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Memoir of a Domestic Violence Survivor: Second Generation Pt. II
This article is a continuation of my last piece. Please, refer to part I if you haven't already in order to understand part II.
- Abusers are well-known for making sure no one else can have you. They belittle you, so they become your only option for a partner.
- Abusers isolate you from friends.
After months of crying to Insecure Guy, who held me, and tried to cheer me up, confirming I had done nothing wrong, a few of his friends became interested in dating me. One by one, they began telling me how fond Insecure Guy was of me until he found out they were romantically interested: “He says how great you are, all of the time, but as soon as I mention that I want to date you, he tells me you're 'crazy' or 'unstable,' which doesn't make sense if he just said how great you are.” After hearing this, several times, I finally confronted Insecure Guy, who never responded, so I cut him off, entirely.
After ending my friendship with him, mutual friends of ours gradually stopped seeing me because Insecure Guy would pester them until they would stop. I don't know what he says to them, of course, but these friends would confess the reason they see me less and less is because of his constant nagging not to associate with me. I have had to end all mutual friendships because I know I deserve friends who value their relationships with me, and can tell the difference between a friend who just wants a relationship, like I do, and a person who wants control over others, like Insecure Guy wants.
- Abusers can be passive; neglect is abuse.
- Devaluing others is abuse.
My most recent ex, I had liked for about eight months before he finally dated me. I never told him I liked him for fear he would reject me. So, I thought I'd get it over with. To my surprise, my liking him made him want to date me. One problem that had always existed was his tardiness, and I don't mean that lightly.
The first time we ever hung out, he was supposed to be at the train station at a set time, but “missed” the train. That is, didn't even leave for the train for another hour or so, but didn't tell me anything until I had driven the half an hour to the station to meet him. This became routine. He wasn't just a bit late. He was an hour or more late, everywhere, because he wouldn't even leave; however, I figured he was worth it, regardless, since we had such great conversations I couldn't have with anyone else, I thought.
We dated for a month, and I finally felt ready to make it official, after he had been asking when he can call me his girlfriend the entire time. Meanwhile, every time I saw him, he was perpetually very late, even when I drove over an hour to see him. Yes, I would drive an hour and twenty minutes to his house, park around the corner at the lot, text him to let him know I had arrived, and then wait for thirty to sixty minutes, sometimes more, for him to come outside. I wish I were exaggerating.
Finally, he was supposed to come over to meet some of my family, after I had met most of the people in his life, and he had met maybe two in mine. I had worked all day, but I was eager to pick him up at the station so that I could introduce him to my brother's girlfriend, who is one of my best friends, and who shares a lot of Mr. Inconsiderate's interests. After work, he told me he missed the first train, but would get the next one. Okay, don't panic, that means I can shower and redo my makeup. There's plenty of time. Almost two hours later, still no word. I messaged him, and he tells me about a situation—which he doesn't actually have to stay for, and he should have told me about, himself; unfortunately, he wouldn't get to the station in time for me to pick him up, and be back for dinner, nor does he suggest getting a cab to my house. I was miserable. No effort after all of the effort I had put into for him.
If you can believe it, we reconciled because I wanted to. I should have known then that he was manipulating me and making me do all of the work, but I liked him too much. That, plus he had told me early into dating that if his next girlfriend broke up with him he would never get back together with her. So, that kept me from being strong. It was very similar to when Bait-and-Switch told me that if I broke up with him, he would need a month to recover before we could date, again. Only, it was more severe.
The next time he came over, he was very late, again. He apologized, and apologized for never coming the last time. Since he didn't have a job, anymore, I took it upon myself to drive there, so he wouldn't waste his money. The last time I drove there, I arrived on his street shortly after 2pm, and text him. He didn't come out until 2:45p/2:50p. When I later confronted him about it, he claimed I waited for fifteen minutes, and then would distract from the subject if I brought it up. A few days later, I made him talk about it, and he broke up with me, claiming he had been thinking about it for a month. A month earlier was when he was supposed to come visit to meet my family, but he wouldn't get on the train. Remember, abusers won't admit when they have done something wrong. They will always blame you and/or act like it's not a big deal that they hurt you.
I hope that these stories help some readers. I'm not telling sob stories to whine or claim I've had a bad life. I'm sharing it because I hope it encourages others in bad situations to get out. You don't need to be physically hurt to be in an abusive relationship. Sometimes, it's hard to tell what's going on when we're with someone who is poisonous. In all of these relationships, I wanted to leave, but was too afraid because I doubted if I was right. Of course, I did leave my best friend, but I never fell in love with him. When we fall in love it makes it harder to know when to leave. I hope that if I am ever in this situation, again, I leave, and I hope if any of you are in this situation, you leave.
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