I got out. I was one of the lucky ones who got it. If there is nothing else that you get from this, understand that not everyone gets out. Forty to Seventy percent of female murder victims were killed by someone they were in an intimate relationship with. That number is staggering. I got out because if I went back even once, there was a chance I could become a statistic.
It wasn't easy to get out. It is hard work and sometimes it can feel like it is easier to stay with the abuser than fight. I didn't leave because I couldn't handle the abuse. I had been living with verbal and escalating physical abuse for years. It was when I saw that my children were in danger that I left.
When people ask why they stay they don't understand. The abuse didn't start out right away. It was slow. It built up over time. It was a process of wearing me down that caused me to question myself. His statements about me made me think I was deserving of the names he was calling me. I wasn't good enough.
You are good enough. If your partner tells you that they are better than you, they are smarter than you, and you got a good deal, it is not true. Getting into a bad relationship does not mean you aren't smart. It means that you had faith in a person and they failed you. The failure is not on you. Their actions are not a reflection of who you are.
I was scared to leave because I did not want people to see that failure in my life. I was convinced that I could make it work. The truth is you cannot live with an abuser and get them help. They need to seek after the help on their own. They need time to get their life straight. If they tell you after two weeks that they are changed and turned their life around, don't fall for it. It is impossible to see a change in two weeks. If they have really changed, give it a year and see what happens. It may seem like a long time, but divorce takes just as long, if not longer.
I wanted to work things out, but I didn't want to be treated that way anymore. I had lunch with my ex and his family just a week after I left. His step-mom told me that was just the way their culture is. Culture is not an excuse. If I wanted to go back, this conversation only cemented my resolve. I reported it to the police and I begged him to get help. He didn't change. He said he would but he didn't. In fact, over the years it has only gotten worse. He had the opportunity to show he changed. He had the chance to be a father and failed.
To those in an abusive relationship, it doesn't matter what you have done, it is not your fault. You are worth more. You are precious and loved. No matter what they say, you are loveable. You can find worth and purpose outside of the relationship. Their goal is to get you to stay.
Find a friend, get someone who will stand with you. Don't jump from one man to another to get out. Get out because you are worth it. Get out for your safety. Get out for your life. It will be hard, but it will be the best thing you have ever done.