Spousal Partner Abuse Thinking and Therapy
He Doesn’t Value Me or Does He?
by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.
Many women say when they get involved with a man, they lose themselves. That may be true. And it may also be true that they give themselves up. Ouch!
You heard me. We give ourselves up. We intentionally and voluntarily surrender one desire for another. Now, how empowering it that? VERY.
Have you ever considered the truth in the opposite of what grips you, as illustrated in THe Work of Byron Katie? For example, let’s take the classic belief and experience of women dealing with spousal partner abuse: “He doesn’t value me.”
He Doesn’t Value Me
Chances are, this is accurate to some degree. It comes with the territory of spousal abuse. His interaction with you can be void of personal respect and unconditional regard. And you pick it up. You see it. You feel it. It is so.
However, if you remain invested in changing matters from here only, you are stuck. Here’s why.
His valuing you is not your business and not something that you yourself control. It's his business and fully under his control.
Come with me and let’s re-visit your core belief and experience that he doesn’t value you... Let me sit in this thought with you and we can turn it around. For in its opposite, you will find your strength.
I Don’t Value Me
“I don’t value me in his presence.” Try that one on. Is that true, maybe even “truer” (i.e. more true)?
When you’re with him, you redefine yourself through his explicit experience of you. And understandably so, you feel with regard to yourself as he says he feels about you.
I’m certain you know how this works. We see it with our children. They see themselves as we see them. The same is often the case with our significant other.
I Don’t Value Him
It may also be true that at times you don’t value him. And the longer you are in an abusive relationship, the more this belief is stabilized.
You don’t like the bully he is. You don’t like his demanding-ness. And you hate the oppression you experience in yourself in his presence.
He Does Value Me
And then there is the mirror opposite of the original belief that “He doesn’t value me:” He does, indeed, value me. So much so that he insists on having me in his orbit constantly.
Granted he may insist on this whether you want to or not, which is part of his not valuing your preferences moment-to-moment. The fact of the matter, however, is that he does value you...though dysfunctionally. This is where his work begins.
Conclusions in Considering the Turnaround Beliefs
There is an undeniable connection between what we think and how we feel. That’s simply the way we are wired psychophysiologically. We know this through mind-body medicine, and we experience it thought to thought…breath by breath.
If you have available to you only one thought and lock onto it, you are certain to have only one experience—the one associated with that thought (…and with it, the options available to you through that experience).
When other thinking becomes available to you, the thought that previously gripped your attention let’s go of you. And with the alternative thinking comes another experience and other options from which to grow.
Psychotherapeutic process is best known through experience. This article intends to help you open that door of domestic abuse counseling for yourself and for your loved ones.
For more information on domestic abuse counseling, visit www.preventabusiverelationships.com/spousal_abuse_tx.php and claim your Free Instant Access to Survivor Success eInsights. Psychologist Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. helps people nationwide recognize, end and heal from domestic abuse. © Jeanne King, Ph.D. Domestic Violence Prevention and InterventionThis series of eInsights is presented to you by Partners in Prevention, a nonprofit organization. If you find this eInsight article useful, we invite you to contribute to the maintenance and growth of the Survivor Success Tips & eInsights. To make a tax-deductible donation, please visit www.EndDomesticAbuse.org
Dr. Jeanne King is a licensed psychologist and domestic abuse consultant. Feel free to contact us if you need help with physical and/or emotional pain, stress-related illnesses, or relationship abuse issues at home or in court. Contact Us to reach Dr. King.