• author
    • Heather Alani

      Columnist
    • September 17, 2014 in Columnists

    Let’s make a sandwich together

    Get the hell out of bed! The kids need a ride to school! You are so lazy!

    I mean, really — get up! Why does my husband get to sleep? Men can be so inconsiderate, right?

    Chucking a pillow at his lazy head was far less than he deserved.

    “Booyah, right?”

    I plopped down at my computer. Good ol’ Joshua Connell’s status hits me smack in my overtired noodle.  “Men, the overlooked victims of domestic violence.” Oh, please! Who can abuse an abuser? They run the world, make us miserable AND want to scream domestic abuse?  I decided to be a smartass and post a meme of a woman smacking a man telling him, “NO! You make me a sandwich.”

    PUH-lease! All men do is hurt women, right?1604729_10201858200517082_3073122678872315558_n

    Wrong. What?! I was wrong. I knew I was wrong as I responded correctly on Joshua’s thread. My brain spoke a multitude of truths, surprising me a little.

    Who am I to ever speak to my husband in a way I would not speak to my family, friends or strangers?  The same, exactly the same, as who is he to speak any differently to me?

    Whiny two year old goes both ways. He says “Rah, blah… wah, nah… I don’t have to take it.”

    Well, what did I say back?  I assure you, nothing at all reputable. Had I fallen into a pattern of being verbally and emotionally abusive? Had I become exactly what I cannot stomach? Whoa!

    I am no different than the man who physically beats his wife, leaving bruises you can see all over her body. I am no different than the physically abusive ex who drove me to become a counselor.  The bruises we are creating are much more severe — you can’t see them and instead, you feel them, sometimes forever.

    At what point had the lines of mutual respect been crossed?  I asked my husband “Why do we speak to each other with such a lack of respect?”  There is no one else in the world we treat this way!

    He thought and said “I don’t know.”

    Is it a human example of because I can?  Is it because we once hurt each other?

    No, it’s because we crossed the line of mutual respect.

    Why do I repeatedly set myself up in relationships to be verbally abused and to also verbally abuse?

    There it is.

    Hey, Dad. Wow! Your cat is huge! Kitty, have you been following him around eating what he eats all day? I exploded in pompous laughter; my dad just shakes his head with a grin.

    Stop.

    My dad and I never showed each other affection without being verbally abusive.  Ah! I am programmed to verbally abuse men. I am programmed to find amusement and even affection in being verbally abused.  It’s dead wrong.

    This is how the lines of respect are first crossed.  This is the beginning of a domestically abusive relationship.  It’s a quick painful death to mutual respect and communication.  Cross the line and it’s the beginning of the roller coaster ride to a quick end.

    Stop.

    Say “I am sorry.” Acknowledge when you have hurt someone.  Do unto others as you would have them do to you.  This is the universal golden rule.

    Hurting someone emotionally or physically is never kidding.  It’s not funny.  It’s bullying.  It is all the things I would hate in another person.  I am glad Joshua helped me realize, it’s not a “them” issue, this is a “me” issue.

    Domestic violence is as simple as it’s complicated.  Respect and honor your partner.  If you can’t see eye to eye, walk away.  Think twice before you speak — words, once spoken, can never be retrieved.

    Words have power, create motion and therefore create change.

    Let’s make a sandwich together. 

     

     



    • Beautifully said.


      • Joshua

      • September 17, 2014 at 1:52 pm
      • Reply

      I’m glad i could help this get to heart. This isn’t a male or female issue, it’s a human issue.


      • Heather Alani

      • September 17, 2014 at 2:01 pm
      • Reply

      You are right, Joshua!



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