June 14, 2017
These are the words from an incredible woman I had the privilege to speak to. She is someone who truly is self aware, strong, honest, and I know is going to make a mark in this world.
This is real talk from survivors of abuse. Inspiration from one survivor to another.
SURVIVOR TALKS - NO. 0006
It never happened during the beginning, the first time it happened was after a month of living together after a family party. All I did was ask "where are you going?", after I saw him not getting undressed for bed and putting cologne on and changing his shirt, he got so mad that I would question him. He got in my face grabbed my neck pushed me against the wall and while he was chocking me (my feet were not touching the floor) he was screaming profanities at me. The words that stuck in my head were "You don't control me!". My nephew was laying in my bed sleeping as this was all happening, he then took me to the bathroom and proceeded to smack my head against the wall, that was not even the worst of them.
The pressure that society puts on women their whole life is what drives all of this. I started dating him and although he didn't have a stable job or a stable place to live while dating for 8 months he was never mean to me. I had experienced love before and I knew that I didn't love him, I cared for him. What drove us to live together was the pressure society put on me, a 25 year old Mexican raised in an extremely catholic household. At that age there was no reason why you should be single and have no kids, so I stupidly told myself if it's not now, no one will ever love me again, I have to do it! We were together for a total of 7 years, we got engaged and decided to live together after dating 8 months, I never fully went ahead with the wedding because after he put his hands on me for the first time I lost all respect for him. I didn't tell anybody, I kept all this to myself for 6 years, the beatings happened at least once a week. He always threatened me with killing my family and knowing what he was capable of doing I decided not to put their lives at risk so I kept it all to myself. He was smart, he knew where to hit me so that the bruises would not be visible, he would punch me in the head and kick me in the ribs, never touching my face. After he tried chocking me the first time and leaving marks he knew not to do that again, any place the blows were directed were always under my clothes. I started to settle thinking this was never going to end, I stopped hanging out with people and stopped going to parties because he liked to pretend everything was perfect between us and I couldn't stand it. I was always sad, I gained weight to a point where I was almost diabetic. I never let him touched me sexually and thankfully we never had kids. We pretty much stopped being intimate after the first time he put his hands on me, he knew it and he never persisted and that was his way of showing me "his love" according to him. The last time he put his hands on me was the day he broke my wrist and I had to be taken to the emergency room and had a cast for 3 months. 8 months after he broke my wrist, I was broken, in need of human contact, in need of a touch, compassion or something so I slept with him. He then told me he was sleeping around and caught Chlamydia from one of the girls. He had to fess up and leave as one of the rules when we were dating was that the minute he cheated on me it was over. He tried to lie to me about the whole thing because he didn't want it to end but he had to come clean about it as he had put my life in danger. He left and since July 25th, 2015 I have not seen him, although for a whole year he tried contacting me.
What I got from all this, is the way society raises us to be resilient and quite and not seek help, things would've been easier had I been able to go to my family or someone without being judged or blamed. After almost 2 years I am now feeling the repercussions of it all. My anxiety is worse than it ever has been and I have started having nightmares of the past. I've been seeking counseling though and hopefully I'll be able to finally move on.
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