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How do I get over an abusive ex-boyfriend?

Tagged as: The ex-factor, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (6 December 2004) 193 Answers - (Newest, 5 February 2013)
A , anonymous writes:

Hello...here's the story- I went out with a guy for 4 years who I loved with all my heart and when we were together the first two, things were okay but he always had a really bad temper and things started getting bad in our relationship- he would come to my job and flip out(bc he thought that I cheated) almost causing me to lose it- but then he bought me a ring and promised me he would get counseling and we went together- but things always ended up falling apart- anyway...the day I broke up with him(which was a year and a half ago) he decided to try to put his hands on me In the car so I threw him out and wouldn't take him back. He finally got with someone else and stayed with her for about a year. Now I hear he broke up with her, and I see him everywhere when I go out- The first time he saw me, he said something cocky and the next night, I had it and blew up at him- He even tried to talk to one of my friends to introduce her to one of his so that he could talk to me- By the end of the night he threw beer in my face because I would not talk to him- and I got him kicked out of the bar. Then he turned around and told my friend he LOVES ME and he is hurt by what happened to us!!!!!!!!!

Let me inform you that I put a restraining order on this guy so i went to the cops and got him arrested for violating it. Heres my question- after ALL THAT DRAMA how come I still think of him and don't want to see him with noone else?!!! Is that CRAZY or what?!!! Sometimes when I think about us and the good times I still get teary eyed- but then I think about all the rotten things he has done and I tell myself it could never work- Why am I feeling this way? And how can I stay strong to not want to go back with him? Is this love or obsession? What is your input on all this? THANKYOU!!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (5 February 2013):

Hello,I read your post and felt so sad because I'm going through something similar. I dated a guy for about almost four years. At first it was the best, I thought I had the best boyfriend and sweetest guy ever. I believed with all of my heart he loved me and he couldn't do anything wrong. But then the strange messages and calls started to appear on his phone. I couldn't touch his phone and if I did he would grab the phone and get angry. Either way I sort of knew I he was cheating but never had full proof. Then the insults started after that he would beat me up almost every weekend of even during the week, only because I demanded answers of the calls or messages or maybe just because he hates my friends, something I did, some where I went or because he thought I cheated.

We broke up but even after all this I would always miss him and take him back. I don't know why. Today I'm pregnant with his child and he doesn't give a damn. He has some else now, a woman who's almost ten years older than both of us. I can't forget him I don't know why!!! I don't want him back but also hate seeing him with her. I to want to know is this an obsession or love....

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 July 2012):

Im 47 with a m an for 4 years, hes 50. He was seperated when we met and promised for 4 years to divorce. He said he didnt love her anymore and waited til the youngest was old enough to leave. Hes also a drinker. I dont have family here. We were very in love and I got engaged after 2 months. As soon as I got the ring his ex-wife was calling every day to talk to him and it upset me alot. Shes with a livein man 5 years now. Their kids are grown up they married young. I was also abused by his sister and lately his father. They are all very controlling and they never let u talk (except the man Im with). Hes taken hundreds from me and wont p ay me back-and his dad takes hudnreds from him and im on welfare so i only have 100 to liveoff a month. When we first moved together and she was calling - he started to turn on me and told me to get a man for sex and that he did not love me anymore (before he was in a rehab). One day I came home and he had broken into my bank account and took money and lied about it and also i had hidden month under my mattress and he took most of it to drink. I left everything but my clothes and moved back to my cit its 700 miles with little money and I didnt have a job or place to stay- I also ended up homeless due to home at another point. I really loved him- in other ways hes so gentile and caring- he cares that i eat well, that i sleep well that im home safe etc but in other ways he could care less about my feelings. He just told me last night after 4 years that "I told u for 4 years I still love kathy and i was trying to get her back when i left here 14 years ago"- and i exploded. They talk all the time on their cells in secret calls- neither will stop talking to each other. So lately i decided to start dating and i have a date tonight and i told him........dont htink he believes it. He told others he wont marry me and he tried to make me look crazy with her family and friends and he told some people Im nuts when its all untrue. Im here alone. He kept me from friends due to his possessive nature. He tried to control what I wear, when I shave, when i bath and how I talk. He always is right hes never wrong. He also got me believing that I cant cook so i gave up cooking altogether. His father is the same with his mom but she died 4 months ago........she was controlled too..

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A reader, anonymous, writes (10 June 2012):

We all have "war stories" to tell. I was nineteen and it lasted thirty-two years on and off. The easiest way to tell to you is think of the bad times and never think on the good. The good times will get you right back with him and it never ends good. I went back for one last try one too many times and was almost killed.

I kept thinking if only I would earn enough money so I went to school and have three undergrad degrees and one master. I earn enough but it did not stop the abuse. I cleaned the house and cooked meals until all I did was work at home or at my great job. I had his son and supported him without one penny of child support and took him back after our child was raised.

I could never be smart enough, pretty enough, or skinny enough to be treated with any respect and when I stood up for myself when he was beating me so I knew who was in control one last time he came very close to killing me.

I now am six months after the fact and know that I do not have any desire to see him and I am through trying to be what he needs to make him happy. I am now enjoying who I am and I like me.

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A female reader, shazzyshaz New Zealand +, writes (31 May 2012):

He sounds exactly like my ex. My ex is so verbally abusive and I have allowed it to happen for over 4 years now. When the abuse started I was such an emotional wreck and at one point tried to take my life. He constantly blames me for everything that goes wrong in his life, his cheating, him not going to work, him being broke, he starved the night before because I wouldn't come over and take him out for dinner. Him not seeing his kids, and the list could go on and on and on. He say's nasty things about me to others and has no problem embarrassing me. Blames me for putting him in the cells for the night as he threatened to kill me and his daughter while he smashed up the place, and forever threatening he's going to kill me. I hate the way I'm forever treated and hate how i allow him to come back into my life. He knows how to charm me for a couple of days or a week and then theres that Jekel and Hyde. I know I deserve better and I really don't think I love him anymore, but it's that cutting complete ties with the man. I try my hardest now to move on, not reply, and invision that i will meet someone that will amaze me with how wonderful a good man can be. I know what I want in a man, but it's allowing myself to accept that I can be happy in a healthy loving relationship, that's why we call them partners. There equals, not the dominant and the oppressed. I say to you all in the same situation, Please keep strong, give it day by day, think positive and allow yourself to be happy within, and I will try my damn hardest to do the same xo

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (14 March 2012):

When you think of him think of only the worst of times and know that if you ever got back with him they would continue. If you are out of the so called "relationship" the hardest part is over. Work on building your self confidence and becoming independant so you are in control of yourself. If you find yourself thinking of him and missing him you clearly are not keeping yourself busy enough doing postive things. If you get back with him because you miss him then who's stupid? If you have left an abusive relationship and go back to it I call this selfish because you going back to him involves your family and friends who will worry about you and your well being. Is that fair? Move forward and never look back!!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 March 2012):

its addiction my love and the control that they have over us.... stay away and get on with ur life u will be alot happier, i did it although my abuse led to drinking and depression u dont want that!!! im on the mend now, i was with him 15yrs i left him 4yrs ago they destroy ur life..xxx

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A reader, anonymous, writes (7 March 2012):

I spent 4 years with my highschool sweetheart he was my everything i was 16 when i stared seeing him i was young and didn't know any better. after a year together i moved in with him we would fight all the time throw thing at each other and we fought all the time because he wouldnt stop trying to get with other women but i loved him so much. i eventually got fed up with being hurt by him and moved in with my sister then found out i was pregnant a few weeks later so i took him back it only got worse he stared hitting me and calling me names it was the worse after my daughter was born i have been split from him for nearly a year. and i met some one new everything was going great until last night he decided he didnt wanna be with me anymore so we got into a fight and he hit me for the first time there was warning signs he had told me about he had abused his ex but i thought he would never do it to me i tried my hardest to make him happy i miss him so much and would give anything for him to be here with me but i know from experience it only gets worse he done it once it will more likely happen again so i am gonna try and move on hoping i find something better i am just glad my daughter never saw it but i am charging him with assault i let my daughters dad get away with it and i will not let him get away with him he knew how i was abused i had told him all about it and he did it himself

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (3 March 2012):

forget him and move on.

never trust bad boys.

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A female reader, sweetypie1989 United Kingdom +, writes (2 March 2012):

came across this page so thought i would also share my story.

i met him 2 years ago on a night out, i should of like many of us seen the warning signs there and then as soon as we made eye contact he just stared at me ( 4 hours in total) until i gave in and gave him my number, he rang me the next day he was so funny sweet charming and cheeky (perfect) again the second warning sign he texted me all that day but if i didnt text him straight away he would question it i just thought it was "sweet" he likes me this much he can't enough.

He would then ask me to be his gf i would laugh it off we had only seen each once, i went to his a couple of weeks later and everything was perfect we became a couple not long after that, i ened up being with him constant,he would say things like i just like you that much i cant get enough i wanna spend every minute with you, he would confide in me with his problems (abusive step father,ex's taking advanatge) third warning sign hes first love saw him beating his mother up and left him hes next gf up and left leaving everything from make up to clothes, i just over looked it.

On our first valentines day thats when hell started for me,i found a text he had sent to another girl,he dined it,got very anrgy crying then he hit me,i was in shock but i rang the police it went to court ect but i dropped it and got back with him, he ened up moving in togeather and when he knew i was "his" he got worse, i wasnt allowed to gulp loadly when i drank,i wasnt allowed to eat crunchy food, i wasnt aloud to pass wind, he would take me shopping but tell me what to wear "if you dont want to wear it you dont have to, but you would look so attractive in that" what woman doesnt want to please there man? i was told arent i lucky to be with him as he could have any woman he wanted.

The abusive got worse,he had sex with my friend in front of me because a 3 some would be so pleasing for him and i was such a "good" gf. i was humilated in public constantly, i wasnt allowed to sleep in the same bed as him and i had to beg for a simple cuddle. he was soo clever at what he does he had hes friends wrapped around his finger, he says all the right things, i have been apart from him for 4 months now the last straw was a black eye were he was broken my eye socket,i still miss him everyday and am struggling getting my head around why he did this to me, because i will never trust another man ever again.

I have heard he is seeing someone else now and it sickens me, what if he treats her better,he did say to me once that his "next" would be treated like a princess, i struggle to sleep at night and i am constantly thinking about him, the good parts the bad parts,but on a good note, i have all my family back and my true friends by my side and i have started counselling, even tho i miss him terribly i am happier than i was when i was with him so thats something that makes me feel better and makes me realise i made the RIGHT move by leaving, which by the way i am blamed for and was toruted for a few weeks for leaving himn and to remember I threw it away, he really does not see that how he treats women is very very wrong and anyone who stands up to him or leaves him they have done him wrong, its very sad...i am sorry it was so long...remember girls they dont change i could of come out of this worse off in hospital or dead xxxxxxxxxxx

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A female reader, clarky United Kingdom +, writes (28 December 2011):

OMG i was shocked to read this although my story is different but kind of similar. he was amazing for the first 6 months then when i got pregnant with his son the violence started an verbal abuse. he used to tell me not to wear certain things an call me fat etc. after our son was born tho he beat me to the point where i was in complete shock just for goin to a pub with his sis for a coke. anyway to cut along story short weve broke up an got back together dozens of times an everytime weve broken up im obsessin about everything all the good times etc but also hate all the things hes done. this time tho i wanna forget him for good as he beat me to the point i thought i were gonna die a week b4 xmas an said after he cant be bothered with kids this year an hes goin to his mums for xmas. so i told him to get out an never come back an also got him put in jail for xmas day. hes contacted me about his son but in the past when weve broken up hes never been bothered about him just a way to see what im up to i think. if he wants him that bad he can go court. thing is tho hes completely took over my thoughts an ruined my life. i lost 5 st cse he called me fat. i no hes datin as checked his tagged an he was tlkin to someone the day after we split. iv tried to like other men but i cant. had a rebound b4 but still thought of him. dont understand how i could love such an animal really

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A female reader, somebodyloved18 United States +, writes (22 October 2011):

Here's my story...

I'm only eighteen and just graduating out of school and i 'm currently getting out an abusive relationship, physically, mentally, and emotionally. i thought i was just being to caring to him or smothering him every time he said "your a pest" or "your a nag". but i should have known, me and my ex were in a relationship for three years he was my high school sweetheart, he was my first everything i loved this boy so much i just couldn't even fathom not being with him but when the abuse started i had doubts.

we were in the relationship for about six months before he started saying i was neglecting him and ignoring. i had a party for my birthday and he stayed in the corner the whole time i tried to dance with him but he just acted anti-social i should have known something wasn't right when he started saying things like "this relationship isn't the same anymore since you showed your true color at your party"

I tried for along time to please him i would buy him stuff and i would bring him places with me around my family and for a while we were cool but a year into the relationship i started suspecting he wasn't so faithful as he claimed. i made myself a face book and i decided he needed one because he was so anti-social to people but boy as i wrong i didn't fault him for having so many friends it's just that when girls would comment on his pictures and say inappropriate thing he would answer back and say in-box him or text him. i questioned him about it and he would get mad and yell and cause a scene.

Then that's when the abuse started he would say i was jealous of the girls he talked to as friends or would say there just Hoe's and he just talks to them when he needs something. i guess i just wasn't getting the bigger picture because i was really missing something. when i would question him about who would be texting him early in the morning or late at night he would say it was jux a friend or somebody just playing on his phone. i called the number's back it would be girls saying they were involved and had been for months. by this time i was just emotionally depressed and physically strained i had entered my last year of school and had finally got a part-time job and the stress was piling on more and more. i tried talking to him about everything that was going on but as young, dumb and naive i was not realizing he didn't even care to shakes bout me. he would hit me when we argued bout something and he had a biting fetish that was unbearable.

as the months progressed we did the roller coaster ride for so long i don't know when we got back together. by this time i had three pregnancy scares and a drug problem that i'm still battling with today.

i would cry my self to sleep still feeling the need of his company. he called me every name under the sun but a child of god, i had weight issue but he didn't care about my feelings.we would fight and he would kick me out his house and call me a fat bitch and say go home you fat bitch and eat. i thought to myself all his other girlfriends where no size two's. i started to eat one time a day so i would seem fat and hungry.i too believe i was just to much to handle. i loved him with all my heart and would do anything for him. we had our good moments where we would have simple arguments and then make up but the last fight we had he choked me and squeezed my face to where my mouth was cut up from my braces. he always said if you scream it will only get worse. i would fight him off and but it would only add fuel to the fire. his auntie would just say stop all that fighting somebody might get hurt and go in her room.

I figured it was time to give up my relationship when i got bruises you can see. even though it shouldn't have gotten that far i was just naive to what was happening i felt like he was the only person in the world for me, he made me feel safe when we weren't arguing. after reading this story i know I'm not the only one in this world who has taken something from somebody and wants an answer and a resolution but even when you see the answer you still have to solve it by yourself.

i am still trying to love my self wholly after this. i have only been broking up for a few short days but i just needed to tell my story. i hope somebody gets touched my this even if its just one person at-least i helped somebody.

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A female reader, JennaMay1990 United Kingdom +, writes (15 July 2011):

I'm going through the same dilemma. I absolutely understand. I went through a faze of romanticising about him, hoping he would change and forgive me for taking him to court due to his violent behaviour. After time went by, he went started dating a mutual friend of ours, I was so heartbroken and spent the whole night wollowing in my own sorrows with a bottle of wine. It took a while to get over, about a month at the least. But once that feeling went and accepted it was over for good I didn't have that heart-achey feeling anymore. It just went. Because I knew age was a fool to go out with him. Sooner or later the same will happen to her and she'll understand how it was for me. I feel better off without him as he was never good for me neither THE ONE. He hassled me alot for taking him to court, and sometimes tries to contact me even in his other relationship. We live in the same area term time as we study in the same uni, so I have to put up with it for another year, hopefully it will just be that. You need to turn to more positive things, I know more than anything that it takes strength and I sometimes feel like it still, it's all about beating the past, looking to new destinations, maybe travel for a while or even move away and make a fresh start! I am moving away next year to escape this place that haunts me of all those horrible memories in the relationship I had last year. It'll get easier. Make sure you surround yourself with those who love you and you will soon not need to need this awfull guy who hurt you. Your life Is precious, please don't go back and risk your future or life, trust me I know, I nearly lost out on my education due to my ex, but I managed to escape whilst I could, you now have a chance to experience REAL love. I loved my ex and I understand you did too, but is love worth risking your future, your life, your well-being? No, you can do anything now if you put your mind to it, in the end he will always have failed relationships due to his behaviour but you have a chance at finding an everlasting love who will love you truthfully and keep you secure and safe, and more imporantly happy! Please take care. Jenna x

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A female reader, ms.psychology United States +, writes (14 June 2011):

PLEASE READ !!!!!!!!

I thank God I didn’t get the STD he received from a bimbo he was messing with.....

(my body once put a hole in a wall from being thrown into it)

Tired of being tired, enough is enough 24, MS, QMHP pursuing a Phd., BUT NECK AND BACK PAINS that will not go away.

I am 24 years old. I have been in a verbally, physically, and emotional relationship for the last 9 years. I have two children a boy and a girl by the guy. I believe I love him with all my heart, and some portion of me always will however I am aware I have taken too much. Our relationship started when we were neighbors we use to play together as kids. By the time we both entered High School we ended up following in love. He was my first, however I was not his. I ignored several attempts from a girl, which told me numerous times he had raped her and was abusive, because the prince I saw wouldn't dare do any of those things... Little did I know that by the time I was graduating from High School almost two years in our relationship pregnant walking across stage that abuse was beginning. When I was pregnant he pushed me into a tree because I wanted to go home, because we got into an argument about him having a relationship with another girl. He didn't want me to go...

I was at the time, so I thought a strong minded teenager, that would have fought someone for putting their hands on me, however for some reason I just cried and he took me back to his house. He apologized, but I will never forget that night, because that was the first encounter..........

I moved in with his family, we got into arguments because I found out he was a porn addict, internet porn and a huge computer box filled with porn in his room, vhs, dvds, pictures, magazines, websites on the search menu, everything. He burned some of the items, however that didn't stop me from finding porn evidence......

I graduated three times since I got into a relationship with him. I am once again 24 years old and I am working on a PhD in Psychology.. I am a mental health counselor and at times I get scared because I believe if I allow him to continue to degrade me and my own stress overpowers me, I will not have a career any longer. I am successful and very verbal. In the past I have gotten blackened eyes, swollen lips, lots of property damaged including my car window, my current homes bedroom door has a hole in it, which it received just last year and over 50 other items in the last 9 years. I went through abuse so much even pregnant with my second child that the police refused to come to my home, unless i pressed charges.........

I moved to a different state to get away from him however that did not help, since I moved him in with me and our children. I do not have any proof that he has cheated, however several different situations has been presented, which points to several other females and him having a relationship............

The year I overdosed on several different types of medications i found out he gave all my Valentines gifts to a girl he had been talking to, just a few days after I broke up with him one of the times in the last 9 years. I am ashamed of all the damage I allowed myself to go through, I cannot post all that actually went on this length of time, however I lost several friends, and most family members are tired of hearing about it. His family does not believe he does the things I have said. He attended Anger Management and that still did not help. I thought for a while we were doing good, but just yesterday he called me a "Lying B..." because he went through my phone and saw a guy he saw me with in a picture at a time we were not together sent me a message on facebook. Last night I deactivated my facebook page and turned off my personal cellphone and is only using my work phone. I told him he can call to talk to the children, but that is it. I am ashamed of everything.

I refuse to allow my daughter grow up and believe a man should treat her like daddy treats mommy, or my son treat another female as daddy treats mommy. My children have seen too much, especially my son... He is recently turned 7 when he was much younger, he often ran into corners and defecated on himself because he was scared of how we fought. I don't like being upset and not being my full self. I am praying daily for strength and asking God to forgive me for not loving myself. He has just called and after he talked to the children I hung up. His voice annoys me.................

I am glad I did not marry him, even though he proposed three different times. We argue about everything. He is not supportive, he tries to be nosey, He lies about going to work, or anything and tries to start fights so he can go places. When I tell him we are over he neglects his children and acts like they do not exist. I have a charge on my record for arguing with his mother about something she had nothing to do with. We both are children of abusive parental backgrounds, but I have made the decision to break the cycle. I will accomplish more goals, I forgot my worth, so I am trying to remember it.... Even though I have been raped, hit, punched, choked, spit on, kicked, and so, so much more... I am still alive and I am not only a role model, but I have the most important job on the earth and that is a MOTHER..

My children will know how to be a strong individual by looking at me.. I hope that I will get that man one day, that does not want to smoke, argue or degrade me, but instead complete all duties that a honest man should do... I am waiting, until then I will continue to pursue my goals, and acknowledge the power I have.

I believe abusive individuals take it as a challenge to break down a strong individual... I’m building back up and when he is going to the left...I'm going to the right.

Much love and support with loving yourself and your children.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (11 June 2011):

I was 25 when I got with my first childs abusive dad, then I got with another guy for 10 years he controlled me with my 2 kids that did not belong to him, MY ADVICE Leave town, get out the first time they call you bad names, hit you or belittle you, my husband burned me in the end with a woman 22 years younger, I still thank him!!! She ditched him too, men who abuse women are LOSERS, you have a choice LEAVE!!! ITS YOUR CHOICE!!! I have not been abused now for 9 years I claim VICTORY that I am alive, I LOST BOTH MY BOYS GETTING OUT THEY WENT TO GRANDPARENTS, NO MAN IS WORTH YOUR KIDS I just now have my 14 year old back my other son 20, HOLD YOUR HEAD UP AND DON"T LOOK BACK!!! I am 46 now bought my own trailer and I answer to no body but myself!!! I love life WITHOUT ABUSE!!!! If you choose to stay in an abusive relationship YOU ARE WASTING YOUR PRECIOUS TIME ON THIS EARTH, YOU HAVE A CHOICE GET RID OF THESE LOSERS MOVE FAR AWAY AND LET THE NEXT DUMB WOMAN TAKE THE ABUSE BECAUSE ABUSIVE MEN DO NOT CHANGE EVER!!! I have watched both exes go through more than 10 women each, now I know how dumb I was to stay, I wasted my life!!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (4 May 2011):

Warning this may be long but this matter is close to my heart.

It is so heartbreaking to read everyones stories, why such unpleasant (to be polite) things happen to beautiful strong wonderful women is beyond me but I guess life has it's moments and the most important thing is that you take the lesson and embrace it to become a better person.

My story is no different from anyone else who posted here. He came out of nowhere and swept me off my feet. We were together for a year and a half and I can honestly say that time was the darkest time in my life, I could not see the wood from the trees, I stopped functioning like an ordinary human being.

He started off sweet and wonderful in the beginning, I was starved for love and I am sure he could smell a willing and ready victim in me. But truth be told, even the first moment I met him, alarm bells went off deep down somewhere. All those red flags they tell you about rose up and would not go away but I did not listen. Biggest damn mistake of my life.

I was abused in every way imaginable. It started of with the jealous and controlling behaviour, I started feeling like a trapped lab rat. He was very smart and maniplative and if one tactic didnt work he would dig away at me until he found one that worked and boy would he harp on it. It moved onto sexual abuse, I inisited on using condoms and he refused, one night he just pinned me down and raped me. I remember trying to move and fight and plead but it was to no avail. After he was done he would not let me sleep in the spare bedroom and made me cuddle him that night. Next day he came with tears and sob stories and apologies and like a fool I fell for it. He also broke condoms or punched holes in them (not sure) and I ended up falling pregnant. He had always spoken of a baby wanting a baby with me. I think he wanted to trap me and have a connection with me forever through a child so that I could not go anywhere. No need to go into detail but one point of clarity in the situation was not letting him have that.

This excuse of a man had no money, no job and was basically a hopeless loser who was blessed by God with good looks and a silver tongue and used it all to his advantage. He would insist on taking me to work so he knew my movements and so he could gallavant and drive around my car showing off to people as though it was his. He would leave me in the house with no means of transport to get anywhere and on few occassions when he was highly suspicious he would even lock me in the house. One time he followed me to a friends place to ensure that I was were I said I was. The verbal abuse was intense, he could go either go on and on at the top of his voice or sneak it in like slow poison...either way worked my soul felt beated into submission.

I have no idea why he was so suspicious of me because he was busy with half the female population of the southern hemisphere to the point where one time he bought a woman to my house whilst I had gone away for the weekend. My house, the house I worked hard to get and maintain, the house that I let him stay in rent free out of the goodness of my heart, he disrespected by bringing another woman there. I actually lost count of the number of women he cheated on me with. He even infected me with an STI and then blamed it on me and beat me for it! And like a brainwashed zombie I went along with it after those punches I would have admitted to anything quite frankly.

Then came the physical abuse. That is when things hit a crisis point for me. It started with breaking my property, pushes become shoves, slaps become punches and soon I was hiding bruisies and keeping a safe distance from him whenever his voice raised above a certain level. I also learnt to keep my mouth shut and was constantly walking on egg shells. I looked like a deer caught in headlights.

I had no friends left and my family was constantly worried about me. I felt so alone. Everytime I would break up with him or find the strength to leave he would harrass, cry, beg, plead, promise, cajole or frighten his way into staying in my life. At one point he even came to my place of work and would not leave threatening to cause a scene. I was mentally exhausted I just relented. Plus it didnt help that his friends who only saw the charming side of him where constantly calling begging on his behalf. Who knows probably they didnt want to deal with him and palmed his sorry ass on me.

He humiliated me in public many times. He lied to me a billion and one times. He called me every name under the sun. He degraded me and treated me with the amount of contempt that a person has for the scum at the bottom of their shoe. He watched me cry, lose incredible amounts of weight to the point I was swimming in my clothes, found out I was going for counselling and put the fear of God in me with his threats of if I ever went back he will show me what he really is made of, watched me drown in depression knowing full well he was the cause and smiled at all that and enjoyed my pain. He did everything to try and destroy me and take away the essence of who I really am.

Now I am doing so much better. As I write this I have so much joy in my heart. In the beginning it was so hard and I was in so much pain. A part of me still yearns for the person he showed me in the beginning but I remind myself every day that it was a facade and the real person was the person who squatted in my house like a stray cat for over a year and still looked at me with absolute contempt and treated me terribly.

What I did was I wrote a list of every event, every terrible thing that he ever did, every bad word, every gesture and mistreatment. And when I was feeling weak I would read it to remind myself of what I had left behind. On the other side I had a paper of all the things I had gained since he left. Just seeing it in black and white sometimes puts things in perspective. Where there good times? Yes but with him it bounced between him being inconsiderate on a good day or downright evil pretty much everyday with rare sparks of goodness in between once every eclipse. That is not life, that is not healthy, that is certainly not love.

I also made a concerted effort to reconnect with as many friends as I humanly could. Those I was isolated from or threw away to meet his demands. I reached out to as many people as I could. Those that I trusted I told them not everything but enough so they could understand me and so that if I ever contemplated going back I knew what I stood to lose and knew I had a support system to help me.

I also tried to find myself again. I had lost interest in my hobbies and things that used to excite me. I made a list of what I used to like to do, see and eat and made an effort to do those things again. You have no idea the simple pleasures of life, of listening to music you like, watching the tv programmes you are interested in, cooking food to your specification or reading a good novel in peace or just being free in your own home...you have no idea the simple pleasures it could bring!

I let myself grieve for the loss of a dream I had in him but made vision boards to determine new goals and dreams. I made sure I went for counselling to talk to professionals who understood and could help me. In my country its quite expensive but I see it as an investment in myself. If I was able to take care of a grown ass man for so long why couldnt I take care of me.

Most important, I cut all contact. I blocked him on facebook. Blocked all his email addresses on mine. I did change my number for a while but for job reasons had to go back but everytime he would call I would fight myself to ignore it. If he called from a number I did not recognise I immediatly cut the phone. I avoided where he hung out. I cut off all his friends and refused to take their calls, if I saw them in public I was cordial and polite but made sure I made a beeline to the nearest exit quickly. I just disappeared. Cowardly? Maybe...did it save me? Yes! There is a thin line between cowardice and self-preservation.

Ladies if you are currently experiancing any form of abuse, I beg and implore you to let that man go. He will never change not today or tomorrow. Dont waste all your tomorrows on a monster.

You are just perfect the way God made you and your love is perfect. Some man out there will lap up your perfect love as it is right now and give it back to you ten fold. I know its hard, I know you are hurting, I know it feels like your soul has been ripped from your body and scattered in ten billion pieces. But if you want to get it back you have to take that first step and let the man go.

Best of luck to all of you!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (16 April 2011):

I feel badly for what you went through. What you feel is love but it is not real....This is what I mean. Your boyfriend hid the monster that he was and lied and manipulated you so that you believed the person he pretended to be. So while you love that person, know that it was a fake person not the real him. My neighbor said that a flaw with women is that we have big hearts that only grow bigger and stronger.

I wish there was a magic pill that would take all this away but it just takes time to heal. It is a gift to you that you were able to get away from this monster. And that what you learned will serve you well for the future. Although, this may sound cruel your boyfriend never loved you. Love is not hate and it is not anger. Yes, girls are taught from an early age that a boy who hits us or is mean to us, likes us. That is never true.

As with many abusive men there self worth hinges on being in control of someone. Also, another fact is that they want to "appear normal" and having a women by their side is a part of that charade.

I am very happy you got out with your life. It sounds like it could and would have ended much worse. I hope that you can recover soon and take back the night as they say.

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A female reader, Sashab United States +, writes (14 April 2011):

Dear all abused women,

I wish everyone could’ve known me as the fun-loving, care-free, independent women that I was for so many years. I’m young, 24, and had a clear plan for my future. I was a recent college graduate with a bachelor’s in psychology. My plan was to work at the correctional facility in the small town I live in to save money for my masters. Then……he happened. When I first met him was cocky and I wasn’t too interested, but then he seemed like fun and I went for it. At first we just had a physical relationship and within that time he slept with two other women besides me, both times he blamed those incidents on drunken mistakes. After this I still decided to start a relationship with him. Even then he would pick fights with me so that I wouldn’t feel like going out and it worked. He brought A LOT of baggage to the table, two older kids (whom I love with my heart) and a CRAZY ex-wife. His ex wife would call me his boyfriend because she said I looked like a man and she would talk bad about me not only to him but to their kids. Another red flag he didn’t stand up for me until I made it an issue, he didn’t deal with her. Three months into our relationship he had text his ex-wife while I was in bed with him and started to make me feel bad for wanting to do things without him. By six months it was full blown control and verbal abuse.

