3 Tips to Handle a Narcissist's "Smear Campaign"

3 Tips to Handle a Narcissist's "Smear Campaign"

Just because a woman’s relationship with a narcissistic abuser ends, does not mean the abuse itself will stop. In fact, a separation or divorce may give an abuser the impression he does not have to “play nice” to keep his target attached to him, and he may continue to abuse with less restraint than before.

When a woman begins to distance herself from her abuser, she limits the supply of attention he once received from her. He may go looking for validation elsewhere, and begin to discredit and defame his target to “win” others to his side (especially friends and family). This is what’s known as a “smear campaign.”

If this is happening to you, it can be so frustrating and disappointing (I mean, these people were a part of your life too). You may be wondering, “What do I do?”

Read More

How Do I Know if My Abusive Husband is Really Changing?

How Do I Know if My Abusive Husband is Really Changing?

One of the most difficult aspects of breaking the cycle of abuse lies in a woman’s ability to rightly identify what is happening to her as abuse in the first place. However, even when she can begin to describe her husband’s behavior as abusive, a new struggle for discernment of the truth begins.

I mean, knowing whether or not a man is changing seems so subjective, right?

Thankfully, the Bible offers us a very descriptive account of what true change and repentance looks like, taking what seems subjective and creating a standard by which women can properly assess what’s really going on.

Read More

Is All Divorce Sinful? What does the Bible Say About Divorce?

Is All Divorce Sinful? What does the Bible Say About Divorce?

I suffered in an emotionally abusive relationship for the better part of two decades because I believed that all divorce was sinful. After all, doesn't Malachi 2:16 say, "God hates divorce?”

There’s actually some controversy as to the translation of that phrase. And while that’s a subject for another post, we have observed that at minimum, these words are often removed from their context and applied to implicate a prohibition on all divorce. With so much confusion, how can we discern what the Bible has to say on this subject?

Most often, the truth of one verse of Scripture is evident throughout the whole of the Bible. To really understand God’s heart on a given subject, it’s most appropriate to examine the Bible as a whole and discover what the entire collection of verses on the topic reveals. And while we don’t have the space for that in one little blog post, perhaps one of the most descriptive accounts of divorce in the Bible is God’s own divorce of Israel.

What?!

Yep. In the Book of Jeremiah, God Himself is described as divorcing His bride, the nation of Israel.

Read More

How Can a Christian Wife Address Her Husband's Sin? 4 Steps for Wives from Matthew 18

How Can a Christian Wife Address Her Husband's Sin? 4 Steps for Wives from Matthew 18

The word "submissive" does not mean "punching bag." Biblical submission is about being a husband's helpmate. And if your husband is involved with serious sin, a compassionate helpmate will not stand idly by while Satan destroys the man. 

Submission is not for the faint of heart.

Admittedly, a Christian wife may find herself uncertain about what to do after a one-to-one conversation with her husband doesn't change his sinful behavior. But take heart- Jesus tells us there's more that can be done.

Read More

Bringing Your Abusive Husband's Sins into the Light {A Wife's Role}

Bringing Your Abusive Husband's Sins into the Light {A Wife's Role}

I think there are few people who would argue that spousal abuse is sin. Not only is it sin but it is a betrayal of the marriage covenant in which a husband and wife pledge before God that they will honor and protect each other.

And yet, so many women are afraid to expose the sins of an abusive husband. They are afraid of the shame and retribution that may come along with damaging his reputation. They may really feel like he is making progress and they don't want to unnecessarily draw attention to a situation that may end up being fixed in the long run. Or they may think it is sinful to speak up because that's not submission, right??

Read More

Respect for an Abusive Husband (What it Is, and What it's Not).

Respect for an Abusive Husband (What it Is, and What it's Not).

On the surface "respect your husband" may seem to be an unpopular piece of advice to a woman in an abusive relationship. The words "honor," "submit," and "obey" really don't make a lot of sense when you're being bullied and humiliated by the one who professes to love you.

Today we're going to talk about what respect is...and what it is not.

Read More

I Am Being Abused and I Have Kids: Should I Stay or Leave?

I Am Being Abused and I Have Kids: Should I Stay or Leave?

Often we encounter women who know they are being abused by their husbands, yet they are wracked with guilt as to what they should do for the sake of their children. When the abuse doesn’t appear to be directed at the children specifically, the victim may surmise that having a less than ideal family is better than disrupting the family unit through the process of church discipline, separation, or divorce.

But in abusive situations, your children ARE being abused. Read on to learn more about combatting this generational sin.

Read More

Feeling Like You Have Wasted Years on a Failed Marriage? Here's Help.

Feeling Like You Have Wasted Years on a Failed Marriage? Here's Help.

These women often have the same thing in common. They are haunted by years of endless broken promises. Second chances became third chances and fourth chances. Hundreds of chances (and perhaps decades) later, these women often eventually feel that their efforts were in vain. Forgiveness repeatedly gave way to the devastating pain and betrayal of perpetual abuse, and what remained was the hollow shell of a marriage, if the marriage survived at all.

Why does the cycle go on this way? We believe we can help. We choose to see the good in our husbands. We believe in their best intentions. We might even understand the traumas that have taught them to behave this way. But sometimes, it all falls apart and we are left without answers. In turn, this may leave some of us feeling we are without hope. But girlfriend, God’s not done with you.

Read More

The Best Thing You Can Do to Help Your Abusive Husband

The Best Thing You Can Do to Help Your Abusive Husband

How can you truly help an abusive husband?

In the case of true emotional abuse, you are "alcohol to the alcoholic." As an alcoholic spirals out of control, eventually he or she cannot hide the drunkenness that ultimately accompanies their addiction. However, an emotional abuser is not subject to the crushing reality of his power addiction when his victim remains silent. Silence perpetuates abuse by shielding the abuser from the natural consequences of his actions.

Read More

Sure, You're a Mom {But Who Does God Say You Really Are?}

Sure, You're a Mom {But Who Does God Say You Really Are?}

It seems to me that a lot of books and blogs for Christian mamas are written with the ideal Christian woman in mind. But if I'm looking at the women around me, these assumptions just don't seem to reflect the place where so many of us are in real life. We're unhappily married. We're single. We're divorced. We're stepmoms with messy, complicated families. We work outside the home. We get calls from the principal. We have kids (or husbands) with serious problems. We have serious problems. We curse. We drink. We yell. And we might not have set foot in a church in a quite a while. Read on to discover just how the Bible addresses this and who God says you truly are.

Read More