This blog post was written by a client in our Domestic Violence Program and shared with permission to be published anonymously.
I am a survivor of domestic violence. I never viewed myself as abused until recently, when I started counseling.
Although I was never hit, I was isolated and emotionally broken. I was always told I wasn’t good enough, didn’t cook well enough, didn’t clean well enough. I was never allowed to leave the house unless I had one of our four kids with me. This was his way of controlling me and who I spoke with.
Our kids were always put in the middle of his decisions. To avoid arguments, I stopped wearing nice clothes and make-up. I stayed in the house.
When he was arrested in April of 2015, my world collapsed. Because of how I had lived for ten years, I had lost myself. I didn’t know how to trust myself. I lost our house and had to move us in with people that I thought were close friends.
Over time, he became increasingly angry, more jealous and extremely insecure. He would call 40+ times in a day, write dozens of letters in a week, and harass our friends, trying to intimidate them because he thought they were lying for me. He has threatened to kill me and leave our kids orphans because he will not go back to prison. He said this not only to me, but also to a mutual friend. He has threatened to "take care of" anyone he feels I am with.
My hope for the future is to show my children that love, respect, and kindness are the foundation of a healthy relationship. I will find myself again and raise well-adjusted kids. I will not live in fear and be constantly looking over my shoulder. I AM A SURVIVOR.