A little over a year ago, I met this amazing guy. He was sweet and thoughtful and always showering me with gifts. Anyone who knows me knows I love flowers and he got me a lot of them. We both wanted the same things in life and that’s an important thing in relationships. Another important thing in relationships is respect. That’s something he didn’t give me.
Before we even started dating he called me a bad name. I forgave him though, thinking it was a one-time thing and that he felt so bad that he would never do it again. Obviously he did it again and I forgave him again and again and again. Like every other hopeless young girl, I believed what all the rom-coms were telling me: that if a man loved me enough he would change for me. I quickly found out that love doesn’t work like that but I was still hopeful.
After around four months of being put down every day I begged him to go to therapy. He told me he would only agree if I agreed to go to therapy too because he believed I was the problem and that I was the one who made him lash out. We went to individual therapists and I really enjoyed going even though I cried every time. He, on the other hand, hated going. He refused to talk about his anger or our relationship and would only talk about things like his dog dying when he was six. My therapist and I mostly talked about him and she told him that he was going to hit me one day. I didn’t believe her.
I eventually stopped going to therapy – not because I didn’t want to go but because I was really busy with school. About a month after I stopped going to therapy he hit me. It didn’t hurt physically as much as it hurt emotionally. It’s a confusing feeling when the person who you want to run to when things get hard is the person you’re running away from in the first place.
I don’t remember why he hit me exactly but I remember what happened after. I grabbed my phone and tried to call a cab. He wouldn’t let me. He grabbed my phone from me and threw it. The memories are kind of hazy but I remember sitting on his very tall bed and him grabbing my feet and pulling me off the bed. My head smashed the floor and I remember thinking that he could actually kill me.
I forgave him. Call it being naïve or call it unconditional love but I forgave him again. I forced him to tell his friends and family that he hurt me. I forced him to quit video games – thinking it might be that that makes him so hostile and swear so much. I forced him to actually talk about his anger in therapy.
He didn’t hit me for a while after that. He just continued to call me names. The months following this were very painful for me and I started to stop caring about the relationship in general and this made him more angry. I began contemplating breaking up with him even though I loved him so much. I didn’t think it would ever work out if he couldn’t stop hurting me. The day after I started thinking about breaking up with him, he told me about an amazing opportunity.
His dad got us internships in Chicago for the summer in the field I was going to school for. The internship would look so good on my resume and I couldn’t say no. He wasn’t in the same field as me but his dad really wanted him to go and helped pay for a lot. I still had to pay $2200 for a work visa though.
After paying for the work visa, I started feeling stuck. I didn’t want to go with him. I didn’t want to date him and I didn’t want him to hurt me anymore but I already paid a big chuck of money. I cried everyday leading up to leaving. I begged my mom to not make me go (she didn’t know about how bad our relationship really was). I don’t think I’ve ever been so depressed in my life.
Let’s just say things didn’t work out when we got to Chicago. After two weeks, I finally broke up with him but we were going to try to be friends so we could stay in Chicago. After we broke up, things just got worse. After a couple days, he hit me again (although he denies it). I texted his dad and told him that his son scares me and I didn’t feel save. I said I didn’t want to stay there so eventually we decided it was time for me to go home. I called my mom crying and finally told her about the abuse.
The next day I had to give my two weeks’ notice at my internship. I hated that I had to quit even though he was the abusive one. I hated that I couldn’t tell anyone at work. I felt like he was being rewarded and I was being punished. His dad even came to Chicago and brought him to a Stanley Cup Playoff game. I felt like him and his family didn’t care about what happened to me. They just kept sweeping things under the rug for him.
After my two weeks were up and I was leaving the next day we got into another fight. I was upset that he was planning on hanging out with a girl he met online the day I left. He was going to drop me off at the airport, skip work and hang out with some random girl. It shouldn’t have hurt me but it did. It hurt my ego and I threw a deck of cards on the ground (52 pickup). He got really mad and kicked me so hard in the back that I felt like I was going to throw up. I couldn’t breath and I never knew a kick in the back would knock the wind out of me like that. I ran away but he followed me and he choked me and forced me to listen to him as he yelled in my face.
Let’s just say I was relieved to leave the next day. I was relieved to go home. I’m happy that he is Chicago and I’m far away from him. It’s still hard to get over him from way over here but I’m sure it’s a lot easier than trying to get over someone who is constantly in my face.
I’m trying to get over him and I’m trying to find my way. This is where I’m at in life. I don’t know where my future will take me but I’m glad I have the opportunity to have a future. Right now I feel like I’m at rock-bottom but join me as I find my way back up all by myself.
Have you ever been mentally or physically abused? I would love to hear your story in the comments below (well not love… no one loves to hear about abuse).