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The abusive man’s problem with anger is almost the opposite of what is commonly believed. The reality is:
Your abusive partner doesn’t have a problem with HIS anger; he has a problem with YOUR anger.
One of the basic human rights he takes away from you is the right to be angry with him. No matter how badly he treats you, he believes that your voice shouldn’t rise and your blood shouldn’t boil. The privilege of rage is reserved for him alone. When your anger does jump out of you —as will happen to any abused woman from time to time —he is likely to try to jam it back down your throat as quickly as he can. Then he uses your anger against you to prove what an irrational person you are. Abuse can make you feel straightjacketed. You may develop physical or emotional reactions to swallowing your anger, such as depression, nightmares, emotional numbing, or eating and sleeping problems, which your partner may use as an excuse to belittle you further or make you feel crazy."
Lundy Bancroft, Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men (via queeringmisogyny)
Wow. Wow wow wow. This is frightening. This is… This happened to me. I wish I’d realized it sooner.
This is just not applicable to adult to adult abusive relationships. Abusive parents do this to their children too - often. Leaving their children with no concepts of their own boundaries, emotional boundaries, ability to recognize their own anger, and in fact leading to them growing up and potentially becoming abusive by becoming ‘jealous and possessive’ of their own anger and ‘afraid’ that other people’s anger is in fact a campaign against them having their own.
Abuse cycles get complicated fast.
Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making a victim doubt his or her own memory,perception and sanity. Instances may range simply from the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, up to the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim.
Sometimes it is as literally as simple as telling someone that they’re crazy.
I didn’t like it when adults would walk in on me dressing or taking a shower. I would yell, and my adopted family told me I was crazy. Also, I cried a lot, expressed myself in “gender nonconforming” ways, and didn’t like talking to people. I got called crazy so often I believed something was really wrong with me.
The gaslighting and ableism to trans and queer adoptees especially who do not conform to adoptive families’ cissexist and heteronormative fantasies is horrific.
My adoptive mother (an anti-social narcissist) is always gaslighting my sisters and I. For her, gaslighting involves not just telling us, with certainty, what “actually” happened, but what we think and feel. If I say I need to go to the doctor, I’m not really sick. If I say I don’t want to be in a relationship, I’m told that I really do; I was in one before. If I were to tell her I wasn’t a girl, she would tell me I really was, I’m making it up. It’s horrible and pervasive, and it took me my whole life to figure out that I’m allowed to have an opinion on how I feel and who I am.
I think the absolute worst thing about racism is how it causes me to doubt my own perceptions of reality, how badly it gaslights PoC into thinking that of course we can’t be right, we cannot possibly be correct in how we see anything.
When we call you out for saying or doing something racist, it is because you said or did something racist. It is not because we have a poor self-image or because we are insecure. If we had a poor self-image or were insecure, we’d most likely not even speak up against the racism that you’re so blind to.
Don’t you dare say that we suffer from poor self-esteem. When you do that, you’re trying to shift blame for offense towards your actions from you to us. Not only does that make you a racist, it also makes you a coward.
But, of course, you don’t care. It’s easier for you to think that there’s something wrong with us than it is for you to realize that there is something wrong with you and the system that you benefit from.
Go fuck yourselves.
People of Color