James was an 18 year old guy who was good looking, mysterious, the iconic bad boy that was in every single television show and movie I had ever watched. Where the good girl who always fell for the bad boy.
James had green vibrant eyes, his hair was a dark auburn brown. He never answered to anyone, did what he wanted, when he wanted. I never had that life, I lived under a super strict house where I had an early curfew and constantly had to check in. His way of life intrigued me.
We were 18, just about to graduate high school. I went to my first party, drank my first beer, or five. He saw me and came up to me, we started talking and never stopped after that night.
A few weeks later, we started dating. He was very mysterious, I liked that about him. I liked how independent he seemed and how much of a cool guy he was.
I invited James to my high school graduation ceremony, he had told me he couldn't go. It wasn't until a few months later that I had found out why.
After graduation, I had gotten a part time job as a dental assistant. After I would get off of work, I would go right over to see James. That particular summer day, I had met up with my best friend, Shayla. We were about to go get her very first tattoo, I was her support system. I know it doesn't seem like that big of a deal, but at 18, it was.
We had met up with James and told him what we were doing. He lectured me about how I need to save my money. That way, we could get a place together soon. We never had discussed living together, I only had a part time job and was about to start college in the fall. This was my last actual summer before adult hood.
James had shown me one of the best summers I have had. We drank, he had gotten me into smoking Mary J, and sleeping in until noon. I'll be honest, things were going down hill for me. But I was having such a good time hanging out and partying all day.
I wouldn't say I was un-popular in school. I was known, but never seen at parties. I had grown up in a strict house, if I was ever caught drinking or at a party, I would have been grounded for months. James was good friends with some of the 'coolest' people in school. Needless to say, I had finally felt like a cool kid.
By the subtitle, who could have seen that coming?
Yup, I didn't even show up for my first day of classes. James and I had started working for this stupid security company. "Oh how cool, security stuff?" Guess again, we were telemarketers.
Not just telemarketers, telemarketers who never got paid. Yup, the company we worked for were major scam artists. We had probably made around $1200 the four months we were there. We had gone through so many jobs together, moves, and dealt with his addiction to smoking, not just cigarettes, but weed too.
We finally ended up getting our own place, after our roommate started bringing home certain kinds of drugs and certain kinds of people. I convinced James to finally move out with me. We ended up in apartments on the other side of town.
James had constantly thanked me and told me how much I had saved him. He was convinced that he would have never left his roommate if I wasn't there to do so and how he would have probably started doing drugs as well.
Love or lust?
We never argued, never got sick of each other, and never wanted to be apart.
A year and a half into our relationship, when I had thought things were going well. James proposed, his mom gave him his grandmothers ring to give to me. I wore that ring so proudly. James and I were inseparable. We hated to be away from each other.
I remember one night, we were at the hospital, my friend was having her baby. We were all waiting in the waiting room when she was in labor, James and my friends baby daddy were no where to be found. About an hour later, they had came back into the waiting room. Stoned. So stoned that they were just giggling the whole time.
Keep in mind, I have nothing against weed or people who smoke it. I am just sharing my experiences and sadly, James was addicted. People will argue, telling you that there is no way possible that you can get addicted to smoking weed. I believe that is a huge lie, he would crave it.
I would catch James stealing money out of my wallet, selling things around the apartment, buying pot with our rent money. The list goes on. Needless to say, I had to sell things like my TV, laptop, furniture, just to keep our apartment.
A few months later, James had gotten a traveling job. Which was great, it meant more money for us and less of me having to sell things just to keep our apartment.
I remember crying so hard after I dropped him off at the airport, we were never apart. Heck, we even worked together almost the whole time we were together. I know, I know, how pathetic, right? I think so now, looking back at it.
He would constantly call and text me the whole time he was away, which I liked. It meant he was constantly thinking of me and missing me too right? A week later he had came back, we ended up moving into a friends house, we will call him, Sam. Sam had two boys, ages one and three, at the time. The deal was too good, cheap rent if I helped take care of the kids, I wasn't alone all the time, and that we were saving so much money.