I had told him about past physical encounters; being a naïve young woman I didn’t realize that this could have such an effect on our relationship. WELL I was wrong and one of those encounters stuck in his head and he used it against me. The fights we had weren’t even logical and most times I was confused and felt crazy because I didn’t know what to do. Often times I just said sorry and I don’t even know what I did. He drank, so that just emphasized his need to pick on me. Every time he woke up in the morning he would act like nothing happened. I felt the need every day to please him, I tried everything in my power not to argue and it hardly ever worked. I also felt the need to try harder to make him happy because in my mind I wasn’t doing enough and if I could just be better we would be happy. He would get mad at the littlest of things and I couldn’t understand. He had cheated on his wife and he used a guy that I never had feelings for against me. We fought over my past about 4 to 5 nights a week. During this time I was so in love with him, wanted forever with him. He was the ONE!

About 10 months into the relationship we were done I couldn’t take his Dr. Jeykll/ Mr. Hyde personality anymore but then I found out I was pregnant with our beautiful baby boy. I decided to stay and try to work it out. My first pregnancy and I was thrilled, unplanned and unexpected but happy. I hoped every day that he would see what he was blessed with and come out of this cycle but that’s all it was, was hope. He had moments, of what seemed like clarity, where he would sweet talk me and tell me how much he loved me, but those moments are now moments that I realize he used to build me up. I let this MAN ruin my pregnancy, I didn’t have morning sickness or any of the common pregnancy ailments but I did have an emotionally abusive relationship. I can honestly say I cried 85% of the time and once he told me he regretted our son. When I was 5 months pregnant he kept me up all night and I fell asleep behind the wheel and hit a pole. I was so scared and was transported to the hospital by ambulance. I tried to call him from the hospital and he didn’t answer because he was passed out drunk, I had to call a friend to come get me and when he woke up and had asked me how I got home and I told him, he called me a stupid bitch and asked me how I thought that made him look. He then got up and went to the liquor store and proceeded to get drunk.

Needless to say I was in that relationship doing 90% of the work the whole time for two and a half years. I left two months ago and everyday has been a struggle, it has become easier within the last week because I have researched verbal abuse and have let go of some of the guilt I’ve felt and have realized I couldn’t do anything differently. It’s important that I let go of what could’ve been and understand what would’ve been if I had stayed. That doesn’t mean I don’t love him that just means that no matter how much I loved him he wouldn’t have changed unless he wanted to. Another hard part for me to understand and what I struggle to grasp is his general lack of caring for the situation. I loved his sons as if they were my own and I struggle to be without them too, but I know that I COULDN’T DO ANYTHING. I have my weak moments like this morning but then I think of all of these posts and about the abuse I endured and I find the strength to overcome. SO PLEASE don’t lose hope in yourself, hopeless situations often find hopeful people but don’t let those situations define you. Everyone says it gets better and though I still feel pain, IT DOES……But it takes time and understanding. Thank you, to you all for sharing your stories.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (6 April 2011):

I am leaving an abusive marriage after 25 years. The last two were agony. I made excuses for the verbal and emotional abuse due to his clinical depression, not taking medication, etc. He is incredibly handsome and charming, and I lived for those moments were were like a "normal" family. But once I took control, got him removed from the home, secured our bank accounts and got my own health insurance in a new career, I felt more "me" again. My younger son is thriving without the constant name calling, the verbal and emotional attacks on his mom. Yet I still miss being married,the sex and the "crumbs" of love I felt in between verbal and emotional assaults (he also bit my hand on one occasion when he thought i was "cheating,'' and poured water on my head when he was over medicated). He can't believe I don't miss him, that I don't want "us" back.Please anyone in this situation, realize that the longer you are physically away from your abusive partner, the clearer your mind and emotions will be. I am lonely, scared and have no idea what the future holds. But each day I feel safer and more peaceful knowing that there will be no one to yell at me, abuse me or call me names. The only names I want to be called are "sweetie," "Honey" and "mom." It is better to be alone than abused, and marriage is not a life sentence for suffering abuse. I want to be with someone who would NEVER EVER think to hurt me emotionally or physically. I am turning 50 and would rather be alone for the rest of my life than continue to be emotionally abused. My children need a healthy mother, and I am going to give my sons the best example by showing them that it's not acceptable for men to treat women that way ever, especially not someone they profess to love. Thank you to all the online domestic violence support groups for helping me find a path out of this cycle.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 March 2011):

It is hard to get over an abusive boyfriend. I personally am young, only 22, but I have a career as a registered nurse, a car, friends, my own apartment. I had everything positive going for myself and I met this man thinking omg he is so cute. I invited him to my apartment and should have seen the red flags from the get go. He loved to drink and smoke...but within a month I allowed him to move into my apartment with me..Within weeks he began to verbally abuse me..call me names, down me, I found texts in his phone to an ex of his...but I looked over these things..Not too long after that he smacked the hang out of me..and I was just in shock..I went and just sat on the bed..he apologized of course and asked me if I wanted him to leave and of course i said no...things only got worse..he eventually put multiple knots in my head, chipped my teeth, he would choke me out to the point where I had bruises on my neck, I had to wear turtle necks to work....He threw my blackberry in the toilet...he punched my car..put a big dent in it...he called me every name in the book....dirtbag, whore, fat, a follower, trailor trash...told me all I have is a good job and pretty eyes...nothing else..told me Im not sh*t and wont ever be sh*t....finally 1 day I called the cops and he got charged with domestic violence and spent 30 days in jail but of course when he got out I was the 1st one to pick him up...

mind you this guy has no job from day 1...has nothing to show for himself...almost 30 yrs old wih nothng but 3 dogs...i took care of this man...i cooked big meals for him...while working 4, 5 days a week..12hr shifts at the hospital...i cleaned up the apartment...took care of HIS animals..bought him all kinda clothes, cologne..took trips places...etc...needless to say by being with him...i had to give up my apartment because I couldn't afford it anymore...I aquired so much debt...my car looks horrible now...he ended up kicking a big dent in it not too long ago...and I just cry because a part of me still cares for him..but at the same time I know I am a good girl and I did everything in my power to please this man and make the relationship work..and it just hurts for him to call me those names and put his hands on me when I've been soooooo good to him...the only part that angers me is that yea, we've broken up...but I am responsible for all the debt and damage he has caused...Im stuck with it all because of him..I just feel like I ruined my life for a dirtbag...I know with time things get better...but Im just sad.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 March 2011):

Abusers are very charming and exciting and we can miss that. We were manipulated and lied to and they know how to work us. Take heart, you are human and this is not hard to do to a person. Just be very honest with yourself at all times and this will help.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 March 2011):

I'm going through something similar at the moment. My boyfriend is extremely controlling, and abusing but I love him so dearly I just can't find the strength to break it off for good. Although, I know half the time when he promises me that he will "try" to work things out and be less "jealous" he is completely lying but I just melt when he embraces me in his hugs. It seems like no matter what he does to me, I forgive him instantly although I know deep down it's wrong and that I secretly fear for my life. I know that he can get crazy but at the same side he has a sweet, funny nature (which lately I haven't seen) Nonetheless, we are only human and cannot control our feelings. We love, hurt and fall for people that should not be in our life period whether, it be because they are abusive, uncaring or unfaithful.

The heart wants, what the heart wants and those people will most likely change. I am beginning to gather up the strength and will power, but it's hard and the memories and loneliness are killing me.

I hope you find the answer you are looking for, but in all honestly unlike me you have already separated yourself from that abusive life and found the will power to overcome going back. Are you postive, you want to reopen those feelings the second time? this could mean falling harder with deeper wounds. As I said before, these people will never change.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 March 2011):

I just left my boyfriend of 6 years. We have an amazing beautiful daughter, who is 16 months old. It started out great, exciting... then one night (while living together), he left me at 4:00 am and said he was going to work. I turned on his phone and the calls came in. He lied his way out of it and then disappeared for the next 3 days. I cried thinking something happened and was so happy when he finally returned.

He had hit me once, really bad.. Don't know why I ever took it.

Then came the married older woman, who he emailed back and forth about how he needed to see her. She left him messages saying she loves him. Many nights alone, always an excuse, always my fault. Lies, manipulation, and I was unhappy, but I felt like I truly love him and he loves me.

We move to his parents house, find out I am pregnant (I always said, I know I can do this on my own, never, oh I hope we will get married and be happy).

Many nights he didn't come home, I was alone in his parent’s house, pregnant. Always an excuse, never the truth and never a story that made sense. Text message "tell your pregnant girlfriend I say hi, you ruined a great thing daddy"

Baby was born, he kept spending money, always a reason, always an excuse, never the truth.

I thought our problems were because we live in his parent’s house, we moved out and I knew it would be obvious. I spent New Years Eve alone and he didn’t come home for 13 nights in January. He would go to the store and not return. He say, "I got arrested” (I have heard that many times).

Everytime he left, no communication.. Ignored my calls, texts and didn’t reach out to me...

He would start fights with me so he could leave... At one point he actually convinced me I was crazy..

I left on Sunday... An hour later I was on Facebook (we shared an account) and the messages from other girls start to pop up, he was asking girls to come over because I left and he has his own place or he would drive to them. He was up all night texting and calling weird numbers (family plan, I pay bill).

I went nuts, but thought, wow you are creepy and weird, but was heartbroken again (even though he did this for the past 2 years). He then managed to ruin my bank account, our joint again and transfer money from the baby's savings.

ALL IN A 12 HOUR PERIOD

6 years- no respect, no trust, physical and verbal abuse (you are so fat you fat whale)- it took me 2 years to get to 100% to leave.... but I cannot stop texting him, wanting attention, wanting him to hurt or to feel bad.

He hasn't cared about me in years or cared what he did to me. I want to move on and I look forward to the day I find a real man who is kind and loving and honest.

Now, after 2 weeks of him crying and making promises (never kept a promise before) the minute I left he did this and now won’t answer my call and won’t write me back.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 March 2011):

My ex started out so sweet too,he wasn't long out of another relationship so I was cautious,and in hindsight had every right to be. His ex started harrassing me and he would never stand up to her and tell her to stop. She went into his phone and email and starting emailing and texting me,and still he wouldn't get her to stop.. this went on for a long time and we fought about it constantly,his excuse was 'its because of my daughter' and' I'm scared she'll take her away'..little did I know he was still seeing her and playing us off against each other.

The arguments got alot worse,I was told constantly I had an anger problem and to 'do something about it'-we traded accusations alot until 3 months ago when he broke up with me. It has since come to light he WAS involved with her the whole time and my suspicions were well founded but what happened recently shocked me.

She emailed me again and we got into an altercation-I got sick of the abuse and called the police. I then got a message from him saying he would file a restraining against me if I didn't back off. I was disgusted because he NEVER ONCE stood up for me and there he was standing up for her,the woman that had tried to destroy our relationship. How gutless!!

His lies and deception have almost destroyed my trust in men,my father emotionally abused me when I was young and now this,I feel like I've been stabbed in the back and I am very angry but also desolate.

I am seeing a counsellor next week,but in the meantime I having been going through the motions of my job. I really can't believe I took all the lies and manipulation!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (24 February 2011):

Hi there -

I posted back on Jan 26th and I had some things to add that might help people out there struggling...

I have my good days and bad, but what I've noticed, is that it does WONDERS to get out of your immediate environment that will remind you of the relationship. Get out of your town on weekends if you can. Obviously, you can't afford that every weekend. But put some gas in your tank, and take day trips even - to places that you and the ex never went. I live 3 hrs. away from NYC and going out there over this past weekend was so extremely helpful! Just meeting new people and being reminded of the fact that I am a fun and loving person was refreshing! Coming out of such a dark place, you have to force yourself to get out there and make new friends.

The funny thing is that I was kicking and screaming to go. I didn't want to! I wanted to stay home and wallow behind my bag of chips! Getting out f this town proved to be very therapeutic and I thought of all of you that are on this forum hurt, sad and broken - like me.

Also - one of the most positive influences in my life told me to read the book: The ten secrets of abundant happiness. He swears that this is how he learned how to "chose" his positive attitude every day. The more we can learn to do this, the more we won't give anyone else the power over our emotions and energy!

You're all in my thoughts...

-Peace, love and happiness!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 February 2011):

Everyone posting their stories here is beautiful. Reading about your past is helping me move on from mine. It's uncanny and terribly sad how similar everyone's stories are. Everything seemed so beautiful in the beginning before turning to hell. Like all of you guys, I saw the clues but chose to ignore them.

Clue 1: Things were moving way too fast. It was just so passionate. Not to sound crude but, lots of sex and PDA. He was buying me jewelry and gifts. We'd go on vacations together.

Clue 2: He was always so hesitant for me to meet his family and friends. Come to find out, his dad is abusive with his family and he doesn't have any real friends.

Clue 3: He would act like he's better than everyone else. I was too dumb to think of things myself. If he wasn't yelling and cursing at me, he was ignoring me. Example: right in the middle of dinner with my family, he stands up, yells at my brother and then storms out of the house.

Clue 4: Alienates me from my friends and family. He manipulated me to believe no one in my life really cared about me. Everyone was selfish and he was the only reliable one.

Clue 5: I had to make excuses for him to my family and friends as to why he ditched me or why I wasn't "myself". "Oh, he just had a bad day." "He was too busy to come with me." Or my favorite, "It's MY fault I upset him." BS.

Clue 6: He was really secretive. Found him web cam "cybering" a few times with complete strangers online. Found lots of porn on his computer. Him ignoring my calls. And at the end of our relationship, him cheating on me.

Clue 7: There was an abusive cycle with him being cruel to me and then "making it up." Him yelling at me, sometimes storming out of the house, then he'd come back, sometimes drunk, and try to make love. Or, there was always the gifts. I forgave him every time.

Like most of you, I spent, and still sometimes spend, time wondering what I did to deserve this. Upset because I didn't get any kind of closure. We broke up after he ignored my phone calls for over a week, until I went over to his apartment and found some girl and him having sex. I cut him off after that.

A question you need to ask yourself (honestly!): If he asked for you back, would you get back together with him (After all the abuse, him ignoring you, calling you names, humiliating you, pushing you around, etc)? The answer is no.

--Things you need to realize:

Rule 1: YOU CANNOT CHANGE SOMEONE.

Rule 2: It's not your fault. You were manipulated and he cannot control himself.

Rule 3: You deserve a real loving relationship.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (8 February 2011):

Dear Sisters, I was looking for an answer to my question: "Why do I feel the need to contact my abusive ex even though it's been over a year since I got the restraining order put on him" Instead of finding exact instructions on how to handle this, I found an even better thing- an opportunity confirm for myself and to remind others that You Are Not Alone, You Are Not Stupid, and You Still Are Above All This- just like you always would have thought before you met him.

AND IF YOU DON'T WANT TO READ MY WHOLE POST AT LEAST READ THE LAST FEW SENTENCES :)

Before I met him I hadn't let anyone into my heart for 6 years. When I met him, he was just like the exs you're all describing. I couldn't believe what I found. I thought my time had finally come and he was the blessing I had been praying for.

For all my 6 years of being single I was single because I was so tough I didn't need love. And I would rather be alone than face the risk of heartache the last ex caused. I was a very happy single woman for all those years. Finally I was ready for love and the risks it takes to get there. I wanted this new love so much that I cut my "list" of standards in half just to accomadate him. I knew he didn't make the list but I was ready to give it my all and try it. We can't predict the future right? And I deserve it right?

I can't believe this happened to me. I'm an educated, empowered, loved, successful, smart woman with lots of friends, family and self-confidence. I never fully understood the plight of abused women. I thought I was above this and I would NEVER let it happen to me.

After all his dishonesty, alchohol abuse, needing me to take care of him financially, a cigarette burn, a puffy jaw, scratches on my hands, a broken camera with cherished memories on it, after fear of entering my home, being locked out of my home, after I discovered he took my memory sticks with pics of my deceased mom, after he messaged nude pics of me to my family with untrue text from "me" included.... I still stayed with him.

My support system was dwindling with every so called friend who called me STUPID (true friends do not ever call someone stupid when they are stuck in an abusive situation)

The one final straw was when we were staying out of town with friends. He got drunk off my friends' home brew and then locked himself in the baby's bedroom. With the baby in it! He was just drunk and nothing happened to baby but omg. That's what it took to shake me free. A call to 911, he was arrested and I've never seen him since. The shame after all the fall out, the pain of having "I hate you" as my last words to him, and the wondering 'should I contact him and apologize for the pain I caused him too?'. Will it all ever stop? I will find my answers online, through prayer, and hopefully within myself.

Oh and by the way... google the shit out of his symptoms. I really learned the most about my ex and his issues AFTER I last talked to him by reading about "dependant disorder" and "stalking". Google 'why people stalk' and 'why people abuse' you will find the reasons for all the things many of you are describing here. His issues are beyond his concsious control and you will NEVER be able to fix them either. Don't cut your standards list in half for anyone. Trust me, back to being alone and I'm thankful! I cry from the pity I have for myself when I'm lonely because I think I deserve a good guy too, but I am SO thankful I'm not being abused by someone I love. That is absolutely the worst feeling in the world. Lonliness isn't so bad.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 January 2011):

its been 3+ years since i broke up with my ex. he was perfect at first, very sweet. then he told me i was too nice and wanted me to get mad. i thought that was weird, but didnt really think think about it. he would start fights about nothing. he made me drink and do drugs and forced me to have sex with him. he wouldnt let me leave his house until he said. i often got in trouble from my parents for being late or not answering the phone. i left one problem to go to another problem, neither one my own causing. i went to school with bruises. once he poked my eye, black eye. he hit me on my arm, big bruise on my upper arm. bruises on my legs, bruises all over the place. he would threaten me to do what he wanted with naked pics of myself, which he made me take. he hit me with my purse one time and busted my head open. he chased me with a knife and i ran for my life to a neighbors house, i was so shaken. when i look back at it, i dont know why we were together for 4+ years. why would anyone go back to someone like that? now, years later, its still hard for me to get over. the person he turned me into is not who i want to be. i take my past out on every new guy i meet. i feel like i have to use them to feel better about myself. i think being in an abusive relationship for me lead me down a destructive path. am i the only one with this problem of post-abuse?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (26 January 2011):

Wow. I'm in shock with the insane similarities. I have been finding these websites and forums to read other women's stories and it's been helping me so much to know that I wasn't losing my mind after all.

My story starts with the local rocker couple. I was fronting a band at the time, and he was a bass player in a band at the time. Both of us - tall, blonde and good looking and our town just ate that up. Everywhere we'd go we would get "My God you two are just the perfect couple." Which of course fed our ego's and made me think that we were made for each other. I finally got my equal... because of course he was sweet, caring and loving in the beginning.

Yep, I believe just a week into us dating, he told me that he loved me. A few days later he told me he was looking at rings. The crazy part is that I was just as in love with him, and it didn't seem silly or crazy at all. Three months later, I moved in. It was the first guy I ever moved in with, and I only did it because he told me that he was ring shopping. I thought - finally a guy that knew what he wanted!

The next thing I know, he was out of work. It was the construction field at the start of the economic downfall in '07, and so I felt sorry for him. I work in the human service field and so I don't make a shit load of money but I was also going to school for my masters at the time (something else that he bragged in the beginning about being able to support me with.). Looking back, he showed me signs that I should have taken and ran with, but I always tried to give him the benefit of the doubt.

I NEVER trusted him, but for some reason, I couldn't understand why. He would always tell me that I had trust issues, and I would tell him that I certainly did not feel this way with many of my other boyfriends in the past and never felt this uneasy need to go through their things. It was becoming an obsession. First I find out that he is addicted to looking at porn sites every day, and then the first fight occurred when I looked through his phone and found a conversation he had with his ex talking shit about me! I was so disturbed but I somehow believed his lies that "they weren't talking about me."

He used to tell me very disturbing information like how he had what I now looked online and discovered is "blood lusting." It's when a sick individual (usually a sociopath) thinks about causing harm on other people. He said it could be people he knows, people in stores, etc. I tried to get help for him and bring him to counseling but even my counselor told me that he was emotionless and had a blank face. He lied about so many things, including paying the mortgage, looking at porn, and the list goes on. He emotionally abused me in his own calculating ways and it took a beating on my self-esteem.

I ended up turning to people that I trusted, family and friends, one of which included my ex boyfriend. They all tried to convince me to leave him, especially after the first time he threatened to "stab me and the dog." He would throw things and destroy things without even thinking about it. One of the times I broke up with him was after he threw a wine glass and almost hit the dog.

Things just got worse and worse. He had an alcohol problem, and I was right behind him. I started drowning my sorrows in booze, and would start to get really angry and resentful, blacking out and saying really mean things to him. It's like one glass of wine was all it would take for me to snap, release the pent up anger, and then give it right back to him.

Then the physical stuff began. He would provoke me when we were drunk, and I would give it right back to him. Except, he would take it to the point where he threw keys at my face, put a knife up to my throat and threatened to kill me. I defended myself and punched him in the face twice, but like I could do any damage - my arm is the size of a stick. The story ends with New Years Eve he strangled me and waited until my back was turned, like the coward that he is, and he took a burning hot pizza straight out of the oven and threw it at me. I suffered second degree burns on my back, and neck and will be left with scars the rest of my life. He ended up in jail overnight, and I ended up in and out of the hospital for two weeks. Now I await the trial.

The nurses, doctors and police all told me how lucky that I was. They all claimed to see this type of stuff all the time and they told me that he's a drunk, nothing but, and he would have eventually killed me. EVERYTHING YOU SEE IN MOVIES AND READ ABOUT IS TRUE! It ALWAYS escalates. It starts with emotional, leads to verbal, and then the physical keeps getting worse. Once they know they've gotten away with one thing, they do something worse the next time around.

I'm sad that I didn't stick to the first decision that I made two years ago to leave him for good. He was soooo good at manipulating me and making me think he was (the good ol' statement).... "going to change." THEY DON'T CHANGE! THEY WILL TURN INTO THEIR FATHERS! They will be what they've shown you and nothing else. There is no such thing as "potential." I'm just trying to cope with understanding why on God's planet did I stay with a sociopath? I was such a happy, loving and fun person before I met him - full of life! He took away my spirit and I was beginning to be an ugly, aggressive, abusive drunk, just like him. The other sad part, is that he is so good at this sociopath thing - that all of his family and friends think he is this happy-go-lucky great and funny guy! They have NO IDEA that he's a monster.

I think we all need to be happy that we got away and have a second chance. So many women weren't as lucky!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 January 2011):

I have been with my boyfriend for the past 5 months. I moved into his place after two when my apartment lease ended. It was all flowers and roses in the beginning....he would make delicious dinners, tell me everyday how beautiful I am, tell me how we will have beautiful kids, move to a state I like, encourage me to go back for my Masters.

But he has a problem with my friends, especially guy friends. He never gets along with them, and jealous when I text/ talk on the phone. And come on, I have been in long-term relationships before and I know how to be a good girlfriend. I have never cheated or thought about cheating. I also help him financially because he lost his job, even running to a debt amounting thousands of dollars. I drive him everywhere, helps pay for stuff, support him in his job search.....everything nice.

Yet, he still doubts me, thinks I hide stuff from him, says I dont support him, says I make him distant from his family (when I was the one who broke the quarrel between him and his brother, and made them talk).....he would accuse me of the most hurtful stuff I could imagine. He started calling me names, creating a scene in public, threaten me (kidnapping, hitting, etc). He would aggravate me by throwing insulting accusations at me, and when I dont respond, he breaks my stuff (he broke my $1100 Macbook). He then started grabbing me and shaking me, pushing me out of bed, blocking my way with his body to prevent me from getting out of the room, jump into my car and refuses to leave when I try to drive away. He would always end up screaming and yelling for me to get my "fake ass" out of the house, then threatening to throw out and break my stuff should I ever leave. I am a small girl (100lbs) and he is a big strong man (muscular 200lbs).

Always, in the end, he would cry, apologize, hugs and kisses me. I forgave him for four of such incidents...one every 3 weeks in average. Last week, he pushed me down while i was drinking a glass of milk, without notice. The glass shattered and as I laid on the floor confused and hurting on my arm which I landed on, he called me names and asked me to get my ass out of the house. I went away for a short trip that weekend. When I returned, he immediately picked a fight and started breaking my stuffs again. He admitted he broke them to make me hurt. Mind you, some of these stuffs he breaks are either expensive or have significant emotional value to me (eg. my grandmother's earrings). He called my best friend to bitch about me and asked her to come pick my ass up.

So, I called 911. Three police officers showed up. I told them exactly what happened. When the officer asked if he hit me, I said he only pushed me. I might have been stupid as I could have lied to get him arrested, but I didn't want my self-integrity and values to get as low and dirty as his. An officer escorted me as I gathered some stuff to stay with a friend for a few days. I told officer I would come back in a few days to gather the rest of my stuff and he better not damage them (if they were not already destroyed). Officer told him my story and said I have the right to do it because I do pay rent to stay there every month. Officer asked me to call if he gives me any trouble when I show up to get my stuff.

So, I will return to that house and gather my stuff in two days. I do not think he will ever pay me back the debt he owes me but at least I'm out of his life. I plan to call ahead to notify his parole officer and if he tries to do anything while I'm there, I will call the police again.

To every girl out there, you must love and stand up for yourself. Sometimes being too nice is a bad thing as some ill-intentioned people will step over your head. I was a strong, fiery, determined woman. He took my glow away for a good 5 months. I took a good look in the mirror 30mins ago while I showered in my friend's place and realized I miss the old me. I have no regrets, no longer any love for this man. I do have a little hate for him, but mostly pity for being the messed-up piece of work he is. I am much younger than him and yet I am stronger, more educated, have a steady job, a car, friends, emotional balance and strong values from my mother. I shouldn't even let such a man pull me down for a minute, let alone 5 months. I was ashamed of what I went through but not anymore. I do not care to let the world know I was stupid enough to even put up with this man for that long...because I know at least, I stood up for myself in the end. That makes you love yourself more.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 January 2011):

I am loving all of these posts, because finally i know that i am not alone. My story is just like everyone else, just in a different place. It so very hard. It hurts and its painful- the regret, remorse, shame, fear, and sadness. It has been 3 years since my ex and i have seen or even spoken to each other- he is in prison- but it still hasnt gone away. i am with a wonderful man now, and about to be married, but that doesnt change my past. What i have learned from the 4 years my ex and i spent together is that love is not all that i need, and i cant love someone enough for the both of us. I tell myself he never loved me, but the truth is i think he did. I think that he loved me to the best of his ability, hes just so very sick. and in staying with him i have become so very sick as well. other victims of abuse tell me that i am right where i am supposed to be. iT wont ever go all the way away, and the most important thing for me to do is to share my feelings, allow myself to feel them, and know that that is all they are- feelings. I dont have to act on them. Its a long process, but i know that it gets better, and im so very grateful that i dont have to live like that anymore.

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A female reader, womanpower! Australia +, writes (24 January 2011):

all of your stories resonate so much with my own. I'm still coming to terms with it.

I am 28 and I was in a relationship for about 8 months with a younger guy. He was very moody. Sometimes very happy, protective, and caring....But at other times (and unexpectedly) angry and violent. He broke my nose in a public park once when I threatened to leave him and then was immediately regretful. He did other things too. He would grab my neck or punch me. My bruises still wouldn't be healed by the time his mood swings occurred again.

Sometimes he was "reasonable." He would say that it was mostly his fault... and he would be sorry. He would cry. Other times, everything was my fault. I was "trash" I was "shit." He knew how to hurt me. He knew just what to say to drive me into a rage myself.

More than that, toward the end he was controlling and jealous. He thought I had a thousand boyfriends and criticized by clothes. Before the "break up," just a few days ago, I had been lying to everyone I knew about my nose. Everyone though I was a klutz and had fallen down stairs. I was defending him to my friends and parents.

Part of the problem in getting over this is that at the time of our relationship I was in a very vulnerable position and in many ways he did help me a lot. But I still feel that I'm defending him. Trying to see things through his eyes. Knowing his life and his stories, and trying to hard to understand and accept it all. But in continuing to doubt myself, I am not protecting myself. Every woman has a right to protect themselves and be happy. This is my mantra now. I have it written on my wall in pink highlighter.

The problem is that there is something about this kind of relationship. It's so intense. It's seductive. When they're good, they are so good. Your partner is so interested in you. You feel like everything is right in the world. They have also learned how to make you feel that way. It is a manipulation. This is not love, but control. Don't be confused. Somehow I still want to tell you all that I love him still... but I must remember that with the way he was acting to me, he never truly loved me.

You have a right not be emotionally or physically abused. You have a right to surround yourself with caring people who want you to be happy and successful, and who want you to have meaningful relationships with other people.

There are a couple of other things that have made the separation hard: Mostly it is my closeness with his family and the fact that I basically lived with them for several months. I know that in the end they will support him. He is there son. And, they don't even know the extent to which I was abused. But it is hard because I'm not only loosing him, I'm loosing a woman who was like a mother to me (his own mother). This is the most painful part. In losing him, I'm losing that love that I shared with her.

These types of guys make threats at the end. But you must get through it. You must hold on to yourself and your friends (your real friends). That is what I have been trying to do. Even though I feel that a piece of my heart has been torn off. Stay strong. stay strong.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 January 2011):

It's amazing how similar all these stories are...how the men involved in them seems to repeat the same pattern over and over again. It's like reading my own story, which is almost identical to all of these post.

I'm only 17 years old, but I was with my boyfriend for over a year and for the first half, he was amazing. My bestfriend, and someone I could tell anything too. But this school year, he changed completely. He started calling me names and blaming me for all of his problems. I tried relentless to help him with his problems, stayed up all night talking him out of suicide. Yet, a month after our one year, he broke up with me because he cheated on me. According to him, he was doing it because he loved me and didnt want me to be with "someone like that" I foolishly forgave him however. So for the next for months, the verbal abuse, suicide threats and break-ups continued. Every time, it was the same thing. We'd break up, He's write me horrible mean notes for a week, then he'd be loving and sweet the next, and we'd get back together.

A few days ago, he threatened suicide again. I drove to his house after he shut his phone off to talk him out of it, once I got there he swore at me and made me feel completely worthless. That night, after I finally fell asleep after tossing and turning and worrying about him, he texted me. Telling me another girl helped him with his problems and "I was always such a great help" That's what finally drove me to break up with him for good.

