Did you know that a woman will leave an abusive relationship seven times before leaving and staying away from the relationship?
Seven. Times. Reading this statistic hit me with such force. It showed me that, "no I am not the ONLY person who is going through this". This showed me that there are other survivors going through the same things that I go through. Leaving is a process and takes time.
In saying this, I find it to be a dissapointment when I hear comments that further cut down and undermines the survivor. You know, those comments; If it were me, I would have left long ago. If they treat you so bad, why don't you just leave? Do you enjoy getting hurt/abused? And my favorite, I told you so. You should have listened.
Contiually beating them with these questions and throwing around statements with a disapproving wag of the finger and shake of the head is not going to magically undo the damage and snap the survivor out of it. There is already enough guilt and shame to go around; trust me on this.
Those who are survivors of/are in an abusive relationship need support, not judgement. They need to be empowered and have confidence in their decisions. And if those who are supposed to be in their corner are also tearing them down, who can they trust?
It's time for understanding, not judgement.