The last point in my Ambient Abuse 1 post was that despite being conditioned by a partner to live in an anxious state almost permanently, you LUUUV your partner.
I use that word to differentiate from the word LOVE your partner, because many people in this kind of controlling environment have the symptom of LUUUV. That is, they cannot escape – and could not visualise life without their controller, so they justify accepting such abuse by the continual giving of their love and attention. Their LUUUV keeps them going. It’s a sort of complex Stockholm Syndrome. The longing for a fulfilling relationship, the release from their feeling of unease is viewed as their problem, their weakness by themselves. With more love, with more attention, or better pleasing of their partner, things will get better again. Things will change back to what it was like when they first met and LOVE will return.
The controller in such a relationship probably has no idea how devastating their behaviour is. They would not see it, even if it was pointed out to them. They are unaware often of how they set in place the background for triggering a continuous anxious response in their partner. Often the controller in such relationships is arrogant and self righteous, but not purposefully ‘evil’. The victim sees the situation as their fault – the perpetrator sees it as not their fault. In any argument the arrogant, all wise, and knowing partner, simply reduces their victim to affirming their LUUUV and promising not to be so silly in the future.
Controllers in a relationship are habitually like this. To my mind, there is no hope for the victim except complete removal of themselves from the relationship. Because of the LUUUV factor many people live in such a situation their whole lives, not realising how abnormal it is. The constant pumping of adrenalin and fear hormones into their bodies can cause very significant health problems. It is often only when the victim falls into severe depression, a sort of continuous traumatic shock syndrome, or is pushed into psychosis, that they find themselves HAVING to face the problem.
The controller then justifies his own strength and wisdom by his partner’s lack of it and so, to me, any reconciliation is doomed from the start. The ‘honeymoon’ period gets shorter and shorter but there is no long lasting solution.
LUUUV means you are the one who is living to serve your partner at all costs, even your own sense of esteem, peace of mind and health. You are not sure quite what’s wrong, but some thing’s not right and you are trying to make it right.
LOVE means you are growing together in a mutually supportive, comfortable experience. Your partner does not make you feel anxious or jumpy. You feel confident to simply be yourself, and they do too. You feel good about yourself – most of the time.