I have been struggling with letting go of a very toxic, controlling relationship in my life and need some guidance. My ex-husband (he of toxic and controlling fame from the sentence above) continues to verbally abuse me when he gets angry, which is often. To make matters worse, his verbal abuse often-times occurs in front of our two children. He struggles with alcohol abuse and anger issues and it has only escalated since our divorce. I try to keep things calm, but I don't feel like I can bring up any issue for fear he will unleash on me.
If it weren't for the children, I would try to avoid contact with him at all costs. Since we share custody, I feel that isn't an option, at least for the time being. I know I shouldn't feel sad when he says horrible things to me, but I do. It makes me worry that my children will grow up and think that is an OK thing to happen in a romantic relationship. To complicate everything, deep down in my heart, I struggle to let go of the hope he will one day do the work to make a change. The Two of Clubs in me wants to fix this and make us a happy family again....the other part of me wants to know how to let that motherfucker go. Help?
Nicole R., 2C
You are having a battle between the cards on either side of you: your super sensitive Moon card, the Seven of Spades, and the powerful mind card, the King of Clubs. Mind vs heart. Does that ring a bell?
It is clear that you know your own truth, and this has been the purpose of your obviously karmic relationship. (Karma just means you had some important work to do. Check out our blog and video on Karma here.)
He is obviously a very important player in your game of life, so begin by giving thanks to his higher self for agreeing to help you get this work set up. Stop gagging and just do it.
Remember, he is just playing his role. And try to remember that this experience was chosen by both of you, and your children, from a place of higher awareness and loving intention.
Think of him like homeopathic medicine. He is a dose of the opposite of what you want, which gives you a chance to choose.
When he unleashes his abusive rants upon you, seal yourself in a bubble of light. We will get to the part about you being a bad-ass in a moment, but the hurt he causes you is one of the surgical tools you have to dive deep into the pain. Part of having a Seven in your Moon position is about feeling pain and being sensitive. So...
FEEL the pain. Your being a Club will cause you to try to think your way through your feelings instead of feeling them.
You allowed this kind of man into your life in the first place because you feel unworthy on some deep level. The pain is your inner child crying out from your basement. Bring her into the light of your comforting living room and give her a cup of cocoa and a nice blanket. Let her cry, and ask her what the pain is about. She will help you understand the exact anatomy of the hurts caused by the mistaken beliefs you acquired from childhood and past lives.
You may need some help with this process, like an EMDR therapist, or a hypnotherapist. We bury our inner child deep for a reason. We fear that we cannot bear the pain. But here's the good news: look at what a wonderful mother you are. Are you able to attend to your children in their pain? Then that proves your adult self knows how to be a good parent. It's time to unleash that wonderful, loving parent upon yourself.
Now, for boundary setting. You are empowered to disallow toxic and abusive people from your presence. When you are working with your inner child, bring in five or so guardians, helpers, advocates. They can be real or imagined, here in the body or passed over, ascended masters, angels, and the like. (Paula used to choose Richard Parker, the tiger from "Life of Pi". She used to imagine him riding on the hood of her car during a tender period of recovery in her own life. He was her "NO ONE CAN FUCK WITH ME" aspect.)
Imagine these being with you when you encounter your ex. Stand firm and don't be afraid to tell him that you will not tolerate abusive behavior. You may even want to send him a text or email, setting clear boundaries and consequences for inappropriate behavior. Then, stick to your own guidelines. If he becomes abusive, leave or refuse to respond. He can hurt you only if you take in his words and energy.
If you find yourself arguing with his words or position, this is your internal work. Some part of you believes him. If he told you that you were a prickly pear, this simply wouldn't compute, because it has never occurred to you that you may be a prickly pear. When you no longer have receptor sites for his epithets, they won't affect you. Also, consider bringing a human advocate and support person with you during the child exchanges. If he has threatened you physically, you may get the police involved.