One young woman’s nightmare and how today she strives to encourage other young women to heed the early warning signs of an abusive relationship
When I was 18, I went to hang out with my brothers at the shooting range and we picked up one of their friends on the way. His name was Brandon and when I saw him for the first time I was really iffy about him. He was cute, sweet and caring but I had this gut feeling something was missing. We all shot some clay pigeons on the range and he, thinking I’d never shot a gun, thought he was teaching me something new. After my round of shooting and proving my accuracy with a shotgun, I looked back at Brandon and my brothers and said “I think I got the concept of shooting a clay.” They all laughed and Brandon smiled, embarrassed that he’d assumed.
A couple of months later I was in a relationship with Brandon thinking he was the man of my dreams. We all have faults. His was just being grumpy. I was trying to be understanding of his anger and help him through it. We’d been dating for three months when one night I got out of class and had a flat tire on the way home. I tried calling him, but my phone died so I ended up changing my tire and rushing home because I was ready for bed. I was greeted by the pups when I opened the door to our apartment and when I looked up he was standing there with a beer in his hand.
He was livid.
He yelled and cursed at me for lying about where I’d been. He was convinced he’d seen me with another man. I was so stunned I couldn’t say a word. Next thing I knew he was screaming in my face, calling me a whore and a slut. He pushed me down and slapped me with the back of his hand. I was so afraid I crawled away as fast as I could. That was the first time it happened and I remember the first thing I thought of being my initial gut feeling that something was missing when we’d met.
He immediately realized what he had done and asked for my forgiveness. He told me he loved me. The next day I come home to a dozen of roses and a beautiful necklace.
I thought the problem had stopped but it had only just begun.
The hitting continued a couple of times. Then one time we were on our way home from a big concert. He got mad that I wouldn’t let him drink a beer while I was driving, so he made me pull the car over. I was pulled out of the car by my hair and drugged into the woods. He hit me so hard over and over until I couldn’t move. When he finished, he left me there and took my car. I thought I was going to die there. It was the worst feeling in the world. I laid there, stranded in the woods, unable to move, thinking about all the things I could’ve done to get out of this situation. But I was too scared to leave. What if he found me? What if I failed to run away?
I started spending more time with one of my best friends. He got extremely jealous and deleted her off my phone. He told me I was never allowed to talk to her. He took away all my friends and I was only allowed to stay at home. He even made me quit my job so that I had to rely on him to be the sole provider. I had to have dinner ready every night when he got home from work with a beer on the table already opened.
A couple months later, I finally came up with a plan to escape.
He came home early, while I was still making dinner and was upset it wasn’t ready even though he hadn’t told me he’d gotten off. He immediately started screaming at me and throwing things from the counter, while I kept my head down and cooked as fast as I could. He didn’t like that I wasn’t paying attention to his tantrum. He got angrier. He took a chair and slammed it onto the ground. I still didn’t look up. I was too afraid. I was trembling so hard I couldn’t speak or move. I was stunned into complete shock.
I felt the brute force of one of the chairs hitting my back, pushing my body over the oven. He grabbed my hair and started pulling me towards the bedroom. I began to cry, begging him to stop. He threw me to the ground and took the TV off of the wall. I was rolling into the foot of the bed when he broke the TV over my back. He stormed off after that, leaving me to lie in pain. As he started to storm out of the house I yelled something I should have never said. I told him I was leaving, thinking that it’d make the nightmare stop, but it just made matters worse.
He began hitting me with the hot spatula I’d been cooking with and punching me in the face, telling me that there was no chance and that I was worthless. No man would want me.
I started to fight back. I didn’t know what else to do. I thought he was going to kill me.
Someone had called the cops and they entered the room as we were fighting, shouting at us to stop. I got away to them as fast as I could. My eyes were bloody. My nose was bloody. I was crying in pain. I begged them to take him away and to make it all stop. I told them I’d been too afraid to leave and I thought he was going to kill me.
I started to leave and Brandon said something that made the cops turn around. Then he came over and just hit me right in front of them in the face. As I fell I hit him with the hot spatula I’d been cooking with. I woke up in the ICU.
I spent two weeks there, then another two weeks in rehab to ensure my spinal cord was working properly and so that my body could rest.
Afterwards, he found me. He stalked me, sending me pictures of me getting into my car, calling and even showing up at my new job. It was hard to get away from him. I owned my own business, but he would always find out where my office was and what I was doing. He’d show up and ruin my life all over again. He’s gone to jail multiple times because of the protection and restraining order I had against him. I brought a brand new car and had only been in town for one day, when I found pictures on the windshield after work of my friends and I getting into my car.
I sought help from the local law enforcement, but they kept saying they were powerless because they couldn’t prove it was him, but if he was ever never me then I could call at any time and they would arrest him. But he always seemed so close by. I lived in fear for months until I got tired of it. I was so fed up I moved. He found out where I’d moved and broke into my home, while I was asleep. He picked me up and threw me against the wall, saying I was coming home with him and that I didn’t have a choice. When I said no he threw back down and threw a fit. I found my phone and started dialing the cops, but he left.
I came home from work one day, because of a call from the animal shelter telling me that my dog had been placed in the hospital. He’d nearly beaten her to death. When my new community learned about that story they donated so much to help her fight for a chance to live and even provided dog food for her afterwards. The police did everything they could to find something that’d prove it was him, but it wasn’t working. I felt so hopeless and that it was never going to end. I dreaded the thought of having to pack everything up and move again, just because of him.
The last time I saw him, he broke into my house again one night. I could hear his truck, so when he got through the door it was pitch black and I was holding a shotgun to his face. I was done. I made him sit in a chair while I called the cops and he didn’t move until they came to arrest him.
Ever since my dog and I are happy and I feel like I’ve won back our lives. He tore me down in every aspect to the point I hated what I looked like, I hated what I did for a living, and I hated being alive. But the people I’ve surrounded myself with since, have helped me grow and realize who I am. It’s so important to be mindful of who you surround yourself with and it’s important to follow your gut. If you ever find yourself in a situation like mine in any aspect, even if he just curses at you, know that you deserve better.
A man who maliciously curses will hit.
The information provided in any post is provided from an individual(s) experience and should not be used as legal or professional advice.
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