Part One: Our Survivor Story

It has been 31 months since I left my abuser. 31 months since I called the cops and fell to my knees as I realized that life as I knew it was destroyed. My family had been torn apart in a moment. Our son is now 31 months old. I had just given birth when I was violently attacked. I am still embarrassed and ashamed to admit that the man I loved so very deeply decided it was in his best interests to destroy me and my babies. It had taken me 7 months to be able to write what happened to me without shaking and breaking down.

Here is Part I of my Domestic Violence Survivor Story. I should add a disclaimer that parts of my story may not sound completely thorough as anyone who knows anyone who has gone though trauma knows the victim tend to suppress the events of said trauma to protect their hearts. I have been remembering these pieces of my story in dreams and flashbacks of the PTSD I am now dealing with since my assault occurred.

My relationship with my abuser had its normal ups and downs but it also had some huge red flags that I have now come to realize. I am not about to delve into the good days and bad days because, to be honest, there were a lot of good days in the relationship. The bad days were BAD and worse than one could ever imagine.

Our abuser would do things like purposefully sabotage any holidays or exciting events in my life including my sisters wedding and our trip to Hawaii, among many others. He would be very secretive and on more than one occasion I caught him talking to other women on dating apps. He was also very selfish and what he said always went. Colleagues he worked with would joke about me never coming to his work place. Our abuser told me that I was to never come to his work under any circumstance. It was an order. I laughed with them but inside I knew what damage it would cause if I ever did. God forbid they knew the real him behind his phony, charming mask.

Anyway, this isn’t about the two years leading up to the assault. You can imagine the emotional abuse that occurred that tore me down so much as a person that when the physical abuse actually started, I did not choose to leave right away. I felt nothing.

On February 12, 2019, my boyfriend and father of our newborn son Wells assaulted me for the first time when I was 9 months pregnant with his child. He had come home from work for lunch and I made him his lunch like I did every single day. He had been physically present but emotionally absent throughout the last 6 months of our pregnancy and I mentioned it to him when I, again, got no reaction or even a “hi” when he walked through the door. I explained that I wasn’t feeling loved and he got angry. He started yelling and I ran to our bedroom to escape the verbal assault. I closed the door and locked it. Our abuser tried to enter the door and he couldn’t get in. He then, agressively, kicked the door down leaving it in a bunch of tiny pieces and ripping the door frame off. I was terrified at this point and I ran into the bathroom and tried closing the door. He was able to use his strength to push the door open. I was then cornered in the bathroom and I was screaming at him not to hurt me. I don’t really remember what he was screaming at me but the next thing I knew, he punched me in the side of the head splitting my left ear and I was knocked out, fell into the bathtub, and he left me there. It took me two years to realize that I was knocked unconscious. All I remember is that when I got up out of the bathtub, our abuser was leaving the house.

[Picture of the door to our bedroom after the incident on February 12, 2019. Again, I was 9 months pregnant. I only havev this picture because I sent them to his sister via Facebook messenger. I have no other pictures because our abuser smashed my phone and cut up my SIM card on March 23, 2019.]

I don’t know why I didn’t call the cops. I don’t know why I didn’t tell anyone. But I took pictures of my injuries and the bruises all over my pregnant body. They were so bad that 4 days later I was questioned by my prenatal massage therapist about the origin of the bruises as there was a handprint on my back. I don’t know what excuse I made up but I do know she didn’t believe me. My daughter also questioned what happened to me because my ear was split open and she noticed it while doing my hair a few days after the attack. I came up with some sort of excuse then and covered for Richard. I was less than a month away from giving birth. I couldn’t bare the thought of flipping my life upside down right then. Plus, I wanted to help him get better. He explained to me after the attack that he was struggling mentally with life and needed help. I spent the next couple of weeks attending therapy appointments with him and taking him to see doctors. I reached out to his sister and sent her the picture of the broken door but I was basically blown off. I was told that there are two sides to every story and that she was trying to understand both sides. I explained to her I didn’t feel safe at all and that if it happened again, I would call the police. That was disregarded as well. Things seemed to be getting better as the arrival of our son neared but on March 23, 2019. 13 days after our son was born…everything changed and I had to make the hardest decision of my life.

Stay tuned for Part Two.....

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