It's been a few days, and he's been flirting with other girls and doing the same mean things he does everytime. However, unlike him, I'm getting help. I'm gonna get over him, because someone I helped for so long and loved with all my heart shouldnt treat me this way. NO ONE should be treated this way. Both girls and boys who have been in abusive relationships and have walked away, are some of the strongest people out there. I going to be like them. I'm going to walk away and never look back. I hope all of you find the strength to do that too.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 January 2011):

I was also in an abusive relationship for 2 years, the abuse wouldn't stop

he was a controller and would force me at times to have sex with him, I only weigh 89 pounds right now and I am 17 and my height it 5"3. when I first met him I was at 99 pounds and would never get sick but than we started dating I would throw up once a week sometime a few days a week it got so bad I went to 79 pounds! I was seeing a doctor every 2 weeks because I coulnt stop throwing up and also was getting heart problems. He would force me to have sex with even when I just threw up a few seconds before, I had a feeling that was because of him and I would tell him " i want to take a break" and he would flip out and hurt me, one time he sprained my foot, one time he bruised my eye, the abuse kept going on. one night he was having a party at his house when his parents were out of town and I wanted to confront with something that he was lying to me about so I asked him and he kept lying so i started walking away from him and than he grabbed me and pushed me down to the wooden floor and started hurt me and i screamed and screamed for help and no one came. a day after a friend of mine saw all the bruises he left me from that night and with out me knowing told a cop at my school. cops talked to me and took pictures of what he had done to me. I never returned back to that school, my mom withdraw me because she didnt want him to get in trouble. he kept abusing me, he one time choked me and than pushed my face against the wall and than right after punched 2 holes into the wall. i dont know why i didnt do anything i was scared or i loved him and thought he would change. its been 1month that i havent seen him he broke up with me because i wouldnt have sex with for 3 weeks because of my sickness, i asked him" your breaking up with me because i wont have sex with isnt it" he said" yes that mainly the reason etc." now im having all the flashbacks and i have never been the same since before i met him, i dont know what to do

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (9 January 2011):

I'm currently studying Psychology at an Ivy-League school (I plan on pursuing my Ph.D. after graduation); the fact that I'm in this situation couldn't be more ironic, confusing, or embarrassing. But reading through everyone else's posts has helped me a lot, so I thought I'd add my story too...

I dated my ex for a year and a half. My family had been pressuring me (basically from the first time they met him) to end the relationship and so, after he threw something at the wall in the middle of a fight, I decided to break up with him. He had never been physically violent or even (at least in obvious ways) verbally abusive. Honestly, when I broke up with him it was mostly because I couldn't stand the strain he had put on my otherwise SUPER close relationship with my family. But that's when things started to get bad (and I started to see, in retrospect, how our relationship followed a typical course of abuse):

My ex told me he loved me eleven days after we met; he gave me a key to his apartment the next day, and asked me to move in about two weeks later. I had never lived with a boyfriend (this was my first serious relationship), so I was hesitant - but he pressured me relentlessly, so I eventually caved in. (I was surprised, though, when I finally agreed, that he wasn't overly happy or excited... a pattern that I'd see over and over again in the future - doing things that went against what he wanted caused me so much stress and guilt, but when I would finally do things his way I never got the emotional "reward," I guess you could call it, that I felt I deserved. It just made me more desperate to make him happier, or to do what he wanted immediately next time so then maybe he'd be happier with me... If that makes any sense?)

He showered me with affection. All he ever wanted to do was be with me, he resented anyone else getting in the way of time he could just be spending with me. Every other sentence was something about how beautiful I was, how much he loved me, etc. He bounced from random job to random job, and always seemed to have an excuse for everything (why people didn't like him, why past relationships didn't work out, why he didn't have a job). For the entire time I was with him (I even struggle with it now!) I saw things through his eyes and was very, very defensive of him. I was hard-pressed to find anyone else who liked him. Despite being quite handsome he, as so many people have said, "just seemed to rub everyone the wrong way." He never smiled much in public and was very moody - which I couldn't understand, because he acted like a complete little child when he was alone with me (watching Disney movies, etc.). At the time I thought it was sweet and innocent. Now it seems a lot more disturbing.

Looking back, I can finally see the bad outside of the good (and am completely confused as to how I didn't notice anything was wrong sooner). One time, after a fight, he almost drove me off the road (when we talked afterwards, he said he was just trying to get my attention because I wouldn't pick up the phone). After another fight, he confronted me while I was shopping in the mall, raising his voice until I cried, and following behind me - still yelling - as I raced, with my head down, out to the parking lot completely humiliated. He was constantly telling me I didn't understand how real "adult relationships" work, and how everything I thought/felt/wanted was wrong (he would then explain, through countless hours-long conversations, what was "right"). I felt like I was always being lectured. He was an incredible talker though, and I always ended up feeling confused, but somehow knowing I was wrong.

After I broke up with him, he called and called, and texted, and sent letters, and cards, and showed up (unannounced) several times at my apartment with flowers. For the next year, he told anyone who listened how much he loved me, missed me, etc. (which made the situation even worse for me, because I became even more confused, listening to friends who were sympathetic to his pain). He would call and tell me how he lost his job because he kept crying at work (keep in mind: he was 30 and I was 25), how he couldn't eat and had lost 25 pounds, how he had thought out what he'd write to his friends in suicide notes if he ever decided he couldn't take it any more.

For my part, I became more and more isolated, barely ever leaving my apartment. I felt this overwhelming guilt and confusion and felt torn in two opposite directions; I started contemplating suicide and began suffering from violent emotional breakdowns/anxiety attacks. He threatened to kill me (and my next boyfriend) if he ever found out I was dating; he threatened to stab a male friend in the neck with scissors if he ever made a pass at me; and he threatened to gauge another male friend's eyes out "with a fork" when he thought the two of us were flirting.

Even from the first days of our relationship, he tried to turn me against my family and friends. I'm lucky to still have a support system to help me as I finally begin to take steps to move on. This past week he started dating another girl and, like so many other women who have posted, I struggle with completely irrational feelings of jealousy and sadness! This is a man who showed up at my apartment, pinned me down on the ground (he later described it as a "romantic gesture") and told me I had to be with him and there was no other choice. A man who, when I stood up for myself, would play on all my greatest insecurities and hold personal information I had shared with him in private over my head as blackmail unless I got back with him. Why should I feel anything but RELIEF that he's dating someone else?

I guess it's that I worry what he'll tell her about me, how he'll change me in his mind.. It sounds stupid, but my entire sense of self these past few years has revolved around what he thinks of me. Imagining that he's now degrading that image and tossing it out to replace with someone else... it's painful and strange. But reading all of your posts is helping me realize that it's also very unhealthy.

All of that goodness in the relationship came from ME and I can carry that goodness into my next relationship. He tried to control me but he DIDN'T WIN because, even though I'm struggling to make sense of it all now, I was still strong enough to walk away... By focusing on God and recognizing my ex and the relationship for what it was (ABUSIVE) I WILL move on and find wonderful happiness in my future :)

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (4 January 2011):

OMG, i know this was written along time ago, but I am now going through the same thing. Except my ex would come to my house, look through my window and tell me he sees my dog and i lying down. However he was never really layed a hand on me but after all the crap..still turns around and says "I LOVE YOU". hE ALSO has anger issues..im still trying to figure out myself if it is love or obsession.. I dont think it is love because love is definetly not supposed to hurt.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 January 2011):

I know how everyone here feels. I went through all this. And I lied to all my family members when they saw bruises. My boy and I broke up an hour or two ago and I'm still heartbroken about it. Now he messages me and begs me to take him back and I want to so bad... I hate how he can be so good to me. And he bonded with my son over four months. But, the good times... were so good. Even though our bad times were awful.

He loved to pull my hair out. So much that I was starting to look like I was balding... but, I loved him. I hate this. It's so hard. I wouldn't wish this on anyone but, I'm glad I'm not the only one who's been through it. Stay strong, girls. For me.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 January 2011):

I to was in this situation. The sick truth is the abuser brainwashes thevictum to. Remember how much you missed your itheir benefit . Unfortionatly by the tine you notice thw abuse you are programed tolove him and want him always. Member those times he would be sweet? Those few and in between times through the abuse? Yeah...that was him instilling hope. Truth is he will never change nd remember we can live them and miss them all we want but our self worth ,importance is far more lovable. Remember how much you missed that when you were with him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 December 2010):

hello,

So my story is very similiar to all of yours. He started as this quiet, mysterious asian guy who i absolutely fell in love with in my junior year of high school. We were the same age, and i thought i saw things in him that other people didnt. He had no previous girlfriend and i could tell he had esteem issues by his choice of friends and how he acted in front of people and my. But of course " love is blind" and thats why i stayed and tried to help him with his issues. I told him he had to quit smoking weed because it was only bringing him down and it truly was. AFter a year we had alot of fun memories but broke up with him after finding him watching porn one day. ( He lied to me the other time he was looking at it ) I was disgusted and broke up with him. THats when it got ugly, he got desperate and was very needy. He shouted at me, grabbbed my neck and left me with bruises all over my small wrists. I filed a police report and he was sent to jail for 3 days, of course 7 months after the event.

Long behold after seeing him go to prom with another girl and missing him, i got back with him 4 months later. I felt so happy i was back with him in the beginning, but i later realised he was still an abuser and i would still have to worry about him going out and smoking weed. I was so positive he was a changed man, going to mandatory anger management classes, i thought it would be better but i was proven wrong. He continued to lie to me about where he was at, yah he quit smoking cigarettes for me but my instincts told me he was still dealing with weed. He told me to trust him, when all the signs were there.. and me being a fool, i did. I put so much time into the relationship and showing him what he could be when he stopped doing weed. He had gotten a good paying job, got his lisence and was going to school. WELL, yesterday i had passed by his house and caught him smoking weed. THats when the confrontation started and i told him i was leaving him no excuses.

He pushed me, grabbed me and started choking me because he " couldnt lose me". Thats one thing about the "apologies" these men have a way of apologising it's so hard not to forgive them. It wasnt until then that i figured out he was just telling me what to hear. With the help of his father, i ended up leaving and i felt so hurt and digusted that i let this dirtbag waste 2 years of my life that i will never get back. These kind of men have personal issues and will most likely never ever change. yeah, its hard for me not to think about the good times, and everything reminds me of him,but when i remind myself of what i would be dealing with, the idea becomes distasteful. SO be strong ladies, these men are NOT worth your time and will never change for anybody no matter what. There are so many oppurtunities out there, we just cant let our heart get to the brain and be strong until we can find a man that will love us back . Good luck to all xx

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A female reader, hesmystrengthnweakness United States +, writes (18 December 2010):

Hey love. Im going through just about the same thing. keep in mind my breakup occurred about 1 1/2 years ago. I spent three years with my ex. First year was great. He was my prince charming. I was the happiest i'de ever been. Then things started to go downhill. I mean it went as far as him splitting my lip open. I eventually filled for a restraining order. Shortly after I filled for this protective order he violated it by nearly running me off the road. He served about six weeks in jail..it bothers me more than anything that I think im still in love with this monster.. Maybe just nostalgia?? hmmm one can only hope its just nostalgia

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (4 November 2010):

WOW

I couldnt read every story here but I think we all have one thing in common. You know its wrong. He knows its wrong, your brain is telling you to go, your friend are telling your to go your family are telling you to go, but your heart wont let you, you still care about him so much. I think once you start loving yourself you realise that you dont deserve what you are going through and you have the power to stop it.

But I think abusers are all the same, obsessive, sweeping you off your feet, wanting you to move in as soon as possible, wanting to rush things along and as you start to feel settled his bad side shows its head. Blowing up over small things leads to, name calling, putting you down, making you feel stupid, then to violence and attacks. As soon as he starts calling you names thats your first warning sign. Once he puts his hand on you thats when you know for sure. and the lies to make you stay, just ignore them, Be strong, turn to your family, turn to your friend and turn to God, turn to the ones who really love you for who you are and don't look back. I pray for him and hope he doesnt do it someone else.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 November 2010):

Hi everyone,

Maybe this is not where I should be posting this. But I feel very much like I have been through and shared your experiences except with another woman.

I had an extremely intense love for this woman. so strong it hurts me to think of the love lost even now.

I fell for her the instant I saw her - real love at first sight. She was the same. She was wonderful - dark mysterious caring charming intelligent and intense with passion for me. I dont think I could ever love like this again.

The first few months were a blur of romance and blinding happiness. Then she slowly revealed a slight temper. . . and also began to act as though she were a psychic and knew how I felt what i was thinking what i was doing in other rooms.. it was a bit mad. so i told her i didnt like it. she would belittle me.

then it got worse, she lost her temper with her grandmother - over some famil issues. which i knew about already,and it turned violent. she was punching her nan. her nan would hit back too -it was surreal. i tried to intervene and got punched. this became a norm every couple of days they would be like this. I would be locked in the house - i stopped trying to get in the way. when they were done fighting she would say ' you wanna fight now? you think im horrible? ' and no matter how much i protested it would end up with us fighting.

It got worse than this. it began that she was very jealous of my friends. i dropped out of college. she got jealous if my family. i moved in. i quit my job.

She had me now. it got more and more violent and the blackmailing drug taking and general weirdness carried on. yeti still loved her so much. a million times over she would have little 'revelations' and be really nice for a few days and say she was changed. she never wanted to seek help it was stupid to her.

Then I had enough one day. I was going on holiday to see family in the states. and the night before I left she took me out and all was well - until she began accusing me of sleeping with someone. then i took punches and blows unimaginable. she took her heels off and stabbed them into my head, told me i was no way going to get on the plane the next day. she slammed my head into the pavement. i ran and ran . she found me outside my family home. i ran in and slammed the door - she threw her shoes and all belongings at the door and cursed my mother. my mum asked her to leave nicely - she saty outside the house wailing and crying shouting 'help me' for over an hour. my mum got sick of it and went out to speak to her - she started saying nasty things to my mum and a few punches were thrown. i ran away and the police came and even they said that for the night i should spend it with her because it would be safer to keep her happy for the night.

so i went with her the next day she took me to the airport and alot of tears etc.

I decided after two weeks i wanted to stay in new york. so i did our contact slowly dwindled - i met someone else. had my heartbroken stayed there a year, came back eventually,.

stupidly i met up with her again .she seemed sane and happy and we gave it another go. then she revealed she was pregnant as she had been raped ( one of six rapes while we were together amongst many attackers giving her hickeys...)

she aske dme to stay with her and baby as she desperatly wanted a child. i said i couldnt i would have to leave. so she got an abortion and blamed me for this for the next year and things got worse and worse. i managed to get a good job though- she would steal my cash, clothes, anything jewellery! and make it like i was mad and kept losing things.

i went on holiday to see the friends id make in NY and when i came back she had cleared my account. then i moved into my own place in london, and she started visiting me and it was nice for a month or so. then she went home one day and never came back. i was meant to see her one weekend and called her and another woman answered telling me she would murder me if i came near her gf again - if i dared touch her again ... playing the victim.

i didnt see her for two years. until last night. i bumped into her on her birthday at a restaurant lasdt night and it was really nice. but i know there is huge danger going back there. she wanted to meet up. she apologised and held me so tight and it was nice to feel her passion once more.

im so torn up just seeing her and feeling it all again. i was just getting better ....

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 November 2010):

Yeap in the beggining he was so crazy about me, he was sweet but he lied and said mean things when nobody watched then he asked for forgiveness and he cried. He wanted to get married when we were 3 moths toghether but i wasnt sure. He has a pornografy addiction and likes to have ciber sex with random girls. He punched walls when I made him mad or I refused to kissed. 1 1/2 into the relationship I broke up, cause I catched him dirty talking with someone once againg and I tought it was enough. Then I asked him to be back, cause I tought If we just go to counseling... I went back just to be treated like shit this time for another year and half. He didnt care what I think, and refused to go to counseling. He started drinking 5 r 7 days a week. He worked afternoons so went out almost every night. I didnt feel apreciated but some how I could not stand up for myself. The tought of the hurt I would feel if I lost him made me put up with all. Life became pretty unbearable. When he wasnt hang over, he was drunk. I drove him home at 1- 3-or 5 in the morning. I became a taxi ride. No flowers, no chocolates, no love notes anymore.

He said so hurtful things that I told him I prefer him putting a nife into my chest because it hurts too much. That was the way it felf. this one time there was a plate in the car, he started calling me spoil brad, bitch, fuck u, when I answer back he was enraged so all I could do was begg him to stop and cried, then I took the plate and broke it in my head. I just wanted him to stop. Another time he was upset because he dropp his water in a restaurant and said I didnt move quickly enough to help him, he humiliate me in the restaurant and I went to my car, on the way back he was insulting me, picking up a fight, I exploded and told he humiliated me in the restaurant that I was not going to put up with that, only to be call a whore and a bitch. I parked and asked him to get of my car, he just kept insulting me so I left the car, and he follow me telling me stupid, come here, stupid. Then I ran he got the car and followed me. After a while I got into the car and he apologized laughing at my tears. Then we were ok but I could not feel anyting it hurt so much inside. That was my life, episodes of high happiness and deep craziness, mostly unberable, gray, no singing anymore, no smiles and somehow, I lived in this bubble where I tough this all was just a nightmare, not my life, not real. To the world we were not like that, I was tired all the time, and sad, I didnt smile from my heart, I was focused on fixing my relationship so hard sometimes my head hurt because it seemed like a puzzel.

3 years. I started going to AA meetings and praying to God for him to break up with me, cause I could not. He did a week later. It was so hard for me to let him go. I cryied, begged... Then I didnt contated him, for a couple of moths. Then we got in touch again, I can se he still loved me, and I told him I loved him. We started talking online in july. He said he was sorry for not putting of his part that he loved me and miss me etc. Like in the beggining. Then out of the blue he said he liked someone. He is now engaged to that person that he meet for 2 months and is like I never existed.(I read for narcicists is normal).

Somehow sometimes I think he did this just to hurt me. Every time I was happy he wanted to hurt me. Still I miss him a lot. Why? because we are in love with the good guy that was hurt by his dad. Everytime there is a glimse of that guy... its wonderful!...our hopes go up... still it will not last unless i believe they give their heart to God and get counseling.

Now, I am lauging a lot more, have fun and I am also bulding my dreams,I lost myself and I need to find me. I am happy and I will be ok. I know u will be too =)

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (24 October 2010):

I just got out of my first abusive relationship 3 weeks ago. I was having a hard time figuring out if it was abusive because whenever things got physical he claimed I over-reacted and it was an accident. He never hit me but his favorite thing to do was pin me down and cover my mouth, screaming abuse in my ears. He would shove and push me but claim it was my fault. "you pushed my buttons, I only get so crazy because I love you so much, I had to control you because you were acting psycho". He would scream at me, swear at me and people around me would notice bruises I couldn't remember how I got.

He got into a fight with his dad one and they were strangling each other. One time he got so angry with the dog that he chased after it to hurt it. I see now how abusive it was after talking to people and reading these stories. I mistakenly thought to be abused, you had to be pushed down stairs or have broken bones. But all of you strong women have almost the exact same story as mine. Great for the first year, things moved way too fast, he gave me a key to his place within a week of dating, he gave me a diamond ring within six months and got upset with me when I said I felt too young to get married at 20. The 2nd year was when things really took an ugly turn. He would break things when we fought, once my maid even came downstairs because she heard him screaming at me. He manipulated me, telling me that I make him look like the bad guy because I get him so riled up to shout at me.

A memory has recently come back to me, he told me his ex girlfriend claimed he was abusive but he said she was psycho so I believed him like an idiot. I've written out a list of red flags and so far I have 46 that include his road rage, picking up a chair but throwing a duvet on me instead, not letting me out of his grip while he was hurting my ears with his loud screaming even though I scratched him to get away etc. What makes it so hard to get over him is that I'm having trouble accepting it was abuse because he doesn't. He denies being an angry person, he doesn't feel like he ever treated me in an abusive way. He made me feel like the break up was all my fault but he just started fighting with me while I was sick. After I told him to leave, he ripped up flowers he gave me, broke my new flash drive and ripped up my tissue box. Then he shouted at my mother, telling her I was impossible and he does so much for me. The fact that he spoke to my mother like that made me feel like he does have a problem he won't admit. I used to tell him, you are going to have the same fights with future girlfriends because you have a problem you're not dealing with. He smokes weed every single day, I thought it would make him less angry but nope.

Now he's finally got his sister to drop my stuff off, I was stupid and vulverable and begging him to come back, he was taking this complete detached approach as if he had never done a thing wrong, it was all my fault and it can't work because "your family rules your life. I drew the line when your mother got involved". He had been trying to get me away from my family and friends for as long as I can remember.. I even remember him telling me, "I don't like that friend of yours because she accepts you for who you are". The day after the break up he sent me an "accidental" voicemail of him laughing about the break up with his friends. Today I get a message asking if I could please make an effort and give his expensive stuff back too. As if I'm some kind irrational person who didn't give his sister 3 bags of his stuff and tell her to come back if there's more. I haven't replied. I feel like he is insane and trying to play mind games to shift the blame. He appears to have no guilt or remorse and doesn't believe he did anything wrong. After sharing 2 years of my life and living with him, he hasn't even mentioned trashing my house before he left and I even apologised when I had nothing to be sorry for. This is the same guy who used to scream at me while having me in a headlock in his car because I asked him why he hadn't picked up something he said he would. His sister is a psychologist but she has no idea how much of a problem he has so he feels validated by her. It is driving me crazy, he's making me feel like I am the deluded one. I just want him to leave me alone so I can move on and be the strong girl I was before I met him.

Love and support to all you women x

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 October 2010):

I have just recently ended a long abusive 4 year relationship. I was with my ex for 4yrs alomst 5 I met him my junior year of highschool and just like all of you ladies i though he was the man of my dreams... I fell in love very quickly... he slowly started to manipulate me and my life. He started off by telling me my friends were all just whores and im "2 good" for people like that then he started telling me i couldnt go out and he "trusted me but didnt trust other guys around me" I was so young and nieve i believed him and slowly started to change. After i lost my friends and stopped going out he began telling me how to dress he would tell me to change my shirt because it was "to low cut" or my pants were to tight or he "didnt want his gf to look like a whore" Once again i believed him and I started to dress differently to make him happy and feel comforable. As time when on he became very violent punching through doors,busting out windsheilds,flipping over tables and screaming and yelling till he lost his voice. I didnt realize how bad things were getting b.c he claimed he just loved me soooo much i made him "go crazy" He also would sometimes mention that we both would be "happier if we were dead cuz then we would never have to worry about not being together" This frightened me but for some reason i just had such a soft spotin my heart for him i couldnt picture life without him. I was soo consumed in his bullshit and his lies I wouldnt listen to anyone. He was all i wanted. Joe would often break up with me and would laugh at me and ignore me for weeks he would intentionally do this to see if he could get me back. it was a sick and demented game that always put me into a deep depression. He would call me a whore, a slut, worthless, a bum, a baby killer, fat, annoying, a burden,He often rubbed salt in my wounds bringing up mistakes from my passed. He often threatened me with suicide knowing i was a victim of suicide. He would play with his gun in front of me and tell me that when he dies it is all my fault. He once looked at me while driving 120 down the freeway in the pouring rain with no wipers and told me we were both gna die he jerked the wheel and we almost crashed. He has held his gun to my head and told me "i will splatter your brains on my walls" He accused me of cheating everyday and i couldnt go or do anything or he would accuse me so my life pretty much became nothing but joe. He was my life... I went from being happy and cheerful, stong, beautiful and outgoing to a weak person that really did feel fat and ugly and worthless I also started getting horrible anxiety which turned into attacks in which i couldnt breath and had to seek medical help for ... i was joes property. His pet. Now i am 20yrs old i feel as though ive wasted most of my youth thinking about, following, begging and being stuck and consumed in joes world... a abornormal world that i could never relate to. A fantasy world. He sucked me into his mental illness and i was his victim. Joe was a blood sucker he sucked the life out of me... I was stuck just like all of you ladies and it took me 4yrs and a baby to realize this. I am 5mths pregnant with his child my first baby. This has been a huge eye opener. I feel like ive seen the light at the end of the tunnel. But now my youth is gone and im left to care for a child alone... So my advice to you is GET OUT. Get out before its to late. It will only get worse. You are going to waste away your life and you are gna lose yourself idenity and your happiness. There is someone out there for you. A good man that will love and cherish you and treat you that way you deserve to be treated. BUT before you move on Find yourself. Get a life of your own. Do something to make yourself happy. Become independent and self sufficiant and gain respect for yourself. Stay strong and you can do anything you set your mind to. He is not right for you dont fall into his trap cause thats all it is... a TRAP! He will never bring true joy to your life or love u the way you should be loved. Goodluck :)

mmp

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 October 2010):

I was in an abusive relationship on and off for 13 yrs we have a son together and Im 7 months pregnant with our second ...Ive taken back the piece of crap so many times because of the lies and bullshit he has said to me and I believed every word which was one of my biggest mistakes... He tried to kill me by strangling me until I gave up trying to breathe... he has beaten, abused me mentally and physically, lied, manipulated and I still took him back ..I feel ashamed that I let myself be treated that way ... I could go on with horror stories of the so called relationship but I wont Im just going to suggest a book which has helped me more than ever to realise I deserve better and so do you...its called WOMEN WHO LOVE TOO MUCH by Robin Norwood http://www.amazon.com/Women-Who-Love-Too-Much/dp/0671733419 ... I recommend it to anyone thats been in a violent relationship ...

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (4 October 2010):

Oh, I wrote the last post about me and my three children - I have the back injury...

I missed a very crucial point in me telling my story (which I have found helps me to heal) is that after he beat me while I was pregnant on boxing day 2008, and when I had to get him to come back to help look after us, he slept with a disabled mutual friend who I had cared for and even had tolieted, with a random woman and with a girl who was not a blood cousin, but who was pretty much his coucin and he had babysat her when she was young - when they slept together he was 27 and she was 17. She fell pregnant and had an abortion on the day he returned home to 'care' for us. Everytime he would leave, he would sleep with whatever woman blinked at him, he is actually very good looking and extremely charismatic. He is in sales now, and does the best sales at his company - and I believe that it is because he is a master manipulator, able to sniff out you weaknesses, to push buttons and to tell you whatever he knows you want to hear. Yet why can't I just stop loving him, stop feeling upset now that I jave found out that he was dating someone... feeling desperate cos he might want to be a family again... it feels truly like I have an uncontrollable illnes about him. I can think of all the things he has done, and yet I still wish our relationship would have worked and part of me hopes that he'll actually change one day. I wish I could just cut that defunct part out of my brain so I could FORGET him. - ANGELA

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (4 October 2010):

This is a somewhat older thread but it is very timely! I am 26, and was with my ex for four years. We have three children together, our youngest is only sixteen months old, and our daughter is 5 and our son is 6. I met him when I was 18 turning 19, it was a whirlwind! He was a dopehead, never yelled, so sensitive and caring, drank a bit but when he did he would just get clingy and tell me how much he loved me. I had been raped, suffered a nervous breakdown when I just turned 18... so I was still very vunerable when him and I met.

He loved me so much (I thought) and proposed to me after two weeks together because he said, that he couldn't bear to even think about losing me to anyone else. We were trying to fall pregnant after being together for two months, and I was pregnant after being together for four months total. I thought all my dreams had come true, a sensitive man who had suffered abuse for many years as a child, who doted on me, that never even raised his voice to me. When I was pregnant we started talking about him quitting smoking dope... I had smoked it alot before being with him but I didn't want our baby having dopeheads for parents. After giving birth by caesar with our son, I was pregnant with our daughter only 14 weeks post labour. Our son was very sick until he was two years old, so for the first two years of my sons life and the first year of my daughters, I sepnt it doing physical therapy with my son, trying to care for my daughter and trying to drag my body through each day - even though I was suffering extreme anxiety and depression and having two pregnancies and two c-sections in those two years.

Through this, my ex tried - and eventually succeeded - at quitting the dope... he got a full time job, and although he started drinking more, I thought that it would ease. It never did. He started mentally and emotionally abusing me - me - the person he swore to protect from the men that had abused me before he did, me, that had his babies... then things started getting more physical... pushing, shoving, taking all our money and wastin it on booze. Dragging me inside by my forearms because the situation was getting heated and I thought if I left for a walk he would calm down and not fight in front of the kids... then he started getting more violent and kicked in the bedroom door one night cos I wanted to be away from him when he was plastered and getting agro... he started punching holes in the walls... and he started abusing the children mentally, emotionally and then physically.

I tried to leave him so many times... at one stage I got a Domestic violence order out on him... for three months our ives improved free from him but again I felt I simply couldn't survive without him and reconciled. Things escalated even when we found out I was pregnant with our third child, and on Boxing Day 26th of December 2008, he beat me very severely in front of the children while I was pregnant, smashed up everything in the house that he could get his hands on, and walked around flicking a knife in his hand. Eventually my brother who lived with me came home and saved the kids, looked after me until my dad came and then they got him to leave. He went home to his family interstate and I thought I would never get back with him. I had a very sore back a month after him leaving, and it got really bad. I ended up needing to take him back because I couldn't care for our older children and I could hardly walk - my family couldn't understand it but they didn't help me or look after us and I was all alone. Eventually my back was so bad that I stopped being able to walk AT ALL, I went to hospital a few times and then they admitted me and didn't know why I couldn't walk. After being persuaded I told the doctors that I was beaten and described exactly how - but refused to let them know who did it - and told them it wasn't my partner though. Only then could they diagnose me because the type of injury they finally discovered I had could only be caused by a massive amount of force. I had our baby early because I was on copious amounts of narcotics... and I still couldn't walk well after having him. I ended up going thru rehab to get strong enough to walk again (this is Oct 2009 by this stage). My ex didn't support me at all, and spent every second that the kids were not visiting me in hospital - he abused them. I was a mess cos I knew what he was doing but I couldn't do a thing to stop him. And if i told anyone what was going on, then they would have taken my kids cos I wasn't able to care for myself or them.

I started walking with a frame, then crutches. I was discharged... my ex would refuse to feed me, to shower me... he would take away my painkillers and wouldn't give them back even if I was in agony and begged him... he promised to change... in Feb this year I knew I couldn't handle this, and I especially couldn't let my kids go through the abuse he was inflicting on them. I told him to leave if he wasn't going to change - even though i had no way of caring for myself or the kids. I got evicted cos I couldn't pay rent, but I couldn't live there anymore cos I was unable to look after us. My mum and dad took us in, I lost almost everything I owned cos I had to abandon it... I am only just being able to rebuild my life and feel happy again, I have a house, my finances are in check.

He started texting me about getting back together... I was disgusted... then he kept on at me and I started to soften. Now he tells me he is so sad cos he split up with some chick he was dating (while he was telling me he wanted to change and heal our family)... and then tells me I have no compassion for how bad he is feeling! Then I start panicking cos he stops replying my return texts after saying how he can't cope with life anymore...

