Sharing Memories (Week 38): Leaving Home & Some Bad MemoriesThese weekly blogging prompts have at times elicited smiles, laughs and a few reminiscing tears. But this one, well, it’s difficult to put down to the written word just what I could, or should, share.
So, I simply drew straws [in my mind], and this is what I have come up with.
Most everyone who knows me, knows that I was married at an early age. I was only 16 years old when I married the man [boy] I thought I wanted to grow old with.
The marriage lasted for 15 years. It was not a pleasant marriage. Oh, don’t get me wrong, there were good times, and five beautiful and wonderful children came of that marriage.
But… it was rife with physical and emotional abuse. And eventually, life threatening.
I won’t go into all the details, but let me share this, in the hopes that no other young woman will ever let herself go through what I did.
I don’t suppose I need to tell you, my parents were not thrilled with my giving up a college education to get married. My Dad was empathetic, but Mom? Well, the very last words she spoke to me before I walked down the aisle of the church to marry my sweetheart was, “You make your bed and you’ll lie in it.”
I was too thrilled to be getting married to let her words ruin my day, or deter me.
13 days later he hit me for the first time. On Christmas Day.
And I know it may sound cliché but the truth is, he brainwashed me into believing that every time he hit, slapped, or punched me, I had done something to deserve it.
I was a young girl, a teenager, playing at being grown up. But I always took what my Mother said to be golden. And I kept my mouth shut, because, after all, she’d told me those famous last words! And with those words still ringing in my ears, my new husband brainwashed me with his. Making me feel guilty for the punishments he rained upon me.
So, why do I bare all of this for my children and grandchildren, and future generations to read? [Not to mention publicly on this blog!]
I want all young women to realize that even if their Mother, or their Father, seems to have the nonchalant attitude, giving them perhaps the same words my Mother gave me, they still love you and will protect you should you be facing abuse from a spouse. And if not, then turn to local support [women’s shelters, even the police if needed] and get out of the situation as fast as you can.
If I can impress one thing upon you it is this: If he hit you once, he WILL hit you again! And a man who will hit a woman [or vice versa!] is capable of taking it a step farther. They can take a life.
And me? I came home from work one day to find he had packed his bags and had them sitting by the door. When I asked what was happening, his response was that he had to go “find” himself.
My response? For the first time I was emboldened, and I replied, “Don’t let the door hit you in the backside on the way out!”
I am certain, knowing him like I did, that he wanted me to cry and beg him to stay. But I didn’t.
Get help. Leave!!! Protect yourself and your children.
Life is much, much too short to live in fear and pain.
Today? I will be celebrating my 15th anniversary to a wonderful, kind, loving man in Februay. And believe me, every day just gets better and better!