Abuse Hides in the Dark. Turn on Your Light.

Samantha’s Story of Abuse

He came right up in to my face shouting insults & hurling accusations. I became hysterical - I don’t like being confined. I'm so ashamed if my sister heard.

Samantha’s Signs of Being Abused

I did not know while I was with him. I was sexually assaulted by a neighbor 4 months after I left my abusive ex. The way I acted and reacted during that assault frightened me – I accepted the name calling and verbal insults and internalized them.

While trying to heal from the sexual assault I had a memory of a sexual assault by my ex which I’d totally blocked for 4 years – the memories have been resurfacing ever since.

Samantha’s Emotional Signs of Abuse

Confusion, Frustration, Crushed

Samantha’s Story of Abuse

He came right up in to my face shouting insults & hurling accusations. I became hysterical - I don’t like being confined. I'm so ashamed if my sister heard.I was bubbly, confident and friendly when I met my ex; he was quiet, insecure and under-confident. I felt drawn to him, I wanted to help him and I found him incredibly attractive. He’d been cheated on by his ex-wife and seemed wounded. I wanted to care for him and renew his faith in love I guess.

A couple of months after we got together we went on a night out with a friend and her new boyfriend. She introduced me to him and we chatted as we all got to know each other. I thought the evening went well but when we got home my ex became a different person.

He locked me in the bedroom (his children were in the other bedroom along with my sister who was babysitting). He accused me of being attracted to my friends boyfriend, his face was frightening, he came right up in to my face shouting insults and hurling accusations. I became hysterical as I don’t like being confined. I’m so ashamed if my sister heard. We’ve never talked about it.

The second time that stands out happened about three months later on another night out with friends collecting for charity. We were having fun in fancy dress and my friends were ‘selling kisses’ for the charity (pecks on the cheek). I had warning looks from my ex so I didn’t but as a man we’d been laughing with walked passed me he nipped my bum.

There was nothing I could do about that, I didn’t expect it I couldn’t have stopped it and we all giggled about it, well everyone but my ex. I went to the ladies and when I came out my ex was outside, he came up to me and pushed me, he was in my face again hurling insults and looking like a different person. I made it past him and downstairs to my friends (and mum).

When we got outside of the pub it became public. He carried on ranting in front of my friends and my mum and knocked the collecting bucket out of my hand. I was so embarrassed on my hands and knees picking all of the money up.

With both of these instances I forgave him because he’d ‘been through a bad time and had trust issues with his ex’ – I made excuses for him with my friends and my mum.

Our relationship lasted 7 years. I grew close to his children, we moved in together. We had what I would describe as a passionate, fiery relationship. When we argued, we argued, things got thrown, I got angry too – (I hate myself for that). I always felt like I was defending myself – always.

He would punch holes in walls and doors and tell me I should be grateful it wasn’t my head. He only slapped me once, but by this time I figured I deserved it.

As the years went on our intimate times became less. I expected our relationship to ‘fill out’ a bit to develop closeness but when I think about it he never talked to me, the only time he ever interacted with me was to facilitate sex. I began to question our relationship.

The arguments got worse and mainly centered around our dwindling sex life. When he wanted it he usually got it eventually via an argument, followed by calling me ‘frigid’ and a ‘freak’, usually including him bringing up my past marriage and sensitive information I’d told him in trust and confidence – to use against me and convince me I was a failure as a wife, a girlfriend and a woman. By this time I usually gave in as I needed sleep (I was studying to be a nurse at the time) and also I think I needed to convince myself that none of what he was saying was true. I hated myself for giving in – still do.

Things went on and they got a little better. So much so that he trusted me to go on a hen weekend. It was with one friend and all of her friends so I was nervous as I only knew her and I drank a lot to feel more confident.

The next day they told me I’d kissed a boy – I was mortified – I hated myself. My ex trusted me finally and I was spoiling everything. I couldn’t remember doing it but it consumed my whole last day.

As soon as I got home I told him what had happened. I felt if I was open and honest that would be the best for our relationship. He went insane and basically threw me out. I went to my friends, 2 hours later he came to fetch me, told me he couldn’t live without me and told me we’d try and work through it. We went home and by this point were exhausted it was around 5 in the morning, we went to bed and slept fretfully.

The next part is difficult to write and is the bit I blocked out for 4 years but here goes.

The next morning he reached for me, I was exhilarated I thought ‘he’s forgiving me, he knows it was a mistake’, I soon realized I was wrong. He put his hands on my throat and got on top of me. I didn’t stop him, the look in his eyes was pure hatred, in that moment I could tell he despised me, I closed my eyes and basically took my ‘punishment’ it felt like he was ‘marking’ me, I was so confused I didn’t know what to do or what to feel.

I think I was crying I can’t really remember but I think I was, I’m so ashamed to say I was relieved he was giving me some attention. After he’d finished he got up without a word, got dressed all the while staring at me with hatred – and left the room. I just lay there stunned. After I got up I know I ‘forgot’ what happened – I just didn’t think about it and never mentioned it.

Two years later I left. I had to do it very slowly and carefully to ‘protect him’. I still miss the kids so much – two years later I’m haunted – he’s moved on – but I haven’t.