Monday, July 02, 2007

Manic Monday: Independence


It was just a cup of coffee. And maybe sometimes a bagel. Or a muffin. But definitely the coffee. And I didn't realize how much I enjoyed going to get it every morning until the day I was no longer allowed to.

Out of desperation, loneliness and the unwavering belief that I deserved a fairytale ending, I let him move in. I knew it was not the right thing to do, and I knew that he was pushing me faster than I wanted to go.

But he said he loved me, and he treated me nice. And he made me feel like I was worth it again.

And so, one Saturday morning I picked him up on the curb outside of the room he no longer rented, and invited him into my life on a more permanent basis.

At first, everything was fine. Him being there was a rare treat-like a vacation or a birthday surprise. He made me breakfast before work, called me to say hello during the day and when I got home, dinner would be on the table.

And then he started looking for a job. It was decided that he would drive me to work each day until he saved enough money to buy his own car. When I asked him to stop at the coffee shop, he scoffed and kept on driving.

"You don't need that-you're heavy enough."

That was the first slap I ever felt from him. Sadly, it was not the last.

Over the next year I'd be mentally abused, blackmailed, threatened and yes, even beat up. I was not allow to see friends, talk to family or buy myself anything new.

Even though it was my money. My house. My pride.

He wanted everything-and he was determined to make me give it to him.

And though I knew that it was happening, I had no way of stopping it.

My Independence was being taken away from me. My home, my freedom, my opinions-my laughter. And yet, every law protected him.

Unless I was willing to plow through him while he blocked the doorways, or was brave enough to take the phone that he ripped out of the wall away from him, I could not call the police. And when I later did, they told me I could evict him-a process that took over 30 days.

From the very moment his fist first touched me jaw (while driving me to work one day, simply because I changed the radio station) I vowed to get away from him.

I didn't know how, I didn't know when. But I knew that somehow, I would.

And the only reason I am here today, to tell this story, is because I was strong enough to do it.



21 comments:

Brian in Mpls said...

This is the first thing I read when I got back in town this morning and it breaks my heart that anyone would ever treat you this way.

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

wow! that is scary honey! glad you are okay...

smiles, bee

Mags said...

Brian: Thank you. I'm sorry it was the first thing you read, but it's got a happy ending. So that's good at least, right?

Bee: Thank you. I'm glad I'm ok too.

Nancy Lindquist-Liedel said...

I too got out of an abusive relationship. It was the hardest thing I've ever done. Nothing has been more challanging. My heart goes out to you. You're strong and brave and so much better than he could ever imagine you being.

tegdirb92 said...

wow, your posts are always so powerful. Thanks for sharing that and it takes a strong and independent person to go what you did. Happy MM.

Gattina said...

It's very hard for me to understand that you didn't kick him out of the door right away ! You said in my comments we probably had the same kind of father but I learned to be very suspicous about men because of him as he treated my mother so badly psychologically only of course. That's why I never let a man into my life who wanted to decide something at my place I prefered to be alone and independant then having a macho hanging around. Mr. Gattino doesn't like to take decisions and now we are married for 38 years he has a lot of humor and we are also very good friends. Be careful and never go through such a hell again !

Comedy + said...

I have gone through this too. I fought back and finally got away. He remarried and beat the heck out of her too. Well, now he's old and she is beating the heck out of him. It's is just plain sad. Thanks for sharing something that was probably pretty tough to share. Big hug and have a happy and safe Independence Day. :)

Marilyn said...

I am so glad you got out of that. I'm so sorry you had to go through it.

Jamie said...

Congratulations on getting out of a dangerous situation. It really serves as an example to women who haven't gotten free as yet.

the108 said...

You are so unbelievably strong... I'm proud of you for conquering this time of your life.

Claire said...

Oh mags i am trying to hug the pooter but its just not working and my sister already thinks i am blog mad!

Crazy Working Mom said...

Mags, I am so glad that you got out and I believe it has made you a stronger, more independent woman. Thanks for having the courage to share your story with us!

♥ Tisha

katherine. said...

"But he said he loved me, and he treated me nice. And he made me feel like I was worth it again"

yeah...it is seductive...isn't it.

I am ever so glad you fought for your independence.

Stine said...

Well done you! I know how difficult that was for you, and I cheer every woman (or man) who's made it out...

Mert said...

Wonderful post... I'm so glad that you found the courage and strength to get away from that monster. Happy Independence and happy MM:) !

Not So Anonymous Michelle said...

What a wonderful post, you're so strong and lucky to have gotten out. I give HUGE kudos to everyone that makes it out of an abusive relationship! Independence Day has SO much more meaning to me now than just the traditional sense after all of the blogs I've been reading and after writing my own today too.

Sanni said...

Oh mags, it makes me so sad to read what you went through. I´m glad you found a way out - far away of this monster, brave girl!

Linda said...

My cousin went through two marriages with men like this and I could never understand why she stayed in each of them as long as she did. Sometimes independence is tougher to keep or fight for than we think it is.

I'm glad you were strong enough to push through and come out on the other side.

Travis said...

These are not men. These are animals masquerading in a man's skin.

Damn them all.

Amazing Gracie said...

Travis said it well.
Mags - I've gotten very fond of you and the thought of someone hurting you like that really makes my blood boil. I'm so very sorry, dear heart. But what doesn't kill us makes us stronger and you are an inspiration, indeed!
Love you!!!

~*SilverNeurotic*~ said...

You are amazing in my eyes.