spousal abuse: one woman's story

>> January 6, 2009

(This article was written under a pseudonym by a lifelong friend of mine. It took great courage for her to publish this, and her saga hasn't yet fully ended. With her permission, and that of the publisher, we want to share this story with you.

As a pastor's wife, you are uniquely positioned to clue in to the abuse of women in your husban
d's congregation. You have the power to support and fight for those women, in a way that not even your pastor-husband can. If Natalie's pastor's wife had bothered to care, perhaps her story would have ended differently. ~the CLUTCH chicks)

RECOGNIZING ABUSE FOR WHAT IT IS:
a personal story

by Natalie Joy*

"I'm not the only one who thinks so, Natalie. Professionals have evaluated your condition, and I think they'd all agree with me. You're having another psychotic break from reality. Nobody will believe you. I never touched you. You started it by striking me!"

My husband's words stunned me into submission.

Domestic violence is a crime that occurs far more often than most people realize. As hard as it may be to believe, it's probably happening in your church.

I was a victim of spousal abuse. My husband's violence was sporadic, and I learned soon enough that submission was the quickest way to end the physical pain. But the emotional torture never stopped, even after the marriage ended, cutting deep into my psyche, eroding my very identity.

I was counseled, diagnosed, pitied, ostracized, prayed for, and gossiped about - especially at church.

READ THE REST HERE

Tomorrow's post will feature resources and links for helping abused women.



*The name Natalie Joy is a pseudonym.


This article first appeared in the November 2008 issue of Ministry,® International Journal for Pastors, www.MinistryMagazine.org. Used by permission.

2 comments:

Cindy Beall January 6, 2009 at 2:49 PM  

What a powerful story. Wow. Thank you for enlightening us.

Hannah January 7, 2009 at 9:08 PM  

I'm happy another story like this is coming out. I hope more of the same follow. I don't think people realize how often this happens.

I pray for her continued healing.

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