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My Worst Mistake

My story starts when I met my son’s father. We first met online, and he seemed like a great guy. After a few days, we met in person to hang out. He took me to go see a movie and have a burger. Then, we went to hang out at his house.

Everything was good, until he did something I didn’t approve of. After that, he took me home and left. I was really upset about what he had done, but because he was a nice guy, I decided to forgive him.

That was my first mistake.

Days and weeks went by, and then somehow, we were dating, and I was living with him. At first, everything was good. We were happy, and I was doing whatever I could around the house to help while he worked. One day he came home all mad, and told me that the neighbor saw some guy leave our apartment. That wasn’t true. I was alone all day, cleaning the house.

He didn’t believe me. He hit me in the back and then punched me a few times. I should have left then, and never come back, but I still forgave him. I thought that it wouldn’t happen again.

Over the next couple of years, the beatings got worse. One day when I got home from work, he accused me of flirting with a coworker. When I turned my back, he hit me in the back of the head with a 2×4. I bled a lot that day. When I got pregnant, we were both happy, so I figured he wouldn’t hit me anymore.

I was wrong.

When I was three months pregnant, he went to the room to take a nap while I stayed in the living room watching tv. After a few minutes, he came back into the living room, grabbed me by my hair, and pulled me into the bedroom where he forced me to have sex with him. I just laid there crying afterwards. He continued to force me to have sex with him almost every day for the rest of my pregnancy. Sometimes he would threaten me and tell me that if I ever told the cops what he did to me, or if I tried to take the baby and get him for child support, he would put me in the hospital where I would bleed to death.

After my son was born, he wouldn’t let me raise him the way I wanted. Once, he nearly suffocated my baby and tried to blame it on me. Luckily my son, was fine and is healthy. He still continued to hit me. I missed work because of it and lost my job. I got another job after my son’s first birthday. He would still hit me sometimes, but I was able to hide the bruises.

We eventually had a fight about whether I still wanted to be with him. I told him no, I didn’t care for him anymore. He said he was okay with it, but he informed me that we would still be living together until he had money to get his own place. He would also continue to have sex with me, continue to hit me, and he was going to take my son. He also told me I wasn’t allowed to date for a year.

We only had one truck, so he still drove me to work. One day, he saw a male coworker of mine say hi to me. He asked me if I liked him, Since we were no longer a couple, I thought it was safe to say that I did. I was wrong again. He drove into a nearby parking lot, grabbed me by my hair and swung me around in the truck, My son watched this happen, screaming the whole time.

He then started to drive me back home and told me I couldn’t go to work. I told him I couldn’t afford to lose my job and I was going. He eventually calmed down and took me to work. I had a huge black eye that he told me to hide with my hair. It didn’t work. My supervisor called me into his office to talk to me and had me call the police to file a report.

It took time for my ex to be served with the order. Then, it took more time until I was able to get my son back. Eventually, he was served and I got my son back. On the day of the court hearing, the judge gave me the best news ever: I was my son’s sole parent because his father and I were never married.

I am happy now. I have a new boyfriend who I’ve known I’ve known since before I met my ex-boyfriend. He accepts my son as his own. Everything in my life is great now. The only problem I have is that I don’t know how to cope with my past. So far, counseling doesn’t seem to be helping me very much.

What My Abuser Taught Me

You beat me mercilessly and I learned to be gentle with my own kids.

You said hateful things to me and I learned to weigh the consequences of my words carefully.

You sexually abused me and I learned that I could survive pure evil.

You were a raging alcoholic and I learned to watch my alcohol consumption, lest I become you.

You thought only of yourself and I learned to think of others.

You were angry and cruel and I learned that being kind is worth the effort it sometimes take.

You were a judgemental bigot and I learned to be accepting.

You were a horrible parent and I learned what kind of parent I never wanted to be.

You were a horrible husband and I learned to look for a loving heart before appearance, wealth or status.

You always found someone else to blame for your problems and I learned to accept responsibility for my actions.

You would jump to conclusions and accuse and I learned to listen.

You preyed on the weak and I learned to fight for the underdog.

You lied and cheated to get what you wanted and I learned to be honest and trustworthy.

You told me I was worthless and I learned to find my worth from within.

You tried to break me and I learned I have a strength I never knew was possible.

You showed me who you were and I learned exactly what I did NOT want to be.

You tried to kill my spirit and, in the end, all I had learned, set my spirit free.

Losing Everything

I am forty-three years old – an Interior Designer who has done well for herself over the course of sixteen years. I married thirteen years ago and have four beautiful children. My husband has had a series of losses in his life which turned him into a raging drunk, drug user and abuser (emotionally and physically towards the children and I).

After a series of abusive situations involving the children, I finally made my way to the attorney’s office and filed for divorce. Was that the right thing? I have been nothing but punished since that day in July 2009.

He destroyed the business I have had for seventeen years. He took all the money I had to support me and the children.  He stole from the house and took all the money in our accounts.

He has not only hit me a few times, but he hit the children to the point that child services got involved. After they interviewed the children, they told me I would be charged for never turning in all these abuses in the past year. The children and I are all in counseling.