Reading these posts have helped me feel that I should be wary about getting sucked in again and ending up in a worse position than how I was at the beginning of this year (if it gets worse than being in chronic pain and unable to even pick up your baby son, being evicted, in debt and unable to even shower independently)...

I know it is wrong to even CONSIDER reconciling, and if I did I would lose any help I have from my family... I am praying that I am strong enough to not get back with him...

I am thinking of all you other woman who have gone through the same hell I have... and I hope you are all healing and have found someone who treats you how you deserve to be treated :-) xoxo

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (30 September 2010):

wow i didn't know so many woman were going through the same thing I just experienced this summer. I'm amazed by reading all of these. And i'm sure everyone here understands how hard it is to leave the one man you love, even though friends and family yell at you too. mine was my first love, I left him a few days ago, i'm sick of chasing him when he freaks out and overreacts at me for no reason. I'll always love him even though he treated me so badly, I feel bad for him, he will never change and I believe that i was the only person who would love him as much as i did for who he was and put up with all his crap. We dated for 7 months, its weird seeing him in school, he keeps texting me, although i have a temporary restraining order.

The first 3 months with him were amazing, i even lost my virginity to this guy, we are both 18. basically, he was very controlling and manipulative, he got me to do almost anything, but then he started to ask me to commit suicide with him and try hard drugs, the most i ever did was smoke weed with him, his whole family smokes a lot and he was neglected by his parents who are never home during the day. I wish it didnt end so badly the other day, he called me ugly, and then he said hes gay and he only dated me because i looked like a man. then a minute later he apologized and said im beautiful and im the perfect girl for him. I texted him saying i will NEVER get back with him, his chances are over. and i havnt spoken to him since

he would accuse me of lying, cheating, he thought i was a drug addict, he is so wrong, he is paranoid, insecure, and has major trust issues. I was actually amazing to him, i was always there for him, but when i cried he enjoyed it, he loved to see me hurt, hes sick, and im sad that he will never change. If it was possible for him to change then i would be so happy.

he has held a knife to my throat, saying "IF you loved me you wouldnt be afraid" i was still afraid,he liked to test me to see if i would always come back to him, it was like his game. Hes talked about cheating on me, how he thinks other girls are hot, while im so loyal and faithful. I truly wanted him to be the one forever, i actually love him and it kills that he couldnt change or realize that he was the wrong one.

i cant imagine myself with anyone but him, how can i start to move on? i cant stop thinking about him, and hes going to keep trying to get me back, but i cant do this to myself anymore, its emotionally draining, hes destroyed me.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (30 September 2010):

Hello I am a lady writing this - of course human (some of these man are not!)

There are so many strong women on this website, which is so wonderful to hear, whilst you have faced adversity you have become stronger- what didn't kill you made you stronger and hopefully we can make sure that abuse is isn't TABOO anymore - So keep shouting about it!!

I am not going to share my story as it is far too long and in my past and I am managing every year to grow stronger.

If you are in abuse an abusive relationship, we are all with you in spirit. x you will do what you need to do in your own time - at least you know it isn't right x which is the first step. Just gotta stop your heart ruling your head, when that happens it is much clearer and easier, just don't let him take your strength away from you, which they do! by that I mean self esteem, your relationships with others, keep your friends and family close, and use their head when yours is ruled by your heart, tell them everything and when you know your heart is ruling your head, it is hard to listen to them and as hard as it is and you love them accept they are right and they will help you leave if you mean it- you deserve better and there is a relief when they happens x

Men who are abusive are weak, we women think we can change them, can we? should we have too? and the only way they can live in this world is to make you weaker than them and blame you for their own issues thats not on.

If you manage to finish the relationship, dont give them attention they will continue, ignore them and they will go away, I know it worked for me, ignoring him and having my friends and family beside me.

Because I was angry I made a mistake and showed my anger that give him attention - any attention even negative is attention, if them no words nothing and they do go away!

There are some lovely, gentle and caring men out there, who can give you all the love you need, you have to see with your eyes and your head and leave your heart to come along when it is ready.

I am very protective of myself and sometimes my mind plays tricks on me, but my new partner knows about my past and helps me

Hopefully you will find someone who will love you that way too, they are out there xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (28 September 2010):

Like all the other individual's who told their stories,I too experienced a demon; a selfish, arrogant and insecure partner. We met in 2007 and dated for about a year in a half, however the relationship never really ended in 2008, because the last time I saw him was in july 2010. In the beginning of our relationship, we hit it off immediately. Like the other women on here, I too felt like he was the one. He gave me butterflies in my stomach and provided me with what i thought was unconditional love. Having never been in a relationship, because I was very independent, he was someone i chose to actually open too. Now looking back on ,after about only two months of dating I can notice the obvious red flags; flirting with other girls, lying to me constantly telling me what I could and couldn't wear, who I could talk to, etc. He began to isolate me from my friends, he criticized my family & friends relentlessly, he even criticized my weight, calling me an anorexic whore, and saying I looked sick. He pinned me down and yelled in my face, he shoved me numerous times, threw his cell phone at my face pulled a knife out on me and ultimately hit me. The second he hit me , pulled my hair, and threw me to the ground, that's when the flight or fight instinct clicked; i flew. I got an order of protection against this asshole, and it made me sick to know that I was going through this. Unfortunately, there were times where I made decision's based on my feelings, NOT my head; to all women out there who are or have experienced this, please do not let your emotions get to you, try to fight and lead with your head. Be understanding of yourself and your feelings,allow yourself to feel what you need to feel, what we went through is traumatic. Our instincts our 99 % of the time correct. These so called "men" are sick, they are insecure, because their lives are so dysfuntional they need to control something or someone. They are the ones who are not content with their lives and feel the need to control others. They are losers whose' heads are on backwards, they perceive the world in a dysfuntional way. They spend their lives controlling individual's. Noone really knows them, it's unfortunate, because these "boys" have become so accustomed to their acting role & will never be able to fully feel, receive, and provide true love. Do not let what someone says to define you, you know yourself the best. It is going to take time to reach full contentment and tranquility but you all will get there if you think with your head, get help, and realize why you were involved in the first place. Yes we can all sit here and blame our partner's but we took a part in it too, and that was we allowed them to abuse us. Break the cycle. Best wishes to all xo

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 September 2010):

I've been reading this column off and on since the end of May when I ended things with my abusive ex. It has helped to know that I am not alone. I never in my lifetime would have thought that I would ever be with someone that was abusive. I didn't have other abusive boyfriends in the past and I come from a good middle class family. I am educated with a MA degree and I am a therapist. And so, it is embarrassing that I made choices to have a relationship with this man. But, I have been taking action to end it, following all that know in my head and not necessarily in my heart.

1) First of all, my sisters, as absurd as it sounds, LOVE YOURSELF. It helps for me to think what I would do to protect my children from this person and then I remind myself to protect myself as I would them. We deserve a life filled with love, safety and freedom.

2) Do not feel any pity or empathy for the man that has been doing nothing but destroying you and your life. He is a monster and it is very likely that he knows your weakness and love for him and he will use it to manipulate and get what he wants at all costs. Remember, he is a predator, and a really good actor, liar, con-artist at best. Most likely, he is mentally ill, but that is nothing you can change, help or even need to live with. If he is sick, he needs professional help not you.

3) Do not wait for him to change or to be the wonderful person you thought he was or has the potential to be. My sister who is an animal trainer and behaviorist said that it's like those mice that get randomly rewarded with food when they push the button. These mice will do anything and become desperate because they just know they will get rewarded if they keep trying. Don't keep trying, it doesn't matter what you do. He is the one in control until you leave him and get out of the cage.

4) Cut your losses and be thankful that you left alive. No amount of money or valuables or stuff that he takes or steals from you is worth sacrificing your life. I'm turning it all around and I am saying that I would gladly pay all the things he has of mine to keep him out of my life forever. -He left me with serious credit card debt and stole all my jewelry. He destroyed many things that had sentimental value to me as well. He took over my office space where I saw clients and I had to shut down my business. He threatened to post naked pictures of me on the internet and to shame me to all of my contacts. He used his promise to pay me back the money he borrowed as leverage to keep me hostage as his girlfriend...

He will never repay me, he will never return my jewelry, and everything he threatened, he will simply do now or later...but it doesn't matter to me anymore if I can be free of him. His choices will catch up with him and he will pay....first consequence is that he will NOT have ME.

5) Write a list and title it "X Sucks!" I sat down and in 15 minutes I have a list of 107 ways that my X sucks and I'm not finished. Every time I start feeling soft because I remember something sweet or want to give him the benefit of the doubt, I read that list and I get really healthily pissed again. Keep that list. It is your reality check.

6) When you're done with that list, make another that points out all the red flags you chose to ignore. I feel really stupid when I think of all the the things I dismissed and minimized, but I am smart if I can learn from this and remember these red flags to keep me safe in the future.

7) Remember that he is a liar and there is nothing that he can say or do that can rebuild the trust. He is not the man the you loved. The love that you spewed all over this man was wasted on him. He is not the deserving target of your love just like you are not the deserving target of his abuse.

8) Treat yourself to something that you have done without probably because he was in your life. Talk to your friends, your family, buy something for you.

My ex didn't let me have any time to myself. I now let myself be alone, just to think and breathe again. I can go shopping without his calling me every 2 minutes and me reporting what I'm doing. I can enjoy my privacy. I can take my time to do things. I can sleep. I have a little money left over from what I saved by not paying for his cigarettes and beer anymore.

9) Make a list of things that bring you joy. New freedoms you are discovering. What you really want in your relationships and your life.

10) Go out there with your regained knowledge and power. Claim back your life, surround yourself with all that is positive and let your love land on who or what is deserving, worthwhile and healthy for you.

Good Luck my sisters. Be Strong. Be Well.

-LT

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A female reader, snickydoo23 United States +, writes (21 September 2010):

I met my boyfriend (ex now) about two years ago, I was freshly getting out of a divorce and looking to have fun. I met him at a bar(big mistake) and we hit if off right away. We kinda just stuck with one another from there on out, then the incidents started. We moved into an apartment then he started controlling my friends, my family, my finances, my car, my phone, anything he could control he would. I am the only one working he does his side jobs but those are very few and far between. He is constantly hanging around at bars getting hammered spending rent money. I ended up getting pregnant by him and the abuse didn't end then, he would throw me around dragging me by my hair, pinning me down by sitting on my chest and hit me, one time my face was so black and blue I had to call in sick from work for a week. I would always take him back though, he would crash my whole world one moment then make me feel like I was the queen of his life the next. Unfortunately not mine or his fault I ended up losing the baby at 37 weeks, one of the hardest moments of my life, at first he was really supportive I was shocked, but now I am sitting at a friends computer typing this because he kicked me out of the house, and the death of my baby happened only two weeks ago. I cannot ever tell you that two years ago this is where I would be but he has literally left me in financial, physical, and emotional ruin's...meanwhile he is off somewhere drinking with his buddies not giving a care in the world. I am at my lowest point but just when I think it can't get any worse it ALWAYS does. As my friend put's it: you can't keep beating a dead horse, when it is time to move on it is time, and I am slowly but surely seeing that. I have found it best to try to keep busy, but I know it is also important to have those moments where I can just let it out keeping all of those emotions whether they be sad, happy, angry inside can be a time bomb waiting to happen. Good luck!!!

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A female reader, Recovered84 United Kingdom +, writes (23 May 2010):

Hello there.

I've also recently come out of a relationship that was extremely similar to yours.

You were not wrong, your gut instinct was always right and the reason why you're still thinking about him might be because you shared a very strong chemistry with him.

Unfortunately, many abusive men are very "passionate" lovers and so on and they tend to hook you in by massaging your ego about certain things they know women love to here.

My advice to you is to please please read a book called "Why Does He Do That" by Lundy Bancroft. It will shock you with it's accuracy in how it describes all of the behaviour you have experienced and simply explains why this behaviour occurs.

That book saved my life and has speeded up the recovery process no end as before I was still missing the intimate, happy moments greatly yet now....I just see that I was being manipulated in one of the worst possible ways and that there is SO much better out there.

I never thought a book could make such a dramatic change to my life and my thoughts....but it really has and has set me up for a better future where I can spot the signs of abusive behaviour a mile off now.

All the best :)

xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 May 2010):

This sounds like a relationship I had once. It's so flattering to have some declare they love you SO much, and are desperate to be with you. Unfortunately this is obsession, not love. People who love you don't treat you like that. It's hard to accept. I had to accept it with my ex - I took an honest look at how he was, and also at his previous relationships (these are a great indicator) and his obsessive tendancies became really obvious. My opinion is guys like this are emotionally immature - I don't mean that as a mean comment, they simply do not have the emotional capacity to deal with being in a relationship. Run run run! Don't go back. The best bit of advice I got was very simple - 'next time, find a grown up to go out with.'

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 May 2010):

I hate that so many wonderful women have to go through this. It is sad that we have to deal with the guys insecurities through verbal and physical abuse. Abuse cannot change just because they say it does, it takes years of counseling to change abusive ways.

I met my ex online-I met him very shortly after a recent end to a previous relationship, that may have been my first mistake. We texted for weeks before meeting, he said all the right things and made me feel all giddy inside. The night we met he had been drinking at his sisters house (where he lived-28yrs old) I didnt thinkg anything of it because I wanted him to be right for me. Things were great for a bit, but that changed very soon. He really liked to drink and I started to take notice of that. On a trip to the beach he asked me if I had ever been there, and I said yeah, I came with an ex b4. He blew up at me and I was in shock- I didnt say I missed my ex or anything so why am I being called horrible names? I just didnt understand. That night he brough it back up and had me in tears with the nasty names he was calling me. When I look back this was within the first month-I should have ran then! It progressively got worse with time. He began controlling aspects of my life-when we went to visit my brother he acted like a child-sulking in the corner while I was having a good time...later he told me that I was a b**** for ignoring him-then he said I was obsessed with my neice because I talked about how cute she was---later he began bad talking my friends and family. He attacked my body image and when I lost my job and pleaded that he never bring that up, that was the first thing he threw in my face, although I am a credetailed teacher and he works for a tube inspection company. His drinking got worse. He was up to a six pack a night just to go to sleep. The 4th of July is when I had had it. We went to Las Vegas and he got plastered and began bashing my friends husband-I got annoyed and said something back and he lost it, right in the middle of the casino-he called me a stupid effing c*nt and flipped me off- I left and went to the room, devastated that he did that in public--it seems different when we can hide it in our homes doesnt it? He followed me and burst in the room full of rage! He got in my face and screamed at me every cuss word he could conjure up. I tried to leave and he pushed me back with his chest-I grabbed and opened the dorr and he slammed it, almost on my fingers-I felt like I was in a movie! I walked around the room woth him on my every step yelling and pushing me. He sat on the bed and said something rude and I turned to him and pointed to say something--he urged me to slap him-I didnt know what to do-he said do it, just do it pus*y...I lightly tapped him on the face and he said oh thats all you got, and I told him that I dont really want to hit him-he then swung his fist and punched me in the side-My heart sank, I couldnt believe it-I still remember what his face looked like when he did it-it was so ugly. I ran into the bathroom and slid down the door in tears-he did nothing. I came out to get my phone and call my brother and I noticed my phone was gone--after a few minutes of my pleading he admitted that he had thrown my phone out of the 20 story window of our room---I broke up with him. A few wekks later I found out that I was pregnant that I had been pregnant when he had hit me- I was devastaed and scared- I had seen him arounf his four year old and he was abusive to her as well-one time he got mad and did a u turn at 20mph causing her head to slam against the car door-he didnt care, because he was upset. He also spanked her hard whn she would pass gas-anyways I tried to work it out with him-although I had no feelings left for this idiot. He knew it- he was losing control and didnt like it- he always got mad when we were together because I didnt want to cuddle or hold hands and say I love you 24/7. Its really hard to do that stuff when the guy is cussing you out-why would I want to do that-inside I hated him. His family just said "oh" when I told them that he had hit me...His dadsaved me one night when I called him for help because his son refused to leave my house after punching walls and spitting on my carpet...this guy told me he would hunt me down and that I was disgusting and that he didnt want to have his baby inside of me---I was so depressed and scared I was near suicidal-I had an abortion. I strongly believe that that unborn child saved my life-one life for another...after that he slowly disappeared out of my life-as far as I know he is with another girl, and it is sad because this girl has a child under two years of age and I am worried for her. At times I think Im the only one he abused and that I must have deserved it-but then I read about abuse-and once abuser always an abuser-and its crazy hoe abusers and alcohol go hand in hand-I began going to church during my short lived pregnancy and he hated it-a month after not talking at all he tried to contact me though email because I had changed my phone number-he wanted to stay friends even while dating another girl-I found this humorous-as jealous as he got of me saying one word about my ex he wanted to stay friends with his (me) while dating this poor other girl-he said she had no reason not to trust him--lol-okay...there are days that I think Im unworthy of him which makes NO sense-even wrting makes me mad at myself-but hes a douchebag-he doesnt deserve me! he couldnt stand that Im getting my life back on track-it seemed he put in so much effort to bring me down, which he did-but screw him-very few men are worth your tears, and the ones that are, wont make you cry.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 May 2010):

hi, i've been reading your stories and they are al very simular to mine! I was with my abusive partner for 9yrs we have a son together, so i still have contact with him! i feel that i still love him even though i can now see him for what he is. I never want to go back to that life as it was so degrading and life threatening! i have been left for 15months and they have been hard but i am safe and have a great future in front of me, i am just finishing 5 'a' levels and a GCSE in maths in the last 8 months which has done some good for my confidence!

I hope i can find someone nice in the future but if i don't i have my peace, health and i'm safe! i wish you all the same! x x

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 May 2010):

I was with an abusive guy for 11 months. The day after my 21st birthday, he (for no reason) hit me across the face (which was recovering from a jaw surgery) which left a bleeding gash in my cheek. I knew then that I had to leave... I couldn't take the abuse any longer. I had to go to the emergency and get stitches and I used the hospital to give me strength to finally turn in him. He used to throw things at me, break things, and attempt and sometimes successfully punch me. He many horrible things and it was never my fault.. I was just there. He would be loving one second and snap the next. It was like what all of you have said. He was SO perfect at first. I thought he was my prince charming. He told me how he wants me to be the one and how he wants to grow old with me and have a family with me and all of this to ring me in. Incredibly romantic too. Then signs of his behavior started popping up... then it was "I want to change" "I love you so much I don't want to lose you." BLAH BLAH BLAH. so on and so on. It's been 7 months and I recently starting dating this guy that is absolutely perfect for me and treats me like I'm his princess. He's genuine and not hiding anything. It's really REALLY refreshing and I love him a lot. But then why am I still affected by this abusive idiot? Why am I hurt when I hear about his happy life and this new girl? Because he talked his way out of his punishment? Because he isn't affected by the situation at all and I'm left with a physical and emotional scar? I get SO worked up when I just see him. I turn into the hulk and get incredibly angry and then the rest of the week sucks. I cry myself to sleep and my emotions run crazy. He was very controlling and I think that maybe my body and mind are going through withdrawals of being controlled. After I left him, it turns out that he wasn't heartbroken at all. Even after him saying that he was going to propose to me and we even got my ring size and he told me he had fantasies of how he was going to propose... and it was going to be really soon! So how was he not heartbroken? He told me he was "a little sad" for "about two weeks." Within the first couple months he slept with three different girls and started dating this one girl and they're still together. It makes me feel like that entire relationship was one fat LIE and FAKE and that I gave all my love to someone who didn't truly love me in return. It was for nothing. A waste of my energy. For months after I cried and cried myself to sleep, wasting my love and energy on someone who didn't even deserve yet I knew this and couldn't stop feeling for him! Right now, I don't want him back, but I still go through the being abused/controlled withdrawals of whatever evil spell he put on me. I just want this to stop and so I can live my happy life with my boyfriend. People say that he's "changed" which makes it worse and makes me more angry, but I keep telling myself that he hasn't. People like that don't change in that short amount of time. He's a good boy right now because he's on probation (for the second time...) and knows his ass will get thrown in jail quickly. I just want to be reassured that his karma will hit him...

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A female reader, colliejoan United States +, writes (30 April 2010):

I'm so happy to have found this. I'm in a situation like you ladies. Before I get into it, I wanted to let everyone know that there is a free service available to give counseling to women who have been in domestically violent relationships....In my county it's called Crime Victim Compensation. You need to apply for it, but I think that every woman out there who is going through this NEEDS to get help.

I have finally come to terms with the fact that my thinking is wrong. Something inside of me kept me with that man, and I HAVE to change that something....for me AND for my two year old daughter.

I struggle every day with thoughts of fear, love, guilt....these thoughts should absolutely not be in my head. What he did to me was WRONG.....I deserved NONE of it. But it's so hard to continue to be that strong.....yesterday, I was WOMAN, hear me roar......and today I'm wondering if he still loves me.....I HATE these thoughts....These thoughts make me feel weak and.....dirty.....and sick.

I'm so happy there are others out there that feel the same...I wish some of you were closer, so I had a girlfriend to talk to. For now, a therapist and the internet are going to have due!!!

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A female reader, Agunia United States +, writes (12 April 2010):

I lived with abusive boyfriend for 2 years. yes that was our anniversary. I cheated on my husband with him and i left my husband for him. On the begging was wonderful. After 3 months started. First with jeaoulsy, drinking, creating drama. Everything was progressing from that. I called for a cops on him but he escape. After that we got together again. he could't forgive. He was very manipulative and revengful person. The fights started. He was calling me names and thteating me with everything what possibly could.He said that he is going to destroy my life.He was detoying his belongings then he moved to mine while he was drunk. Once when he was drunk he was playing with the gun and put it into my head and holded and then he said that was a joke.Then he pushed me. Then he throwed me on the floor, then he had knife under my throat and telling me that he was going to kill me. he attacked my roomate and was moving his stuff from the house to the house next door. He called for police then and he told them that we kept him hostile. Cops left I went to the Police station asking them to remove him from my house they didn't want to do anything. When I got back he was bleading and moving his furniture. Taking my stuff and pushing me. then he said that he is going to call for a police and tell them that I hit him and he did. They didn't belive him. I filled Order of protection but our friends talked us out of it. BIG MISTAKE!!!!! he came back to the house and after 2 weeks started again. Threats, drinking, abuse. Then few weeks ago he put me in jail for false accusation of domesting voilence. He was mean and he was choing me on the floor. Then he called to the cops thet I hit him. They took me to jail- didn't even talked to me. Now he is sitting in my house illegally . Does not pay rent, manipulates everbody, does not want to leave. Soon he is going to be gone. i have to pay thousand of dollars for lawyers to defend myself. I didn't want to take a plea (26 weeks of domestic violence classes). i didnt do anything. he keeps saying that Im an alcohlic and another things. He is a sick men.

When the men start abusing you verbally- RUN!!!! It is not going to be better. everbody was telling me this. I didn't want to belive. I have to pay a high price, but if thats what it takes it is fine with me. He was plannig this for a long time. It didn't happend the first time it happend second. I was affraid to leave because of the threats- but he did it anyway. I will be fine.

I fell sorry for him. He has to live with himself. i fell sorry for next women who he is going to meet.

Good luck!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 April 2010):

I lived with abusive boyfriend for 2 years. yes that was our anniversary. I cheated on my husband with him and i left my husband for him. On the begging was wonderful. After 3 months started. First with jeaoulsy, drinking, creating drama. Everything was progressing from that. I called for a cops on him but he escape. After that we got together again. he could't forgive. He was very manipulative and revengful person. The fights started. He was calling me names and thteating me with everything what possibly could.He said that he is going to destroy my life.He was detoying his belongings then he moved to mine while he was drunk. Once when he was drunk he was playing with the gun and put it into my head and holded and then he said that was a joke.Then he pushed me. Then he throwed me on the floor, then he had knife under my throat and telling me that he was going to kill me. he attacked my roomate and was moving his stuff from the house to the house next door. He called for police then and he told them that we kept him hostile. Cops left I went to the Police station asking them to remove him from my house they didn't want to do anything. When I got back he was bleading and moving his furniture. Taking my stuff and pushing me. then he said that he is going to call for a police and tell them that I hit him and he did. They didn't belive him. I filled Order of protection but our friends talked us out of it. BIG MISTAKE!!!!! he came back to the house and after 2 weeks started again. Threats, drinking, abuse. Then few weeks ago he put me in jail for false accusation of domesting voilence. He was mean and he was choing me on the floor. Then he called to the cops thet I hit him. They took me to jail- didn't even talked to me. Now he is sitting in my house illegally . Does not pay rent, manipulates everbody, does not want to leave. Soon he is going to be gone. i have to pay thousand of dollars for lawyers to defend myself. I didn't want to take a plea (26 weeks of domestic violence classes). i didnt do anything. he keeps saying that Im an alcohlic and another things. He is a sick men.

When the men start abusing you verbally- RUN!!!! It is not going to be better. everbody was telling me this. I didn't want to belive. I have to pay a high price, but if thats what it takes it is fine with me. He was plannig this for a long time. It didn't happend the first time it happend second. I was affraid to leave because of the threats- but he did it anyway. I will be fine.

I fell sorry for him. He has to live with himself. i fell sorry for next women who he is going to meet.

Good luck!

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A female reader, Nats7 Australia +, writes (2 April 2010):

It's a little eerie seeing a question dated 6th December 2004 - that was the day my daughter was born. It changed everything. My eyes were finally opened.

I wonder where you are at now. I hope you recovered. I have realised that I have not yet recovered. Instead, I've built a safe little prison for myself. I Love my daughter and my work but thats it. I'm too scared to go out and meet people: Afterall how do I know what someone is really like?

How are you going with all of this? After reading a lot of posts and watching some excerpts on abusive relationships I am kind of understanding that I need to get some counselling and slowly get back into the world.

Time, endurance, courage to face the pain and walk through the other side to a place of freedom? I hope so. I would love to hear from other people and one day I will post my whole story.

As for loving your abuser....well....it's confusing isn't it? But remember that it is not the abuse you love or the abusive behaviour. Maybe it is that you are/were in love with love or it could be grief as you entered the relationship with hopes, dreams and ideals that have most certainly been crushed but at that stage maybe it was too hard to let go of?

I'd really like to know how others are going with this process of healing!

God help and heal us all!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 March 2010):

hi, i got with my ex at the age of 14, i was with him for 3 years. the worst 3 years of my life. for the frist 6 month everythink was perfect, i thought i was the luckyest person in the world. i was only 14 n he was 17. anyway, he changed it was only a littel punch in the face at frist, but then it got worse and worse. i rember one time he went mad because i let he pizza go cold, but he was the one that fell asleep. i just rember waking up with him strangling me and saying u bitch and he kept punching me, pulling my hair, i was so scared. then he made me eat the cold pizza i was being sick n everythink but he didnt care he just laid on he bed and watched me. their so much more i could go on and on. he was a sick boy and needs help. i couldnt take it no more so after 3 years of it i left him. 2 days later he got a new girlfriend i tried to warn her wot he was like but she didnt belive me. all i want to say really is that if your with a man a he lays one finger on you LEAVE him while you can....i mean it....IT DONT GET BETTER ONLY WORSE. i was lucky that my ex found some1 else other wise he wouldnt of left me alone. well im 17 now nearly 18 i left him bout half year ago, yeah it been hard but worth it. im starting to trust people again and i have so much confidents....im so much more happyer :) xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (19 March 2010):

Hi I just got out of an abusive relationship, of two and a half years, in the last week. It's not the first time I have left him but I am hoping it will be the last. I can honestly say this is the hardest thing in the world.

He was so charming at first, I was drawn in like a magnet. The first month was incredible. He seemed to be the perfect gentlemen. He was romantic like no man I had ever know he seemed perfect. But then the cheating starting happening and I always forgave him. That was my own stupidity but it seems like abusive men are like whirlwinds that suck you in and the longer you are in it the harder it is to get out.

I can't place the first time he physically hurt me but I remember the worst. He got so angry at me for something really stupid. It was late at night after we had been out with some friends. I think he was calling me names and saying horrible things to me so I went to pack my bag to leave. He grabbed me by my hair and through me on the bed. He climbed on top of me and from there its a blur. I remember struggling, he broke my glasses and eye gouged me so hard I thought my eye was going to pop. I started crying and he saw all the blood. Instantly he turned from scary to trying to act like he was concerned. I still have a scar from my glasses cutting into under my eye.

Our whole relationship was a cycle. Right after he would hurt me he would feel really bad and treat me like a princess. There wasn't a set amount of time this would last sometimes it lasted a few months sometimes it lasted only a couple of weeks. From there he would make demands of me or put me down for the way I looked, how much i weighed, or he would tell me how bored he was with our sex life. I would try everything to make him happy but it was never enough. Things would escalate from there. He would start criticizing my friends and family, tell me I was a cheating whore when I never once even really looked at another man. He would go out with his friends but expect me to stay at home and if I did go out he would make ridiculous accusations or limit how long I should be gone. Then it would be a physical incident... And repeat.

I always believed his promises to change... I still want to believe him, but I know i need to do this for my own safety and to have a life that is about me not about pleasing the impossible. My only suggestions for others that are going through the same thing is be strong, you can do it, lean on friends and family for support, and if you have the urge to go back read stories like these. That's what seems to help me a little.

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A female reader, Shelly0808 Guyana +, writes (16 March 2010):

I am 27 years old and have been with my boyfriend for 3 years now. As in the case of all relationships ours was a whirlwind experience where we were loving&all the toppings in the beginning. However he was NEVER faithful to me from the inception. approximately 3 mths into the relationship i found out about 4 other girls in 1 night & it started from there...I got all the im sorry's I love you's&the usual lines to reconcile. About 1 year after the physical abuse started coupled with insults not only against me,but my family and friends, I have been cut off from my friends and family & I am not allowed to go anywhere without him& he basically wants me home all the time. Everytime I walk away he comes back with a story & I get sucked into him again. I am a career oriented person with a great job, he however has no job & always demands of me,its been about 1 1/2 years now since ive stopped supporting him however I am forced to spend money whenever we are out & the sums are a ridiculous sum. I have been beaten for 'sleeping around' when I havent, ive been beaten so he can go out with his other women, he has conceived a kid with another girl who will be 20 this year & the child will be 1 year old in a matter of months. At first he told me that the baby was not his however over the past few months pictures have surfaced of 'the happy family' & he has even told me now that he loves the mother & rumours are circulating that they are married which he denies. She has moved to another state now & the cheating still continues. I had decided again to leave him after watching him cohabit again with another girl& now that he has said he has another girl in his life, ive stopped calling & texting. NOW over the past 4 days he has been calling despite the fact that this other chic is spending the nights with him& leaving early in the morning before anyone can see, parks her car infront his house & is upset with me for not taking his calls. 2 weeks ago he dealt me a severe beating alleging that i was sleeping around again & I havent. My friends all think that this is just another act on his part & that he will still continue to call & try to reconcile,despite the fact that he texted me this morning saying he was in love & is happy with his new found love. Why is he texting me & calling me to tell me these things when he is clearly showing he has no regard for me or has no place for me in his life? what will be his next move?& how do I get over this&him? I need to get him completely out of my life. He has told me many times before if he cant have me, no one else can.

