My new book on domestic abuse is on sale

Do you ever wonder if you might be a victim of domestic abuse? My new Kindle book, Am I Being Abused? A Woman’s Guide to Domestic Abuse, can help you to answer that question. It’s on sale through Sunday.  If you get a copy and like it, please leave a review so others will know that it’s worth reading. Thanks!

 

 

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Am I Being Abused? Kindle Book is finally truly ready! yea!

I got my first book up on Kindle officially a little over a month ago. I wrote it, edited it, put it up, and was seriously unhappy with the way it looked. So I worked on it. Again and again and again.

In the meantime, my husband–our abuser–was fired yet again from his job. He lasted in this one six years. Before that, he was unemployed for two years. Before that, he was fired from four separate jobs over a period of four years. And even more before those.

He’s been seriously grumpy. Depressed. Angry. Frustrated. It’s affecting everything.

I’ve been really sick this past month. I have a bunch of chronic health issues, and with all the stress they reared their ugly head big time. But the Lord is good, and He was with me all the time. Helping me. Guiding me. Protecting all of us.

So now, finally, after every single thing, my new Kindle book is finally looking the way I want it to look. And I’ve learned a few things (or a few dozen) about getting kindle books up and ready. The name of it is Am I Being Abused? A Woman’s Guide to Domestic Abuse.

I’m having a promotion starting next Sunday. The price will drop to 99 cents, and work its way back up from there to its normal price of $3.99.

Here’s the Amazon description of my book and a look at the table of contents:

Written by a domestic abuse survivor and the co-author of A Cry for Justice: How the Evil of Domestic Abuse Hides in Your Church, this new book helps women navigate the difficult question: Am I being abused?

If the thought has crossed your mind that you might be a victim of domestic abuse, the most important question that you can ask yourself is: Am I afraid of my husband? If fear defines your relationship, something is seriously wrong. There is a world of difference in an unhappy marriage and an abusive marriage. As you read through this book, you’ll develop the tools necessary to tell the difference.
In this book, you’ll learn…

~How to tell if you are a victim of domestic abuse
~How to tell the difference between true and false repentance
~What you need to do if you are in an abusive relationship
~How to identify your God-given rights

With lists, questions, recommendations, and guidelines Am I Being Abused? A Christian Woman’s Guide to Domestic Abuse offers the reader a way through the valley of abuse and into hope and healing.

A message to my readers

Introduction

Dedication

Chapter 1 Confused, mixed up, brokenhearted feelings

Chapter 2 Am I being abused?

Chapter 3 Delving deeper

Chapter 4 He said he was sorry: true vs. false repentance

Chapter 5 Our God-given rights

Chapter 6 Practical matters

Chapter 7 Things that have been a blessing to me

Is divorce permissible in cases of domestic abuse?

Am I saved?

About the author

Resources

If you’ve got any questions about it (or about abuse in general), or if you just want to share your story, leave a comment on here or message me at thecrossisall@gmail.com.

Hope to hear from you.

Soli Deo Gloria!

Anna

Dear abused friend

Dear abused friend,

He did it again, didn’t he? Abused you. Yelled at you. Lied to you. Then he told you that it was your fault. That you pushed him too far. He made excuses. Blamed you, alcohol, his bad day, his bad boss, or his father. Too many bad choices, and here he is. But he wants to do better. He’s really trying. If only you’ll stay around and help him. He can only do better if you stay. He needs your support. He needs you. One day, he promises, everything will be better. No more abuse. No more tears. No more sorrow.

But it’s all a lie, isn’t it? How many times has he promised you that he’d change, but he didn’t? How many times has he promised you a better tomorrow? How many times are you going to believe his lies?

You’ve done nothing to deserve to be abused. You have never deserved his abuse. You are beautiful, worthy of being loved, of being treated with respect.

Don’t let your abuser define you. Don’t let him control you anymore. Never believe him. He doesn’t care for you; he only cares for himself. No matter how many times he has professed that he loves you, he doesn’t. No matter how kind he can seem, he isn’t kind. He’s the opposite of kind. He’s your enemy—remember that.

You may have had some good times with your abuser. You may have them still. Do not believe them. Unless you’ve seen the fruits of true repentance in his life, he’s setting you up to use you again. He will hurt you again. He will lie to you, take advantage of you, and seek to destroy you again. His kindness is a lie. Everything about him is a lie. No matter how many times he tells you he is changing, he isn’t. Most abusers never change; their hearts are simply too hardened against God.

You may be exhausted and want to give up. Don’t. Fight for yourself. Fight for your children. Fight for your future. Do whatever it takes to keep standing one more day.

If you can, leave. Run to safety. He may try to prevent you from leaving. He may try to make you come back to him. Don’t listen to him. Don’t feel sorry for him. Ignore his tears. Harden yourself to his pleas. Protect yourself from his threats. Use the law if you have to. You deserve so much better. Your children deserve better. Do all that you can to get to a point where “better” defines your life.

