I read an article the other day about an experiment someone did with a dog in a cage.
I cried and could barely finish reading it because it was so cruel and then I realized not only was I empathizing with the dog I was crying for me and all the other women who have been in abusive relationships.
The experiment was; they put the dog in a cage then they electrified one side, the dog soon learned that it would get an electric shock if it went to that side of the cage so avoided doing so. Then they switched the electric stock to the other side of the cage and the dog quickly learned to not go to that side of the cage.
Then they made it so that no matter where the dog went in the cage it got an electric shock. At first the dog frantically ran around the cage looking for a safe place where it wouldn’t get shocked but eventually it gave up and just laid down resigned to the fact that that it had to live with the shocks. (I still can’t even type it without crying)
But the big surprise came when the scientists opened the door expecting the dog to bolt out of it’s torture chamber and the dog refused to leave the cage.
Why? Why would it choose to stay? I can only assume it’s world had gone from predictable where it knew how to avoid getting hurt to totally out of it’s control. It was used to the shocks but had no idea what would happen if it left the cage so it stayed because it couldn’t trust it’s instincts and was so confused and beaten down it stayed where it was.
First of all I think it’s appalling that they did that to the dog. Apparently there is a video showing the experiment but I didn’t want to watch it.
It makes me ill to think I was an experiment to JC, nothing more than a dog in a cage. He said as much after we split when he told me that every time I forgave him or tolerated something he did, he thought to himself, “I got away with that I wonder what more she will take.” or “She anticipated my response to that so I will do this and see what she does”.
I often felt like I was being “tested”, “toyed” with to see how far he could push me before I’d react. If I reacted he would accuse me of causing conflict, never being happy or being paranoid and over reacting.
When he told me that I should have told him to fuck off a long time ago. (his words) I got a knot in my stomach, I knew he was right. The thing is that I did tell him to go away, my son told him to go away, and he didn’t. I put his things outside, then I put them out at the street, and he would just ignore the fact that he was told to get out. I called the police and they could do nothing or wouldn’t do anything. And then he would be so sorry and loving and I would relent. I foolishly thought it was because deep down inside he really did love me. I have been struggling with the cold realization that I had been the mouse.
A bored cat will toss a mouse around and “play” with it knowing full well it could kill it at any given moment but not wanting the “fun” to end it keeps allowing the mouse to try to escape until the mouse is exhausted and then kills it.
My male dog does that with rats and chickens, he doesn’t want to eat them he just enjoys the thrill of the chase. Once its dead he will continue to toss it in the air and shake it trying to get it to run so he can chase it some more but once he realizes it isn’t going to come back to life he leaves it alone because he’s bored.
There were times near the end where I wouldn’t get out of bed for days on end because it was easier to sleep and avoid the reality of my life. To watch my business that I had worked so hard to build die a slow death was killing me.
I knew when I went back that he had sabotaged my truck in the past but I hadn’t realized it was in order to destroy my business, I had thought it was to prove he didn’t have to do what I asked or to control me. I had mistakenly thought I would be able to see it coming and protect myself this time. How foolish of me to think I could ever win a battle with a narcissist. Even sadder and more telling of the mindset I was in; is the fact that I would go back to a man who I knew was capable of doing such a thing. Just like there is never justification for a man to hit a woman; it is just plain wrong, it was just plain wrong for him to stay up all night thinking of ways to destroy my business.
It amazes me how they can twist a person’s way of thinking so that you end up rationalizing why he did something when it doesn’t matter why, it was wrong and sick and there is no justification or reason and you need to get away from the sick bastard.
My stomach turns at the realization that he was getting his thrills from watching me suffer and enjoyed tormenting me to the breaking point and then giving me a morsel of affection and I would be so F’ing grateful. How he could destroy everything good in my life and then console me and I would be so grateful and hopeful that this time things would be different.
Why do they come back? Because you are the mouse and they have realized you have some life still in you and they are bored and need some thing to play with.
If you are in a relationship with an N or have left and you’re doubting your decision think about the dog in the cage. You wouldn’t let him do that to a dog would you? You would help the dog and save it wouldn’t you? Give yourself as much respect and love as you would the dog.
I wish I had do it sooner.