What follows is an account of a client who decided to use our helpline to seek our help in helping herself. Although personally identifiable information has been removed, the theme and most of the events that follow are true.
It’s an old story of my life. When I was young I had so many dreams in my eyes, which were always full of energy and colors around me. My parents engaged me with a boy who belonged to our family friends. I started talking to him and made a fantasy world where I found him everywhere around me. After some time when my studies were completed I got married to him. I was so happy while starting a new life with my partner. Initially, there were times when I felt I were flying in the air, enjoy the spring blossom and having fun. With the passage of time I realized that the situation is no more what I assumed to be. This was not the person I had married. He was completely changed. In the beginning he started complaining about my performance in house chores, gradually he started to restrict my life to within the home and even stopped me from meeting with my family. When I tried to talk about it to my mother she silenced me and instructed me to follow what my husband’s word. I complained to him about his behavior and he became so aggressive that he slapped me. I was shocked about what was going on in my life. With the passage of time this torture increased day by day. I felt he could not sleep until he did not become angry with me and physically abused me. This was a crucial time in my life. It was difficult for me to identify whether I was at fault and if I was being punished.
One day I was watching TV and thinking about how people are so happy in their lives. While changing different channels I found one where a woman was saying something about relationship dynamics. I still remember her words she was saying ” in any relationship no one has right to disrespect you, to limit your life or harm you in anyway. And if you find this in any relationship be clear that this relationship is not healthy because such relationships are not based on equal respect.”
Suddenly a question raised in my mind “If I question about the health of my own relationship, am I included in any decision making at home?”. In short I was speechless. I found that a number for a counseling helpline was displayed on the screen. The host was sharing that if you want to get help for your problems call at this number. I noted that. And later I contacted for help.
This was the first time when I found answer of my question “If I am the reason for what is going on” my therapist helped me realize that no one had the right to control my life and violate my right to be respected, make decisions for me, harm me in any way etc. It was so subtle that I could not realize when and how I started respecting myself and asking for my rights. Initially when my therapist asked me to take charge of my life and he would only support me, I could not understand how I could do that. I was fighting at two levels within my family as well as with my own self. I was so scared, confused and restless.But therapy made me strong enough to start getting from life what I wanted. My family resisted the change in me.
Be sure to follow this real-life clients’ journey as she sorts through her issues and heads towards empowerment!