I was born in a small city, but was moved to a BIGGER city when I was 4 years old. I was raised in that Big city by my Mom and my Dad. While living there I went through things that a little girl should NOT have experienced! My Mom always worked 12 hour shifts at night and so did my Dad. So we had a “sitter” at this house these people felt like family! But at age 9, their Uncle touched me in very inappropriate ways. I told my sitter and her sister what her Uncle did they did not believe me. So I did not tell my parents, they had too much going on and I didn’t want to add to those issues!
By the time I reached 9th grade, I guess I started looking for love in all the wrong places. Summer before I entered into the 10th grade my family moved back to the small town I was born in to be close to family! This is where my nightmare of what I thought was a love story began. The guy I fell in love was not the guy I thought he was! I ran away from home 2 hours away from my hometown with him, where he left me alone with one of his Uncles one night to go party with his friends. That night while once again I was sleeping I was awakened to a man on top of me. I had flashbacks of when I was 9, this time I was 16 and fought off my attacker and was able to get out of the apartment before he touched me again! Cold, dark corner I crawled in to hide.
Back to my hometown after being put on the news as a “runaway.” Off to the group home I went. This relationship continued because the guy became the “Father” of my children. After turning 18 and moving out, I lived with this man. After my son was born when I was 20, is when I found out about his crack cocaine drug use. And the verbal, physical, and mental abuse became overwhelming. He would beat me up when he cheated, when he wanted money for his drug habit. He would beat me when he “thought” I was cheating on him. But it was really him cheating on me and his guilty conscious wanting an excuse to leave to go do drugs. He would threaten to kill me if I left him. I was brainwashed and thought I had to stay for the sake of having a “family with a Mom and a Dad.”
But after 9 years of being beat on by him, I had had ENOUGH! I was no stranger to Domestic violence. I lived it!! The night I was being beat, and my daughter walked in to see me being chocked on the ground, and I yelled out for her to “GO CALL 911, THE NEIGHBOR IS WAITING”!! The fear in my baby girl’s eyes and her screams of confusion, as she was trying to figure out who does she listen to me who is screaming for help, or her Dad who is telling her “NO DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR”. I had already told my neighbor that I was going to send my daughter to use her phone to call 911 because if I tried to call for help he would rip all the phones out of the wall. NO cell phone back then.
The next thing I know he is jumping out of the bushes every where I went. The 10th year I fought back and started calling the police on him every time he broke into my house and attacked me. I started getting really scared that he would kill me! So I got a restraining order, but he kept coming back. Next I went to CODA to get help in getting a “No Contact” order against him. After the police finally caught him on my property violating the “No Contact” order he was only put in jail for six months. So while he was in prison I starting seeing a Therapist who helped me FIND ME! And realize that I did not deserve to be beat on, and that I was not only going through physical abuse, but I was going through verbal and mental abuse as well. I had no clue what she was talking about! Mental abuse, depression?? I was just trying to help him get off drugs!!
The Therapist kept stressing to me that his abuse was more than physical and that verbal and psychological abuse were just as harmful. She helped me believe I could overcome the mental control and verbal abuse and see that I was strong enough to leave him for good! Like many women in these situations I stayed and I kept going back because I believed he had changed, believed that he was sorry until he wanted drugs again, and beat on me. He stole money from me and my kids for his drug habit. I was terrified of what would happen to me if I left.
I wish it hadn’t taken me 10 years to get out. I’m glad I did because I’m so happy now with my husband of 10 years! I have learned to love ME, myself first, and now I know what I will NOT accept, no verbal, physical or mental abuse from anyone. I’m so blessed to have my husband by my side and support me with every thing I do! And he loves me for me person I am, along with the things I’ve been though! He doesn’t make me worry about any hurt, harm or danger coming to me from him! I’ve learned that finding love in the WRONG place has hurt my kids and their future! I love me enough to be happy and have joy without a man in my life! Love yourself first. Know your worth! Your life and your kids lives depends on it! Once you are stronger, they will be strong enough to NOT go through the same cycle of abuse!
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