Thank you for your response — I really appreciated hearing your story. It is so true that sometimes we can be so smart, intuitive, etc. and still not realize how badly we’re being treated. It happens so slowly and in such a crafty way that we can mistake it for love (especially when they keep telling us it is).
I believe we want to see the best in people and it’s hard to understand why they would treat us that way on purpose. It doesn’t make any sense and we want to help them because they are hurting (so they say).
It’s also very common to go back to an abuser several times before finally cutting it off. They were our lifeline for awhile so leaving is difficult emotionally. Good for your for finally getting out!
When I hear stores like yours I don’t feel so alone. I can blame myself at times for staying in it and still even now caring about the person who hurt me. I guess that’s what people with good hearts experience — true compassion and love. Not everyone is capable of that.