#DomesticViolenceAwareness, Domestic Violence, Hope, Uncategorized

Domestic Violence Awareness Month: Anita’s Story

My story started at the age of 17 when I moved in with now ex-husband , then boyfriend. He was twenty three at the time. At first his comments didn’t seem like abuse, but over time he made me feel like I wasn’t good enough to do anything. He always told me if I gained too much weight he’d leave me. He would say things like he could take my son away from me and I’d never see him again. I was scared to even let him take our son to the park. He gave me such a hard time to want to spend time with my family that I just stop trying to do so. He isolated me from my family. Going to church wasn’t acceptable to him, he would accuse me of sleeping with the pastor, and because I wouldn’t respond to him sexually, in his mind I was sleeping around. When I met his friends and they liked me for the person I am, he’d accuse me of sleeping with them, he’d even accuse me of sleeping with his family members. He was an alcoholic and extremely mean when he drank. He called me all kinds of names, and was just made to feel like I was worthless, I didn’t get even a “happy birthday” from him and he’d do the same on mother’s day, just act like I didn’t exist until he was ready to berate me with insults. I would try to get away from him and go to my mother’s house but he would come over and harass her until I left. I remember when I was hanging Christmas lights outside and fell off the chair, I yelled and couldn’t move, my neighbor heard me through her window and called the ambulance. He never came outside until someone went in the house to get him, when he did come outside he just stood there and looked at me like I was stupid. He never came to the hospital to make sure I was okay. I had hit rock bottom emotionally and told him I wanted to kill myself. He looked at me and told me I was too stupid to kill myself, I thought, “I’ll show him,” and swallowed a hand full of pills and downed them with a beer. I called my mom to say goodbye, she rushed over and took me to the hospital where I spent a week in the psychiatric ward. I can recall a day when we were arguing and something inside me told me to leave. I grabbed my son ,who was around three or four at the time, and ran out the door. I jumped in the car , I didn’t even take time to strap my son in. As I was backing the car up he jumped in the driver’s side window to try to stop me. I thought to myself ” fine then we all go,” I slammed my foot on the gas and drove over the curb into the courtyard where we lived. He looked up just in time to let go and as I just missed a tree. When I came back that evening he had taken an aluminum bat to the entire apartment, he broke the bat while beating everything we owned. I truly believe God told me to leave, his voice saved my life that night. I stayed with him for ten years because I believed I could not take care of myself and my son without him. The last two years of us being together is when we got married, he had convinced me he loved me and wanted to spend his life with me. Even though he had emotionally and verbally abused me, I thought he really did love me, so I married him. One year later I came home early to find him packing his clothes. He was trying to sneaking out to leave me. He moved right in with another woman. It took me two years to realize him leaving me was the best thing he had have ever done for me, I later thanked him for it. My next two marriages were to men who abused me in different ways, one was neglect and the other just simply lied to me , wouldn’t work and stole from me constantly. I honestly didn’t know my worth until recently when I finally left my now husband. It was then I realize I am worth a whole lot more than what I have been accepting. I started my catering business, I’m a vendor in two different stores and I am getting ready to launch an online shop. I’m expensive: emotionally, spiritually and financially, any man who wishes to be in my life from now on, has to match all of my efforts, and treat me like the queen I am. 

Photo Courtesy of: Jourdan Buck Photography

Thank you, Anita, for sharing your story. I am grateful you listened to God’s voice and left that night. I am grateful you are safe, and know your worth. What a blessing it is to know royalty.

You are strong.

You are brave.

You are beautiful.

#DomesticViolenceAwareness

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