Answer me oh my love, just what sin have I been guilty of?
Won’t you tell me where I’ve lost your love?
Please answer me sweetheart.
This was one of my father’s favorite songs by Nat King Cole. I know all the words.
The other day the song popped into my head and I had a whole new appreciation of the first two lines. If you can hear these words coming out of the mouth of an abused woman you will understand where I am going with this post.
Imagine you are looking at a movie, there is a couple that is wildly in love and after an amazing courtship they have a great marriage. A few years into the marriage, she is being picked apart…at first, just little stuff like the way she combs her hair or the way she laughs out loud. The things that were engaging and cute now become irritating.
She begins to see herself as “not good enough” for him anymore.
Isolation begins to set in. She feels isolated from him, from her friends and family and from herself.
She begins to feel inferior to him and others.
She may begin to self diagnose as “crazy” or “hysterical” and she accepts the pathologies and looks for confirmation that she is sick.
She gets diagnosed by a mental health professional as “depressed” and begins medication. Things at home never change for the better. In fact, things get worse because even though she may be feeling better inside the outside nit picking does not let up.
By now, the situation at home may have escalated to physical abuse and sexual abuse.
Now she feels really bad and even more depressed!
She begins to hate herself and the only way she can dispel the self hatred and pain is to turn on other women and judge and gossip. She begins to look for people worse off than her and she feels relief from the judgment.
As an observer of the movie, it is sad to see her life get so messed up so quickly. As an observer you want to shout to her tell her to get out!
It’s easy to see when others are being sidelined and abused. It is not so easy to see it in ourselves.
If any piece of this scenario applies to you, take a moment to look at the whole movie about how it got to this point and follow your own advice… Get OUT!
Love and light,