In His Own Words: Deception and heartbreak

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Domestic Violence

Author: Dr. Tara J. Palmatier

The
following
is
a
letter
that
was
written
by
an
Australian
man
for
whom
I,
Andybob,
have
had
the
utmost
respect
throughout
the
three
decades
of
our
friendship.
He
is
an
intelligent
and
responsible
man
who
found
himself
in
a
brief
second
marriage
to
an
attractive,
but,
as
he
would
soon
discover,
emotionally
abusive,
Russian
woman,
whom
we
shall
call
Natalia.

We
should
never
underestimate
the
brutalizing
effect
that
a
woman
like
Natalia
can
have
on
a
generous
and
trusting
man
like
my
friend,
or
how
easily
they
can
hide
their
dysfunction
long
enough
to
get
that
ring
on
their
finger.
Their
entire
relationship
began
and
ended
within
one
of
the
11-month
periods
that
I
work
outside
Australia,
so,
I
have
never
met
Natalia.

The
letter
was
intended
for
Natalia’s
mother
and
eighteen
year-old
daughter
because
my
friend
feared
that
they
may
not
have
been
aware
of
Natalia’s
dysfunction.
He
quickly
realized
that
this
couldn’t
possibly
be
true,
and
decided
not
to
send
it
to
either
of
them.
It
is
important
to
keep
in
mind
that,
due
to
the
letter’s
intended
recipients,
this
letter
is
the
sanitized
version
of
some
of
my
friend’s
experiences
while
married
to
Natalia.

I
became
determined
to
find
a
suitable
way
to
share
his
letter
because,
as
he
was
reading
it
to
me,
it
occurred
to
me
that
I
was
probably
the
only
person
who
genuinely
wanted
to
hear
of
his
experience
with
an
emotionally
abusive
spouse.
As
with
so
many
men
who
have
been
in
his
situation,
it
was
apparent
that
he
felt
very
isolated
from
most
of
his
family
and
friends.
People,
even
loved
ones,
can
become
very
uncomfortable
and
dismissive
when
men
start
talking
about
their
pain

especially
when
they
begin
talking
about
how
they
have
been
emotionally
hurt.

My
friend
just
wanted
to
be
heard,
to
share
his
experiences,
and
warn
others
that
even
strong,
smart,
ethical
men
can
find
themselves
married
to
psychologically
abusive
women.
Many
assume
that
a
man
should
know
better,
control
‘his
woman’
and,
above
all,
remain
stoic
and
silent
about
his
stress,
loneliness
and
humiliation
at
the
hands
of
their
abusive
wives
and
girlfriends.
It
is
a
deeply
offensive
and
misandric
way
of
marginalizing
male
pain
until
it
is
rendered
all
but
invisible.

To
[Natalia’s
mother]
and
[Natalia’s
daughter],

I
would
like
to
express
how
hurt,
upset
and
devastated
I
am
by
the
failure
of
Natalia’s
and
my
marriage.
Over
a
seven-month
period,
Natalia
did
some
very
hurtful,
cruel,
unstable
and
deceptive
things
that
a
wife
should
not
do.
She
had
a
strange
man
call
claiming
she
met
him
on
the
Internet
and
then
suggested
it
was
an
attempt
to
make
me
jealous.

She
often
disconnected
our
phone
without
telling
me
and
destroyed
phone
numbers
of
mine,
both
business
clients
and
friends.
She
insisted
on
coming
with
me
to
tutoring
appointments
and
that
my
clients
contact
her
first.
She
had
their
number
and
my
friends’
but
I
never
had
any
of
her
family
or
friends’
numbers.
She
would
contact
my
friends
without
telling
me.
Natalia
hid
in
our
locked
bedroom
and
parked
her
car
in
another
street
to
spy
on
me
or
surprise
me.

I
could
not
go
out
in
public
with
Natalia
because
she
would
become
angry
and
aggressive,
claiming
I
was
looking
at
others,
and
even
when
I
was
talking
to
her,
she
would
storm
off,
claiming
I
was
not
looking
at
her.
She
often
talked
to
other
men
and
women
in
the
street
and
this
never
bothered
me,
but,
I
was
forbidden
to
do
the
same.

