- Last Active
To those who are saying ‘she had her own agency, she could have left at any time’, let me recount my own story and see if it actually clears things up for you.and 13 others.
In the early through mid-90s, I was in a long-term relationship with a man who was, despite being loving at times, also very emotionally and verbally abusive. There were times when he would come home from work and, in his mind, I would not have done something correctly - laundry, my choice of what to make for dinner, the cleanliness of the house (despite being a neat freak and keeping the house OCD-level clean), my appearance (was my hair a bit out of place or messed up?), any number of things. Maybe it was that he had had a bad day at work, or something else happened to put him in a bad mood. Who knows. I would be greeted with a very cold greeting, no real response to my loving welcome home. At times he would just walk through the front door, slam it, then go to the bathroom and jump in the shower and not talk to me for maybe two hours or more and not even eat the dinner that I had cooked. Other times I would be the one that he let out his anger toward when he had had a bad day (verbally, never physically). Aside from that, there would be times when we would be on the freeway and he would get pissed at somebody who cut him off or did something to bother him, and then I would be the passenger in his moment of road rage. There were times when we would be at a public function, and he would remind me to straighten out my hair or fix my make up or straighten my dress or whatever he thought wrong at the time. There were nights when I would be too tired to have sex, so he would get out of bed and go to the living room and turn on the TV and just sit there in silence watching TV for however long until he decided to finally come back to bed, and when he did he wouldn’t say anything to me -he would just go to sleep. And then at other times, he was super sweet, very loving, attentive, holding doors open for me, etc. I never knew who I was going to get from one day to the next. Did I have my own agency and the ability to leave him at any time? Yes, of course I did. But let me tell you, when you have been with somebody for a long time and you love them with your entire heart, despite the bad things that are happening, there is still a lot of love for them and you still hope that things improve. Not only that, but there is a point when unfortunately you start believing the bad things that they say to you repeatedly and you believe that you can not do better. I stayed for as long as I did because I thought maybe things would change at some point and the bad things would stop and that he would return to being the guy who I fell in love with. It finally came to a head one Valentine’s Day when, while he was at work, I decorated our bedroom with so many helium balloons, had the house spotlessly clean, made him his favorite dinner, had our favorite bottle of wine open and ready, everything that I thought would be perfect for him. When he got home, he went straight to the bedroom and was shouting “what the fuck is this shit?!?!?!????” while stomping on the balloons and popping them. I left him that night.
I don’t fault her for staying because I know what it’s like. Rose-colored glasses, indeed.
Happy 4th, everyone! I’m feeling #blessed to be in our nation’s capital for this holiday. I spent the day walking around the memorials and the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Some displays were very moving, such as:
A copy of the Declaration of Independence:
and Lincoln’s top hat that he was wearing the night he was assassinated:
At the hotel now, resting my tootsies (and the rest of me) after miles of walking in the heat. Going out to see fireworks by the Capitol building later tonight. Enjoy your evening, everyone!