You are so strong, dear friend, do you know that? Do you see your own strength? You get back up every single time he knocks you down. It might take you a while after the most brutal of attacks, but you never give up, do you? By the grace of God, you get back up and you keep on trying.

Trust in the goodness and the greatness of your Lord. He never fails. He is faithful and true. He is good, always and in all ways, no matter what. He loves His own with an everlasting love. He’s the perfect Husband, the mightiest and gentlest Father. Run to Him. Cling to Him. Trust Him with your life. He loves you. He cares for you. He hates what your abuser has done to you. When the waves roar, abide in prayer. The Lord will always meet you there.

Meanwhile, I’m praying for you.

A sister who understands~

My new book went live today

A few years ago, I co-wrote A Cry for Justice: How the Evil of Domestic Abuse Hides In Your Church with Pastor Jeff Crippen. Today, I published my first directly to kindle eBook. It’s for the woman who is wondering if she is in an abusive relationship.

Depraved

Sexual abuse in marriage isn’t just about whether or not your husband rapes you. Marital rape is wrong, and it’s certainly abusive, but there are other, more subtle, forms of sexually abusive mistreatment. It’s wrong for anyone to do things to you, force you to do things with him, or force you to do things to him, that are painful, or humiliating, or that make you spiritually, emotionally, or physically uncomfortable. These actions might be harder to define than rape is, but that makes them no less abusive.

I’m not talking about having differing views of what’s fun or acceptable in the bedroom. There are widely differing views even among Christians about what a husband and wife should, or shouldn’t, engage in as far as sexual play goes, and discussing them isn’t the point of this post. In a good marriage with open communication, those things can be discussed. In an abusive marriage, the abuser—usually but not always the husband—demands his way while disregarding his wife’s feelings.

You are important. What you want matters. Your comfort, belief, and desires should be considered before you are asked to do anything. Your husband has no right to demand anything of you. That’s not submission; that’s abuse. God never commanded the man to force his wife to submit or obey. Submission is something God tells the wife to do; He never commands the husband to make sure she does it. God also tells the husband to love his wife as Christ loved the church, to love her as he loves his own body. If a husband is doing this—if the wife has absolutely no doubt whatsoever that her husband loves her, and will protect her heart, her mind, and her body—it becomes much easier to submit to him. A wife gives submission in response to her husband’s love. If a man loves his wife, he won’t even consider asking her to do something that makes her uncomfortable. He certainly won’t demand it of her.

Sexual abuse, in any shape, form, or fashion, is a corruption of the gift of sexual intimacy. It is a sin against the wife, and—as all sins are—ultimately a sin against God. Sexual abuse in marriage isn’t about love. It’s not about romance. It’s about one partner inflicting pain and humiliation on the other in an effort to control and dominate in order to satisfy their own twisted vile lustful desires. Such a man is depraved.

What will he (or she) do this time?

Grace for my Heart

It’s Narcissist Friday (a little early)    

(I rerun this post occasionally, hoping to offer some encouragement for those who have to handle holidays with narcissistic people.  Although the references are to a male narcissist, we all understand that wives, sisters, mothers, daughters, and other women can be narcissistic as well.  Please understand that this is not meant to empower the narcissist, but to help you have a reasonable holiday.  This is about you and your family/friends.  I would not suggest these for normal use in a narcissistic relationship, but these things might help to make the narcissist’s presence bearable for you and others.  I hope this helps you to have a blessed holiday.)

Narcissists aren’t very good about holidays or family gatherings.  Unless they can be the center of attention, they sulk or tell odd jokes or intrude on conversations or something strange.  He might even flirt with…

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More than an abused wife

Even though abuse has dominated my life, I am more than an abused wife. I’m a woman, created by the Lord, for a purpose outside of pain. God, not my abuser, has a claim upon my life. No matter what my abuser has said or done, no matter what lies he’s told, no matter what excuses he’s made, none of it can change who God created me to be.

I’m a Christian, a woman, a mother, a homemaker, and a homeschooler. I love the Word of God. I devour books, love words, and steal as many minutes as I can to write. I can’t imagine life without children or pets. I read cookbooks like novels, and easily get lost in the beauty of trees. I like to escape outside for a few minutes just as day is breaking and night is falling. I am created in God’s image whole and complete apart from my abuser’s definition or treatment of me—I just failed to grasp that for a long time. I gave up many of the things I loved because my husband demanded that I do so. I gave up me, trying to please him. But there was always a real me hidden behind the facade of the fearful, broken woman I became. Due to the grace of God, I’m rediscovering who I am.

