My Scars: A Story of Abuse

Warning: This post is descriptive and may trigger emotional responses in people who have experienced or witnessed violence. Please read with caution, or do not read at all.

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My blog is dedicated to my escape from the suburbian life and the seeking out of adventure while I am on this earth. Let me give you a glimpse into one of the things that catapulted me into this journey. You see, I am a survivor of domestic violence and sexual assault. I currently live in the town in which I experienced that dark and terrifying life. I would like to put physical distance between me and my trauma so that I may heal within a bubble of safety. Besides, my abuser is still out there. Last I was told, his fantasy is to come into my house, gut me and kill my family.

Domestic violence. Sexual assault. Those terms are common and seem so benign to me. We use them often and the shock and awe have worn off. It's a topic of conversation rather than something that makes your stomach churn and your head spin at the very thought of a human being enduring such things. So let me tell you a brief story of what it really looks like.

The relationship does not begin violent. In fact, it is often romantic and sweet, caring and kind. Your partner sweeps you off your feet and convinces you that they are the love of your life. If you are a person in need of such love, you will eat it right up. They appear to offer stability, financial security, and a safe and loving home. How could one pass up such an opportunity, especially if they have kids?

Then the isolation begins. Some of your family and friends do not like your partner. And when your partner finds out, they convince you that your family is just trying to prevent you from being happy. This is something you readily believe because it is a truth in many miserable families. So you slowly disappear. You make sure that they do not make contact because you don't want things to escalate into an argument. You don't want to appear as if you need anyone but your person. You choose them. You have no choice.

Then things at work start to get stressful. No job on earth is a strict clock in and clock out at the exact time every day. Not every commute home is the same. Yet your significant other expects you home at a certain time every day. If things run late at work you begin to feel anxious. You count the minutes you are away and begin to memorize the reasons why you are late. As soon as you walk in the door you begin to explain your 6 minute tardiness to ward off any argument. If you are late, your partner assumes it is because you are cheating. If you are not prepared, that is the next conversation you will have.

Now that you think about it, your partner is pretty obsessed with cheating. Their previous partner cheated on them. They assume you will do it too. You will do anything to prove to them that you are not that person. You monitor who is on your Facebook. You stop going out with friends unless your partner attends too (and they often don't want to). You do not allow people to contact you because anyone could be looking for a relationship. You are in preventative mode and standoffish to everyone because you do not want that argument.

The arguments begin anyway. It is something different every day. It's about money and how much you spend and how many bills you paid. Your partner can spend as they please (and often do so recklessly) but you are not allowed to. Your bank account is zeroed out most of the time. Your credit score is destroyed from all the loans borrowed and not paid on time. It's hard to manage money when your partner can't keep a job. It's also hard to leave when you can't pay a deposit or pass a credit check.

Speaking of which, why has it been so hard for your partner to keep a job? As the months wear on you realize their job history is more sporadic than you thought. You realize that they have been fired from multiple jobs but it's always because they were doing the right thing and bad people were out to get them. New jobs don't last long. They start off fine but something always comes up. Some reason for them to quit. You, on the other hand, know that bills need to be paid so you keep working your shitty job. You are not allowed the freedom to quit. You are the financially stable one now.

Not every relationship has physical abuse. Sometimes it's psychological abuse. Like when your partner criticizes the way you look and compares you to other people. When they insult your intelligence. When they blame you for "wigging out" and making them angry. They tell you that you lie, cheat, and are crazy. They tell you that if you leave no one will want you and no one will believe your story because you're "just being dramatic". Sometimes these things are said in solitude. Other times they say it in public. It is humiliating. After a while your self worth has been shredded to nothing. You are no longer a confident person.

The physical violence is terrifying. It often comes out of nowhere and starts small. A backhand to your mouth for something offensive you said. Your mouth swells and bleeds. You wear lipstick the next day to cover it up. Then it's a pop to the nose and a black eye. Concealer works wonders. It even covers the finger sized bruises on your neck. You become a really good makeup artist.

Your spouse likes to intimidate you. They back you up against to wall. Sometimes they will grab your hair or your neck and bang your head into that wall. Sometimes they will punch a hole right through the drywall, at the same height as your head, inches from your face, to prove that they can destroy you too. Often times I would find myself locked in the bathroom, holding onto the door, begging him to leave me alone. Praying the kids couldn't hear. He would get in anyway. I don't know why he preferred the bathroom or bedroom. Perhaps because it's easier to clean up the blood. Perhaps because it's harder to hear someone scream for help.

A lot of my domestic abuse included sexual assault. It's hard to explain that you've been raped by your husband. People assume that when you say "I do" that means you agree to everything, even sodomy. You cry and you plead and say no and beg them to stop but you go unheard. Things are forced in your body because your partner is obsessed with sex. Violent sex. They watch a lot of porn to fill their time when you are not present.

Just so you know, rape is rape, and this is a crime, even if you are married. Invasion of your body without permission is sexual assault and is punishable by law. You can report it.

I never called the police because he said he would kill me and the kids before the police arrived. And if they arrived by surprise he would hold us hostage. He made sure he always had weapons. Guns, rifles, swords and knives. Take your pick, he threatened with them all.

I will forever regret not calling the police. Domestic violence is nearly impossible to prove in court without police reports. Thankfully I had a few witnesses who saw the bruises. And my judge was a previous criminal prosecutor so he knew the warning signs and behaviors of people like him. Criminals who care nothing for other people. Narcissists who believe they are above the law. It was documented but he received no repercussions.

My story is not unique. In fact I probably just said a bunch of things that you have experienced. That's because all abusers are the same. They act the same. They talk the same. They make you need them, emotionally and financially. They tell you that you are worthless and no one will believe a crazy person such as yourself. You stay because you believe with all of your heart that if you could just keep things together and prove to them that they are wrong, that you will change them. No one else could save them but you can. After all, you've seen them cry and apologize. There appears to be a nice person inside and you long to be with that person.

The truth is it is all one big lie. You are being fooled. They will never change. You will see it when you leave. They will switch from "please come back I love you" to "I will fucking kill you if I ever see you alone" in an instant. Not kidding. Being abusive makes them feel powerful and gets them what they want. Why would they change that? When you leave they will go on to abuse someone else. Don't let them do that. Go somewhere safe and call the police. It's time these people wear their badges of shame, not us.

If you need help leave your situation, please reach out to me via email, Instagram DM or Facebook messenger. You may not have a village to help you right now but I will help you build one. YOU ARE NOT ALONE.


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