8 Heartbreaking Reasons Why Men Hit The Women They Love

Story Highlights Oprah Winfrey: Nearly 1,100 women are killed every year as a result of abuse Young men who admit to abusing women offer insight into abusive behavior Abuser: "I couldn"t express myself verbally, so I would take it out on her physically" Men say emotional abuse can leave the deepest scars



(OPRAH.com) -- Every day, three women die as result of abuse -- that"s nearly 1,100 killed every year. "That number might not mean anything khổng lồ you...unless the woman was your mother, your sister, your daughter," Oprah Winfrey says. Young men who admit to lớn hitting, kicking, choking and even wanting lớn kill the women they claim to lớn love are opening up khổng lồ Winfrey & giving an unprecedented look inside the minds of abusers.

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Sir says the first time he laid his hands on his wife, Christy, was just weeks after their wedding. He says he got jealous after a các buổi party where she was nhảy with someone else.

"It mix me off. I remember walking up to her & smacking her full force," Sir says. "I grabbed her by her neck, and I kind of held her against the car. Then, I walked her over to the bushes and threw her in there, và I just started choking her. It was with every bit of rage, every bit of anger I"ve ever had."

After the first incident of abuse, Sir says he held a gun to his head. "It was very hard for me to come to grips with the man that I was," he says. Sir promised Christy it would never happen again, and she forgave him.

Though Sir swore to his wife that the abuse would stop, it continued for the next two-and-a-half years. Even while Christy was pregnant, she says Sir beat her to the point where she feared for her life. "She didn"t want khổng lồ be intimate with me, she didn"t want lớn have sex with me and I got very furious," Sir says. "I got on đứng đầu of her và sat on her stomach."

Christy says Sir choked her & covered her nose và mouth so she couldn"t breathe. "I was just thinking: "Oh my gosh, I"m going to lớn die right now. Is this really happening?"" Oprah.com: 7 ways to kết thúc violence against women

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When he was in a rage and beating Christy, Sir says he did want her lớn die. "I had every intention lớn take her life. I felt lượt thích I had power and control over something in my life," Sir says. "It made me feel invincible."

Luckily, Christy survived the abuse.

"By the grace of God, reality would come back khổng lồ me as the rage would decrease," Sir says. "I look back now và I can see that at that time, when the rage would come, it was like tunnel vision. I would try và express my anger và my disappointment the only way I knew how. Và that was through abuse."

Eventually, Christy left Sir và gave him an ultimatum -- either they would include Christ in their marriage or she would not return lớn Sir. "I went trang chủ and gave my life khổng lồ Christ," Sir says. "With that came the relationship with my wife. It was so much better."

Sir says it"s been about two years since he last hit Christy. "If one of our arguments were lớn progress & continue khổng lồ escalate, instead of adrenaline, it"s knots," he says. "I"ll have knots in my stomach, and I"ll say, "Okay, we have khổng lồ stop talking." That allows me lớn step aside & pray & calm down."

Christy says that if Sir were to lớn ever hit her again, she would leave. "He has full knowledge of what he needs khổng lồ be doing as a man và a father & a husband," she says. "If he"s not owning up khổng lồ those responsibilities, then I"m better than that, and my kids deserve better than that." Oprah.com: What happens when children witness abuse?

Though Sir says the abuse has stopped, he admits it"s an everyday struggle. "If I ever think I have it under control, I"m in trouble," he says.

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Though Sir can"t speak for all men, he believes his own abusive behavior was triggered by his past. "Kids are precious -- they record everything," he says. "I grew up in an abusive household, so I didn"t know how khổng lồ verbally communicate with my wife without putting her down. I didn"t know how to lớn verbally disagree with her and say, "We don"t see eye khổng lồ eye," và be okay with that."

Does Sir believe that every man who hits a woman once will hit her again? "I say yes because I hit more than once -- there was a second occasion, there was a third," he says. "Do I think it"s a cycle that can be stopped? Yes."

Tony is another man who admits lớn having abused a woman. In an thư điện tử to Winfrey, he said he beat a previous girlfriend so badly she bled. "I couldn"t express myself verbally, so I would take it out on her physically," Tony wrote. "The thing that triggered me was that I was insecure as a person. To lớn see her stare at another man, or to lớn see her have a conversation with another man, or if she confronted me about anything, it enraged me."

Though Tony says he knew, even in the moment, that he shouldn"t being doing what he was doing, he says he couldn"t stop.

Today, he says he"s trying lớn make amends for his previous actions by speaking out against domestic violence whenever he can. " to lớn say, by grace và remorse, that I"m still here today," he says. "I made it through."

Tony says it felt like he "blacked out" during the abuse. "You don"t understand what"s going on," he says. "I completely own up to lớn , but in that rage, it"s lượt thích your brain wires, they aren"t clicking."

He says being in an abusive relationship is like being in a drug addiction. "It becomes like your bond in the sense that the woman is lượt thích cocaine inside of that relationship. That"s the only connection you have, because there"s no real love," he says. "In order khổng lồ overcome it, it"s almost lượt thích you have to lớn separate, go to lớn rehab, move out of the dope house & never come back."

Although physical abuse is never acceptable, Sir và Tony say it"s the emotional abuse that leaves the deepest scars. "The internal abuse, the demoralizing & demeaning of a woman, lasted longer than the physical abuse," Tony says. "The bruises heal. On the inside, you strip away their pride, force them to lớn compromise their self-worth, their self-respect."

Tony says a grooming process tends to take place within abusive relationships. "In a sense, you gain their trust, but it"s all lust and lies. The relationship is built on deception," he says. "They feel lượt thích you love them, & when you get close enough to lớn them, you"re able to lớn critique them & criticize them in a way that they feel like, "He loves me, so I need lớn change this.""

The grooming, Sir và Tony say, stems from the man"s own lack of self-worth. "In public I"m a very confident male; at trang chủ I"m very insecure," Sir says.

It"s an issue Sir says he & his wife are still working through. "She still heals from the verbal abuse. I took almost every secret that she gave me to lớn in an argument and threw it back at her as an insult," he says. "So it took awhile lớn kind of have communication."

Many people who have never experienced abuse wonder why it isn"t easy for a woman lớn leave after the first time she"s hit. If a woman does leave immediately, would an abuser get the message? "Would a man continue lớn hit a woman who refuses lớn be hit?" Winfrey asks.

"I think it"s different for each man," Sir says. "To me, it could have been reversed in the sense of, "Okay, I"m going to lớn have khổng lồ tame this now." Or the opposite is, "I shouldn"t have done that."" Oprah.com: How vày we end the cycle of abuse?

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