Post # 1
Okay…this is a really long and complicated story but I will try to make it brief. My FHs friend and one of my best friends have been dating for about two years. Well there have been a series of domoestic violence situations. The most recent time, the police were involved and criminal charges were filed. Well within about two weeks of her filing the charges they got engaged and are going on an exotic trip. She is now upset with her friends that we are not happy for her.
This has been a horrible ordeal since they are both our friends and are both in our wedding. It has been hard with me and my FH becuase I hate his friend for what he has done and I am frustrated with my friend for her decisions.
I really don;t know how to help her. I feel like I have tried everything. She wants to believe thta he has changed and now during his trial period they are saying they are so happy and in love and only a few people know the real truth. It really upsets me and is weighing down on me. Does anyone have any suggestions? Has anyone been in this situation?
Post # 3
I’m so sorry you are going through this awful time! It sounds like your friend definately needs help (professional) since she stays with her boyfriend when it’s unhealthy. But I’m not sure what I would do if I were in your shoes. She make get even madder if you say anything more. Then again, I wouldn’t want to watch her stay in a volatile relationship. Good luck with whatever you decide to do!! Oh, what does your fiance say (since the guy is his friend)??
Post # 4
He can’t believe how serious things have been. He told my friend that he will ever change and she should be done. His friend has not contacted him at all and acts like everything is fine when they see eachother
Post # 5
I totally understand why you are so upset, it’s so difficult to watch people we love make destructive decisions. That being said, the cliche about love being blind is really really true–and someone in her situation is unlikely to listen to people telling her that she needs to get out until SHE is ready. And until she makes the decision herself, she will be angry with the people that say bad things about the man in her life. She will choose him over the people trying to help her. The best you can do is be her friend, support her, be there for her, so that when this situation comes crashing down around her, she will run to you. She needs to know that she has a safe place to go where there is no judgement. You can be that place, and perhaps give her the little bit of strength she needs to know that she deserves better than this. I’m so sorry for you, and I’m so so sorry for your friend.
Post # 6
I think that there is a serious problem here. This “guy friend” sounds like he has no interest in changing and therefore never will. what he probably does is hurts her and thereafter says “Oh Im so sorry, I love you I will never hurt you again!” And because she loves him, she believes him. after that apologizing period there is the honeymoon period, everything is great and perfect! But eventually its going to happen all over again. This is the cycle of abuse and unless there is a breaking of the cycle on both sides, it will never stop. I know this because this was my relationship with my mother, she emotionally and physicall abused me.
All I can really say is that there is not much you can do but just be very clear you are not supportive of the relationship and try to stress just how much you are worried and how much you care. It bothers me your Fiance remains friends with a guy who acts like this. he really should cut his relationship
Post # 7
I’m so sorry your friend is in this situation. Based on my experience with some of my family I’ve noticed that many times people are very resistant to help that’s offered to them. It sucks, but if they don’t actually want the help, they don’t accept it.
I think you can be of most help to her by being a supportive friend and helping her by offering her a place to stay, pointing her in the direction of helpful resources (like a counselor, hotlines, etc.), or anything else. Just be her safe place and don’t make her feel judged and hopefully when she’s finally ready to get help she’ll come to you and you can finally help her get away from that guy!
Post # 8
I think you maybe need to write a letter to your friend and nicely but clearly explain why you can’t be happy for them right now. Explain that you want the best for her, and you can’t see how someone that hurts her is the best for her. Explain that you do understand that people make mistakes and can change, violence is not something that can be erased in a short amount of time. Say that you will always be her friend, no matter what she chooses, but you can also be her friend and not support her decisions.
Post # 9
From what I understand…there is nothing that you can do
She is in an abusive realationship. Because of this her mind is all messed up. She will not leave until she is ready. She will fight with and lose friends and family who do not suport her relationship. It’s sad but I don’t think there is anything you can do. You can’t get thru to her…you just can’t. People in abusive relatiohsips are really sucked in by the whole cycle and even though it’s SO CLEAR to everyone around her…it’s not clear to her. It’s really sad
My advice is to try to be as uninvolved as possible. She will come to you when she wants help. If she is in your wedding…then just try to lay low and try to get thru the weddding. Try to just lay low…keep to yourself and take care of what you need to do. Be there if and when she ever comes to you….but try to understand that no one is going to be able to get thru to her until SHE is ready to see the truth
Post # 10
Why is your Fiance supporting her abuser? By ignoring the matter he is in a way supporting him… If the abuser is ignoring it and acting like nothing happened he needs to know it DID… I would honestly kick him out of the wedding party. He needs to know that it’s not OK. Most likely, he’s not being a “good friend” to your Fiance right now anyways…
You need to support your friend but not condone her being with him… is there anyone else you can turn too? Maybe get an intervention? If he’s already been arrested once, that’s not good… 🙁
Post # 11
Having been the friend of a woman who was in an abusive relationship for years, I agree with the earlier posts–Be supportive of her (not of her choice to stay, but of whatever choice she makes), offer her a safe place if she ever needs it, don’t judge (she probably knows that it is not “right”, but she wants to stay) and do some research on counselors, safe houses, etc so you have the info when/if she needs/wants it. Just love her for who she is. Try not to bad mouth the guy–could make her defensive and more likely to stay… Good luck, your friend is lucky to have a concerned friend.