I NEED HELP

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 March 2010):

WOW, I have never related so much to anyone as I relate to all the most recent posts, and older ones but wow the most recent ones are shocking.

Here is my story and recently life experience in a nut shell:

Just like most of you, I fell for an abusive man. I had already been through one bad relationship although I was young, but he just seemed sooo LEGIT.It was a long distance relationship... I was a Junior in high school and he began lying and manipulating me then very gradually but slowly the brain-washing set in. He promised me he would marry me and that he only wanted me, and I fell completely in love with him. There wasn't anything that I wouldn't do for him, and I would ignore him getting angry over me calling late or eating with my family late or something so normal. By my senior year, I had sank into a deep depression because of his controlling tactics. I lost all of my close friends, and even quit the sports I loved the most; the emotional abuse was too much to handle. He would always accuse me of cheating and wouldnt want me out with my friends or experiencing all the "senior activities", after he knew he had control is when he would start calling me the names, slut, whore, fat ass, cunt, stupid, dumbass, ect ect ect. I am not a "fat girl" but he knew that because i'm taller and more filled out and muscular that that was something I struggled with and he pulled that card every single day. If I had guy friends he would threaten to kill me, he threatened to kill me all the time. When I would be able to go visit him, he was completely different and we would have amazing sex and he would buy me nice gifts and just be so different so thats what kept me hanging on. Before prom of my senior year, he finally admitted to me that he had not only kissed another girl and talked to several other girls, but that he had also slept with another girl during all of this. This really made me feel NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR HIM, there I was like an idiot listening to his every command and not having anything to do with anyone but him, but he was out screwing other women?? Yet, I stayed with him and continued to put up with his craziness.

After I graduated, I had the option of going to any college in the state pretty much, but I chose to go to a community college so I could move near him. Worst mistake of my life. After I moved near him, it got so out of control. He would not allow me to go grocery shopping without him, out to eat without him, to the mall without him, he wouldn't let me pump gas into my car...ANYTHING. I could't make friends and he made me give him the passwords to my myspace and facebook so he could read everything and see who added me to make sure that I wasn't talking to any NEW guys from school. Eventually, putting up with him everyday, things got physical because I would try to resist his control and when I would confront him about anything he would go crazy and break things and shatter things and rip up my belongings, ect. If i would try to leave he would threaten to kill me. One time he jerked me into his apartment and slapped me so hard on the side of the head that I fell down and not only couldn't hear but I almost peed myself (not humerous.) He did things like this on a daily basis, yet for some reason, even though I know I deserve better and I finally got out of the relationship physically because I told him I moved back home and he doesn't know where I anymore, even though I live in the same town (he has no car...or job or degree..) I still remained in contact with him via my cell phone. Eventually I fell into the same routine, and let him control my life. I dont want anything to do with him, but when he calls me going crazy because he doesn't know every detail of my day and starts telling me about the "bitches he is going to fuck" I can't help but just break down. WHY DOES THAT HURT? why do I care if he is with other females? I DONT WANT HIM, yet this sick man has messed up my mind to the point to where I can't stand to see him or think about him with another female. It hurts so bad, and basically thats why I have gone back everytime I have. I am in the process of moving on with my life, trying to gather the pieces and make new friends (girls and guys), and I can finally be myself somewhat again and be more free spirited and independent and I recently got a job that may help me fight my depression and from falling back into old routines....but I just wanted to share my story because I know how scary it is to wake up and think that your life might be the next "lifetime movie" and I Know how hard it is to move on from someone who you loved so much, but who hurt you and emotionally trained you to do as they commanded, it is a long tough road but I know that all of us can over come it. I don't think it is fair that we have had to go through this, but it has hopefully just made us stronger.

Thanks so much for all the posts. It really does give me hope to know that so many woman have overcame this dark situation that I have been facing.

My prayers are with you! Trust in the Lord, for he will lead you out of this time of despair.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 March 2010):

My ex and I were together on and off for four years. He "rescued" me from my first relationships, which was emotionally abusive, and I thought of him as my knight in shining armour. Isn't that how it always starts off? He was sweet and charming and smart, and very, very manipulative. I was too young to see just how manipulative. In those four years, he convinced me that he knew what was best for me and that my parents and friends were evil. He loved me and wanted to marry me and no one understood me like he did, blah blah blah. He sent me into a depression that engulfed my junior and senior years of high school. Because my GPA had suffered so much, I was rejected from my first AND second choice schools, and ended up attending the university that he currently is. I lied and told myself I was doing it for me, but I was doing it because I was stupid-in-love with him and he promised that everything would be better. I spent one semester there and dropped out. Currently, I am getting my life back on track (without him in it) and am doing everything I can do accomplish the dreams that I put aside for him.

I was fifteen when we started dating and he was eighteen. I am now nineteen, he is twenty-two. In those four years, I was sexually assaulted by a former friend and raped by another all within the same year. Knowing this, my ex would force me to be physical with him despite my obvious discomfort-- I am still not over what happened. He would guilt me into it. I complied. I used to blame myself for everything, even when he started hitting me. He would tell me that it was my fault for making him so angry and it would never happen again (don't they all say that?), and I was so stupid and naive at the time that I believed him even though EVERY time that he put his hands on me he'd say the same thing. I have a scar on my elbow as a permanent reminder of what he has done to me. To top off the emotional and physical abuse, he raped me on multiple occasions. I am just now coming to terms with that aspect of the abuse.

To ensure that I do not have contact with him/he does not have contact with me, I have blocked him on every medium I can think of. After all of this, it still hurts to find out that he is dating someone else. I don't love him anymore. In fact, I am in love with another man. He and I are very happy together and he treats me well, so I can't, for the life of me, figure out why it hurts that my ex is with another woman, and I can't figure out why I give a damn about him at all.

It is a relief to find that I am not the only person in this situation, so much so that I could cry. I just wish that someone had a solution.

The only one that I have come up with is constantly reminding myself of the abuse and of every reason he never loved me and never will. There is no justifying the abuse. There is no forgiving it (in my eyes), and there surely is no forgetting it.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 March 2010):

Wow, I have been reading everyone's posts over the last two days, and it is so comforting to know that I am not the only one. I am 28yrs old and consider myself a strong women. I am currently four classes away from my Master's . I have been on and off with my ex for the last 3years.

We were together only 3 weeks before he purposed and I was engaged. He tatted my name across his chest, put me on his checking account..and told me his deep dark secrets. I didn't believe in love at first sight but knew this was it. I had been cheated on before and experienced several broken hearts. I thought God had finally answered my prayers. We had so much in common. He loved everything I loved. He had his own house and was well established. He promised to take care of me.. I am very independent and have always taken care of myself...so this was new to me. I had a hard time letting him pay for things or take my shopping. He liked that about me...because of course all of his ex's used him for his money and cheated on him.. he had such horrible stories about them. Since I had been cheated on and was insecure I felt like we saw eye to eye. The thought of this is to good to be true crossed my mind several times. He was super HOT!! and could get any women. But he wanted me. He thought I was perfect showered me with affection and compliments.

when I moved in with him is when it went down hill...I thought what am i doing Ive know him for a month and things went so fast..but i seriously thought he was my soulmate and it felt like I had known him for years.He would tell me sweet things like I just want someone to grow old with, and go places with. By the way he was only 21 when i met him and i was 26 he seemed so much older than that.. acted mature. I still paid my roomate for my room just in case it didn't work out (the smartest thing i did) The drinking started, and mood swings..and the controlling...if I was at grocery store for more then 15 min it was texts like where are you, why are you taking so long? I couldn't even shower or go to the bathroom without him all up in my space. He would punch holes in walls, and be abusive to his animals. which was another thing i didn't get ...he was obsessed with getting dogs. but was horrible to them... I felt trapped like I Couldn't get out. We would get in these horrible fights and he would call me horrible names..cunt whore dumb ass your stupid, when I am the one with a degree and he barely graduated high school. Then would come the apology and the flowers and the crying (soooo much crying) like a light switch. Babe lets go shopping, or can we have a baby? I want to buy you a car... Im so in love with you and scared to loose you...I want to make all your dreams come true. he put the pressure on thick for a baby...and said it would change him. ya right! when we would break up he would ask for ring back and car...and i had to leave. if I didn't have a place i would be in a hotel... and I had heard a few of his ex's that happend to them..they gave everything up for him then he just dumped them a month later after he promises to move you in and why pay rent when i will do it for you? why drive your car just sell it or give to your mom you can drive the BMW. then he leaves you with nothing...

i looked through his phone and would find pics or texts..then confront him...he would freak out and break his phone or throw it out the window. It was nuts...I would leave and then be miserable missing him and remembering the good times. How he made me laugh and the sex was amazing. he would text when i would be at my loneliest and i would cave and go back... things would be great for a week, then i would find panties in the couch that were not mine, or business cards left by strippers... and it would start a fight..he would drink and the fighting would start... the name calling and punching holes in the walls... breaking dishes throwing things.. it was so stupid. one time he threw a sandwich at me. he would say sorry baby u just made me soo mad. or it wont happen again..and he would pour all the booze out... but that didn't last long.

I would excuse his behaivor because that was all he knew his childhood sucked and his dad doesn't even claim him. his mom was abused, and he is so protective of her, and me. but then verbally abuses me or degrades me. His mom enables his behaivor...she spoils him and sticks by his side. If he is mad at me she was mad at me..it was such a game. Pieces of the puzzle started coming together. I found out he had domestic violent charges pressed against him, he told me it was self defense(bullshit).. I found out he had two kids...that he never sees but yet he constantly wanted me to get pregnant.

My whole family loved him he was a manipulator and a charmer he was like a big teddy bear, and had ways to make you feel sorry for him. He is blessed with money...but if he didn't have money...he would not attempt to having a job...he likes to drink and smoke, and is always looking for a thrill... wrecking his trucks and getting DUIs. And then calling me saying if you were with me I wouldn't do those things...I need you to take care of me and love me.

In between all are breaking up and getting back together he had tons of chicks to his house..and would date them and sleep with them... on occasions when i would go back i would read the texts..them saying I thought you loved me? and wanted to marry me? now your just ignoring me... he would text them back Im working things out with my ex cunt don't call me again or I will kill you.... and because he never said that to me...when i would leave I thought he really does love me...I think he does in his own sick way but again its sick. We are currently not together and its sooooooo hard I miss him and have to remind myself why I am not with him. He never was physically abusive but I def believe it would have come to that. He did tell me he hopes i die because if he cant have me know one can..and how he hates that he can't have me.. I told him to go to anger management and get help..stop drinking (makes fights way worse) he wont. he said he would but he has never actually done it.

he has a way with me..hard to explain... oh ya he showed up to my work... talks shit about my friends...def tried to isolate me, my friends hate him, and my family told me to get away from him... which they think I dont talk to him anymore...but I lied cuz I was embarassed to tell them that i had seen and talked to him. I just want to move on and meet someone new. I know I have to get healthy first though and learn not to attract crazy men.

I think he may be a Sociopath or Narrcasist. I suggest you ladies googling those to things. I have read several books and am currently in therapy... its a long road to recovery. Stay strong!!!! and when you get sad and want to go back remember the bad out ways the good and no on should treat you this way!.

my ex still will text me or call...ive gotten stronger and I don't respond. I am to affraid to change my number or get a restraining order on him..cuz i feel like that will set him off and he will come to my work... I dont want that. then there are times weeks i don't hear from him only because he is with another girl.. then he will text I have been missing you...just thinking and have been by myself just me in my dogs.. i promise babe cuz i just want you and only you.. I will wait until you are ready... and I am not sleeping with anyone else.. ( sooo not true) sometimes i would drive by and see cars at his house or hear through other people that hes banging so in so.... it hurts!! I don't want him touching anyone else but I also don't want to be with him!

I WANT TO MOVE ON AND FINALLY GET OVER HIM!!!!! I just keep praying and journaling...try to keep myself busy..and surrounded by good people.

God bless and stay strong!!! You all are in my prayers.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 March 2010):

I was in the same situation.I had to realize that I'm going to die this guy is really crazy.One thing I didn't do was go to the cops was a good thing you did.I was scared of him.But I had remember the good times but I realize you only live once why would you waste your life on this situation which you already did. You only get one life and there will be somebody for you you have to be patient and wait.Go out stay away from your friends.And if he really did love you he would of never dated anyone for a 1 year you know that was not going to last.Be strong go out meet guys they are all over the place try speed dating just for fun just to get him out of your mind.It is always good to have a guy friend they always give the best advice. Just stay away I did it and he still calls me.And it gets him angry when I dont answer the phone but your ex almost made you lose your job your not married to him and you wanted to get counsling for this dude you wasted your time honey good luck been there.You will feel soo much better about yourself leaving that faget alone.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 March 2010):

To the last poster (1st March 10) I know just how bad you are feeling right now. We have all felt it on here, all who have loved these abusive men. I can relate to feeling like the relationship wasn't 'real'. The sheer waste of loving a man who doesn't deserve it. It's the worst feeling in the world.

But you and all the other women on here are very strong because we have faced a kind of hell and we will survive it. Never doubt yourself, ALWAYS trust your instincts and listen to them. If he seems too good to be true, he probably is. never let him convince you he has changed. People rarely change all that much and these extreme behaviours are quite deeply ingrained and very resistant to change. Our lives are too precious to give these men the benefit of the doubt.

It is the most painful thing, to leave someone you love so much because they are so damaging to you. But to stay is a worse and longer lasting pain. It's been a year since I left my abusive ex. I loved him when he was good. Then he changed (or rather became his true self), became verbaly abusive and irritable, put me down and belittled my culture (I'm muslim and he was white atheist). Gradually he began to physically assault me and after taking him back a few times, the penny finally dropped that he wasn't going to change. I realised he didn't respect me or himself.I knew that if I stayed I would lose respect for myself also, and that is what prompted me to finally leave. I doubted my decision for a long while afterwards (stupidly), and I missed him terribly throughout. But a year on and now I'm beginning to feel grateful and happier, not being in that claustrophobic environment of such a damaged abusive man.

You will get through this and you will be stronger for it. I'll pray for all of us going through this. xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 March 2010):

I've been reading through these stories and they have helped me so much. I was in an abusive relationship for the last year, and it finally ended only 2 days ago. I'm 24 years old, and we met on myspace of all places. We hung out every day for 2 weeks straight. He then came to me and told me he had to tell me something. He told me that he was seeing someone, but she lived in another state and he didn't really like her. After reading some of her texts to him it turned out that he'd been telling her he loved her nd that she is the one, etc. etc. I told him that I couldn't see him until he figured that out. He came to me a few days later and told me it was done. So we continued to date (though that should have been the first sign NOT to see him!). I fell completely in love with him within a month. He would ask me weird things about my past but I let them go as simple questions. He finally told me that he was in love with me and that I would be his last girlfriend. He would get very angry about little things at first, like traffic, or being late, etc. Then it escalated to where he would blame everything on me, calling me a cunt, a whore, a slut, a bitch, etc. He would talk about other women in front of me, talk about how hot they were, or their tits, etc. I am a small girl with an A cup, so these comments made me very insecure with myself. At one point he asked me if I would get fake tits. Then the physicl abuse started from time to time. The first time it happened he grabbed me by the throat, put is thumb on my windpipe and body slammed me on the stairs. He threw me into the side of his car, leaving bruises on my ribs, etc. etc. I caught him talking to girls over texts and via facebook, so I brought it up with him and it started a huge fight. I had a very manipulative way of turning things like this around on me, and somehow making me look like the bad guy to a point where I believed I must have done something wrong. He later told me that these "girls" he was talking to were "backups" in case our relationship didn't work out. We broke up at least 5 times in the last year, and he always came back to me, BEGGING me, saying that he will change and he loves me, and he wants to marry me, etc. This last time (a month ago) I really did think he was seriously changed. We had a wonderful last month together and I couldn't have loved anyone more than I did him. He had my whole heart like no one ever has. He was moving to Arizona for a job and I was getting ready to pick up my life, family and friends, to move with him. I came home on Friday to find a facebook message from one of the girls he "used to talk to". She told me that she had no idea that he and I were together, and that he'd been lying to me about her. Before replying to her, I called him to give him a chance to tell me the truth. He told me he couldn't remember when the last time was that he had talked to her. I knew he was lying, so I asked her and she said it was within an hour ago! He had told her that he couldn't stop thinking about her (which he had told me earlier that day as well). After talking to her on the phone, I found out that he was trying to get HER to move to Arizona with him! He told her that we weren't together anymore, etc. etc. I found out that he'd been like this with her for the past YEAR! It breaks my heart to think this whole time he was in love with someone else. He even had the balls to beg for me back, and when I wouldn't take him back, he called her not even 5 minutes later to beg for her back too! This guy is nuts, and I was in love with someone who wasn't even real. I don't know what to do about the depression. I haven't left my house, I don't want to talk to anyone, or see anyone, I just want to end my life (though I won't). He did so many horrible things to my self-esteem -- when I was around him I always felt ugly, or not good enough. When I wasn't around him, guys look at me, I'm told that I'm gorgeous, etc. I've never felt this ugly, unwanted and betrayed in my entire life!! Is there a good book out there for inspiration? I'm afraid I won't ever meet someone with the qualities that I loved him for ever again in my life. I've never felt this stupid and so alone. To top it off, my best friend flipped out on me and called me a piece of shit for still talking to him last night. It helps to know that there are others out there who have been through this. Please tell me there is an end to this lonliness and misery? :( I can't stop crying.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (21 February 2010):

WORDS OF ADVICE!

Well, what can I say, apart from damn, we women are walking the same path and continue to do so!

I won't go on about my ex, there is on point, as you have all expressed the same emotions, pain, angst and fear that I too have been through. I love him still, and I am sooooo annoyed with myself for loving him but hey, I do, and it will take time.

I left him just before Christmas 2009 - he brought me down to the point where I felt so alone that I wanted to take my own life and still do on occasions; he certainly did his best to damage me and control me and he still does, to a point!

I'm strong, intelligent, passionate, and determined and from what my friends say, I am a lovely, decent, kind and a beautiful woman, who only wants to make people happy so, why do we attract these kind of men and why do will continue to stay??? Somehow, the above sentence echoes all that has been expressed before.

You have to remember, we are WOMEN, we see human beings (or I do) in pain, whether it is obvious or not and our instincts start to kick in and, work overtime. It's like an maternal instinct that switches on - we feel their pain and we try to make it better, we want to hold them, take care of them and love them in order to help them but at the mercy of our own being. We try to ignore the abuse but we have to remember, we are in fact working with someone that is damaged and an emotional infant. The thing is, we have to STOP seeing them as a child; they are not children, we cannot save them and they cannot continue to use us as a punch bag. Yes, the majority have been through pain, lost parents, been abused, suffered immensely but, so have I and so have so MANY people however, I haven't attacked people or made them feel so low about themselves that they have wanted to take their own life or have been driven to alcohol and substance abuse.

The men we are in fact talking about need help, not from us but from people that are trained to help - they are the ones that are paid to deal with this kind of thing, not us because we are a cheaper/easier option. The abusive men are the ones that need to recognize their behaviour and seek help, we are not the ones to carry the burden or consequences - they are just too weak or pathetic to look at their actions and actually do something about them and sad truth is; they will continue on their path of abuse until they seek help for themselves.

Personally, I believe all to many women have lost a skill in-which intuition has been pushed aside. I'm not a expert on the subject but we have certainly chosen to ignore the sixth sense when it comes to men! As soon as that alarm bell rings, GET OUT! Don't wait for an apology, the excuses to come, the blaming or the put-me-downs, GET OUT and don't look back – there is NOTHING you can do for them, they need to recognize their behaviour and, work it out for themselves.

It's a shame, but when you fall in love with a man and he treats you with such discontent i.e. put-me-downs, violence and hatred; basically trampling on your soul and taking away your identity, and what you are left with is, NOTHING – you have become nothing and that was their intention.

When we have experienced such a traumatic turn in life, women shamefully have the ability to go from one abusive relationship to another one. Firstly, get out, find your own space and work on your self-esteem and start to rebuild yourself or you will find yourself attracting the wrong men. Vulnerable people only attract parasites. Is that what you want, a parasite sucking all your energy, all your passion and drive and love until you are a nothing??? You have to remember, we are human, yes, but animals nevertheless, and these men are highly tuned in the art of innocence and vulnerability. You are prey to them, whether they know it or not...you are hunted and preyed upon until they have broken you down and taken your heart and soul and for what, for their own gratification and enjoyment – they relive their anxiety and bestow their pain on you and that is why you are so important to them! A toy springs to mind.....being played with until you are broken and then tossed aside until they are given a new toy. We give ourselves openly to them but we are just another toy to them to be thrown away.

I hope I haven't been too hard on the subject but we women need to stick together and understand the consequences of the abusive actions of others and I'm talking men and women. We need to stay strong and positive and work toward getting ourselves back to a place of calm and peace and we can only do that when we recognize what has been happening and, LET GO.

Take care and smile – you are surrounded by beautiful, lovely things and life will be good to do as long as you are good to yourself. x

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A female reader, cgirl United States +, writes (18 February 2010):

The truth is you can probably never get over an abusive ex boyfriend. I always thought to mysel if i ever saw a friend get abused by a bf i would tell someone right away. I never thought id get into a relationship like that. You know right away wether u like someone or not. If somone tries to tell you how bad that person is your not going to listen because u want to figure out things for yourself. Thats the way i am. My best friend insisted on me meeting and being with her brother. Before hiim ive only been in 1 other long relationship. that guy was amazing but i didnt treat him right. I knew i didnt so i moved on and he still hasnt. Anyways. i agree with my best friend cuz i finally meet her brother and was such a sweet guy. seriously something is going to go wrong i a guy acts this perfect. i ended up being with him or 2 long hard years. the first year was great. it was rough cuz i found out he cheated and i took that prick back. yes i took him back. i was crazy about him and we had so much fun together. well that passed and ever since then i hated looking at hiim. i couldnt stand being around him and i didnt like having sex with him anymore because while we werent together one time he held me down by my throat and had his way. he said he can hve sex when and where he wants. that threw me off the deep end. after that a few months later we are at his friends house...earlier that night he had done something i didnt know about..i find out everything. well i had drank a little but wasnt drunk and knew wat was going on and we got into a huge argument. he drew his fist at me but didnt hit me rigth in front of his friends. he said i was making him look stupid so i started yelling back at him telling him he was doing a good job of that himself. then we went outside and he started slamming me up against the walls a bench grabbing my wrist and acting crazy...then i get in the car with him. stupid. we drove around and then i started teling him wat i thought and he said he would kill us and started swerving the car. luckily we did not wreck. by the end of the nigth we were fine..how does tht happen? so i let that go then after that we came back to the same friends house for a new years party that ended up me getting a punch to the face and a busted lip. then some weeks after that a black eye. threatening texts that said r u doing anything that would make me want to kill you? this was never ending for a year. i was warned. even his sister my best friend knew things werent right. still kept taking him back. i loved being around this guy. he was everything i wanted in a guys personality and could make me laugh like no other. i still keep in touch with this guy but the last time we broke up he tried making it my fault. we have recently split right ater looking for a place to live. why would i want to live with someone like that and maybe end up dead? i have no idea. why would i want to be with a guy that could leave me in a ditch and drive off and then try to apologize? even his friends know how he is and warned me. ive matured since ive been with him but have lost some self confidence. i know that i deserve better but honeslty i dont want better. i want the old hiim back and the way we were in the beginning. he thinks when he snaps his fingers im there. ive have knews for him, im not. i would never do another thing to help that guy. EVER. there is so much to read between these lines that i only wish i could talk to girls about. so many girls are geting killed cuz they think the world will end without their abusive bf. let me tell you something, you were happy before him and you can be happy after him. stay positive and dont give in. if he is really changing like he says he is...good for him. you dont need him. you are beautiful and u can do so much BETTER. threatening text messages. hitting. apologizing. bruises and not getting a sorry. breaking your phone in half. its all happend to me. im such a better person without him and its pathetic this guy is still in my life somehow. i will never let another guy treat me with as much disrespect as this guy. GIRLS YOU DONT NEED THEM. someone else can love you so much better. there are such things as healthy relationships.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (15 February 2010):

hi, im gona tell you now.. the best way to get over an abusive relationship is your family an friends. u might of burned alot of bridges, given everything and everyone up for him but your not gona want to move on with out someone there to remind you of how precious you really are. im only 18 about 2 months ago i was heart broken over someone that i really loved this made me vulnerable, this also allowed my worst nightmare into my life. i met him over myspace he wuld always comment my pics or IM me with sweet things to say an plus i thought he was jus so sexy an he seemed for real about wanting to tlk to me instead of just having sex so i gave him my number. i figured he culd make me forget about my ex an mend my broken heart. in the beginning it was perfect i spent everyday with him after school or on weekends, we got along jus great an had alot in common, he seemed like a normal guy till he stared trippin over ppl txtn me.. this didnt really bother me till he got to the point of where he wanted me to delete every single guys number an pictures of guys out of my phone.. even family. and of course i bought his whole "i jus want u to myself, your so gorgeous an im so lucky to have you i dont wana lose you" speech an did just as he asked. slowly from there we wuld even flip when girls called my phone an wuld call them bitches an say fuck them.. eventually my friends stoped calling an stoped talking to me all together.. an that hurt. at the time i was living with one of my friends, well he begged me to come see him so my friend an i drove to where he was. when we got there he informed me that i had to take him home, this wasnt the plan so i was mad an so was my friend well he started to cuss her an i pulled over beacause it was chaos in that car. i was forced to choose btw him an my friend, if i didnt choose him then he wulda went to prison because hes already on probation so i left my friend in the middle of no where to take him home. that nite her parents kicked me out an i culdnt go back home to my mom. he had me right where he wanted me.. he put me down told me that i was a slut an a bitch an a whore threw up my past an even tlkd about our personal things infront of his family an friends. he got to the point where he wuld ask me questions about my ex's while we were havin sex then he wuld get mad and hurt me on purpose, im a heavy sleeper an he's laughed about the fact that he does what ever he wants to me while im asleep, it got to the point where i was scared to close my eyes at night. the verbal abuse is what really broke me down.. he made me feel like it was alright not to have any friends because he wuld be the only one there an that he wuld nvr leave me.. he made me feel like i was so lucky that he wuld settle for someone like me.. he wuld tell me things like ill make sure no one ever wants u if u leave me. we were only together for a month an i lived with him maybe a week and a half of that month. we faught everyday, screaming an cussing the worst he did was put his hands around my neck i thought that i wuld be safe if thats all he did besides put me down. ive had a very well trusted friend tell me in the beginning that she didnt feel i was safe tlkn to him cuz of his past.. i very soon found out i shuld of listened. we broke up maybe 8 times while we were together but he still wuldnt let me leave his house he blocked the doors unplugged the phones an broke my cell phone twice. after every fuss he always seemed so sincere when he said sorry.. told me that he wuld change an that we can make it, he even proposed. see he had a really bad pill problem an thats what he blamed it on so i always gave him another chance. on night we both took these pills that are something like a zanex an things got way too out of hand he tried to hold me down an when i broke lose of his hold i headed for the door he grabbed me up by my neck an slammed me on the ground he slapped me an pushed me full force with both hands by the face i broke open a closed door an fell on my tailbone when i tried to leave his house he drug me in by neck sat on top of me an held a knife to my throat.. he then shoved 16 benadryls in his mouth an said ur gona sit here an watch me die. i begged his grandma to let me leave but she wuldnt i was so scared.. they were sick ppl his granmda watched everything he did to me an still wuldnt let me leave she tlkd to me like i was the crazy one tellin me to jus clam down an that i was jus on pills that her grandson has done nothing wrong. when he finally passed out from all the medicine i found my phone its a touch screen an even tho alli culd see was black i memorized where the numbers had been an called my brother. when my mom, brother an step dad showed up with the police he threatened to blow my brothers brains out if i left so i was forced to lie to the police to keep my family safe. and even tho they told me i wasnt apart of the family anymore since i was staying i still had to feel like they were protected. the next few days my mom insisted on calling me.. she told me everything he was saying.. how sorry he was how he'll nvr do it again an things are gona change.. they were his EXACT words.. my mom has been thru this so i lied to him an told him that we were still gona be together but i needed to go home cuz he was keeping me from school an work.. i lied, i did an said everything i culd to get outta there safely. my mom came an picked me up that day.. we went to the hospital for my tailbone an to the police dep. he still blows up my phone an leaves sweet messages. it kills me to listen to them cuz even tho i kno life with him was hell 85 percent of the time.. i still loved him. but at least i kno that im safe now an i have most of my friends back an a family to be there no matter what. its hard to move on when u feel like someone has droped everything for you but it makes it even easier knowin that u dont deserve that.. it will nvr get better he will nvr change an you will be in hell as long as he holds you in his arms i can promise you this. no girl deserves this.. these are memories that will scare you for life

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 February 2010):

Hi, I have I finally decided to end it with my ex. We had been together for a year and I think we both tried to make it work. Only, because he is clearly damaged, it would be ok for a while each time and then the anger would start coming back, the drinking would increase and the abuse would start again. Mostly it has not been physical to me. He has punched me once and hit me hard in the chest and tried to keep me hostage in the car but somehow i got away. He constantly accused me of sleeping with other people and told me constantly that I was a slag and that noone else would want me, that I have STDs when I dont etc. He constantly threatened to find someone else. He constantly would not let me sleep because he wanted sex and I just wanted to sleep. Do people really always do it twice a day? Dont people need sleep and to go to work and stuff? He didnt like my friends or like me going out but I thought things were getting better. Last night I did go for a drink after work and when I came home, not late - I only stayed for a couple - he was drunk and painting the bathroom. I wanted to sleep. He wanted sex. If i wasnt giving it to him he was going out. he went out. I made him leave my keys because I knew he would come back more drunk and there would be trouble. he used to search my phone, he has broken so many. Previously he put all my clothes in the bath with my lap top and camera and bleach and wrecked them. He has smashed up the mirrors in my bedroom. Thrown pots of food that I have been cooking around the kitchen. Dragged me out of a pub where I was having a quiet drink with my friend - we had wanted to meet up with him but he was being nasty so we stayed away. He dragged me on the floor and punched me in the face. Last night he did come back. He was throwing stones at the window little ones at first and then bigger until a brick came through the window and smashed more glass in the bedroom. I called the police. He has punctured my tyres before now too. Its really hard because the good times have been really good. Last weekend was his birthday and I spoilt him rotten. Nice presents, expensive meal, nightclub, home. No dramas. I thought we had turned a corner but all week he has been getting angrier and angrier over nothing. Its not that I dont like sex because I do but I dont want to feel pressured and like I have no choice. Its not like he was not getting any. i think three times this week is pretty reasonable. If i dont he accuses me of sleeping with all and sundry. The police came around and today they called. They gave me a number for the London Centre for Domestic Violence - 0870 9220 704. They said I could get a civil injunction against him within 24 hours. I am hoping he will leave me alone. So far there have not been any of the usual death threats and I hope that he realises that he is wrong and should leave me alone. I feel sad for him and for us because the good bits were good and i guess in some ways he cannot help his behaviour but I must remain strong and stay away. Compared to what a lot of you have been through my mistreatment is pretty mild but its still abusive nonetheless and I must deserve more. In some ways because it is mild is makes it even harder to walk away. But thats what I am doing. Calling the police seems to be a strong deterrent for him. At the end of the day I told him, if he keeps doing it and I keep having to call the police then they will arrest him whether I want them to or not. I have a duty not to put either of us in that situation too. Before him I was in a 6 year relationship and this was a bit of a rebound thing I guess. I have never really lived alone for 7 years and its a bit scary. I dont really know myself any more. I need to find ways to love me and enjoy my own company and make friends with constructive people. In the past I have had a tendency to socialise totally through alcohol. Losing whole nights of memory. Doing stupid things but I know I am ready to move on. I have not been like that since I have been with him and I am proud of myself for that. I think it is onwards and upwards from here. Or at least I hope so. I am scared of what he might do but just have to move on in hope. This is really therapeutic. My sister told me about a Louise Hay DVD that is really good for healing yourself. I cant remember what its called something about heal your life. I'll give it a go. My ex before this one - the 6 year relationship was awful too I guess. He would disappear on binges often when saying he was on his way home from work, or going to the shop etc. I dont want anyone else right now. Just to be happy with myself. I am 34 and not getting any younger. I want kids. I need to heal myself if I want any of that. Anyway. I will check on here to take inspiration from all you strong women and will try to be strong too. Look in the mirror and say I love you 5 times a day!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 February 2010):

hi, i was browsing online about why us girls go back to a relaitionship wen we are just degraded and made to feel worthless. i have been involved with a guy for 6 years and he has on many occasions hit me then apologised, ive had to learn to get over it because i would never approach the police. he has insulted me infront of my frends, and continues to throw abuse at me. im sik of it all..but after spending so much tym with this abnormal man it has made me realise i have lost all my confidence and self respect. he has been wid me because i have allowed him control and anything he desires. i know this now and it makes me sik to look in the mirror. i kno this will take time but time is a good healer and i hav gr8 frends out ther that shall support me. as long as u kno ur number one u will neva allow ne1 to disrespect u lyk that. i confided in him, lovd to hear him tellin me evrynyt that he loves me when the whole time he was cheating he had a guitly concious so suspected me. i kno he was never the one for me but i wanted to believe we wer compatable so thats the reason i stayed. Now i kno i shall neva go bak because i've thote long and hard and i kno now that if he eva luvd me a tiny bit he wud neva make me feel so low. i want a man who will pik me up wen im down not walk all ova me whilst im down. i would hav never thought to hurt him intentionaly and he did it delibeartly evrytym. he has never valud me and i held on to sumthing i wanted and not wat was best for me. this experience had changed the perception i have of myself and it makes me sick to kno what sort of person i became whilst wid him. i let myself be degraded by someone who i thought lovd me and that was neva the case. i belived wat i wanted it to be but not wat it actuali was....i dont want ne advice but just to share my experice wid u all.

