There comes a time when we have to admit that things are no longer working. It doesn’t matter if that is in work, life experiences or personal relationships. When the sun stops shining it is time to move on, but how we get to that point is very individual.
I first reached this point within 6 months of starting university.
The work was easy enough but it wasn’t what I wanted to do, and I was still as alone with my kinks as I always had been. Just now there were more people to be different to, the crowd was bigger and my loneliness was stronger. I cut and ran, moved back home with my mum, got a job and started a college course. College was great, I was the only girl with 14 guys. I was in my element, ever the tomboy I enjoyed weekends teaching some to kitesurf, spent evenings with the “pig boys” smoking weed and playing mario-kart. Oh and we studied hard together. This all changed in the new year. I had turned 20, and work was busy.
There was a pub across the square to my restaurant. One of the waitresses was leaving and I was invited to her leaving do. After hanging my coat I found my way to the bar and looked around for a familiar face. There was P, further down, looking at me with a wonky smile. He had a beer in one hand and a whisky glass raised in the other. The night that followed involved me winning lots of drinking games, dancing with acquaintances and ending up in his room watching some movie that I can’t recall. He and I fell into the routine of sex, smokes and a takeaway. Two weeks later he texted me from his toilet “I love you”. My reply from his bed “thank you”
This is my chance for a normal life
I had been trying to switch off the urges for kink, and had been open with P about my past. He accepted me the way I was, better yet he loved me after just two weeks. Four weeks later he said “wouldn’t it be funny if we told everyone we got engaged” I laughed along, it was funny!
Then we decided to get married in the march, a mere six weeks further along. My mum pointed out how fickle I had been in the past and urged us to wait until the autumn. Over the next six months I was discouraged from spending time outside of college with my friends, the pig boys, unless P was with me. And he always wanted to come with me out on the boat when I went wakeboarding. My circle grew smaller, and with it my confidence. But it was ok, because he loved me.
I cried all of the way to my wedding
Was it just nerves? A sense of impending doom? Perhaps even excitement, as I told my bridesmaid, mum and brother? I couldn’t tell you. We moved shortly after the wedding, my new friends were his old friends. We moved again six months later, back to the town we had got married in, spending time with his friends, my new social circle. This was normal, surely? The normal that I thought I needed anyway. And when he started to drop the word “slut” into conversation or question my promiscuous past I began to believe that I wasn’t to be trusted, and shut myself away.
A couple of years in he started working 9am to midnight, six days a week. I reconnected with some wakeboarding friends. Spent many happy evenings with the boat boys, but he could not understand that it was platonic and accused me of messing around while out on the boat with them. Not long after I started seeing them again he suggested we try for a baby. It is only recently I have begun to question his motives in asking… We had been married four and a half years when our eldest son arrived. My world shrunk, my confidence all but vanished. Every waking moment was spent looking after the baby and P. By the time baby number two arrived, 5.5 years later, I wasn’t me anymore.
No longer even a shadow of my former self, I was nothing.
I’d become conditioned to accept the way he spoke about me and to me. Taking up running was a great way to get some time to myself and do something just for me. But when I got home he would sniff me, accuse me of having sex with other men rather than running. This, apparently, explained why I was always flushed when I got home.
The way he treated me in front of our children was awful too. Had I seen another being treated like that I would have been appalled, but he loved me so this must just be what I deserved? Even when he raped me, with six-week old son #2 asleep on my chest—He hasn’t slept since he was born, you make a fuss you’ll wake him up, and who knows when he will go back to sleep—I took it, because that was what I deserved, and he loved me, if only I could be a better wife.
Desperately unhappy I wondered if I should try to get some of my old self back.
I remember one occasion, during a thunder storm, asking if I could give him a blow job in the dark and secluded garden. He laughed in my face for two whole hours, calling me a freak and saying that I was weird. Not a week later he grabbed me by the hair, mashing my face into the kitchen cupboard and pulling down my trousers he started to spank me, hard.
“This is what you want, is it?” He literally screamed into my ear.
“No, stop it, please stop.” came my whimpering response.
He did, eventually, and I fled the room in tears. I think I knew then that I was no longer able to stay for the boys. And as his behaviour deteriorated further I began to gain a little strength. With his moods came name calling and the start of emotional abuse to the boys. Something in me started to wake up, and things were in motion; this was not ok!!
As Sophocles said, it was time to say goodbye to the sun that shines for me no longer.
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I cannot express how desperately sad, reading this made me feel. Knowing this and knowing the amazing you now, only confirms to me what a Fricken Amazing, strong, courageous woman you are. Sharing your story will undoubtedly show others who are going through now, what you did then, that they are not alone.
Thank you Bea. Strength shows itself when we least expect it, and reflecting back on dark times serves to remind me how far I’ve come.
Since starting afresh I have met some wonderful survivors of similar situations, it is frightening how abuse works. it’s almost textbook. 5 amazing friends with 5 different abused lives which stop at various points over (essentially) the same story.
I’m one of the lucky ones, because I’m free from that now. And I have found such joy because/in-spite of these experiences.