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You Never Know...

I am writing this story here because it is about marriages and relationships and this group is the largest group here on EP.

I went to college in my early thirties and I loved learning. Especially psychology because I wanted to understand about people and how they think. In Psych 101 two of my classmates were beautiful women who always walked in together chatting and laughing. I used to look at them and think to myself that they must have perfect lives. One was in her twenties and the other in her late thirties and their hair and clothing were stylish and they carried themselves with assurance.

One day I saw where there was a meeting after school for women who were or had been in abusive relationships and I signed up. It was a support group to offer insight and help. I walked in and took a seat and in a few moments every seat was taken and women were lining the walls of this room. Two of them were my Psych 101 classmates!

These two women that I had imagined as having perfect lives were victims of spousal abuse! We all spoke out in turn and I was astounded at the women who were living in abusive situations. So much pain in such a crowded room. It was heartbreaking. The rejection and the common thread of shame when the shame should have been on our abusers.

This taught me a good lesson. No matter how a person may present themselves. With a smiling face. Perfectly dressed. Laughing. Poor or well off financially. Abuse and rejection crosses all social and financial lines.

You never know who you are sitting next to. Who waits on you in a restaurant or answers the phone when you make a business call. Sometimes the people who appear to be the happiest, the most put together, are people who live in the shame of abuse and rejection.

People live secret lives. Why it means so much when we give a stranger a smile or compliment. One kind word or gesture can make a difference in someone's life. You never know. Peace,D
dartist dartist 56-60, F 4 Responses Aug 3, 2012

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YAY!! This is more truth than any other truth I have read about abuse. Thank You! Hugs, LW

I too am not religious anymore. Long story but this does not change wanting to be kind to others. I am intolerant of intentional cruelty however and will call someone on this behavior. Living now in the Deep South where practically everyone carries a gun means that I have to know where to draw a line with prudent actions. <br />
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It is sad that so many people live without an intimate connection with their partners. Unless a physical problem, health issue, or abuse is present, couples are missing out on a part of bonding in a marriage or relationship. <br />
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I am unsure just what keeps these couples together? Family? Finances? The religious judgement from others? Children? Apathy? Affairs? I could go on and on and I see a lot of unhappy couples out in the world.<br />
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In my thirty years as an artist who exhibited my work at many venues in different states, I can count on my two hands the couples who walked into my art booth and truly were connected in a different way. They practically glowed together and I always let them know that I recognized this. Same sex couples. Middle aged and seniors too. They gave off an energy and had kind faces. Smiled and laughed and leaned into each other. Joined in some way that was different. Wish I had seen more of these couples over the years. Peace,D

Very good observation... Recently I met my old childhood friend. I mention to her I have been living in SM for 3 years... She said to me- I am so glad you mention it I have been living in one for last 10 years and don't even know whom I can talk to... Shocking- beautiful successful woman! So really sad....

Hi Dartist<br />
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Yes, you are so right about treating and regarding others. I am not religious but that old saying, "There but for the grace of God go I" means so much to me. I have a simple philosophy, I don't know when it might be my turn. Unless someone is being a wilful *** and trying to hurt others, then I should leave well alone. Sometimes, to my regret, I do forget that though.<br />
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I made a comment somewhere else that I had read on the Net that it is estimated that 40 million Americans alone are living in sexless marriages. Once you start allowing for how many in the population are children, how many are not married at all, how many are already divorced, how many are widows or widowers and so, on that number looks more and more ominous.<br />
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So, when you pass an adult in the street or shake hands with them, just pause for a moment to consider are they too, in a sexless marriage. The chances may be pretty high. It was never deigned to be easy. Kudos to those who just make a serious go of it.