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A female reader, annieT United States +, writes (1 February 2010):

To be honest I just broke up with my ex he tried to kill me by choking me, I was so surprised at his actions. I knew he was jealous and had a temper and some crazy ways of thinking for example telling me he was sent to me by God to save my soul....so wierd but i put up with him for ten months which at first he was nice and said all the right things to me swelling up my head. Today I am confused and crying inside and trying to find something positive to do with myself. I promised myself I will get past this situation. this is the best website I have found for support....listening to other women stories, we deserve so much better in life, we have to take our time to get to know these men and find out about his background. I plan on taking sometime off from the dating scene. My God he was trying to kill me, I thank God he came to his senses and stopped before he sucked the life out of me.

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A female reader, Larrk United States +, writes (13 December 2009):

The reason it is hard to get over an abusive man is because we are addicted to that type of man.

My track record shows me that it isn't any coincidence I have been in mostly abusive relationships. Some part of me is drawn to it.

I just got out of a bad relationship for good because I got a restraining order for a year. This was the third and last break up with this man. I get involved with guys that you need a restraining order to get rid of.

He wasn't all bad and cycled with periods of bringing me roses and all the attention I could ever want to being suffocating, angry, an a stalker. There was a blow up every three months like clock work and always a break up before the holidays.

If you really want to move ahead with out all the calls and drama get a restraining order. Go for the second hearing and get it for a year. You can then extend it again if you still feel unsafe.

Master abusers don't hit you. They know better but you can get a restraining order for criminal threatening. I just said he told me he would hunt me down and kill me. It works because there are no e-mails, no pleading phone calls and seeing him everywhere I go. If he violates it he is in jail.

Do I still miss the good times? Yes, but the bad times out weigh the good. I sleep better and he wasn't one to work or contribute so I am better off financially.

Most abused women are very strong and self reliant except for having the abuser.

I'm almost 47 and this is hopefully my last abuser. I know I will be attracted to another one, it is only a matter of time but I am going to try and give myself a year off from men. I have a lot to keep me busy and do volunteer work.

I also ask God for help to not pick up again... Another abusive guy. They are like a drink for me. My first love tried to kill me and all these years later I am still fighting this fight. It gets old.

They don't have to hit you to be abusers. Some are control freaks and use threats. Life is too short to live with a high maintenance bum.

My 25 year old son told me, "Mom, your fly paaer for freaks". And I know he is right. I'm just happy to be on the other side of this past relationship.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2009):

Wow... all these comments have helped me out so much! My ex was a very verbally abusive and a very controlling person... at first of course everything was exciting and new. I've never really had a boyfriend before so it was fun to get attention...plus where i live (i'm 23) you have to be a perfect 10/barbie to get attention... no one loves a girl with a little curves(haha)... He loved everything about me which i'm not use to... and then our relationship went sour and like someone commented before i too felt like i was walking on "eggshells" giving in and apologizing to keep the peace. Dating him was a HUGE learning experience (which wasn't needed at all). He was the first kid i fell in love with so emotionally i was hooked on him like crazy! My family couldn't stand to be around me because i was so depressed and angry... after hanging out with im i was honestly exhausted. His thoughts on everything were so twisted. Like the "stupid girl" i turned into i wanted to help him... i wasn't blind by what he was doing i was just emotionally hooked and felt it was my duty to help him... however even he admitted that when he met me i was a confident independent individual and he relyed on me to help him be a better person. However he brought me down with him. My ex has honestly been through so much in life that my heart goes out to him. His parents treated him like crap and now that he's 25 they have FINALLY reached out to him which was a big deal to him... unfortunately he's been taking care of himself since he was 15 and learned to rely on girlfriends and found a way to get attention and love was by manipulating them. Unless he gets help he will never have a sucessful relationship. He's a good kid deep down inside he just has a lot of anger build up and I could fell him taking it out on me at times. His best friend told me that out of all the girls he dated I was the best thing for him. (his friend doesn't even realize what a creep my ex can be... cause my ex treats his best friend with respect... his friend is like his "brother", that is his "family").

I'll admit that i was a perfect example of what not to do after a break up... harrassing my ex to come back to me...eventually trying to settle to be friends...even though i had a plan to get him back... blah blah blah... I went crazy because i missed him so much. After 4 months of him and i breaking up i sent him a text trying to end things on good terms (cause thats just my character i HAVE to end things on good terms otherwise it drives me crazy!) He told me he wasn't ready to be friends with me.. to see me or hang out with me cause he's not over me. I honestly think he said all of that for me to leave him alone... he told me to respect the silence while he works on getting over me...and that he'll be back. I felt bad for harassing him and decided to offically call it quits so i wrote him a goodbye letter and made it as positive as possible and then i ended things. I know for a fact that if i didn't write that he'd be back and i want to move on with my life... plus if he did come back i'd give in and go back to him on his command... i can't do that anymore. My heart still hurts and i have my ex withdraws like this week has been tough but all these comments have helped me out a lot! its nice to see that the feelings i'm going through i'm not alone. However i learned missing someone isn't bad just don't act on it and do what you need to do to move on! being happy is so much better then being sad.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (4 November 2009):

Honey, My ex and i were together for two years. One morning he came to my job, made me get in his car, took me to his house and held me hostage for about 4 hours. In that time he beat me til he was sick of it. After it he swore he felt so bad and begged me back and although im not in love with him anymore sometimes i begin to feel bad for him when he is not the one that got hurt. He still calls me on the daily and he has broke into my house a few times too. When men get crazy like that you just got to let them go. You are worth better!!

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A female reader, Daisydaisy United Kingdom +, writes (31 October 2009):

Just had to add to this re:abusive boyfriend comments.

Today I woke up and want to have 'the nice parts back' of him but he comes as a package and can't tolerate the rest.

There is a recognised aftermath experience called 'Trauma Bond' and I urge readers of this site to check it out on Google, can help to explain why you/we have difficulties letting it go.

Reading all your comments makes me realise how strong I am. I met my abusive man on-line just after my mum died, no family to turn to and I'd just come out of hospital and got diagnosed with colitis, a vulnerable point. I cared for my mum for about 5 years so no friend network - yep alone and isolated. Again, also what is quite a common experience if you read through these comment that he had an alcohol problem in the past, now 5 years clean, however, later on it became apparent he was cross addicting with cannabis, according to him not so bad but still SUBSTANCE ABUSE and do you know what, I'm convinced with the substance abusers their underlying behaviour is still there without the substance abuse, the substance is just the sympton of their mental status.

It lasted 4 months and it was too much for me, although after a couple of on-line talks it was he that decided to end it, em, it don't really matter who did (I did) its the manipulation of the truth that concerns me. Of course all his ex's had been unfaithful, treated him badly, etc. Also had a bad childhood. When conversations got tough for him and realising that towards the end he couldnt press my buttons so much he was having the most depressing time in his life, arrrh, its all about him isnt it? Called me a bitch when we started seeing each other in the flesh, away from the internet, told him i didnt like it, he did stop, however, regardless whats kind of man does that. When i was in it i couldnt see it but then i asked myself i did know something wasn't right.

I've had counselling from an abuse counsellor. Its been helpful, extremely painful. I still desire the closeness back but also know deep down its just a continuous circle.

I've a few friends now and hope to make more. i'm not really close to anyone and i'm lonely. My mind was pushed 'n' pulled one way and another. He threatened to 'throw me throw a window if I was a man' at one point and called me mentally unstable. He can be very charming and I felt connected but thinks it might be better to feel a gradual kind of love.

I'd love to love someone and be loved back. We all deserve to be loved. I believe these men end up lonely and dont really like themselves, they are very needy but the way they meet their needs are done in a manipulative/abusing way which is it detrimental to us.

I am trying to make a go of my life. It will take time. My confidence is a bit low, im grieving for my mum, life isnt easy.

But check out Trauma Bond on Google.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 October 2009):

I would just like to start off by saying that I read all the stories and it has helped me knowing that I'm not alone in what I have gone through.

I will tell my story, and it is quite long but writing it all out kind of makes me feel better.

I met him 6 years ago, and we had a great connection from the beginning to the end. He was wonderful, someone who I had such a great spark with and loved every moment being with him. The first 6 months were great, he was everything I wanted or I thought I wanted. The first incident happened at a friends party where he got drunk and got kicked out for trying to start fights. As I drove him home, he pushed me in the car and that should've been my first sign but I never experienced this before and excused him for doing it out of drunkeness. Anyways, when he pushed me my car swerved and a cop saw and pulled us over to question us. Before I knew it, he was being arrested for an outstanding assault warrant. The cop warned me to be careful who I date. He spent 2 weeks in jail before getting out on bail, and gave me the excuse that the warrant was for a fight he got into outside of a club a few years back.

A year went by and we started fighting more, and he started emotionally abusing me. One night we went out and he got drunk at a restaurant and refused to leave. After I finally got him out, he started fighting with me for no particular reason and ended up punching my arm and face. I got him out of my car and drove off and parked somewhere where he couldn't see me by my house as I had a suspicion that he would end up at my house and sure enough he got in his car and went to my house, but luckily I wasn't around so he left. He called me all night, first fighting then as the alcohol wore off he realized what he did was completely wrong and said after I told him it was over that he understood as I didn't deserve to be treated that way. Like a fool, I took him back when he begged the next day and swore he would never react like that or drink again....the drinking really never stopped.

In speaking to his cousin, I found out that he actually lied about a lot of stuff about him. He was actually charged with assaulting his ex girlfriend and lied about everything from where he lived to his past drinking problems. When I confronted him about it all, he had a good excuse for everything and I once again forgave it all. It was then I found out that his father abused him and his mom as a kid but he swore up and down that he was nothing like him and never would be as he hated his father for this.

3 years ago, I threw him a birthday party and he got drunk. He hit his own cousin, and after everyone left slapped me a few times...I don't know what I did to deserve it after all I went through throwing the party for him. I still forgave him and went back excusing him for being drunk. After that he never hit me again, but emotionally abused me calling me bitch almost every day like it was a common word, slut hoe, and more recently fat and ugly. He would always realize his behaviour and would always apologize from his heart, so I would forgive and move on.

He lost his job due to the recession, and things got worst. He always smoked weed but it doubled. He started drinking again, and the temperments got worst. It started getting to a point where I would purposely fight just to look for the bad and find a way out. I wasn't happy and deep down knew it. But when I would fight and we wouldn't talk for a few days I would feel like dying inside and figured I was in the end happier when I was with him than being without him. I have slowly realized that he has actually gotten me so low on myself that I feel I am nothing without him. I left him last month after a big fight we had filled with lots of verbal abuse...nothing physical thank god. The thing is...I want him back :( I miss him like crazy and miss all of our times together. I know I shouldn't think about the good, but unfortunately we had more good than bad times and when it was good, it was great. We hadn't talked for 2 weeks, as hard as it was I knew it was for the best but prayed that he would call. He called 2 weeks after our breakup at first mad and blaming me then admitting that he was the one at fault and always knew it and is determined to change and get me back. I made the mistake of keeping in contact with him and even met him last week. It was wonderful, like we were on our first date....he was great and said all the right things that seemed like it was coming from his heart. Then a few days ago, he called and was drunk and said he's falling in love with someone else and wanted my advice. I am really once again heart broken by this as I truly believed he was working on changing for us to be together and had a lot of hope. I am now at my lowest point. I told him to leave me alone, but he's all I think about. I can't eat, sleep, concentrate on anything. I haven't called him, but I reallly want to know what is really going on in his head. I know deep down I don't deserve this, but I really love him and can't get him out of my head. I am going to try and be strong as I know in the end he's not a good guy for me and he will only continue if not get worst, but I want him back...he was not only my love but also my best friend. All I can do is pray now and leave it up to god to help me do the right thing.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 October 2009):

I was in a abusive relationship off and on for 3 years. For the 1 year it was great but there was signs that i sould have seen. Like showing up at my work or telling me that I should wear something different and the biggeat one was that he was a heavey drinker and tended to get into fights when he was drinking. By the 3rd year we had the cops called on us a dozen times and I have had the crap beat out of me 2 dozen times. It wasnt intill I found out that I was with child that I made the choice to leave and leave for good. I am now 5 months pregnant and in cousiling. I cant say that it gets easier everyday but what i can say is that I am now having more good days then bad. I believe as humans we have the right to be treated with respect, love and diginty. Manda

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A reader, anonymous, writes (16 October 2009):

i have been in a loving happy marriage for 2 and a half years.. i realise this is not the usual start to the answer but i want to say it will get better... i was in an abusive relationship for 6 years, the bastard actually got to me from being in another abusive relationship when i was 20. he worked with me (he was 10 years older)and knew what i was going through and obviously found a completely vunerable target..told me how horrible it was for a man to do that and that he would protect me etc. etc...it was two years before i found out that he had broken his previous partners (mother of his childrens) jaw, but by that time he had, brainwashed? fooled? beat me down? and i didn't leave him...

i am only free because he made the mistake of hitting me in public, it went back to my family and friends and they made me leave, but i was still in his power, i signed over MY house to him because i wouldn't talk or admit about what had happened, i still thought i was the spoilt bitch and everything was my fault and that i had destroyed his life by leaving..i even told my mum i was going back to him, when i think of those days when i was completely in his control it makes me wonder what the hell he did to me..

most people on this site talk about how much they love the man who is hitting them, at the start i did but at the end i hated him but he still had control, gained over 6 years of mental and physical abuse, i thought i was the slut, spoilt bitch, no one will ever want you and the rest...i didn't realise how common the same abusive behaviour is until a friend recently split from her husband due to physically and emotionally abusive behaviour and i looked on line to see if i can give her advice, she asked because i'd been through the same thing...what do you say?

i'm still hurting, but only when i think about it, i wanted revenge...i'm struggling to save a deposit for a house when he has not one house but two (the house i handed over increased in value considerably) and i HATE him..

but i found an amazing man, reliable, strong, comforting, smart..we have little but we also have everything..

i wouldn't be writing this if it wasn't for my friend, it's brought it all up but she also looks at me and tells me that if i got out of it and got my personality, my fun and my smile back, then so can she. good luck.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (12 October 2009):

I ended a two and a half year relationship with my ex just 6 days ago,I have lost count of the number of times I split with him and never could understand why I always ended up back with him;the pleading messages,the promises to change,go to counselling,never touch me again and until very recently,and reading others' experiences,I would eventually believe him as I think he actually believes himself,I know that if I took him back again the controlling behaviour and violence would return,its only a matter of time,he would be on his best behaviour for a few months then gradually,just as i'd be lulled into a false sense of security, the anger would build again. The violence increased with each episode,however he somehow made me feel unsure and confused as to what why and how it happened. Alot of my friends didn't want to come visit as he would have to be the one speaking all the time. After an incident at christmas,my family no longer wanted anything to do with him, and his family,who loved me to begin with,ended up not speaking to me,especially his mother,as she believed I was ''messing him around' because I would kick him out every few months.Her boy can do no wrong,and in her mind if he does then she will pick up the pieces.All the ex girlfriends were spoken badly of for their heartlessness towards him.I now know what I was up against was impossible. He threatened to kill me,stab me,call social services on me.He punched me, threw me around,pulled my hair out,hit me around the head (no obvious bruises)he smashed my things, kicked and punched holes in every single door in my house,smashed into 2 of my cars with his 4x4, punched one of my male friends simply for sitting in my house.Said hurtful derogatory things to me and about my mother and my friends,he poured beer over my head,fabric conditioner,threw pint glasses and bottles and ashtrays at me,He once lifted a coffee table and threw that at me in front of a group of friends and as I am writing this I feel stronger and stronger.He is still sending me messages pleading with me. I have read around abusive partners and have learnt that the main objective for this type of person is control.From what I have read and what people have said,an abuser will not change,no matter how convincing they are, if you continue to take them back,their behaviour will get worse and worse.It is not your fault, they have the problem and no matter how much you love them and want it to work, it wont make a difference.Oh yes,a year ago he also started sleeping with someone else behind my back and got them pregnant.His reason?I wasn't allowing/ready for him to move in with me and my children and HE felt rejected,his manipulation actually worked and I blamed myself for that. Good luck to all of you who have or are experiencing domestic abuse and or violence.I hope you can all gain the strength you need,I am so relieved I have finally made the break.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 September 2009):

I honestly don't know where to begin... For the past year and a half, i have been dealing with a BOY, that has been physically, and verbally abusive to me. And until about a week ago, I did not think that I would ever be able to get out of this never-ending cycle of pain that our relationship had seemed to turn into. I honestly in my life never thought that I would experience something like this. Teen violence? This was only something they talked to us about in PE, and i remember sitting there thinking "This is SO no happening to me. What kind of fool would date/ stay with someone like that?" I was now the fool. I was the girl in the video going back to her abusive boyfriend because "he WILL change". I cannot even begin to express the pain that he has put me through. But I am sure that most of you reading this will be able to know what that feeling is. Hopelessness, regret, stupidity, lonlieness, beaten down, weak, confused, scared, all rolled into this huge knot of pain that you feel is impossible to untangle. But its NOT. There ARE ways out of this. he would call me things like "slut", "whore", "stupid", "useless", Need I say more? According to him, he never TECHNICALLY abused me. I guess choking, pulling hair, thrwoning down, pushing, bruising, and slapping someone doesn't count as abuse. It makes me SICK to think that in one point of my life, I let someone who said such degrading, hurtful, and just down right wrong things to me STILL continue to be a part of my life.I used to think it was my fault. what was I doing to make him act this way? What was wrong with ME? but now i see the answer to that NOW such a simple question... Nothing. All the things he would say, and all the times he hurt me was because of HIM. Not ME. I am still feeling so much pain, and somewhat regret of letting this go on for as long as it has. But I know with prayer and the strength of GodI will be able to slowly untangle myself from this knot, and be free from all of this once and for all. I used to not be able to see my life without him in it. Now I only DREAM of the day when he does not try to conteact me anymore, and he is only someone lost in my memories of the past. I have such a heavy load lifted off of my heart knowing that. And knowing that someone will love me for me, and treat me the way i truly deserve to be treated. And this is the same for anyone who reads this. We are not weak, we are not helpless. We are strong women who deserved to be loved and cherised. So hold on, becuase in the midst of all the pain that surrounds you, there is an amazing future waiting for you ahead.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 September 2009):

things do go wrong,,,i met this guy from my school friend and we slept together once,,since then we were attracted towards each other. i didnt know him then and he seemed to be the sweetest man i knew on earth..but when my friends came to know they told me to dump him,after almost some months,he started cheating on me and using verbal abuses. not only this i stayed on like this for one year and thought he would change, i even met his parents and plans were on for marriage,,i always wished if he could change but then i got to know that he is still not over his first gf and hence his ego was hurt and he has been trying hard to take it out and i was an easy prey. i was so hurt that i broke up with him and came back home.. i kept on crying for days and he didnt even try to contact. he was as happy as ever, i then deleted his gmail and yahoo account. since he had lotsa info in it,he started crying adn howling and even said wrong things about my mumdad. its been like 1week almost since i ahve dumped him. this was the biggest mistake of my life. i repent for being with him and wasting my time. i cry alone. i think in such situations,,one should do whatever once can. i feel stronger and more in control now,,,for now onwards i know what to do in my next relatinships. but girls out there, its a request, if a guy uses abusive language,they must be dumped there and then.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (26 September 2009):

I just left my boyfriend for the millionth time. We had been together for four years, but I've known him for the past eight.

he was actually arrested for beating me, the neighbors called the cops one time..

I always believed him when he told me "things will be different this time. I don't know what I was doing. I never want to hit you. I love you more than anything." But then it would go right back to the controlling, verbally abusive boyfriend after a week, until something set him off, then I was hiding bruises and black eyes.

It happened countless times. I always thought it would change.. that it was something I was doing wrong. I changed the way I spoke, dressed, acted, everything I could think of... just to try to make him happy.

Things will get better for a few weeks, even a few months, And you think they might be better for good, But know, deep down, he will never change. If he really loved you, he wouldn't even be able to call you those things, much less beat you 'till you're bleeding all over your own clothing.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (19 September 2009):

I am 15 and was with my boyfriend for a year he was 17 and 18 and i was 14 and 15 during. It was my first relationship so i guess i was a little naive but we broke up a few weeks ago. Due to a number of reasons but the biggest being his massive anger issue. He repeatedly punched, kicked and pushed me during arguments. Through stuff at me, and on occasions, split my lip, gave me a black eye, what people thought was a dislocated nose, and what people thought was a fractured arm due to the swelling, split my knuckles open, scarred my back and throughout our relationship chased and hurt me when i tried to getaway. I wanna know how bad this is? am i not letting go of something that isnt really that significant? and how can i move on? its all i think about and i constantly have nightmares about what he'd do if he got me on my own. He was always very emotionally abusive also and controlling of me, but how can i ensure that i dont make someone else wanna do this to me? how can i get my trust back? im so scared its gonna happen again. Please help. Any advice or comments appricieted so so much. I love this guy so much i just wanna know what i did wrong and how to get better. Thanks for reading.

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A female reader, rupiruu United Kingdom +, writes (13 September 2009):

I've just broken up with my ex, probably after like the thousandth time, usually I would go running back crying begging him to get back with me to forgive me. It is only now I'm thinking...hang on I BROKE UP WITH HIM FOR A REASON, why the hell am I trying to get him back??

I should've known to stay away from the start, we became mates online, and he'd tell me about his ex's trying get back with him and i'd laugh, thinking pathetic women whats wrong with them??now i feel ashamed for that, knowing now he did the same to them as he must have done to me, I even got on the phone to one of them and laughed at her, i feel disgusted with myself for that.

He would be the sweetest guy in the world, used to ring txt me all the time,tell me he loved me, now i know its because he had nothing better to do, he's jobless, druggie and fromer drunk. At the start he'd chat to girls infront of me, etc b in contact, and i finally got him to stop, when he' argue he'd ring them infront of me, tell me he cheated on me, and then he'd apologise. Call me every name under the sun, why is whore such a favourite??

then come back saying he loved me, that he's never loved anyone as much as me, yet when we argued/broke up he was ready to say i was jus a shag. i've wasted so much time and effort with this man, and all i got was abuse, he never hurt me but he ws violent so at times i'd be worried.

My point is i've now just realise how much he'd manipulate/control and abuse me, even after many friends told me, i nearly lost my best mate like a sister because of him. But me myself hav now realised it, there so much i can put here saying what he has done, its so crazy n disgusting i feel ashamed, to admit it, but this will only make me stronger.

if he says he loves you, THEN HE WOULDN'T TREAT YOU LIKE SHIT! simple as, thats not love, its his control.

stay strong, we deserve to be happy, we are strong independent women, that for reason you onlu know are in this situation. mines lonelyness and low self esteem, but u don;t have to be unhappy be strong, please xx

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A female reader, Strongernow01 United States +, writes (11 September 2009):

I want to thank all of you amazingly strong women (like me) for being able to post and come to grips with the fact that he is abusive, instead of making excuses for him like we have probably all done in the past. My short-lived, volatile relationship ended only 6 months after it started. I am an extremely bright, business owner, who does not need a man financially, nor WAS I insecure at all before I met this guy. He destroyed me emotionally, his abuse was not physical but was emotional and he withheld sex, making me feel unwanted. I have never been so hurt by a man, as recently, we were in a texting war when it was over. After it, I could barely breathe the things he said to me, well I just cannot believe someone could say to another that they allegedly loved. Why then, is it hard to not feel passion or love for him. BECAUSE WE ARE ADDICTED TO THE PERSON, and to what we think he could be (because he has shown us the little sweet things he can do) and we want the emotional attention they throw onto us. Usually these abusive men are needy, overwhelming, extremely available and in our face, etc. That is not love, but control. This guy was the most controlling ass ever even though he earned nothing, did not work, slept all day, smoked and drank, and tried to control my life and every aspect of it, except he could not and that made him angry and frustrated. I knew what he was, but I stayed. I was addicted. I am now breaking that addiction and reading a book called "Smart Women Dumb Choices". Ladies, we are stronger than them. We need to remember that.

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A female reader, Nikki339 United States +, writes (23 August 2009):

Sad to see how many of us women are in such situations! I am 32 years old and broke up with a man who abused me physically and mentally. I managed to move out of the house at the end of January. But of course I have been back and forth with him. Today I feel week and have not felt sad or missed him in months. Funny this man was a fire fighter a man who saves lives. He recently lost his job and house because of his out of control drinking. This man has done everything from putting tracking devices in my car to putting bruises on my body and calling me Cunt, Whore, Slut...(which seems to be every abusers fav names). I love him very much and wish he was not sick....but if he was normal would I love him? I want him to be lonely for the rest of his life for the pain he caused me, basically want him to suffer. But I guess he already is! He lost his job, house and me! (Me I think he only wanted me around because I was always there no matter what). Love does not hurt!

I think the problem not only is with them but with us! Why are we wasting the best years of our lives on men who doesn't care, and in the end will tear our beauty away? Not only that but have lost the respect for others around us when they see how we let HIM treat Us.

I have been making myself date and have many guys to text to keep me occupied...but I think I have made a mistake. Because yes, I have been comparing them to him. And believe me I compare every man I see out to him.

This man, 42years old I was with was stylish and different, told me he was very compassionate and that is why he acts the way he does. So any woman will fall for that in a second and well I will be sitting here still crying over him while he is moving on. He already has women making sexy comments on mysp now that I am gone...excited that I am gone is their comments..

I have made my friends take my passwords so I have no contact on mysp or facebook until I am well enough. I have a good grip but still need to find away to make myself believe I can have happiness. Its nice to have strangers to throw my feelings to because my friends can only hear so much.

I was thinking of doing things for the community instead of dating, it kinda sent me a few steps back...( kinda feel like I am in AA..lol

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 August 2009):

I'm missing my ex too (verbal/emotional abuse)-- broke up 1 1/2 months ago. Just like many here, I wondered how I could have stayed so long (I thought he might change, things might improve-- nope). But, it's been said already, these people are master manipulators. My problem has been that I'm just too nice, naive and trusting.

I've found Mira Kirshenbaum's book, "Is he Mr Right?" very helpful in trying to figure out why this has happened to me, and why, after all his rages and tantrums, I still miss him. I believe that it's because we had great sexual chemistry. Unfortunately, the chemistry in other areas was lacking. I was constantly walking on eggshells with him.

Soon after the breakup I made a list of all the negative things about him and our relationship. It's really helped bring me back to reality when I'm feeling lonely. However, even with this list, it's not easy to forget all the good times.

