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?”

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Abuse is Idolatry: 5 Tips for Going "No Contact" as a Biblical Way to Deal with Abuse

Abuse is Idolatry: 5 Tips for Going "No Contact" as a Biblical Way to Deal with Abuse

If you’ve been in a relationship with an emotionally abusive man, you have no doubt described the experience as living with “Jekyll and Hyde.” One day, he’s charming Dr. Jekyll. But all of a sudden, something shifts and vicious Mr. Hyde is revealed.

This is a hallmark of narcissistic personality disorder (also known as narcissism).

It’s a dizzying and exhausting experience, one few people can understand unless they have experienced it. However, once a target of abuse is able to identify these shifts in behavior (and what fuels them), she has the ability to distance herself emotionally from his destabilizing tactics. Read on to see our 5 tips for going no contact as a biblical response to abuse.

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5 Habits that Enable Your Abuser {+ 5 Ways to Stop Enabling Him TODAY}

5 Habits that Enable Your Abuser {+ 5 Ways to Stop Enabling Him TODAY}

Enabling, is a very real part of abusive relationships. Enabling happens when a victim engages in behaviors that hide abuse and shield the abuser from the consequences of his actions. Enabling allows abuse to worsen by keeping this evil shrouded in darkness (where it just LOVES to grow).

And while abuse is never a victim’s fault, she may be unwittingly contributing to its longevity through enabling. In this post, we’re going to talk about 5 key things abused women do to prolong abuse (and 5 ways you can stop enabling an abuser, TODAY).

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Am I Co- Dependent? The Consequences of the Codependency Myth in Abusive Relationships

Am I Co- Dependent? The Consequences of the Codependency Myth in Abusive Relationships

It can be hard to make sense of the relationship dynamics in an abusive marriage. There’s a natural tendency to think in terms of cause-and-effect logic, in which the wife is given some responsibility for her husband’s abuse, due to being a “low performing” or co-dependent spouse.

Not only does that kind of thinking hurt victims, it isn’t biblical.

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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.

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5 Things Your Church Can Do RIGHT NOW to Stop Domestic Violence

5 Things Your Church Can Do RIGHT NOW to Stop Domestic Violence

In Part I of this series, we discussed the raging epidemic of domestic violence in Christian churches and pastors’ self-reported unpreparedness in handling it. And while ongoing education is the mission of organizations like Agape Moms, we’ve developed a list of five meaningful steps Christian leaders and pastors can take RIGHT NOW to safeguard their congregations and help families struggling with these issues.

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By the Numbers: The Silent Epidemic of Domestic Abuse in Christian Churches

By the Numbers: The Silent Epidemic of Domestic Abuse in Christian Churches

Domestic abuse is an insidious, silent epidemic in the Christian community. Sadly, 37% of pastors surveyed say they believe that domestic and sexual violence does NOT occur in their congregations.

With nearly 1 in 3 American women suffering domestic abuse at some point in their lifetimes, It doesn’t seem likely that nearly 40% of churches are completely free of this issue.

The greater likelihood is that these churches either don’t know how to identify cases of abuse, or do not have the kind of culture in which victims are encouraged to come forward to seek help and healing. In the meantime, women and children are terrorized by the effects of intimate partner abuse as victims struggle without guidance and support from a spiritual community.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. But identifying the fact that there is a problem is the first step.

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Identifying False Recovery in Abusive Relationships

Identifying False Recovery in Abusive Relationships

It’s not uncommon for a woman in an abusive relationship to believe at times that perhaps her husband is finally on the right track and making meaningful progress. Eagerly she may even declare, “This time, it’s different.”

And for a time, it may seem so. But when another abusive episode occurs, she’s left wondering what went wrong.

What she’s just experienced is known as a “false recovery.” Read on to learn more about identifying false recoveries and what to do about them.

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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.

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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.

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Three Critical Steps to Stop An Abusive Conversation

Three Critical Steps to Stop An Abusive Conversation

Stopping the cycle involves disengaging your emotions from the situation to stop the abuse itself. Proverbs 26:20 says, "For lack of wood the fire goes out," (NIV) While we often want to defend ourselves and convince our abusive spouse that we have their best interests in mind, doing so only sends a signal to an argumentative man that he might be on to something. To further avoid fueling the fire of his abusive rage and leave an abusive conversation, there are three critical steps you must take.

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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??

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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.

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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.

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