What happened that made you decide to leave?
My son was diagnosed with Autism, but my ex didn’t believe me. He told everyone that I was lying and just wanted sympathy from other people. He wouldn’t accept my son’s autism, and he treated him very unfairly. My ex would punish my son when he didn’t need to be punished, and he punished him harshly.
For the longest time I didn’t even realize that I was being abused. It was years before I realized the abuse, and it took me another 2 years to accept it for what it was. After my son was diagnosed I knew I had no other choice but to accept it, and move on with my life for my son.
This was not the only thing that pushed me to the edge. I had been with my ex for 6 years. We had two children together, and we still lived at his parents’ house. I tried and tried to get him to find us a place of our own. We would always go look at places, but they were never good enough for him.
Finally, about 3 months before I left him, we found a place. We paid rent, damage deposit, and put the bills in my name. Everything was in my name, which I found strange at the time. Nothing before was ever put in my name. After the first month of living there he quit paying our bills when I thought he was paying them.
We lost the apartment, and I didn’t even know that we were losing it. I didn’t find out we were losing it untill our last week there. It was very devasting to me because I knew that this new place would either make us or break us. I was hopeless, tired, and just done with it all. By this time I had lost everything. I lost materialistic things, but most of all I lost myself.
How did you feel about your abuser and/or your relationship in the days before you left?
I was heart broken, scared, I had a lot of anxiety, I was worried, I felt weak, and I had no idea how I was ever going to come up with the stregnth. But I just closed my eyes, and took a blind leap. I knew I had to get out of there.
What three emotions did you most experience in the days closest to leaving abuse? How did you deal with them?
Scared, depressed, and kind of excited in a way to start my new life.
What planning did you do before you left? Who knew you were leaving besides you?
I planned where I would stay, and made back up plans just in case things started to get dangerous.
What were the one or two BEST things you did before you left?
I really don’t know, I was just walking around like a zombie..I really had no idea what I was doing.. But the best thing that I did do was leave and get the hell out of there.
If there was anything you wish you had not done before you left, what was it?
I have no regrets.
How long ago did you leave? How do you feel today?
I left 3 months ago exact to the day. I feel free. The anxiety I use to have is gone. The zombie like stage I was in is gone. I am finaly becoming me again, and I love it. I have my fall backs sometimes but I just keep going.
Is there anything else you would like to say?
If there is someone out there reading this that is in an abusive relationship still and hasn’t left yet, please don’t stay and think that you’ll just put up with it, or that you can fix it because it only gets worse. You can tell yourself that you can put up with it, or you can just overlook the truth. But everyday that you stay you will lose even more of yourself. Pretty soon you wont even feel human anymore. Nobody is worth feeling like that.
I know that you feel scared and lost and weak and maybe even guilty. But remember that’s their feelings, not yours. They implanted them into you. You are stronger than what you think. You are still that strong independent woman you were before you got with your abuser. Now just prove it to him, yourself, and everyone else.