This is what so few people understand about abusive relationships. People see friends and family members stuck in relationships that are obviously horrible and say “She should leave him! Why doesn’t she just leave??” If the abuse happened in secret the first question your loved ones ask when you escape is “Why did you let it go on so long? Why didn’t you leave sooner?”
Abusive relationships aren’t just one partner doing cruel things to another. If they were, there would be no relationship: there’d just be a woman getting assaulted one time by her boyfriend and then immediately leaving. Abusive relationships necessarily include the construction of psychological barriers to leaving, or else they would not exist. Victims of abuse are kept constantly confused, off-balance, insecure and unsure of themselves, because their abuse always necessarily includes the element of psychological manipulation.
This is why people stay in abusive relationships, whether it’s abusive relationships with significant others or abusive relationships with empires.
Vast fortunes are poured into keeping us from realizing that we are being exploited by powerful wealth hoarders while our nation’s resources are sent to fight wars of planetary domination. That our ecosystem is being destroyed for profit with no real plan for what to do when it’s gone. That we are being increasingly oppressed and impoverished to keep us from having enough awareness and wealth to dethrone our rulers. And that it doesn’t have to be this way at all.