I'm so grateful to everyone's advice on this thread, and even though it's tempting to contact him again, I think I'll just try to ride it out. I like the "give it three months" advice!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 August 2009):

I'm really scared.... scared that I will still think of him... scared that I won't be able to move on. Every time he's laid a hand, elbow, kick, put a gun to my head, or shoved me on the ground I made the excuse that it was my fault. Which I can take that blame since there are several occasions I acted out first due to anger. I'd want to slap him for being a douche bag and he'd shove me down to elbow me or just plain kick me. It doesn't help since he's trained in mixed martial arts. I can't help but to think how much I love him. I'm such a loyal person and devoted making us work I lost myself in the process. I told myself it's because he's bi-polar, so the rants and degrading comments is just nothing. I don't go out without him, I try to wear what he would like, I give him passwords to all my accounts, and the list goes on. I wake up early to make his lunch, drop him off to work and come to work myself an hour early. Then after work I drive to pick him up, come home, either cook/buy dinner. I pay for everything and even help his family at times.

It definitely is his charm that's gotten me, but I know who he really is inside. It's a fascade he puts up. We're together all the time and I've lost all my closest friends. One of my best friends I don't even see or talk to because he blew up in her face and started cursing me out because she was jokingly making fun of him. She never once cursed... she just mentioned his issue with flirting. She's getting married and he's not invited. It's put a damper on everything...

The worst part is that's not what bothers me... what crushes me is his flirtatious nature. We met online and every once in a while he starts trying to flirt or hide stuff BUT he uses MY laptop so he's just stupid. I swear to God... I don't do any of that and maybe because I'm so loyal and sweet he's taken advantage of me. He tells me I'm stupid and he's the best guy in the world... the alpha male. That he would never cheat on me but other guys would. I do believe he wouldn't physically do it but why even put yourself in that position to be tested???

Like everyone said... I am waiting for him to change. Waiting to see if he would realize what he has. It's like the jealous part of me just doesn't want to see him with anyone else.. it's all too crazy.

Last night we argued about his text messages and I slammed the door. He ran up and shoved me on the tile screaming belittling comments. He's average build and I'm petite. He calls me a whore, slut, cunt... but I do neither to even deserve those words.

He's taken all my self-esteem away. I find myself wanting plastic surgery like it's candy. My friends tell me I'm beautiful but I don't see it anymore. There's too many incidents where forgiving and forgetting is not an option. It's just too much.

I started looking for counseling today near me. I know I need help. He's manipulated me so much. This past weekend we argued and I left home... it was just the straw that broke my back. He came up a few hours later and I attacked him out of jealousy so he got the gun and fired off rounds. He apologized the day after saying how we can't drink anymore or go out. How he just wants to be with me. It f#%ks my head up.

I want to feel like I've had enough and I can walk away. I have to PRAY for God to give me strength. I know it's a two way streak. His actions have turned me into someone I didn't even know existed. Now I'm jealous... especially feeding off his jealousy and constant questions. Like if I'm not on time after work he makes snide comments asking if I was "visiting a guy" or things like that.

When we argue he'll go out to a local restaurant and mess with my head by texting me, "Oh a hot girl just walked in." Or threatens me he's going to "bang a girl."

We're not good for each other but I FEEL that I love him and it's hard for me to let go. It's like all those sweet things he tells me or does I don't want it to go to another person. So is this obsession? Since this weekend I've taken sleeping pills so my thoughts won't ravage my rest. Otherwise I wouldn't eat or sleep. We live together... I even had to drop him off work this morning but he's decided to be broken up. It's such a catch 22... when we break up I want nothing more than to be together... but when we're together I want nothing more than to break up.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 August 2009):

I am proud of all who are not contacting their abusive ex boyfriends...and I'm also proud of those of you who are able to ignore any text, phone call or e-mail from him! I have been in a horrible situation for over a year now. It will only get worse! The more chances you give him, the more apologies you accept, the more he will walk all over you and treat you with less respect! I finally had enough and am not responding to any of his attempts to contact me, manipulate me or his fake cries for "help"....and especially his broken promises.

Please stay strong and know that love is so much different than what we have all been through. We need to stop trying to "rescue" our loved ones, being there for them when they are able to abuse us so easily...especially when they do not want to make the necessary changes on their own. Stay strong and just know that there is someone out there that will love you in the ways that we should all be loved.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 August 2009):

How do I get over an abusive ex-boyfriend?

It is a hard question only thing I can say is trust your instincts... Abused women tend to blame themselves and feel guilty but you know what your not the one in the wrong so don't blame yourself or feel guilty and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.... You have done the right thing by leaving him so dont regret it....

I think some women would rather go back to their violent exes because they think they know them, as they say better the devil you know but I say better the devil you dont know in this situation

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 August 2009):

I cant believe it!! there is soo many stories about these cowardly men,

My story starts when I was 16 yrs old whenI met this guy through work he was 26 alot older than me I was working for his mother and he would call me everyday and we'd chat the relationshipmoved very quickly and I was soon living with him and pregnant he would do everything for me and was really sweet so I thought then the first time I noticed something was wrong was when he threw his dog against a brick wall I screamed at him and said If you ever do anything like that again Im leaving

Months passed by and Id just had my son he started an argument with me while I was holding our newborn son I started crying uncontrollably and shaking so I placed my son on the floor he said you dropped my son on the floor and started kicking the shit out of me as I lay on the floor I cant really remember anything after that .....

The relationship went on like this for 9 yrs on and off with him grabbing me by the hair dragging me across floors, punching, kicking, choking and yelling abusive stuff at me I became severly depressed and even tried to take my own life a few times, Ive had avo's put on him but I dont believe they are worth the paper they are written on

The last time I was with him he strangled me until I gave up trying to breathe, I honestly think he thought I was dead I then got up and grabbed a heavy ornament and said you come any closer and Im gonna split your head open and for once he really stood back was shocked by my reaction In my heart I really didnt want to hurt him nd thinking back maybe I should have given him some of his own medicine....

Well he just wont give up Ive told him to go through the courts if he wants to see his son but will he listen.... Last night I recieved a text from him saying I will see my son soon I said the only thing you will see is my fist in your face, Ive really had enough of this maniac Im starting to get my life together and doing a course and growing my hair back after I cut it all off so he wouldnt pull me by the hair across the house I just wish he would drop dead.....

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 August 2009):

I had no idea so many women were going throught the same thing. I was with my abusive ex for 3 years, we have been officially broken up for 2 years now. Like so many of your posts, it was the same thing. At first everything was perfect, I thought he was my Prince Charming because I got with him after another abusive relationship. I thought he had "saved" me. But the reality was uglier, he started abusing me about the last 6 months of our relationship. He blamed it on me, that I was a liar, whore, junkie, bitch any bad name you can come up with he told me. I thought it was because he had a rough childhood, because I was smoking weed all the time, because I wasn't good enough. But the reality is that he is a dangerous, abusive, felon with no self-control. I wasnt the only one that he hit. H ewould beat up my friends boyfriends, their brothers, even his coworkers and lost a job because he couldnt control himself. DEEP DOWN I knew this truth, but I just wanted to be with him, help him. And eventually, the last time I finally threw him out for the last time for beating me up, he alomost killed me as he punched me as I was driving.

After we broke up, he continued to look for me. he'd use me for sex and make me believe we'd get back together. He'd act like we were still together and then dissapear for 2 months and i'd go crazy. I've almost completely lost my mind because of this, I am now on antidepressants and pills so that I can function as a normal person and not want to kill myself every day like I did. But now, I have went back to college and have straight a's, I have made new friends, gotten my own place, work 2 jobs, and have a good social life. The only problem I have is that I cant get him off my mind. Logic and sense tells me what I already know, that hes an abusive loser, he never loved me, and that I need to forget about him. I guess he was a master of manipulators and did a real good job on me. I am single because every relationship that I try to get into, I keep doing the same thing: Comparing their looks to him, the relationship, the sex, my feelings, I get super jealous, I close up, I dont allow myself to be loved, and even closing my eyes when I have sex with another and imagine its him. Thats sick isnt it? Im trrying SO HARD to stay on the right track. Its a struggle every day. Some days are better than others. One thing I am sure of, I will let myself heal first. Heal from the abuse, pain, and obsession that all come from him. I hope and PRAY that one day I can get this sickness out of my head and be happy again. Live life without the crazy thoughts that take over my mind sometimes, like plotting to get revenge.I know I must first FORGIVE. That is probably the hardest thing I have ever had to do, besides throwing him out of my life.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 August 2009):

It's been almost six months since the last time i saw my abusive ex of two years. He was put in jail for the last time he beat me. It wasn't the first time; it was the fourth time! Everytime it got worse. He became good at manipulating my emotions, thoughts, and fears. I didn't want to be without him (so i thought) and i didn't want to be with him either. I was so confused. Months and months have went by and i feel better off alone. Single by choice is the best thing for me. Until he started calling my friends looking for me. I was extremly upset that my friends were taking his calls. Needless to say they are no longer my friends, and never were anyway.

So time goes by and i cant seem to get him off my mind. Even though I know i shouldnt contact him i did anyway. It was like nothing ever happened. He had been looking for me for two months...seeing him around town until i caved. I DID! Im so disappointed in myself. I told myself i would never do this again. Well, lucky for me i have a protective order against him and he's on probation for 10 years because he was stalking me and forced his way into my home. I ended up in the hospital for head injuries. He wanted to fight all morning cuz he was drunk and on drugs. All i wanted was to leave and get out of there. The fact of the matter is that it gets worse everytime. The last time i ended up in the e.r...but next time i dont think i'll be so lucky.

All i know is that i thought he would change. He hasnt changed with anger management, or five months in jail. It only made him worse. He still doesnt acknowledge what he did was wrong...and he's not the least bit sorry. He just wants to see me suffer and pay the price for his mistakes. It hurts me everyday to know that the man i loved has major problems that are beyond my control. I'm glad for this web site because i need support. I feel helpless when it comes to him but i'm so brave and strong with everyone else. He has turned me into someone i dont even recognize...someone like him.

Sometimes i picture myself hurting him...like the way he has hurt me. It manifests inside my brain. To help me cope with the pain. I feel the need to mimic his actions. Thats not me! I know it deep down in my heart, mind and soul. I don't want to date anyone at all. I want to be alone and learn to love myself. He does not love me nor will he ever.

He just texted me right now. I started talking to him five days ago and i keep telling him i just wanted to know he is alright but now i cant get rid of him. He keeps on crying and telling me he doesnt want to lose me. I keep telling him that we cant be together. That we are not together cuz he is abusive to me..mentally, phyiscally, verbally, and emotionally. The worst is the verbal and emotional abuse. So when he wasn't hitting me, slapping me, shoving me, strangling me, or pushing me; he was calling me all sorts of hoorible names that no ones ever called me in my life! And he said he was sorry, that he loved me, that he didnt mean it. That he was just mad, or that i made him so upset cuz he is just crazy in love with me.

Nonetheless he made the choice to act those ways. How could someone say they love you for all eternity then just hit you, cheat on you, tell you that youre worthless? And if i dont bend over backwards for him, all of a sudden it's cuz i have sumone else or cuz i'm selfish, or i might be the one with a chemical imbalence!??? I know i'm fine without him, but when he's in the picture i feel intimidated. I know i'm pretty smart. I mean i've been trying to finish college and get into the military. I need to get my life together. He has done nothing but keep me from my dreams.

Now i'm done blaming him for me slacking. Ive been taking responsiblity for my actions. I dont let anyone get in my way now. Although he has my new number and is constantly making sure im around, and not talking to other men. I sense danger. FIVE DAYS of talking and i already sense danger! That is a RED BANNER, not a red flag! I have told him in soo many different ways to move on. He keeps reeling me in. IM AWARE of this but i cant completly stop. I did for five months only cuz he was in jail. Im am so tired of living life this way. Always looking over my shoulder to see if he's watching me. I feel him driving around my neighborhood, the places i hang out at, and some of my friends houses.

I know i was wrong to make contact with him again, but i missed him and felt like maybe i could gain closure. No i only stirred up trouble. I wish I had a better support system to help me get thru this. I feel lonely and sometimes i see myself going backward and not foward. It's always going to be the same if not worse. I pray every night that god gives me strength to see beyond the clouds and darkness. I have made it this far, there is no turning back now. I would have done anything for that guy...even putting up with the abuse. I can tell you he would not have done the same for me.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 July 2009):

It's been 4 years since I broke up with my Abusive boyfriend. I was too young-13 & he was 16. We met through friends. At first he was really sweet,nice,caring, & cute. I fell in love with him (or so i thought). First 8 months were great! Everything was perfect, but then he got in a gang & he started changing. He got like 5 tatoos in each arm. When it came time for my family to meet him, he was a mess! & of course my family hated him! I thought i loved him so i went behind my family's bak & still dated him.

Then everything changed. I started noticing that this wan't good & i broke up with him but he called my phone 20 times, texted me about 20 times & left me about 50 viocemails.I didn't answer anything bak & didn't think much of it. I wake up at 2 am from a noise in my window! He came to my house!!!!I was so scared bcuz i thought my parents were going to wake up so i snuck out to talk to him. && he begged and wouldn't leave until i took him bak so i had no other choice. The nex few weeks were hell!! He called me the worst names you can think about & if i didn't do sumthing he wanted me to he would threaten to tell me family! It was terrified & i couldn't talk to anyone! & da worst part was that his mom saw his behavior towards me & she didn't say anything to him!!!

Now thank god he has a wife & a kid. I'm 17 & he's probably about 20. He looked me up on myspace & started talking to me again! I'm so scared! I blocked him but he tells my friends that he wants to talk to me & when i didn't he got in contact with my now boyfriend & started talking about how im a whore,slut,ect..... My now boyfriend is a sweet heart & knows my history with my ex & of course he didn't believe him & wants to kick his ass. he is very supportive & is trying to help me get over it cuz im insecure about everything!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 July 2009):

Its been nearly 5months since i left my abusive ex, and he is still calling and txtin, going from crying and pleading for me to take him back to threatning and calling me a whore etc. I was on the rebound when i met him and he also had a convenient 'sob story',(he was trying to get off drugs) so we bonded over shared pain. I wasn't looking for a relationship but i ended up in love with him for 3yrs. Looking back he had me trapped, although i did'nt see it at the time.

My ex is white and i am Indian. I had to keep our relationship a secret from my family bcoz relationships outside of marriage are dissaproved of and they wouldn't have approved of a guy with his baggage. This is one of the things he used against me to control me and keep me. I couldn't turn to anyone when he'd hit me, he knew that. He was blackmailing me indirectly at 1st and then directly after i left him. He is still threatning to 'ruin me'.

The first time he hit me, he was drunk and afterwards said he didn't remember hittin me and that he only pushed me, and that i was exaggerating. I'd also had a bit to drink so even though i clearly remembered what he'd done, i forgave him and believed it wasn't abuse, (just a one off heat of the moment thing) and it would not happen again. I think i just badly wanted to believe him so i could take him back because i loved and missed him.

He had a good side. That's why we stay. We want to compromise and give them the benefit of the doubt. We want to be the woman who 'fixes' them. It's partly a weird kind of maternal instint that takes over? I took him back 7/8 times because in a strange way i felt that i understood. That i 'got' his anger and where it came from. I'd had my toubles too and i felt we were connected in our pain.

But i think (and hope and pray!)that i have woken up and left those romantic notions behind me. I think that being all 'walking wounded' is one way to attract the wrong sort of guy. An abuser. they use our compassion against us. I'm definately much more wary and i plan to stay single for a long time and try to love myself instead.

The hardest part for me is missing someone who's caused me so much pain heartache and fear. And wondering what happened to the sweet kindred spirit i fell in love with? It's like losing someone to mental illness, you cant get the old them back and it's so sad. But then that side of them was just their 'bait'. the real whole them is a manipulative, selfish brute.

Any woman going through this, getting out is the hardest thing you'll ever do. But dont do it 2oyrs fom now. Do it now. Life is sacred, you owe it to yourself.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (25 July 2009):

To the person who posted on May 26, 2009, Christine. Your boyfriend sounds exactly like my ex-boyfriend. We were only together for five months, but he started getting jealous and getting mad any time a guy would talk to me. Actually, he once told me he was jealous of anyone I talked to (male or female). He said I was always so nice to everyone, except for him and it made him mad (which is not true. I was nice to him and did nice things for him a lot... he never seemed to recall them even if I had just did them or was just nice to him).

He was verbally and emotionally abusive.

It was hard, because sometimes he was very nice to me. If I was having a bad day, he would do something to make me laugh. If I was sad and maybe started crying, he would hug me and kiss me and talk with me. I gained some weight and am 10 pounds over weight right now. He always told me he didn't think I was overweight and that he thought I was beautiful.

So, how can this person, who is so sweet sometimes, be so abusive at other times?

What finally got me to break up with him was, one night he conjured up some stuff in his head, that I was trying to have sex with someone else at a party because we were talking (my boyfriend was about 15 feet away and I had just got done telling him I loved him and left his side to get a drink).

He pushed me into the table (from behind). I had no idea it was coming and no idea what was going on. It was crowded so only the guy next to me saw it. He said something to my boyfriend and my boyfriend left. He then came right back (later told me he never left and saw me laughing with that guy thinking I could get away with it... but I wasn't laughing, I was trying not to cry... )... he stuck his middle finger up and pressed it into my face and shoved my head back pretty hard, while calling me a whore and a bunch of other things. That guy that was standing there told him to leave. So... he left. A girlfriend of mine took me to her house for the night.

My boyfriend then proceeded to send me a bunch of texts and voice mails saying that he knew I was with this other guy, having sex with him and he was going to tell everyone what a slut I was. He called me every name in the book and said a bunch of horrible things.... all night long! I turned my phone off.

The next day, he called and sent texts with apologies, blaming it on bottled up anger and alcohol. He told me he was going to quit drinking. He wanted to make amends, etc. I ignored him for two days and then sent him an email, breaking up with him. He responded right away, denying that he pushed me and saying that I am to blame for what else he did, etc. Once again, later, he apologized to me.

I did what everyone told me not to do, I kept talking with him through email, trying to get him to understand it wasn't OK for him to act that way and trying to get him take responsibility for what he did. He pleaded with me to get back together and said we could call it a bad drunken night where we got into a fight. The thing is, we didn't get into a fight.

I did not do one thing that whole time. It was all his choice to act that way. If he was so concerned that I might be trying to have sex with someone at a party, he could have come over and talked to me. The whole idea was ludicrous. We are adults at an adult gathering. We had just had a super fun day and I had just got done hugging him and giving him a kiss and telling him how much I loved him. Ten minutes later, when I leave his side and someone starts to talk to me (a guy) he makes this huge scenario up in his head and blows up.

I left him two weeks ago and now I am sitting at home alone and starting feel sad about how things turned out. So, I found this site. I read what you said and it sounded just like my ex-boyfriend. I am glad you wrote it, because it makes me feel better about not going back to him. Sometimes I wonder if I am making a mistake. We had plans to move in together. He had already bought plane tickets for me to go meet his family, etc. Sometimes I am thinking that maybe if we went to counseling, or if he did. Maybe if he truly tried and did stop drinking... maybe it would be OK.

But, on the other hand, I read about this all the time and all the women say, it never changes and it only gets worse. I am an attractive, smart and nice person. I know some day I will meet someone else. I just don't understand why I feel the way I do now. Why is is so hard to leave? I keep having thoughts of emailing him.

Two days after I broke up with him, he went back on the dating website where we met. I emailed him and told him that was ridiculous considering what he just did and that I really had hoped he was being sincere about counseling and not drinking anymore.

Last weekend he knew where I was going with my friends and he showed up there. He got mad because I didn't talk to him (he was drinking). I had told him in an earlier email I think we could be friends and that I hoped he would go to counseling.

He really didn't care. He was already trying to find someone else. He was already back to drinking. And, he was still treating me like he had the weekend before. That night, because I ignored that he was at this place, he sent me a bunch of nasty texts (again). I told him not to contact me anymore and that I don't even want to be friends with him. The last message from him was later the next day saying (again), I am sorry. I was just upset that you wouldn't talk to me.

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A female reader, nancyhasglasses United States +, writes (11 June 2009):

I hate to be blunt (actually, I love it, but you might not) but I would place a large amount of money on the fact that you still like him because you have nothing else to do. Abusive partners tend to isolate their victim, now that he's out of the picture, what have you done to get your life together.

Get out of the house and do something productive with your free time. Volunteering at a humanitarian organization will give you more to think about than your own drama or what your ex is up to. You have to be proactive to fix your life, you can't wait to become happy; you are responsible for you own mental state.

Quit going to places where he hangs out, quit hanging out with mutual friends (if they're still his friend after what he did to you, there's no reason for them to be in your life).

Focus on you, if you're in school, study harder, if you've got a career put in extra work. Get yourself to a happy place and then you won't care who he's screwing.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (26 May 2009):

Hi all, I was searching the internet for some bit of hope and understanding for the pain that has been my life for the past 20 months - and this hits the nail right on the head.

I am 37 yrs old and just broke up with my abusive ex for the 4th time in 20 months for his behavior. Why do I keep believing his B.S. and taking him back time and again? I rack my brain with this question but don't have a good answer.

His abuse was mostly verbal but he had shoved me, knocked me down and slammed me against the wall in the past.

He had terrible mood swings and then would drink, and turn into this monster I didnt recognize.

Then afterwards his apologies and tears would come, and he would say how he knows he's so flawed and wants to be a better person and I am the only one he has to turn to, and blah blah blah.

His good behavior would last about a month or so and then right back to the same pattern of moodiness and drinking and violence and apologies.

About a year of the time we've been together he lived with me in my house and would damage it on purpose since he knew that's what would upset me the most.

He damaged walls by punching, kicking them and throwing or kicking furniture around, cranked up the humidifier on my furnace so it overflowed and soaked my new carpet in my basement, broke dishes, and the most recent thing he broke was my glasses this past weekend, which now I will have to spend big bucks on to replace and can't really afford to do so without putting it on my credit card.

I kicked him out of my house this past Saturday night since he was drunk and starting to smash things up again (knocked my glasses off and then stomped on them on the floor). I threatened to call the cops if he didnt leave. He was very drunk and was afraid of being arrested, so he took off. While he was gone I threw all of his shit out in the yard. I had taken his house key and garage door opener when he wasnt looking so he couldn't get back in.

He came to get his stuff the next morning and I stayed in the house and watched out the window. He ranted and raved and screamed what a bitch I was and I was losing the best thing I ever had etc, etc.

I can imagine what the neighbors must think and its so embarrassing.

Then 2 days later he's leaving messages about how sorry he is and can't he have another chance, our love is true love and we're meant to be together and all that B. S. I am just screening my calls and ignoring him even though it is SO hard.

I stayed with him/took him back for the same reason(s) many of you also do:

1. you think he can change if he wants to, and eventually will if you just stick with him and support him.

2. you believe him when he says he was just mad/drunk/having a bad day/whatever and wont do it again

3. you are afraid no one else will love you again, or you won't be able to find someone else to love like you do him.

4. you might be scared to be on your own financially and can't pay the bills by yourself

5. You break up with him just to go back again since you can't take the loneliness anymore

6. you try to date other people but just keep comparing them to him, and for some crazy reason they don't measure up - even though they are probably much better guys!

I could go on and on, but I am sure I have lots in common with many of you.

I am glad to know there are others out there like me and this site helps so much to help me not feel so alone, and not to beat myself up for being in this situation.

My ex started out as prince charming too, and I was taken in by the attention and his seeming "devotion" to me.

I was fresh out of a divorce and was flattered by the attention.

I didnt get to see the true him until about 9 months later after I let him move in with me when his apartment lease was up.

You have to realize these guys are masters of hiding who they really are just to reel you in.

If we saw that behavior right off the bat, would we date these idiots?

Of course not!!!!!

I am hoping to be my strongest this time and finally realize I am just wasting my life on this person, and not to ever give him another chance, since that just tells him his behavior is ok by my tolerating it.

I need to give MYSELF a chance on a better life with someone who truly deserves me.

Good luck to you all, thanks for listening and stay strong.

Christine

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 May 2009):

How dare you!!! ( to the last person who wrote on this site!)

I don't know about your personal issues with the person who started this page- but how dare you suggets that any woman on here has made up the horrible, disgusting, degrading things that the man in her life has done to her. Of course there are two side to every story but there is never eny excuse for raising your fist/glass/foot/belt to a woman. not to mention the control, manipulation and humiliation that comes along with it. My sick X would probably leave a stupid message like yours on this site- even though he is now behind bars for what he did to me. Woman come on here to leave messages of hope and strength for other women who have dealt with disgusting men- your nasty message does not help and does not belong on this site!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (22 May 2009):

I can tell all of you ladies this, there is two sides to every story, and the person who started this blog is full of shit. Not all girl are delusional but a lot of them are. Most women are truly capable of making something up in there mind and truly believe there own lies. All I'm really trying to say is there is to sides to every story. Some times there both lies, but there are rare situations when there is actually one person's side of the story who actually tells the complete truth no matter what the penalty is. Even in front of a court of law. Never forget what goes around comes around and karma is a you know what. Quite: when you purposely try to hurt someone you love or loved 99.9% of the time you end up hurting yourself in the long run. WRS

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 May 2009):

I replied to this on March 27, 2009 and I'm going to give an update just because there have been a few more answers since I wrote. I found and still find these responses to be uplifting, empowering and inspiring. The list from April 17 HITS THE SPOT! Every single one of those was true for me; they are words of wisdom.

Anyways, he told me I was nothing without him. That I would disappear, all that jazz. Truth be told, it has been almost 2 months since I finally ended it and I have never been happier or more productive. I have a job. I am moving in with my best friend. I have reconnected with all my friends, which is about a dozen people. I have made at least a half dozen NEW friends. I have reconnected with my family. I wake up every morning and I DO things rather than just sleeping 16 hours a day waiting for my end to come.

His update? He is living with his mother/friends. He doesn't have a job. He doesn't have any new friends. He doesn't have anything. Every day I wake up and look at his MSN name and I see him being so (fucking) self absorbed, self pity. He continues to prove every single day that HE was the fucked up one, not me. I don't even think about him anymore, or miss him simply because my life is better without him. Honestly, 3 years of absolute hell and chaos with that man to get what I have now? It was a worthy sacrifice. You really, really don't know what you have until it's lost, but to gain the opportunity to get it back? Priceless. Every day, even the worst possible moments in that day, are so sweet because I am alive, I am productive and I have so much love to give.

Stay strong girls (and guys, cause I know you gotta be here too...). No one should be able to violate your own sense of well being and self, don't ever let anyone control that most intimate part of you. Your body is one thing, but your soul? Your mind? You are safe there regardless of how you might feel, and anything is possible. You can't live if you aren't willing to take risks and make mistakes! But number one lesson to learn from all of this is respect yourself enough to leave these situations because you are you, totally unique and special despite what anyone tells you.

Good luck all.

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A female reader, SassyCat21 United States +, writes (1 May 2009):

SassyCat21 agony auntWomen, you must think of what your reality will always be with a man like this!...you must think of the bad things he has done to you verbally, mentally, and physically over and over again even after all of the apologies... These men are manipulative and selfish. My ex never put a hand on me, but I could see that it could have been a matter of time. What REALLY is hard to believe that even the most independent, confident, intelligent, and educated, free spirited women can become a victim...his pray...and mentally get trapped with this kind of ridiculous negative life that will continue forever!...YOU MUST PUT A STOP TO IT NOW! and thank goodness, I finally was able to free myself from him! Unfortunately, I got involved with this man as I was contemplating divorcing my husband. My ex was a high school boyfriend and we ran into each other 20 years later, just around the time I was having problems with my husband...BIG MISTAKE!!! especially when you are vulnerable..My ex was a very wealthy man as I got to know with his endless tokens of love (desinger clothing, jewelry, furcoats, shoes, perfume..the list is endless), he was very charming, passionate, we had the most amazing chemistry EVER and I believe he was in love with me as I soon felt I was in love with him too. However, the dynamics of my marriage changed and my husband really proved himself to me that he wanted our marriage to be better than ever (he cheated on me and I had so many prior disappointments and resentment toward my husband)however, I felt our marriage deserved that chance...This became a competition with my ex and instead of stepping back as a man and give me the time to figure out my life, my marriage, my 2 little girls, etc..he came on like a fireball!!! He bought me a wedding ring, he bought me a villa in Greece, His relationship was so codependent, insecure, manipulative, his actions were so over the top that he called them actions of love, actions due to his passion and emotional connection with me...it was DRAMA 24/7!!! There were so many other people he had involved in our relationship as well...He was passive aggressive, he had major anxiety and he did not want to let me go...He feared the thought of never seeing me again. Now, I too had a hard time letting go and I would fall into his words...we both were very passionate...everything incredible! But at some point...sooner or later...the patterns continued..OH especially when he drank...his demons and insecurities would all come out....He then started making false accusations of me having something with other men, called me a player, used the guilt card, would not allow me to close the door to my car as he wedge himself in...All along, I was so honest with him about my husband and my husband was also well aware of my ex and of the situation that had happened...I think my ex was a narcissist...Getting this man out of my head has been a battle, but there comes a time when enough is enough and you must decide the life you want to have....When my ex would unexpectedly act up and ruin a perfectly great time I was having, I would become beyond ANGRY but then at times like a fool, I'd give in...FINALLY, I realize my happiness and free spirit and Gods nows what else...would have been compromised had I left my husband for this man....Thank the Lord, that my eyes have been opened. My husband and I are better than ever!!!! This has been a huge life experience for the both of us...Do not take your spouse for granted.., take care of eacher other, but most importantly, Men like this CANNOT change...my ex.....They are impressive and can take you to cloud nine....but please watch out for those signs...the weird gut feeling, obsessive, manipulation, jealousy,selfishness, false accusations, his bad childhood, poor family relationships, no best friends, the blaming game, the guilt trips, codependency....I've had to learn the hard way...You must walk away if you want your health and sanity...YOU LIFE!!! It sucks that this is the way the mind gets trapped and you have a yearning to go back, BUT DONT!!!! I feel so great that this weight has been lifted..I hope you have that strength too!!! It's not easy, but keep yourself with positive thoughts and keep busy..do not go back and think of the good times!!! That's a PHONEY PICTURE..NOT REALTIY....What these men do are not actions of LOVE...they think it's love, but LOVE does NOT ALLOW for such behavior!!!!!!!!!!!

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A female reader, miss a thing Canada +, writes (29 April 2009):

Wow, I have been reading everyones answers to this and am dismayed to see how many of us have been treated in this way.