On
one
occasion,
when
I
said
hello
to
a
mother
when
her
small
child
nearly
tripped
me,
she
became
violent
and
threatened
to
jump
out
of
our
moving
car.
Natalia
would
insist
I
swear
on
my
children’s
or
parents’
lives
I
would
not
look
at
or
talk
to
‘korva’
or
‘prostitute’
as
she
called
other
women.

She
began
to
go
out
at
strange
hours
and
I
could
not
contact
her.
She
would
come
home
in
the
early
hours
of
the
morning
and
not
explain
where
she
had
been.
On
one
occasion,
she
returned
home
very
late
and
told
me
she
had
parked
her
car
in
another
street.
The
following
morning,
a
taxi
turned
up
and
she
insisted
it
was
not
for
her,
but
the
driver
called
her
name.
She
claimed
she
had
been
too
tired
to
drive
home
from
her
mother’s,
but
I
did
not
understand
why
she
did
not
call
or
tell
me.

When
Natalia
had
a
car
accident,
I
was
there
to
make
sure
she
was
safe.
When
I
asked
if
we
could
quickly
visit
a
client
in
the
same
street
to
apologize
for
missing
my
appointment,
she
became
hysterical
and
aggressive
and
openly
called
her
old
boyfriend/boss
in
front
of
me.
This
was
very
hurtful.
She
often
accepted
financial
help
from
him
which
was
hurtful
and
disrespectful
of
me
as
her
husband.

I
looked
after
Natalia
with
all
my
ability.
I
cooked
for
her,
cleaned
for
her
and
gave
her
everything
I
could.
Over
a
six-month
period,
I
gave
her
$10,000
to
avoid
a
drink-driving
charge,
$25,000
for
bank
debts
and
credit
cards,
$15,000
for
her
mother’s
permanent
residency,
and
$15,000
for
her
dance
school
business.
I
helped
her
pay
many
phone
bills
and
registered
her
car
and
gave
her
financial
help
when
she
needed
it.
Now
I
am
in
financial
difficulty.

When
my
father
was
seriously
ill
with
cancer,
I
gave
Natalia
$500
to
go
to
Melbourne
to
visit
girlfriends
and
she
did
not
contact
me
for
several
days.
She
eventually
texted
my
sister
to
say
she
was
in
Newcastle
for
a
beauty
quest
with
accompanying
photos,
showing
me
and
my
family
no
respect
or
concern
at
this
serious
time.

Natalia
is
a
physically
attractive
woman
and
enjoys
attention
from
others
to
satisfy
her
ego
and
vanity.
She
is
obstructively
and
aggressively
jealous
and
unable
to
apply
the
same
standards
and
expectations
which
she
had
of
me
to
herself.
She
is
extremely
self-centred.

I
feel
Natalia
has
serious
emotional
and
psychological
issues
that
prevent
her
from
being
able
to
maintain
a
healthy
long-term
relationship.
This
was
supported
by
a
counsellor
we
both
attended.
She
is
jealous
and
insecure
and
could
never
trust
me
or
understand
my
loyalty
and
stability.
Her
aggressive
and
destructive
behavior
is
hurtful
and
disturbing
and
I
could
not
bear
it
any
longer.

I
cannot
help
but
feel
Natalia
used
me
for
my
financial
resources.
I
loved
her
and
am
a
good,
honest
man,
but
she
drove
us
apart.
I
was
not
sure
whether
to
write
this
letter,
but
Natalia
contacted
my
family
and
friends
and
I
want
the
truth
to
be
known.

I
have
no
malice
or
ill-will
towards
Natalia,
but
am
hurt
and
feel
sorry
that
she
will
never
be
happy
until
she
addresses
her
issues
and
faces
the
truth.

P.S.
Natalia
told
me
she
had
been
unfaithful
during
our
marriage
and
this
was
the
most
hurtful
action
of
all.


Thank
you,
Andybob,
for
caring
enough
to
share
your
friend’s
experiences
with
Natalia.

Original Story on AVFM
These stories are from AVoiceForMen.com.
(Changing the cultural narrative)

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