If you are abusing your spouse and you want help in knowing how to break the cycle of violence, this article is for you. It is the beginning of a journey to loving freedom for you and for your spouse, if you take it. All we can do is point the way to some good resources. After that, it is up to you to take the first step in grabbing onto all the help that is extended for your use. The next step is then to prayerfully apply what you learn.
We pray strength and resolve as you work to break free so you are no longer a spouse abuser. May you grow to be one who extends love and grace, rather than pushing violence of any kind onto your marriage partner.
For the Spouse Abuser
Please know that much of the advice that is presented will be addressed to the abusing husband. Other resources address the abusing wife. Few address both. That’s the way they are written. But the truth of it will hold true whether you are a husband who is the spouse abuser within your relationship or you are the wife. And yes, we’ve seen it go both ways. Sometimes it is one; other times it is the other; and then there are times when it can be both.
I encourage you to prayerfully read (or listen to) the following. If the article (or radio program) addresses a different gender than you, just flip the pronouns accordingly to fit your situation. We can’t change who the author addressed within each resource. But you can. Change the pronouns to fit, then glean to use what will be helpful. The info is still very viable, good, and can be helpful. Don’t get hung up on pronouns and particulars. Glean and apply whatever you can to your situation.
First: For the Spouse Abuser
The following questions, written by Don Stewart can be helpful to ask no matter what gender is the abuser.
“During the October 21, 2005 “FamilyLife Today” broadcast series, on ‘Finding Refuge: Escaping the Cycle of Domestic Abuse,’ [which you can listen to or read through the link provided] guest, Don Stewart encouraged all men to take these questions home to discuss them with their wives. Allow your wife the freedom to answer truthfully. [If you are a wife who is the spouse abuser, you should do the same]:
• Are you or the children afraid of me?
• Do you feel safe enough to tell me how you feel about our relationship?
• Am I controlling you or suffocating you with my demands and expectations?
“If your wife answers ‘yes’ to any one of these questions, though you may not have physically abused her, you may be abusing your position in your home.”
ALSO, Addressing the Abuser Spouse:
We came upon some You Tube video interviews that can also be helpful to watch. They involve Sid Roth (on his program, “It’s Supernatural”) talking to Dr Paul Hegstrom, who used to be an abusive husband.
In these interviews Dr Hegstrom talks about “re-wiring” your thinking to help you to change your behavior. You may have said, “I will never hurt my spouse again. I am not that person and I will not allow myself to be violent like that again.” And yet you find yourself falling into the same abusing pattern repeatedly. You regret your actions, and yet you don’t seem to know how to stop doing what you most horribly regret later.
For that reason, we encourage you to listen to the following interviews. See if you might be able to gain some insights into your problem and reach out for further help afterward. [Switch pronouns, if it is applicable:
And if you have not already obtained the book that was referred to in the interview, you may want to at least look to see what it’s about and possibly obtain it for yourself. TODAY is a good day to start a NEW BEGINNING, in changing and making different choices for dealing with your issues:
Additionally, for the Spouse Abuser:
To attempt to give you as much help as possible, we came upon some information from a (non-Christian) credible source that you may want to explore as well. Dr Steven Stosny has done a lot of work with abusers. He also works with those who are victims of abuse.
A lot of his work deals with re-wiring a person’s thinking and behavior —especially when it comes to anger and control issues. The following are links to several articles you may find enlightening to read. And then you may want to visit Dr Stosny’s web site, which we will provide as well. The first link takes you to a series of articles on Dr Stosny’s web site:
Here are some additional articles for the spouse abuser to read. (Again, these are secular articles, but they are good ones… Glean accordingly.):
Last, but not least:
We hope this information will help you to gain freedom and release from the bonds you have been feeling powerless to escape. We’re talking about the bonds of acting out in ways that you want most to stop. And we pray you are able to find the help you need so that you are no longer victimizing those around you. That way you can experience peace in your heart and life, as well.
If you have additional information you can share to help others, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.
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Filed under: Abuse in Marriage