
Why does she do it? Because She Loves Him.
I had another friend that, well she wasn’t really a friend. In fact she was a complete stranger. However this is the girl who started me on my path to understanding the abusive relationship. Her name was Kelly, and my first introduction to her was at a restaurant. She was with her boyfriend and another couple and said something he deemed out of line and gave her a smack in the middle of the restaurant.
Long story short the guy got one more smack on her but the third attempt was met by me pulling him out of the booth and getting into a fight. She came to me after afraid to go back to them because of what he’ll do so she asked if she could come with me and my friend.
That woman put me on the path to the man I will eventually become. The first time in my life I felt pride in anything I did. Through talking to her about her situation I developed a bit of an understanding. People in this situation have a hard time distinguishing between Love and Co-Dependence. She believed that she was madly in love with this guy and because of that the licks she had to take from the back of his hand was just the natural price you must pay to be with the one you love.
Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Well not to some.
The next example I’m going to give is one of the hardest to write. She was fairly older than myself and was involved in a relationship with a guy that drank. When he drank he got violent and he would beat her over the dumbest reasons. One night he beat her so bad that the neighbours heard her screams and called the cops.
She denied him any guilt in the matter, told the cops she deserved it and begged them not to take him away but it was too late. They walked in with him mounted on top of her swinging at her face.
Without her support in locking him up the guy was back at home a mere few months later. He promised her he’d change, he’d go to AA he would do anger management… she believed it. Of course she would.. “he loved her” so of course he would fix everything and be with her.
It was nice, they seemed pretty well-adjusted for a week or two until a staff party she took him too resulted in him punching out one of her co-workers, and getting her “disciplined” when she got home be being too flirty. She was much better at hiding it now though.. so was he. No more bruises in visible places and god help her if she exposed herself.
Then she got pregnant. Her friends all thought it was a grand thing. They were such a normal couple these days. They were living in BC at the time, new life, living the dream.
I believe the kid was almost 2 old when the daddy got drunk and beat mommy in front of him. Of course opting the 1-year-old to start crying which Mr. Man couldn’t deal with at the time. He went into his sons room and shoved him telling him to basically shut the hell up, the kids head hit the wooden frame and died.
Finally she got her wake up call. She finally saw what her ignorance had cost her. She was ‘so in love” and he was “going to change” for so long that it took the death of her first son to realize that it was never going to happen.
This friend now lives with her parents in Halifax, and although this was a number of years ago she is a complete empty shell. The last I heard she lives a reclusive life never leaving the house whenever possible. She still cries herself to sleep. No amount of antidepressants will be able to bring back her son. But what she did, she did for “love”
I hesitate to share this story, but I did actually send an e-mail to her parents to make sure it was okay. It’s also why I didn’t use any names. But, I think stories like this need to be shared, there are too many people falling into these traps. and the mentality of “He Will Change!” is very dangerous.
It’s easy to point and laugh and snicker at “that stupid girl should know better”.. but no one laughs when the real damage is done. The point is that sometimes No they just don’t actually know any better. These people legitimately believe that there significant other will actually change.
The problem is… it is impossible.
I myself have changed since my first relationship, I have learned and there are mistakes that I don’t think I’ll make again. But that is only done at the high cost and a heavy price. I had to lose my first girlfriend in a car accident before I was able to truly grasp some of the character flaws that I was privy too.
A man who beats his girl and doesn’t suffer any consequences not only will not “change” but he has a new-found security in that he knows he can do it and get away with it. My friend’s boyfriend went to prison for a little over 3 months and got out on a probation with mandatory counselling. What did he suffer? Nothing. He got a slap on the wrist for almost beating his girlfriend to death. It was only a matter of time before it escalated.
“But it’s only when he drinks or does drugs, otherwise he’s a different person!”
This is by far the most common rationale that causes women to stay in a situation that is very dangerous to their well-being. They don’t seem to realize that drinking and substance abuse well remove inhibitions and accelerate the process.. but without it being a part of his core nature, not even drugs would be able to cause this extreme.
Not only that, how likely is it that he’ll quit drinking?… “Oh he’s going into the program!” .. A few weeks in rehab is not enough for a man to change something that is so ingrained in his nature. He needs to experience true loss… and if you actually believe that he “loves you” as much as you think he does.. the only loss that’ll allow him to do anything about this is You.
You need to get out… if he truly loves you in years to come he’ll eventually be able to wrestle with his demons and realize that he lost you and it’ll help him on his pathway to recovery… a 2 month breakout and a few months of separation WILL NOT SUFFICE.
There is also the adverse if he really doesn’t “love you” the way you think he does then he’ll continue his ways, but at least you will be free.
There’s no excuse, no justification for ever putting your hands on your significant other in this manner. Drugs, Alcohol, Rage, these are all catalysts and excuses, but if you truly love someone not even they can stand up to it. Ask anyone that knows me, if anyone has seen me approaching anger you will see that I actually harbor a lot of rage within myself. There have been so many holes punched in walls, and so many injuries due to punching things that were not to flimsy… I have anger issues.. I mean they are under control but they are present. Still no amount of alcohol has ever or will ever allow me to hit a girlfriend.
The closest I came was a slap in the face I received from a friends roommate who decided one day to be a bitch… I was loaded, and I noticed my hand balling up and I was getting angry, so I did what a man SHOULD do.. I walked away and left.
Anyway, like I said. If I ever come into a large some of money I’m going to make it my life’s work to put an end to the “He’s Gonna Change” mentality. It’s the worst way someone can live.
If you or anyone you know is in such a situation and you need help dealing or guidance on how to help, you can send an e-mail to
I’ve helped a significant number of women and even a guy get out of these kinds of relationships. And, for those of you still in them, I want to just make it clear.. not one of them regret it. They all say it was the smartest move they’ve ever made.
He Will Not Change, and you’re only risking your life and the life of any children you may or may not have with the abuser.