Two weeks later, James was getting ready to leave again for two weeks this time. He had his best friend, Travis over and our roommate, Sam. We were drinking and smoking in the garage, when James had came in and picked up a hammer. Walked up to me and started screaming about how I cheat on him all the time and that I was a horrible person.
Travis stepped in yelling how I was a good girl and that I would never do anything like that. He was right, I was always loyal to James. I would never thought about cheating on him or leaving him at any point. He picked up the hammer and slammed it down right next to my foot, I had to move my head otherwise, I would have gotten hit, what a story that would have been.
Cheater, cheater, best friend taker..
A few months later, James and I had gone to Travis' house for his fathers birthday party. James had kept drinking a new beer about every fifteen minutes. By 7 pm, Travis' mom had to drive James home. I was left with mine and James' car, so I had stayed longer and joined everyone for cake and a few drinks.
An hour later, James shows back up at the house, he had taken our roommates car. Keep in mind, James is still drunk.
James came bursting through the backyard fence, screaming about how I should be at home and not at the party. How much of a bad person I was and how much he hated me. He had shoved me in front of everyone and threw a beer bottle at me.
Travis and his cousins had to kick James out, causing a fist fight and three other men to get involved to get him off of their property. Travis told me to go wait in his room, which was upstairs in the house. I ran up the stairs and shut myself in Travis' room, I was embarrassed, hurt, and betrayed by the 'love of my life' I was hurt.
Travis walked into his room about twenty minutes later, saying that I wasn't going to go home, he didn't feel that I was safe there. His mom had set up a bed for me down stairs on the couch. As Travis and I sat on the bed, Travis had gave me a long hug, it was needed, I was in tears. He then put his hand on my thigh and leaned in and started kissing me.
Yes, that is right. Travis, my fiance's best friend, was kissing me. He was pulling the moves on me when I was vulnerable. Travis was like my best friend too, he was apart of our little family we had created. Granted, Travis was a country boy, a player, and very attractive. He had jet black hair with bright brown eyes that were so innocent looking.
Needless to say, we had to get back to the party. We started drinking just a little bit more. I didn't end up sleeping on the couch that night. The guilt had covered me like a sheet. I had never done something like what I had done, I loved James and only James.
Until I started developing feelings for Travis..
I ended up going home the next morning, yes, to James. I opened the front door and there he was with flowers apologizing to me for everything he had done. I forgave him, I wasn't scarred of him like most people were.
That following weekend I had gone to the mall with my friend Shayla. The typical girls shopping day, you know, buying clothes we didn't need and getting lunch. James called me about an hour after we had gotten there telling me to get home. I remember telling him no, then him telling me if I didn't get home within the next thirty minutes he was throwing all of my things in the front yard and setting it all on fire.
James left the following week, he had called me and I had told him that I wasn't happy anymore and that maybe we should think about taking some time apart. That didn't sit well with James, he had told me if I broke up with him he was going to jump off his hotel balcony. This was a phone call that lasted a good four hours. He acted like he did jump or physically harmed himself. He would constantly hang up on me and not answer the phone. Of course I was worried, I didn't want to be the reason for him to do any kind of self harm to himself.
He wouldn't let me break it off with him, this was a constant thing for months. I would try to do it and he would threaten me with harming himself or burning all of my belongings.
Out of anger, I had Travis pick me up that night where I stayed with him multiple times. No, I wasn't proud of myself, I felt bad, guilty, and disgusting.
A few weeks later, I tried to break it off with James again. I was driving, he was in the passenger seat. I had brought up maybe just taking a break from each other for awhile. Whenever the 'crazy switch' would flip in his head, he would get this look in his eyes. The only way I can describe it was that the devil took over his soul. His eyes just showed pure anger, like a tunnel vision, he didn't think, he just acted. I was in the middle of telling him how I thought we should take a break, when I noticed he opened his door.
