It has taken me a while to write about this as it dips into my own past and pain. I am Facebook friends with a young woman who I barely know. I was high school friends with her two older sisters and that is the extent of how I know her. I may not know this woman very well, but her post tells a story that I know far too well.

(Grammar and spelling was revised)

Getting beat by a man is different. Do you ever see me with blood? Do you see me in bruises ever? Have I ever had a mark on my face?…Yes – he gets a little rough, when he gets mad or grabs me, holds me, and smacks me a couple of times. Which is way wrong – yes. He knows it, but he wasn’t sober . He does not beat me. There are women who are actually getting beat. It makes me so sick to hear that…Yes, a man should never put his hands on a girl, not even grabbing hair and all, but that is not beating a woman ….I’ve seen women beat. He has never hurt me like other men do to their women, who are in hospitals with bruises head to toe …I’ve beat the s*** out him – yes – so, how is it that people can judge a man for mistakes, but never hear of women being judged? What makes me a better person than him?…He knows that when he drinks, he does want to get ignorant with me, so he has stopped drinking a couple times this year, but not around me. He is doing really good and I’m proud of how much he has changed just to keep us.

This was only half of her post. The other half shared her family’s negative views toward her situation, her working on her anger issues and how she loves her fiancé because they are trying to succeed for their daughter. As I wrote and read her message, her words angered me and pained me. My pain wasn’t just for her, but for their child.

Is her situation any of my business? no…Should I judge her? no…Am I judging her? no…..  I am simply crying for her realization of her situation. I am sad that someone else has fallen into this trap that I recall being in so many years ago also. Until I realized, that wasn’t life…

I had the same thoughts as her. The problem is me, I am the one that is angry and bipolar all of the time. This is what is making him angry at me. He only hits me or treats me like this when he’s drinking and/or high. He will change, because I need him to for me and our child. He doesn’t leave marks, blood or bruises. I fight back, so it’s not always his fault….I had these same thoughts as her…She was me approximately 10 years ago…Me – 10 years later – will never understand why I thought this was normal.

I only felt bipolar and was angry all of the time, because of his drinking and getting high all of the time. Because when he did that, he took all of his frustrations and anger out on me. I didn’t want to deal with him when he was like this. I was way too compassionate and forgiving. I held the hope that he would change…

So, what was my ending point?…my son. My son was screaming instead of talking. My son was covering his ears rather than listening. My son was confused by our chaos. My son saw things that he shouldn’t have saw…That was my breaking point…This was not life. This was not the life that I wanted for my son.

So, I took my 18 month old son and left. I showed my son what life was really supposed to be like. My goal is to continuously show him the most normal life possible. As his father continues to fail him and bring chaos into his life, I redirect my son into better environments and making better decisions. I try my best to reverse his mistakes and…mine.

My son is still in need of speech therapy, and to this day, I blame myself for that. My son is still sensitive to loud noises and I blame myself for that as well. I don’t hold myself fully accountable, but I do acknowledge my part in the situation as I should have left before it ever got that bad.

In that moment when having a child, you think it will open the eyes of your partner. You think it will change them as it changed your heart. You hope it changes them to place your child into a better environment than before. You hope, so that your child doesn’t have to become the subject of a broken home. But often times, because you hope so much, you let go of realization. The reality is nobody can make those changes for them, they have to want to change for themselves.

Just because somethings change for a little while, doesn’t mean it won’t happen again. Just because you think they changed, doesn’t mean they actually have. I learned that the hard way. They may straighten up one type of abuse, but may start conflicting a different type of abuse next – believe me, I know…

For this young woman, this is not okay. This is not normal. That is not in any way shape or form considered love. By continuing to believe in change for him, will only change the way her daughter will see the world. She will start believing that this is what love looks like. She will learn acceptance, because her mother is showing her that example. My son was young enough to not remember my poor examples. Her daughter is still young enough as well. It is more harmful that she stays and that she witnesses constant abuse and anger. She could help break this cycle in society to just say no, I deserve better. Otherwise, she is teaching her daughter that she is not worthy either. I can only pray that she wakes up from this nightmare and shoots for the dream she should be in. Because this is not life…

 

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Written by J. Marie

Mom of three boys. Assistant Manager - Meris Gardens Bed & Breakfast . Blogger . Photographer . Marketing Director . Custom Art . Part-Time Student . Pursuing career in Mental Health Services

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