A few years ago I had the chance to live with people who were much younger than me. If I hadn’t made up my mind to go back to school, I might never have met her. Their age was somewhere between that of my generation and that of my own children. Something caught my attention, especially with the girls. They often found themselves embroiled in relationships that were characterized by psychological abuse without realizing it. Is that your future?
They told me why they “argue” with their friends, and it always sounded the same. First they explained the reason for their anger, how they reached a turning point, and ended their story with a sense of guilt, as if all the responsibility lay on their shoulders: “He really didn’t do anything bad, I was just always in a bad mood.”
To be honest, their stories made me shiver. They were about behaviors that a girl should never have to endure. These girls apologized for all of their “bad deeds” even when they didn’t agree with the way they were treated. If they could think about it objectively, they would see that the justifications that they and their partners were clinging to were out of thin air.
I looked at her with a certain sadness some mornings. During the break, they told me about what happened until everything broke out of them. It was so obvious. I never looked into the face of a girl in love, but into the faces of people in a dependent and toxic relationship that was marked by psychological abuse.
And I asked myself: can’t we do something to warn them, to wake them up? Do we each have to see with our own eyes and suffer the dire consequences of abuse to be recognized as such? That’s what this article was written for, for you and for anyone it could open their eyes to.
Here is the story of one of the girls. The story of a girl who slowly fell victim to psychological abuse without realizing it until it was almost too late.
Psychological abuse – a real case
I let a ghost woo me in a pretty white sheet. He was older and more experienced than. I didn’t see it, I didn’t notice it. At that time, I didn’t know anything about psychological abuse. Unfortunately, I couldn’t open my eyes to the truth until it was too late.
I just wanted to feel and have a perfect childhood for my son. The perfect childhood I wished for him was part of the “happy family” idea that I had always longed for. As soon as I became pregnant, the real me of my partner began to emerge. He started treating me badly, yelling, insulting me and arguing with me about everything. He made me feel inferior and incompetent. Who was I without him?
Everything got worse after the birth
When my little boy was born, things got worse. He even attacked me with the baby in my arms. From then on I tried to avoid arguments as best I could. I ran away from his outbursts of anger, letting myself be convinced by a mere “I’m sorry” . The outbursts of anger became more frequent. I fell into the trap of psychological abuse. Most of the time, I felt responsible for what I had to endure. Was it the culprit with my bad mood?
He stopped working and helping around the house. When he drank he turned into a devil. He cursed me, hit me, and broke what was in his reach. But I kept this beautiful goal in mind: a happy family. Every couple has fights, I told myself.
When he fought with me, I avoided him. It was unbelievable that I had to experience the same screaming and insults in my own house that I knew from my parents’ home. The worst part of all was this destructive development. The wounds didn’t heal, they got deeper every day.
He started abusing our son when he was three years old. To humiliate him like he did to me. Our son was easy prey, easy target for all the hatred he carried within. Hate. Why? I will never understand But I know he always tried to have a victim around.
My friends were important in opening my eyes to reality
I slowly expanded my social circle. I made new friends even though I was quite a recluse. And I understood, I was beginning to realize that these fights weren’t normal. He destroyed my self-esteem.
I toiled in and out of our house to bring home some money. Finally I fled with my friends, I didn’t want to be home for a few hours. I found comfort in her words of support and affection. But I went back to my prison. With each passing day the dream of a happy family became more and more distant.
My son was three years old and it had been two years since I really looked at myself in the mirror. I had lost all interest in repairing myself or looking pretty. What for? I was ugly and tired.
I felt old He kept shouting and knocking me down at the few events we went to. Nothing I did was okay or right. My eyes clouded with sadness, like the clouds on a moonless night. That was never my plan for the future.
I started to feel like this life alone was my responsibility, like everything was my fault. And I’ve lied about our relationship when asked. I apologized until I could convince everyone that my hair loss was a hormonal issue.
One day something changed in me. My body told me it was enough. I suffered a panic attack. I had to see that my body was no longer working. First I lost the feeling in my fingers, then in my hands and feet. Then in my face, tongue, arms and legs. My heart was in my throat and I was hyperventilating.
I don’t wish that to anyone. Having to watch the body gradually stop functioning. My friends took me to the hospital and I stayed there overnight for observation. My partner marched home with our child. The doctor in this small town was not only my friend but also a psychiatrist. He recommended that I stay with a friend for the rest of the week to find peace and recovery.
I learned to say no
I recovered like this for over five days before going back home. There he was, standing on the porch. I went up the stairs and hugged him. “I’m back feeling so much better, ” I told him. He pushed me back with a nudge that threw me off balance. He started yelling at me, but I don’t remember what he was saying. Suddenly I couldn’t hear him anymore. I could only see his screams, his thrusts, and the violence in his gestures and voice frightened me.
I was scared for myself and my child and the friend who had brought me. “Run!” Is the only thing that came to mind. But I couldn’t leave without taking my 5 year old boy with me because I feared he would do something to him just to hurt me. That’s what I thought he was going to do to get me back. But I hadn’t done anything!
We drove away together and no one said a word the entire drive to my friend’s house. When the three of us got there, we were silent. My partner stood in front of the door for a few minutes.
Once more he said he was sorry
But, you know what? It was too late. A word broke out of me, from the depths of my soul: “No. I can’t do it anymore, I’m done with you! ” I had made the decision to escape the cage of psychological abuse.
Still, I wished him that he could be happy because he didn’t seem to be with me, and I also let him know that I loved him. The only form of contact after the breakup was threatening calls. He threatened me that he would take revenge for the humiliation.
No, we don’t want to see him. He harms us when he’s around. He pulls me and my son down with him. Away from him – that is the only way I have to get what I need: peace for myself and for my son. I will not let anyone harm him, including his soul. It is my duty as a mother to teach him from the start never to confuse love and humiliation.
Because if someone loves you, they won’t abuse you psychologically.