01-03-2009, 01:45 PM
Five years ago, at 14, our daughter was in an abusive relationship. It was a situation where she wanted to be with him desperately, confronted him on various behaviors but over time (a very short time) not only stopped confronting those behaviors but excused them because she "loved him". In short we witnessed her steady and rapid decline and did everything we could to intervene such as seeking the advice of counselors, talking and trying to help her to see for herself the danger she was in and finally forbidding any contact in order to literally protect her. After the nightmare was finally over she said "he not only wants to hurt girls, he wants to destroy them!" She then dated another boy in high school. He came from a good family but he drank and did drugs. He was not abusive or violent as the previous boy had been. That relationship ended and for the last 6 mos. she has another boy in her life. He is from an alcoholic family, has a drama mom (her words), drinks and he recently put a crack in a door while angry. He's in the service and she's away at college so her time with him is limited. While back for Christmas break, they broke up. But she sees him almost daily since they have many of the same friends. The concern I have is this...she is very good at vehemently confronting her boyfriends on their behaviors with her words but her actions seem to say "I'll love you and accept you even if you continue in these behaviors". This is what got her in to trouble when she was 14. The similarities in this current relationship are scary. When they broke up just before Christmas she withdrew more (wears her headphones almost constantly); watches a lot of movies (it's as if she's brainwashing herself) and doesn't sleep or eat as well. It feels like she's trying to ignore what is and create in her mind what she wants things to be. A few days ago she said they were going to get together to talk because "they loved each other" but he called that off because he "was confused" and they didn't meet. Still they have spent a lot of time together because of having the same friends. She says she's over him but her actions tell me otherwise. She seems to confront behaviors in a boy "she loves" but then if there isn't any change, she ignores and even defends it and him. If this boy does decide to get back together with her I believe she'll agree in a minute. Her words are so strong and so right on but her actions say otherwise. I'm genuinely scared for her if she doesn't have the strength to be strong in her relationships. It sometimes seems like she "gets it" in her gut but igores it with her actions. It's like there a disconnect. She has a lot going for her. Why the disconnect? What's missing? She gets angry at us when we try to talk to her OR on a day where she's more open-minded, she listens and says "I know, I see it" but then goes out and acts differently! My husband and I are not drinkers, nor violent, and we have a strong marriage of almost 30 years. Our kids see this so how does this youngest daughter not get creeped out over such unhealthy behavior. Not only does she get creeped out but she seems to enjoy it (like she enjoys the trashy reality TV shows). One more thing...because of my childhood experience, my self-protection mode is to separate myself from people that refuse to work towards being healthy. I get scared and I don't think I could handle being exposed to seeing our daughter do to her kids (I'm projecting out in time) what I experienced. My husband has concerns but he keeps reminding me of the good choices she makes too. But my "gut" tells me she's trying hard to get back together with this guy and I cannot forget what we experienced 5 years ago. In that relationship it was as much about her as it was about her abuser. She chose to allow what was happening and I fear she could do that again. Is there a pattern here? Are my concerns valid?