Submitted by: *Becky, Survivor
On average, it takes seven times for a victim to successfully leave an abuser. Many things contribute to someone returning to their abuser, including financial dependence upon the abuser, desire to preserve their family, children, and fear. Survivor Becky shares with us how her abuser’s manipulation of her emotions and his false promises would reel her back in each time she tried to leave.
He was different. Becky had never met someone like him, and something inside her compelled her to give him a chance – several of them. He was ten years older than Becky, and his dad was from the Caribbean and his Mom was from New York City. How crazy could he be?
They dated for three years, and during that time, she left him about a dozen times. The last time he assaulted Becky, he strangled her twice in a drunken rage. She managed to convince him that she was okay and that it was safe to let her leave so she could bring back take-out food for them to eat.
Every time she tried to leave him in the past, he was able to win her back with his charm and broken promises. Becky had become so numb from being abused that she did not realize she was the victim. As an empath, she thought that she could soothe and heal what was wrong with him.
He hurt Becky too many times for her to remember how bad it was. On several occasions, he told her that he was going to “beat the s*** out of her” or kill her. Sexual abuse was his preferred form of abuse, and he violated her almost daily. She was never allowed a break from him and had medical issues from the frequency and severity of the abuse.
Becky’s abuser would always instigate arguments about things that happened in the past and would follow her around to each room to continue fighting with her. She would lay in bed, and her brain would shut down as he became angrier and shouted at her. He wanted Becky to argue with him, but in the end, she stopped responding. He did not care about her or her child, only about himself.
After Becky left, he went on the run. She no longer considers him her problem. Until the next person he is with realizes what he is and leaves, he will be someone else’s problem. Still, Becky would not wish him on her worst enemy.
“Learning to love myself again has been challenging and practical. Thank God I’m not where I was a few years ago. To all of you reading this, please get yourself counseling or find a domestic violence support group as I did. If you need to, join a Facebook support group and open those blinds so you can see life again. You don’t have to be scared. Your story is not over because you are a survivor.”
*Survivor’s name has been changed to protect her identity.
**If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, there is help. You can visit the Break the Silence website at www.breakthesilencedv.org, chat with one of our helpline advocates at 855-287-1777, or send a private message through our Facebook page.
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