One year my colleagues David and Carole were preparing a skit on abuse for a conference, and they decided to perform a rehearsal for their abuser group. Afterward, the group members rapid-fired their suggestions for improving the skit, directing them mostly at David: “No, no, you don’t make excuses for why you’re home late, that puts you on the defensive, you’ve got to turn it around on her, tell her you know she’s cheating on you….. You’re staying too far away from her, David. Take a couple of steps toward her, so she’ll know that you mean business…. You’re letting her say too much. You’ve got to cut her off and stick to your points.” The counselors were struck by how aware the clients were of the kinds of tactics they use, and why they use them: In the excitement of giving feedback on the skit, the men let down their facade as “out-of-control abuser who doesn’t realize what he’s doing.
— “Why Does He Do That” by Lundy Bancroft (via bajo-el-mar)