The Word of God is sufficient to help as we seek to cast off the cruelties of the past, and embrace who God has created us to be. God, through His holy Scriptures and the application thereof, can help us not only to overcome, not only to survive abuse, but to thrive. We no longer have to feel like a kid standing outside of a candy store, with her nose pressed against the glass, looking at the goodies she knows she can never have—except, instead of looking at sweets, we looked at and longed for normal, didn’t we? For kindness. To be loved unconditionally. I know I did, and I imagine you did, too. But God fulfills all of that—and so much more.

It can be hard work peeling back all of the layers of your abuser’s lies but it’s worth it. You, just as God created you, are a fabulous person. Sure you’ve got flaws, we all have flaws—but there is a world of difference in having flaws and being flawed. Dear one, you aren’t flawed. Your abuser lied to you when he told you that. You are beautiful. You are precious. Anything you don’t like about yourself and want to work on, you can—but because you want to, not because he’s forcing you to. Always remember that you are worthy of finding you and of finding the freedom that awaits you.

Futile? No, but hard!

Grace for my Heart

It’s Narcissist Friday!     

I often read or hear about people who suggest that we should just fight the narcissists in our lives. After all, they are wrong and we are right. Stand up to them. Gather others against them. Tell your story and others will listen and believe you, they say. Just say no to the narcissist.

But that’s easier said than done. In fact, I wonder if those who give that advice have ever tried to do it, and I wonder if they succeeded. Most of those who try to stand against a narcissist find an opponent far stronger than they expected.

Why is it so hard to fight a narcissist? Well, most of us have never really fought anyone, and a narcissist is one of the most formidable people you will ever meet. Many strong and capable people have lost everything when they dared to go…

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Who is he really?

You’re married to a man who sometimes seems to be the greatest guy in the world. When he wants to, he can be so wonderful. During those times, he’s a loving husband, an involved father, and just an all around great guy. At those times, you just wish that you could stop time and it would last forever. But those times won’t last forever—will they? He won’t remain a loving husband and father because that’s not who he really is. He isn’t really the greatest guy in the world, is he? No, he’s not. Because the greatest guy in the world wouldn’t systematically try to destroy you. He wouldn’t try to hurt you. He wouldn’t lie to you or about you. He wouldn’t be addicted to porn or use it as justification for sexually abusing you. He wouldn’t break your heart again and again and again. And he’d never, ever, do anything that would endanger his children. But your guy does, doesn’t he? All the time.

But maybe he’s not really an abuser; maybe he just hasn’t gotten over the things he went through as a child. Depending on the case, that is possible but it is also doubtful. It’s true that there are some folks who take a long time to heal but it is also true that, even if this were the case, if he loved you, he’d be doing his very best to be a better man, a better husband and father, and he wouldn’t be systematically hurting you and your children. Maybe he wants to do better but hasn’t learned how to yet. You must ask yourself if he is doing everything he can to heal and to grow? Is he actively working on improving himself? Has he stopped abusing you? Is he devoting himself to being a better husband and father? Or is he making excuses for why he’s not farther along in his healing? For why he’s not able to control his temper or his mood? You need to seriously consider these questions, pray over them, and be honest with yourself.

The most important thing to consider when you’re trying to decide if your husband is an abuser and you are a victim of domestic abuse is this: Are you afraid of your husband? If you are afraid of him, something is dreadfully wrong and needs to be addressed immediately. If you are in danger, don’t just continue reading—find a way to leave NOW.

Do you need more convincing or you are just not sure? Ask yourself these questions: Do you walk on eggshells around your husband? Have you changed your beliefs, the way you speak, act, or dress, or what you like or dislike, in order to please him? Do you go out of your way to accommodate him? If you are constantly stressed when you are around your husband, if you believe you must do whatever he says or accommodate his wishes no matter how bizarre, if he gets angry for little or no reason, if you’ll do anything to keep from setting him off, the chances are very, very great that you are in an unhealthy or even a dangerous relationship.

Questions for the abused woman

 
Has your husband or boyfriend ever hit you, slapped you, pushed you, or gotten physical in any way with you—even once?

Are you afraid of him?

Has he ever threatened to kill you?

Are your children afraid of him?

Do your children show signs of fear or anxiety when he is around?

Has he hurt your children or threatened to hurt them?

Has he hurt your pets or threatened to hurt them?

Do you feel that you have to make excuses for his behavior?

Are you afraid to let your family or friends know how he treats you?

Can you say “no” to him without fear?

Do you feel as if you can never please him?

Does he control your time, your money, your choices, everything?

Do you feel like you are going crazy?

Do you feel hopeless or helpless?

Are you stressed when you are around him or when you think about him?

Does he make you feel small?

Do you stay with him because you are afraid to leave him?

Do you have any solid reason to believe that things will ever change?

This man is an abuser. Now ask yourself this: What are you going to do?