“I married an abuser.
It started off with small things like him making snide and nasty comments about me to friends and family, then laugh like it was all a joke. He would humiliate me then act like I was crazy for being upset or embarrassed.
Next he started isolating me from my friends and family. Anytime I made plans he would suddenly have something he needed me to do right then. He would pout and throw childlike temper tantrums if he didn’t get his was and soon it was just easier to give in than keep trying. If I loved him, I would want to make sure he was happy, right?
Some friends of ours were getting married and I was so excited to be able to see all of the friends and dress up to go out! I was pretty pregnant at the time and borrowed a maternity dress. I felt pretty in it and carefully did my hair and makeup. At the reception friends I had not seen in years were so happy to spend time with me! We danced, sang and celebrated the love of our friend’s marriage. I stopped by our table for some water and he was sitting at the table pouting. I sat own to immediately try to deescalate because I knew a scene was bound to happen. All the friends sat down too. I tried to talk and get him to engage…nothing. As I was about to turn around and start visiting with friends again, he grabbed me by the back of the neck and turned me towards him. To everyone around it looked like he lovingly was caressing me when in reality his grip was so painful, I struggled to catch my breath and it left bruising that lasted weeks. In a loud almost shout he said “MY GOD YOUR BREATH IS RANCID!” then laughed like it was the funniest thing. Everyone at the reception turned and stared as he leaned in and said “You are making a fool of yourself! You are too FAT to be dancing! You look like a damn balloon in that dress! Just sit here and do not open your mouth again!”
On the drive home he ranted about how I better never embarrass him again like I did that evening….or he’d be done with me for good and GOD know no one else would ever want an ignorant whale like me.
This was just one time out of many. Why didn’t I leave then? Because I believed him and every single bad thing he said about me.
It was another 6 years of abuse and isolation but I did leave. I wish I had left sooner. And by the way- he was wrong….not only did I survive but my children and I thrived without him.”
Thank you to the Survivors that share their stories. You are true inspirations showing strength and resilience.
If you are being abused there is help. You are not alone and it is not your fault.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline