Living with Domestic Violence – Part II
I began this story in December of 2010 here on this blog and never continued it. Well, it is time I told you the rest of the story. I left off in California I believe. Our marriage continued to deteriorate. There were a lot of fights and emotional abuse. I was back handed at the dinner table on many occasions. We had friends living with us, for reasons I won’t go in to, and they were worried about my state of well being. Well, finally my husband was discharged from the military, and we headed home to live with his parents, until we could find a place to live and get settled. I was hoping being around family would modify his behavior.
We moved home in April of 1988. I was 4 months pregnant with our second child. At first things seemed better. But, then with the frustration of not having a normal salary and not being able to find a job, it started again. The screaming, the emotional abuse, the back handing at the dinner table. One instance I remember very clearly. I had made dinner, and it evidently wasn’t what he wanted, and the entire dinner ended up on the dining room floor. Yes, that was normal in our house.
Well, we finally moved to Georgia, where my husband was working. We had moved many times in between. I won’t bore you with where and how. Just know that the emotional/physical violence is increasing. In Georgia is where the heart of my story begins to unfold. It is now 1992 and my children are 4 and 7.
Now, you ask yourself why does she put up with the abuse? You have to understand the cycle of abuse. The woman, or abused person, becomes afraid to go and afraid to stay. She becomes afraid of the consequences if she stays and afraid of the consequences if she leaves. I had someone tell me today, that the woman makes a conscious choice to stay. I told the person evidently they have no understanding of what it is like to be abused.
When you are living a life of domestic violence there is a love/violence circle that goes on day after day, month after month, year after year. There will be days of peace and days of hurt and pain. The days that are filled with hurt and pain are followed by apologies, flowers, promises to never do it again, and filled with love. Those days can be long periods of time or short ones. The days that are filled with hurt and pain, you say to your self, “How can I stay?” and the days filled with peace you say, “Why should I leave?” This cycle continues until you just cannot stay anymore.
I will continue my story and its conclusion in subsequent posts. They will be difficult to write. I suppose that is why it has take a year and a half to continue the story but it must continue. Not only for my sake but, for the millons of women that suffer silently each year. These women should not have to suffer in silence. Domestic violence isn’t their fault. They should not be ashamed. We have to make a change and it has to start today.
If you or someone you know is suffering please get help. Help is available here on this website under the topic Get Help, or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline Number 1−800−799−SAFE (7233).
Be the change, save a life.