My first attorney did everything wrong, My second attorney took what money I had left and dumped me because I couldn’t pay any more. A guardian ad litem was finally appointed to our family and I had to pay for that out of the investments I had left. She actually believed him and never interviewed half my witnesses. She also never talked to the boys. Then, I was sent to another attorney (a third one) who said he would finish up the divorce for a flat rate. Well, I can’t come up with the rest of the money. He and my -soon-to-be ex’s attorney seem friendly and I feel like I am just getting screwed.

The worst part about all this is that the children are so messed up from the divorce and the abuse they suffered from their father. I have done everything I can to protect them but the Florida courts don’t seem to care.

We are getting ready for trial now and I can’t seem to get anyone to understand how bad this is for me and my children.

They hide in their rooms when he comes to get them.

My nine-year old ran nine blocks away and called me from a gas station because she was afraid to be with her dad.

My four-year old has seen his father throw me up against my desk and hold my head down as he threatened me. He nearly drowned at his cousin’s house and his father was nowhere to be found.

On his second birthday, he took my son out of his car seat because he was crying and stuck him out the window as I was driving down the highway.

My six-year old keeps getting thrown into walls by his father, his dad calls him pussy boy and tells him he cries like a school girl.

He makes him sleep on a sofa at his house to punish him for his mother filing for divorce.

My eleven-year old is pulling out her eyelashes and eyebrows.

Where am I to turn? I don’t know how to get people to understand what is going on and change this for my children.

I bought my house when I was single and have fixed it up, paid the mortgage on it for eleven of the fourteen years I’ve owned it.

In 2004, I walked into my house to find a lender and a lady sitting there because he wanted to refinance the house. I was stupid and signed the papers not really knowing how bad I was going to be screwed – until now, when I can’t afford food, let alone the house. I am about to be forced out onto the streets.

His attorney is trying to get me out of the house so he can move in. The only reason I would do this is for my children so I know they have a bed to sleep in and a roof over their head, but in the process I have nothing.

No money, no place to live, no support and an attorney who told me to marry better next time. My whole family lives up north and the few friends I have here have their own problems.

I never thought this would be happening to me.

I have gone to the courthouse for help with the abuse center. They can’t help me and just send me to the shelter. I can’t find a job and am so confused. I can’t figure out what is going on.

I guess I don’t know what to do at this point. I have tried everything I can except to just take the children and run away. Believe me, I have thought about this so much, but what kind of life is that for them? What if I got caught and then can never see them again?

Do I just give him the kids and walk away? I know that would kill me. I can sleep in my Suburban for a while, but since I can’t secure a place to live because he ruined my credit and took all our money, I will lose the children anyway.

I am a rat stuck in a very bad situation. Crying is not helping me out of this giant mess. Where did the strong business person go? Why can’t I get anyone to understand that I divorced this ass to make my children’s lives better? Where do I go from here?

How do my children survive this nightmare?

I Don’t Want To Be The Bigger Person

Once upon a time I could forgive anyone of anything.

Hell, I forgave my first husband when he tried to kill our then five month old (after he’d completed his jail time, and I’d received counseling).

My best friend had sex with my boyfriend? Everyone makes mistakes right?

My sister drained my bank account. Well, these things happen.

But I don’t want to have to forgive you.

I lived through two years of our relationship and all of the bad things that it caused me.

You left me countless times. I begged you to stay. You finally came home and asked me to marry you. I said yes.  If I’d known about her then, I would have run over your foot in the driveway as I left.

We got married. I didn’t tell anyone, because no one but me seemed to understand that you HAD changed. No one supported this relationship. My own mother didn’t even find out until a few months later.

Eleven days after we got married, you went back across the country to her. You said things were too hard here. What you meant was that I wanted you to work because it wasn’t fair that I had two jobs. She could support you (or rather her daddy could). You could drink and smoke pot all night with her. I expect you to be clean and sober. Yeah, I guess I could see how that would be hard for you.

While you were gone, I lost the house. My mom took the kids back to her house because I couldn’t work 70 + hours a week and still remember how to make lunches in the morning. I cried every minute of every day, and organized a way to kill myself.

Then you called me and said that you missed me and wanted to come home. So I dropped the $350 to fly you back from Seattle. We decided to make a go of it and told the kids that you were home and everything was fine.

And everything was fine. I’d started opening my heart again, believing that you were honest with me and that you loved me and things would work out.

Until she e-mailed me… She’s pregnant. It’s yours. Your first biological child is due on my birthday. How sweet. You told me that you used protection with her. You said it was safe, that she was on the pill.  You SWORE to me that she was out of our lives FOREVER. And now I find out that I have to deal with her and her spawn for the rest of my life?

You say I’m supposed to be the bigger person? How do I explain to my kids that their “dad” has a kid from another woman. Who will be born the month before our first wedding anniversary? How do I tell my son that it’s NOT okay for a man to treat a woman this way? How do I show my daughters that this is NOT what a good relationship is?

Oh that’s right… By being the bigger person and forgiving you.

Silly me, how could I forget?