||18 Jun 06
overcome with such national fervour when T&T played England on
Thursday was like falling in love. It couldn’t have been about the
football because my eyes have been known to glaze over with boredom at the
footie talk. But for those nail-biting 90 minutes the world outside that
game ceased to exist. Just when we thought we would make it, even win, on
the 83rd minute England scored a goal and I felt as if I had the biggest
came to my eyes, and I couldn’t look at the shocked faces around me. And
if we couldn’t believe that lash it came again. And the streets went
quiet. And real life came flooding in. The television was just a
television. A rag was just a rag. The flag was just a flag. The dishes
needed washing, the baby cried. The clothes for work needed ironing, the
children feeding. Once again you noticed the garbage on the highway
instead of the flags on the cars. Like a love story gone sour.
Card of Love
amazing thing about life is the curve balls it throws at you. We didn’t
expect our team to shine the way they did, reducing the English manager to
a lip-chewing wreck and frustrating the English team and we didn’t
expect the lash. But they are still our team. And we can work our way back
to them, perhaps not as starry eyed, but with a more realistic supportive
love, that doesn’t have to do with what they do for us—taking us away
from the squalor of the real world—but what they represent: Courage,
teamwork, making the impossible possible.
fits in with the last of this series on destructive relationships between
men and women. The love turned sour.
Lundy Bancroft, author of Why Does He Do That‚ tells us that men don’t
abuse because of some emotional problem but because they play to win. In
football that means yellow cards. In relationships it means power to the
abuser in the following ways:
The intrinsic satisfaction of power and control. He gets a potent
rush and finds a momentary relief from life’s normal distresses.
Gets his way.
Someone to take his problems out on. The abusive man considers
himself entitled to use his partner as a kind of human garbage dump
where he can litter the ordinary pains and frustrations that life
Being the centre of attention, with priority given to his needs.
When a woman’s partner chronically mistreats her, what fills up her
control. This power makes it harder for her to leave him especially if
she can’t support the children or if he threatens to take custody of
forgets that such behaviour may cause his wife to leave, land him in
prison, alienate his children, crush his life.
change. They learn to play fair. Just in time.
recognise yellow cards after their partner starts standing up for herself
and her children. The steps to change include:
to his history of abuse, taking responsibility for and acknowledging
that the abuse is unconditionally wrong.
in detail his pattern of controlling behaviours and entitled attitudes
and replacing them with respectful behaviour, accepting that
overcoming abusiveness is a lifetime process.
with the effect his abuse has had, including fear, anger, loss of
trust, and freedom.
amends for the damage he has done by developing a sense of debt to
you, accepting consequences and being accountable.
he changes, great. But the game of love blows up in your face if the
abuser is violent, threatens to kill you, has a criminal history, is
abusive to children, has access to weapons. Then, Lundy says, leave. Game