This post was submitted anonymously.
I wish my mom had left my dad sooner. They were married for 30 years. He was not the kind of crazy that Lea got stuck with, but pretty damn close. He beat my mom and all of us kids down, mostly emotionally, but definitely physically too. He was also very fun and creative, and I can see why my mom was attracted to him in the first place, but his expectations of us were on an uttainable level. Religion and AA also played in. He was the worst to my mom and my older brother, but none of us could ever do anything right. And now in hindsight I can forgive him, and see that he was also the victim of abuse by his father, but it has taken YEARS. Even just seeing his handwriting on old cards and letters made me nauseous, I had to throw them all out. But I have a recipe box that he made his mom, with the hand-painted word “Recipes” on the side, in his writing, and when I saw it last month, I realized it didn’t make me sick anymore. But it’s been 20 years since I have lived in the same town as him. That’s the amount of time and distance it has taken for me to heal, plus being in a stable supportive relationship. It took years for me to adjust to realizing that just because a man is mad, it doesn’t mean he is going to hit me. But my sisters are in their 30s, damaged to all men, living alone, and most likely will be forever unless some serious healing starts to happen. So I guess I am just writing from the side of the child whose parents stay together, when really they shouldn’t. When my mom finally broke free she became the person she should have been all along. She did crafts for pleasure, drank wine, and visited with girlfriends. Things she didn’t feel that she could do while with him. She got to enjoy her life finally, but only for 7 years, because she unexpectedly and suddenly died in 2016, and staying with him for so long made it that much more of a waste. I want this community that Lea is building to succeed, because I want women to feel safe and supported in leaving their partners, especially if children are involved. My family’s circumstance is so minor compared to how drastic and uncivilized it could be, but my siblings and I are a bunch of damaged goods, and all at the hands of one man. Thank you for letting me vent anonymously.
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