Post # 12
Disclaimer: I speak from experience here and am sharing my opinions, not offering any type of professional advice
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do except try and be supportive. It is frustrating to see someone you care about go through something like this but she has to realize that he’s not going to change and leave on her own.
Abusers believe they have the right to abuse their victims and until she realizes that she does not have to be abused, she won’t be ready. One of the things abusers do to try and maintain control over their victims is they cut them off from their friends and family. This makes them more dependent on the abuser and more isolated. They can do this by causing problems between friends and family (ie. friends do not know what to do and are not supportive so she gets upset with them, etc) or telling the victim they shouldn’t see those people. Statistically, abuse escalates which is sounds like has already happened if the police got involved and there were charges filed. What usually happens is that the victim becomes completely isolated and dependent on the abuser and then has no one to turn to when things get really bad.
So what can you do? Don’t get involved directly – your safety should take precidence over anything else. But you can try to educate her on her rights and be supportive. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence has a lot of good, helpful information on their website. Leaving can be a very hard and dangerous thing. If/when she decides to leave she will need support and that can be hard to come by if friends and family have dropped out of the picture because of the situation.
Your friend, whether she realizes it or not, is lucky to have friends like you who care about her enough to try and help. Hopefully someday she will figure out (on her own) that this relationship is not good for her.
Post # 13
This guy is in your wedding so I would speak with him. Yes your friend might be able to escape the abuse by leaving him (though the rate of abusive men escalating and attempting murder when their partners leave is high) but the person who can really stop this abuse is the abuser. Even if she leaves him he is likely to abuse the next woman that he is in a relationship with. He desperately needs intense therapy and no romantic relationships till the therapy has an affect. Is he in therapy?
It’s not clear exactly what the abuse is like and that might make some kind of difference.
I would not treat him as if nothing is wrong. As if he is not abusing the person he is supposed to care for and treat best. It is a criminally evil thing to do. I would absolutely kick him out of the wedding party.
I would make sure your friend knows that no matter what happens in your relationship with her she can always always call you in an emergency and that you will help her however you can.
An exotic trip, with no friends in easy reach, no police that speak your language or are likely to recognize that women have rights against their sexual partners, sounds incredibly dangerous. Incredibly.
Post # 14
My sister was emotionally and physically abused for 7 years. It’s horrible not just on the person, but on those who love them. But I promise you that other than supporting her when she makes the decision to leave, there is nothing you can do. She will have to decide to leave on her own. The pattern exhibited by her Fiance is exactly like my sister’s former boyfriend. Huge fight, name calling, hitting. But the next day came the flowers and the sweet words and the “I love yous”. None of it is true. My sister got engaged to this guy, and none of us were happy, and she was mad at us for a long time. But your friend eventually will reach some sort of breaking point, and that will tip her over the edge to leave.
You are in a unique and frustrating position because they are in your wedding. But if it were me, I would make sure that the abuser knows he is out of line, and that you do not approve of his behavior. It is likely he will become angry, and you may also likely lose his friendship. But a big problem with many abusers is that NO ONE challenges them. You can PM me if you would like any more advice!
Post # 15
Thanks for all the advice ladies! Just o give a little more information since a few of you asked. The abuser pretty much pretends like nothing has happened. No one has challenged him or called him out on any of this. He does know that we know.
He was married once before and there are rumors that that marriage ended due to cheating on her part and violence on his…
It is a cycle. She told me all this horrible stuff and moved back with her parents. They were broken up for a short time and he swore it would not happend again. They got back together but she did not move back in. Then about 6 months later it happened again and i am assuming it was worse since she got the police involved. She did not tell anyone they broke up and by the time she did they were back together, engaged and planning a trip.
She honestly believes that spending 2 nights in jail has made him change. She thinks he is fixed already and it has only been about a month since the incident.