He opened his door while I was driving at 45 miles per hour. Unbuckled his seat belt and jumped. He jumped out of my truck, onto the side of the road, with the rocks, and trees. Of course I had pulled over, I got out of my truck and ran to him. I was scared out of my mind, who does that?! Who jumps out of a moving vehicle like that?!
James was screaming, he was in pain. I got him back into my truck and went home. He told me that if I left him, he would call the cops and tell them that I pushed him out of my truck while I was driving.
Looking back, I would have loved to see him explain that. A girl, half of his size who was driving, pushed this guy out of her moving vehicle..
A few months later, I had a phone call from one of my old friends who lived a couple of states away. I was offered a plane ticket to go and visit her for her birthday. I would leave on Saturday morning and come home Tuesday night.
I had talked to James about it and he said he was okay with it until that morning. I was packed and walking out the door. He grabbed my purse right off of my shoulder and had taken all my money, I had over $150 dollars in my wallet. He then grabbed my suitcase and started throwing my clothes all over the living room. He gave me the tunnel vision look that he had, his eyes pierced through me.
I had to beg him to leave me at least $20 for food, at least he had given me that. I packed my clothes up, again.
He stormed off into the kitchen, grabbing a butcher knife, and walked towards me. The only thing I could think of doing at the time was running into my room and locking the door. At this point, I wasn't sure what he was capable of. I looked out the window, watching him slash two of my tires on my truck. Realizing that my cell phone was still in the living room, I froze. There was no way to call anyone for help, I couldn't escape. Suddenly it felt like the walls started closing in around me. I watched as he tried to open the bedroom door. Knocking and turning the knob. I tried to find a good place to hide, but realized it was pointless, he obviously knew I was in there.
Not even five seonds later, the door fell to the ground. He charged it and broke it. Still holding the knife, he grabbed my neck with his free hand, pushing me onto the bed. He held the cold butcher knife to my throat, the same one he had used to slash my tires.
I was in tears, panic, all the things you would expect from a 22 year old girl who had a giant knife being held to her throat. If I moved a certain way to try and get away, I knew I would have my name in the newspaper. I didn't want to imagine my own obituary.
He was trying to move his body on top of me, that was my window of opportunity, I lodged my foot into his groin, knocking him to the floor, the knife fell right next to my head. I don't know what had happened, the tunnel vision was unreal. The only thing I could do was run. I grabbed my purse, my suitcase, and ran out the door.
I threw my suitcase into a bush down the street, while I hid in a bush a block away. I had called a friend to take me to the airport, I was cutting close to missing my flight. I stayed in the bush until she had came and got me. I saw James drive by three times, if he would have seen me, what would he have done to me? I still wonder that.
Looking back, I should have called the police. I should have gotten this taken care of, but all I wanted to do was get far away from him and the town I lived in.
I had to turn my cell phone off, as he kept calling, every five seconds. As soon as I landed, I had to change my phone number. I blocked James from every social media website that I had. My truck was towed to me, two states away. He had kept everything else, my movies, my old photo albums, cd's, my bed. You name it, he has it.
Looking back, there are a lot of things I would change. You don't realize how toxic someone can be, how much stress a single human can carry. What it is like to live in constant worry and depression. Until you let go.
Unfolding the truth like laundry
A week after moving and de-Jamesing everything, I received two facebook messages from some girls I had gone to high school with. Both claiming that they had to get restraining orders on James.
Turns out James was a regular member of being in and out of juvy up until he was 18, a few days after I had met him. He couldn't go to my high school graduation, because he had those restraining orders, he wasn't even allowed back at our high school. He had gotten his GED in juvy and now has a few charges under his belt as an adult. I'm not sure for what, but I am perfectly okay with not knowing.
The sensitive bad boy I had known and thought I had loved, turned out to be the monster that hides under the bed. The kind of guy that would possibly make his way to being on crime watch or in the news, I had escaped from. I had to leave the state, hide, and fight my way out, but I made it.
If you see any alarming signs or are scared for any reason, leave. Leave before it gets worse and puts you in a position where you have to start your life completely over again, or worse. If something bothers you, let someone know. Don't keep it to yourself.