I too have suffered an abusive relationship. I was with a man for over two years. he was the most wonderfulto start with and then came the abuse, mental and physical, he chaeted on me and bamed me, wanted to know where i was the whole time, hated my family and used to hit out at me if i ever tried to stand up to him. funnily enough at the time i wasnt that scared, i used to get riles, he put my head into a steaming hot bath and used to slam my head against a wall (knowing i was epileptic) he even used to head butt me.

thank goodness for my family, it has taken me five times to leave him and i had to move to canada from england(this is where my parents live) to make the final break. it's beenalmost 5 months and i have had contact with him, trying to see where it went wrong and if we could fix it. i cannot still see myself with another man. but each day i am getting stronger, i hate the thought of us being apart, but in my heart i know that if i was to go back to him that would seal my fate. no one deserves to be treated like any one of these women on here have been. it maes me sad to think of what i have lost with this man, but reading everyone elses stories i realise that it was not true. i loved him, but he did not me.

5 months on and this is showing the abuse that he put me through... i do not trust men and cannot have a relationship wityh someone yet. thank you to everyone for writing their stories, you have helped me to give me the strength to have no more contact with my abuser, even all those miles away he can still get inside my head. however i must be recovering, for 5 months ago i would have gone back to him when he asked, now i will not. of course he has a girlfriend now... he had a 16year old one just 3 days after we split... he's 31 and i now seethat a young girl is easy to manipulate. i have just turned 25, starting my whole life again, i have zero to show for my years in adulthood, he took every penny i earned, my dignity and my life. but each day thanks to friends and family and people sharing their stories i am finding the strength to get up in the morning and trying to be happy.

girls... no one deserves this abuse, you will miss the being with someonelike i do, but it's not him, it's the feeling of bing with someone who you 'think' loves you. anyone that loves you will treat you with the dignity and respect you deserve and would never hurt you. these men don't change, with my ex it was his family background that i believe made him the way he was. and now talking to the 'bitches' he called his ex's they too wentthrough the same cycle of love then abuse like me. and that goes back over 10 years!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 April 2009):

WOW- You hit the nail right on the head! That is exactly it! What you described is exactly my relationship and what other woman I have now talked to have described.So I reckon we should do a check list - a list of things to look out for- Please id you disagree or think there should be more add them!

Signs that he might be abusive...

1. He dislikes all his x girlfriends because they were bad people who treated him badly.

2. He sulks, moans gets angry if you talk about your x's or look at other men on the street or TV.

3.He has an unhealthy relationship with his family.

4. He wants to know where you are all the time.

5. If you don't answer your phone he needs a 20 minute explanation of what you were doing, why,etc??

6.The relationship is moving really quickly- he seems too good to be true.

7. He breaks things when he is angry.

8.You see much less of your friends and/or family.

9. He doesn't like some/all of your friends and tells you they are bad people.

10. He wants to be with you ALL the time.

11. He blames you for all your arguements.

12. He calls you a drama queen.

13. He shouts and swears at you.

14. You argue all the time and you have started to 'back down' just to have an easier life.

15. He punishes you with silence, or breaking your things, or preventing you doing something you like.

16. You go out less often.

17. He raises his fist to you when angry, then says its a good job I don't hit women or youre lucky you are not a guy right now.

.... there are more- I think if you have 2-3+ of these you need to watch out for more warning signs because next comes the really physical stuff.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (14 April 2009):

I cannot believe all the responses to this and it dates from over 3 years ago!!!! These men - where do they all come from? They all come from the same mould ..... and why, if they've all had such a bad childhood, do they not sort themselves out and stop taking it out on innocent women??? Each "male" described (I will not call them men), start off charming, mesmorising, who draw you in, make you feel like a princess, love you so madly, make you feel like you're the best thing that's ever happened to them (and all their past ex'es were mental, mad bitches - and dont you feel so sorry for them?!!!) and you think you are the one who are gonna make them happy and it's going to be FOREVER! but no, these "males" obviously cant do "forever"!! So you give up your life (sometimes marriage, financial security, your senses, family, best friends, jobs, whatever) for this "love of your life"...... and one day, it slaps you in the face: you are in an ABUSIVE relationship!!! O my god, you never thought it would happen to you!!! You are too clever, too savvy, too sassy, too opinionated and strong!!! But no!!! He's kicked it out of you!!! and you dont know what are the right boundaries of a normal relationship anymore!! Is it you? Yes, you are a drama queen!! You made him do it! You do things on purpose to make him angry! If it wasnt for you, he wouldnt get so agressive and shouty! Why dont you just do things the way he wants and make sure you please him cos then none of this would happen and everything would be hunkydory... #

I havent been through as much physical abuse of most of the women who have responded to this lady. I am one of the lucky ones obviously. I was with my "male" for 4 years and he didnt really show his dodgy side until a year or so into the relationship. And it was only the last year, when we had bought a house together that it became really evident to me that he really wasn't right, although all my family and friends had warned me, I even lost my lifelong friend (39 yrs) through him (back talking now and re-building our bridges).

I have two little boys (and it was realising that the ex would never be a good role model or a good"stepfather" to them that made me end it) and I will do everything I can to make sure they respect all human beings, and especially never hurt girls - either physically or MENTALLY.

Yes, we all yearn for that "honeymoom" time, when he loved us so passionately, so fervently, so madly and he made us feel so SPECIAL and the sex was OUT OF THIS WORLD. But those times arent ever gonna come back!!! That's what draws us in, because it seems so SPECIAL, so real, so magnified. But it's not real, not really. It should start to feel comfortable and easy and relaxed, not hard work and stressful and striving to please to get those special "honeymoon" feelings back. RUN, IGNORE YOUR FEELINGS, a normal relatioship SHOULDNT BE THAT HARD, it IS NOT NORMAL, YOU;VE GOT NO-ONE LEFT TO GIVE YOU A REALITY CHECK COS HE'S ALIENATED YOU FROM EVERYONE YOU TRUSTED, SO TRUST YOURSELF, TRUST THESE RESPONSES, RUN, RUN, RUN, you miss LOVE, but you dont miss HIM!!!!! He's damaged goods, run a mile..... and keep running. Be strong. you, me, we all deserve better xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 April 2009):

hi... its almost 2 weeks since i broke up with my boyfren.. its been a really hard time for me coz i was in this relationship for almost 3 and half years.. i loved him with all my heart.. i always thought that he loved me too.. the first 3 months of my relationship was like paradise.. he always spent time with me.. cared abt me and made me feel special.. but then things changed.. he always spyed on me.. abused me for everything and even hit me just bcoz he thoutht i was cheating on him...he would blame me for everything and i started feeling so hurt that i always ended up hurting myself physically.. 2day i have bruises all over my body just cos i loved dat man and i didn wanna hurt him instead.. i stil kept up with him bcoz after everytime he hurt me he would apologize to me.. and i always fell for it..

but now its just way too much for me to handle anything... my family and friends hated him and always told me to break up with him.. and now with great difficulty i have done it. its way too painful and it kills me to see him with anyone else... its just that may be he is not worth my love..

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A female reader, gemmaxx09 United Kingdom +, writes (7 April 2009):

gemmaxx09 agony aunthi, i have bene going through a similar situation with my ex boyfriend. Its weird because he did so many things to hurt me, i ended it but he still reeled me back in each time, such as constant texts and even ringing my house which was my parents house phone and crying his eyes out to take him back.

At first i thought he was the most caring person i had met, but i realised he was the most selfish, uncaring, horrible person i ever set eyes on.

He would punch walls, kick bins, swear, call me names like bitch and said his mates thought i dressed like a tart.

One time he punched a wall because i didnt take my heart medication and he said i will be f***ing be aggressive if u dont take them on time, it was weird because i didnt feel scared of him, i just felt angry, maybe thinking back i should have been more scared as i think he was capable of doing more. If he did put his hands on me he wud block me from the door or grab my arm and push my back down on the chair.

He was even cruel to my pet dog, she was 13 and quite ill, he went up to her and rolled her over. My dog hated him, when he was over she would lie right by me protectively and if he touched me she would go mad through her pain until she died. The list goes on and on with him.

I am only 20 and this was the first ever relationship I had been in, my parents were worried to death. If it wasnt for my family he would have done more but he was too sly and clever with his ways to hit me at that point because he knew he didnt have full control over me mentally.

i ended it with him for the last time, i thort but he blamed all his behaviour on me, saying im a drama queen and that no-one treat me as good as him. I knew that i could find someone a million times better, but at the time i thort i was madly in love with him. However, i am one of the lucky ones because he ended it with me because he knew id never change my views and he would never be able to control me fully, especially with my family.

I feel such a fool because all my friends and family told me, especially my mum that he is abusive but i said like hell is and did not listen at all. I keep punishing myself thinking how stupid i was because he nearly had full control over me with my food, tv, music and he would put it down infront of people. I feel like he has taken away a part of me that i cant have back such as my happiness and my innocence. Before him i would see all the good in people but now my trust for people has gone so low i keep looking for the bad in people and comparing it to him. I am terrified that i wont be able to fall in love again but i know i have sooo much love to give. It will take a long time to get over the hurt but i know i will one day.

For you girls out there, it is one of the hardest things you will ever do is to end it with them, because i knew that it takes control away from them but it will be the best thing u will ever do for ur well being,health and safety. I still think i miss him to this day, but its not missing him its just i got used to the behaviour. i have being seeing someone who is indeed one of the nicest and sweetest people ever and its soo weird because i am used to the negative treatment of my ex. i want something better for my life, no-one deserves to be treated in any way, whether its physical or mental.

It will take a while to get over an abusive ex boyfriend but you have got to remember u may think u r missing them, such as the gd parts they hard like sweet talk, saying how much they love you and making you feel you are the most special and important person on the earth. However, when you feel like your missing them think about the way they treated you, i realised that the most important person on the earth to my ex was himself, everything was about him and him only. You have got to realise that you cant just change someones personality like that, its the way think think and the way they are moulded. I wish in my heart i could have changed him but i couldnt make him the person i expected him to be.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 March 2009):

I know exactly how you feel- the void in your life is so huge when you finally let go of the person that has dominated your thoughts, feelings and actions for so long. Its a big gap to fill, but once you start seeing your friends and family again it soon fills up. I felt like you- i thought that if he gave me one sign he had changed i would take him back in a heart best- but over the past few weeks i have realised HE WILL NEVER CHANGE! thats it plain and simple he may be able to cover it up (4 a while)but if he is a bully he will always be a bully. My therapist used to work exclusively with men who abused women- he told me straight on my last sesion -he can count on one hand the men he thinks have changed out of the 1000s he has worked with.and thats after years and years of intensive help.its brutal but true- us women need to make a stand against these men that think they can dominate and hurt us- we deserve so much better- we DON'T have to pit up with it!!! SO DON'T!!!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 March 2009):

I am going through this too right now. My now ex boyfriend was verbally and emotionally abusive to me, but I put up with it for a couple of years because I honestly thought it was me. For the last couple of months however I looked around me and saw that I had no friends anymore, no family, anything he WANTED to do dominated our life while anything I NEEDED to do, did not. So if he wanted to do anything, it took priority over getting a job, going to classes, etc. I was not happy, and very suicidal (which is a bad thing, because I have attempted in the past). I had lunch with my sister not two weeks ago and I guess she went home crying about my situation to her husband who grew up in a very abusive situation. Well, he didn't want to see me live through what his mother and him had to, so he phoned my ENTIRE family and they all came to my apartment...

They said, make a choice, this life...or a new life. I chose new. I broke up with my BF that night, I told him to go get help for his anger and mood swings and I would get help for my things...then maybe we could be together. Long story short he did a whole woe is me speech to me and my father, didn't say anything that encouraged me to believe we could ever work it out. It was horrible, my heart was broken that night, I broke his heart. BUT, he hurt me so much over so long with little things, that there wasn't much left of my heart to break. I am still sad, but not suicidal, I realize now that I have so much in my life: my family, my friends (who I am beginning to speak with again), and maybe even a new love. I can do everything I would never have been able to do if I remained with him, like travel, continue with my degree and talk to whoever I want to. I do love him, but it is not a healthy love, and I know I would take him back if he gave me even ONE sign that he'd change. But he hasn't, and he probably never will, but that will not prevent me from bettering my life. Make my life a life worth living.

Just keep in mind all the things you are gaining over what you have lost. It is a bargain in your favor. The process of grieving is long and complicated (which is what we're doing), spending so much of your life dominated by a single person creates a huge hole when that person is gone, but it gives the opportunity to fill it with love for yourself, for your life. Remain strong, we can all do it with a little strength. No matter what mistakes you have made, you deserve to live a good life!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 March 2009):

Last time i wrote i said i would never see my abusive x again- then 3 weeks ago on a lonely drunken night i called him. i woke up regretting it the morning but now he had my mobile number and he started texting me. We met up and all the old feelings came flooding back. We made love and it was beautiful. we met up 2 more times and i really had started to think he had changed and i could give him another chance. The next day he came round to pick me up. He called me from outside and i came out. Then it started, just like b4, "i have been ringing for 15mins, you ignored me on purpose"etc etc- it was like being hit in the chest -i knew he hadnt changed in an instant- we tried to chat and he made comments like- it was 50/50, it wasnt domestic violence, i only hit u once (not true) blah blah blah- i got out of his car and walked homed and promised myself that was his last chance. It was a mistake but at least i will always know i gave him one last chance to change. He is an angry bully who will never give me the safe, caring, loving family i want and as much as i miss his smell and touch he will never be good enough for me. I may be months/years b4 i meet somebody else but im willing to wait if i can find someone who will love me properly. good love should be comforting and allow you to fly. I can't wait to be loved like that- I'm excited about the future, not scared of tomorrow anymore! Its an amazing feeling! If you are with a man like my x please please please think about whether you can really live this way for the rest of your life- it took me to the brink of suicide to realise it was wrong!You can break the cycle 4 yourself- u will have bad days but you will find your inner strength.The relief is the best feeling in the world- I am free!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 February 2009):

I broke up with my boyfriend of 13 years we were off and on.I have an 12 year old by him and I am currently pregnant.He was mentally and physically abusive to me.He blamed me for every single thing that went wrong.He cheated on me blamed it on me and said I belittled him.I put an restraining order out on him.It has been 4 months since we broke up I seen him and he is still angry,he stated how he wanted to busted me up side my head with a glass bottle.We were suppose to dicuss our kids and his vistation but, he did not seem concerned about our kids he was asking me personal questions like who I was sleeping with.I told him I did want to talk about it and he walked up on me and started acting crazy and threating me with the bottle as I said earlier.I should have called the cops but,I was so embrassed that I went home.He has put me through hell Iam pregant and his girlfriend is pregant.It is like he want to live his life and I am not allowed to have one.I think the best way to get over an abusive relationship is no contact.I get teary eye and I do cry because, I miss him sometimes I don't know if it is love or obsession but,I hate seeing him with his girlfriend it hurts me,but,I do not want him back I am tired of the black eyes,getting choked punched in the stomach while pregnant, throwing down to the ground.My baby did not deserve that or me.And to have your kids witness that is crazy.I was crazy to put up with it and to top it off Iam 29 years old.I have anger and I am depress.I hate the fact that i feel like trash because, Of this man who hurt me beyond repair.I just want to get over it.When I do not see him I am OK just missing him and the good times but,when I see him I am a mess.I am committed to staying single for a year and getting counseling so I will not wind up in another abusive relationship.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (10 February 2009):

Hey, well I am a guy who has just split up with my girlfriend, we have been going out for around 4 months, nevertheless, I love her so much! We split up yesterday as she told me she didnt love me, she had tried, loves me so so much as a friend, but not as a partner.

She split up with a very abusive guy about a year ago and I was her first relationship since, we got on very well, eating out all the time, going to the pub, etc etc. Then approximatly 2 weeks ago, we have a conversation and she just closed up, as if she knew she was getting close to falling for me but couldnt let herself do it.

I knew something was wrong, obviously, and aksed her about it, she was in floods of tears when she told me she didnt love me. I did ask her if she would ever let herself go, and she said no, she will be on her own for ever and never fall in love again. I did say that is like letting the other guy win as he still has a hold over her and is affecting her life. I still think that deep down she may still have feelings for me, but will not take the risk.

I know I cant begin to understand how this situation would work, I think the whole abuse thing is completly unacceptable and disgusting, but how can I help her? I am asking on two levels here, as an now ex boyfriend who would love to get back with her and try my hardest to make her happy. But I am also asking as her friend, I understand that this may just have been the wrong time and will never work, but in which case, she will be my best friend for life! I also appreciate there is no answer to this, but any experiance would be most helpful!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (9 February 2009):

Chapters 1,2,3 have ended!, i went out with an abusive guy for 3 years, he was nice in the begining but then he turn into a psyco, he verbally abused me and told me that i had to lose weight, at that point i was 120 pounds i was not fat!, but he was soo convincing that he convinced me i was fat, i starved myself and worked out i did everything to please him, i stopped talking to my bestfriend i had no life outside him, we broke up millions of times and when he called back i took him back. He cheated twice ( that i know of), and i forgave him, i cheated too and when he found out i got beaten, i have his nails marked on my skin forever, so i finally left him, i was so sad and lonely, my self steem was on the floor, he didn't even called to apologige, didn't call for my b-day!. One day i met this AMAZING guy at the club and we stared dating, he was complelty different, he calls me beatiful everyday, he has never put me down, i have never met someone that amazing in my life, now im in love all over again but this time is real, i don't cry anymore, i love myself and i got my friends back, i got my life back. Back to the bad guy,one day he saw me with my new bf, and he went crazy, he stared calling me, calling my mother,tellin her he wanted to marry me, he apologized to me, he begged for 5 months told me he changed for me, thuth is man never change! so i did not give him a chance, it was too late to apologize, soo for you girls that think he is the only one for u, is not, u will fall in love again..just make sure u dont make the same mistake. Because the perfect person for you will think as highly of you as you do of them.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 February 2009):

hey i was look up how to get over an abusive love and this poped up as i read it it was scary enough my story to except i was the other girl and im styll not strong enough to let him go but i have a sugguestion that may or may not help everytime you think of a good time replace it with a bad memory and try to remeber the hurt and pain that you most likely felt everyday i feel hipercritial sayin this because unlike yu im still in my situation but i hope this helped..

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 February 2009):

Let you Go

I'm lettin you go

let it flow

set myself free

put up a boundary

I'm feelin pain

your sweet lips on mine

I can't deny

I still yearn for the guy

and it's a crime

abuse and bullying

all at mine

I don't invite guests

to do this

I feel myself

less and less

diminished

small

and

confounded

again

I tried to

build myself up

take time

get strong

but you back me into a corner

and hammer me again

the pain

I told him

is not from the separation

but the contact

© Anna Savage

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (3 February 2009):

I'm 25.I changed the locks on my front door last week. It is the best thing I ever did. I had just been dumped by I guy I had planned to marry. I was easy pray-lonely and needed lots of attention. He was sweet, caring, sexy. It started off with phonecalls ALL the time. Wher are you? why havent you called??? Then he started breaking things, holes in walls, then breaking my things. He would block or lock me in rooms, call me every name under the sun. He proposed and i ssid yes. We brought a house and tried for a baby. Then he didnt take his anger out on objects anymore. It was me. He held me by the throat, pinned me up a wall and screamed in my face as i cried in pain. The bruises on my throat made me feel sick. The very next day he pushed me over the kitchen unit.

Things didnt get better over the next few months. I hated him, couldnt bare him touching me. Friday morning was the final straw. He smashed a telly and threatened to block me in a room so i couldnt get to work. I got out-told a colleague and that day my family helped me pack up his things.He is still knocking my front door- but i will never talk to him again. Im still sad and lonley but I know longer consider suicide everyday or cry myself to sleep, or dred the sound of HIM coming through the door. I have already started to build up my confidence. I will be fine. We all will!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 February 2009):

After reading all these other articles from other girls that were in my situation, I don't feel as alone anymore. I was in a relationship for a year and a half with a very abusive guy. It started out with just verbal insults and him destroying things around the house in a fit of anger. He got me so low, without me even realizing, now that I'm away from the relationship I feel the old me slowly returning, the confident, secure, happy girl I was before we met. During our courtship I became pregnant..that's when it began...the spitting on my face...the ripping out of my hair...the shoves...the shaking...and the last straw...which was when he decided to put his hands around my neck while I was nine months pregnant with our son...I called the police that day...He was arrested...and I FINALLY moved out and took control of my life again...I could handle him hitting me...but I WOULD NEVER allow him to put my child in danger. It's been nine months since I left, the court case is in 10 days and he has supervised visits of our son once a week...His family hates me....alot of our friends have taken a neutral stance in the matter which makes me hesitant with ever talking to them again....It's hard starting over..there are days I find myself missing him..the good times we used to have...but I will never go back My son deserves a chance in life.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 February 2009):

Hi, there, Eunice again. He just called to let me know that I am exaggerating because he didn't do it as often, it's sad because once is enough and in our case it was more than once, twice, thrice, you see where I'm going with this.

To make things worse, he tells me that its the best I deserved. Being hit is the best I deserved. Before I used wanna kill myself, now, I know I'm stronger than that, him. Only weak boys hit girls. I refuse to call him a man because hitting a girl makes you nothing but a child.

I don't know what the future holds, but I know it's not with him, and that gives me comfort.

Good luck to all of yous trying to move on, and for those who are struggling, I pray you find the strength to leave, one way or the other you will, just don't want it to be in a body bag. Each strike gets harder everytime.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (1 February 2009):

I was in a relationship where I was accused of cheatin, daily, I was called a bitch and a slut and the fact that I dated a guy who cheated on me gave my ex a reason to call me lose, slut all the time. He hit me about 5 times, every time he will hit me, he will say I made him do so. I believed him and tried to be a better person. (the most memorable one was last summer 2008, He was ill and I went to visit him, we got into an argument and He held my head smash it on the wall, grabbed my neck, opened his door and threw me out, I was mad and raging, he followed me home on the phone apologising to me, and guess wot...I took him back. H hit me three times after that. For me the verbal abuse was what got to me, It has a way of making you feel inferior and worthless and dependent)

After 25months of being with him, I really couldn't breath anymore, I felt that I needed to get out, the thing is, I felt that way 80% of the relationship, but because he was my first and only love, I held on for the good ol' days when we were young and wild and head over heels. The time has come for me to realise that it is never gonna happen. So a week ago, after being called a slut and accused of being wit a guy.....again, I decided to leave. I was tiered of not being free to go out wit my friends and family.

The Scary thing is, until I read this site today, I thought it was a normal relationship, I have just learn that I was in an abusive relationship. I wonder how many girls are out there who do not know that they are being abused. I also wonder how many guys actually realise that what they are doing is wrong. I don't think my guy knows, and is sad cos the loving side of him is beautiful.

I was told that, if a guy verbally abuse you, get out because eventually he will hit you. If he loves and respects you, words like bitch and sluts should never be used against you.

Eunice 22, London

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (26 January 2009):

I still feel stupid and different even after reading these stories. It only took 2 weeks for him to become abusive, and we were on and off again for 3 years. Before we got together, he was my partner in class at uni. I didnt even know why i was attracted to him. I had broken up with my previous boyfriend a few weeks earlier, and i couldnt stand being on my own. I dont know what happened to the independant girl i was in my early 20's who was always single and busy. I so badly needed the company. I felt like my friends had drifted away and couldnt stand the solitude. So i put up with accusations of cheating, him causing a scene in my street nearly ever time he came over, blocking doorways and not letting me leave. He was very jealous of my school work, and would pester me to "lay down with him" whilst i was trying to get work done that was due the next day. He eventually beat me up and our school teachers found out (we went to the same uni). I had to get a restraining order put on him and walk around campus terrified that id see him; terrified because i didnt want to see the spiteful smirk on his face. After 3 months i felt i missed him so much that i started seeing him secretly, and had no one to turn to when he became violent. I couldnt let people know how weak i was for taking him back. I havent seen him in three weeks and im so proud. Im sure that this time will be different. I am so lonely, and try to think of things to do to while away the days. The days are so long. Even though i do get a lot of male attention for being "hot", it seems like guys just want to fuck me and dont care who i really am. I was hoping that someone nice would come along and help me forget him, but i know i have to go through this and build up my own strength. The silence is deafening. There is no one to confide in. I will get through it though. I just keep practicing my music, and studying, in preparation for the day where i can enjoy its benefits. None of us are stupid. It isnt hard to make a woman fall in love with u. You just have to be sweet to her, and thats what these egotistical bastards know, and that is why they are so perfect to begin with, like he was before we got together. These people are sick predators, and just when u thought u couldnt sink any lower or lose anything else, they somehow manage to take another piece of u that u didnt even know u had left.

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A female reader, Troubled123 United States +, writes (23 January 2009):

Reading all these studies on this site has helped. I was in a relationship for only 2 months. We would go out and he would have to have shots and each time he would start a fight with me. The next morning I would accept his apology because I said he was drunk. In the two months we had five episodes of abuse. It first started with put downs, calling me the b and c word and spitting in my face. He is handsome and I consider myself average, he told me everything I wanted to hear. I was so in love and said he was with me. He wanted to marry me already.....I am single mom with 3 boys and felt so good he excepted me and my boys. I put myself and them in the wrong situation. He ended up staying over my house almost to the point of moving in, we enjoyed each other so much but then he would put me down even in the bedroom. He started with the words then grabbing me and pushing me. The last straw was on a friday he choked me twice again forgave we were both drinking, but on that sunday he started in on me again and the cops where called and he was arrested. I pressed charges went through with restraining order and was granted permamanent one. One part of me is he belongs in jail (45 days) and other part of me misses him so much. The pain is horrible.

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A female reader, blonde-bex United Kingdom +, writes (10 January 2009):

well...where do i start! ive just been reading some of the replies from other girls on here and im so sorry for what uve been through, i no its hard an i dont rekon ANYONE deserves to be treated in the way we all have

my story begins in february last year when my ex dumped me on valentines day and well i was verrry upset at this coz it was totally out of the blue, i was single for about a month when i met the lad in question, he was quiet good lookin, good body, charm and wit, we managed to go on a date although i was abit hesitant as i wasnt reli sure if i was over my ex but anyway he charmed me and charmed andeventually i agreed. the date was nice jus ya typical cinema date and a fe days later text me askin me out as initially id refused and said i jus wanted to be friends but over them next few days he jus turned on the charm. the 1st few week were great hed text me often, be really nice and caring and sensitive, then he came up to my parents for the weekend and that was fairly nice however when i was goin through my computer which he as using (i always go thru to try an delete stuff so it dont get too slow!) i found some chat logs from msn that well shall we say were VERY inappropriate, i stayed silent for a day or two givin him the cold shoulder and eventually confided in my mum and told her what id found and she said too me look theres no other way but to confront him which i did and in a slightly cocky was 'reassured me' that it was only a bit of fun and that he didnt mean anything by it and as i hadnt known him tht long i let it go and put it to the back of my mind

after this incident over the next 2 months or so we slowly slipped further and further down. the sex didnt happen, the complments didnt appear, he was always askin to lend money for this and lend money for that, and was always on his fone (i didnt no at the time but i assume it was other girls) i dont remeber the exact 1st time he hurt me but we wer jus messing around on my bed and i didnt think much of it at 1st coz it was just ticklin but soon he started punching my legs and as it wasnt hard i didnt think much but gradually they got harder and harder (hes a well built muscular man) and when i asked him to stop he didnt and jus kept doing it again and as i shared the place i cudnt really go anywhere else and the following day siure enough the following day i ended up with bruises all over my legs. over the following month i had my end ov year exams for uni so i spent queit a lot of time revising, but everytime i wanted to use the computer he wudnt let me always on it, on msn dating/flirting/chat room sights. i tried askin him about them when i got enough courage and all i got was 'its a bit of fun' or something to that extent. soon after when we were out he would call me names and call me stupid and dull and boring an this really effected me it was like emotional bullying.....from my bf of all people!!! one night we had huge row which did turn violent in the end, we did a lot of shouting name calling and a lot of grabbing each other in the end i managed to break bree and (some how) rip his earing out...i hope to god tht hurt the fu**er and he stormed off and for some reason i begged him to come back! why u ask!? i dont even no myself, i think its because he wore me down so much i was afraid to be on my own and that maybee i had hope inside me tht i could make him change, over the next couple of months this went on and on and as he was practically livin at my uni digs i found it really hard and just didnt have the courage to ask him to leave. everytime he went 'home' he wud alays return a few hours later out of the blue, it was like i could never get any time to myself, but now i o believe this 'going home' was to go on dates/sleep with other girls. one evening at the end of may after we'd been out to this uni thing wed both been drinkin but him much more than me and anyway he passed out back in my room so me and his mate both carried him into my room and left him in a comfy position, at this point though his phone kept ringing and ringing and ringing and in the drunkish state i was in i thought it would be a good idea to answer it and to explain the situation tht he was in, when i answered a female voice came on and kind of went quiet and hung up after i said this is his mrs who are u and ill passs a msg on, after that i recived a few texts claiming tht this other girl was also his mrs, so as i broke down in tears his mate rang her back and asked her what the f**k was going on, it turns out tht they'd never actually met but had been talking on msn...anyway the day after i was in such a big mood all 3 of us went to the beach and as i fell asleep crying into his mates chest i asked his mate to have a quiet word with him the day after, so sure enough when the lads had finished playing football they asked if i wanted to come for a walk, but i opted out and his mate assured me that he would have a word. later that day on the way home he started to hold my hand again, tell me i looked nice etc, and as thought his mate had had a word with him, at the end of the weekend he even took me out for a meal and left his fone behind something which he'd NEVER done before. for about a week or two all was good but then again things went down hill and one day he jus stopped sleeping in the same bed as me, i asked him what was up an he wudnt talk my parents were down tht day (thank god) so i just left him to sleep and went out for the day with them, as i was literally reduced to tears they eventually new something was up and i couldnt keep it in and told them, when i got back home tht day he was still there and we had a chat and i couldnt figure out what was going on, one min he'd say we wernt alike, then hes day he loved me then hed say he wanted to be single, in the end we came to an agreement to give it one last chance, but whn i got back up to my parents i did a bit of investigating (i had now reclaimed my laptop) and figured out he had cheated and sure enough i rang him up had a big go and he tried to act all hard sayin nah nah ull never catch me and all this, in the end i gave in and begged for him back.. by this point he had wore me down to absolutely nothing, i dont think there was a day gone by where i didnt cry, and i must have been depressed for easily a couple of months, i think thats why all some of the girls in here have had the same trouble as i did letting go, they tore us down to be so weak we'd give anything for some support (even if it was the wrong kind) anyway a few weeks later we decided to go our seperate ways we went on a break and when we arranged this i specifically asked typical questions like should we text, speak, meet up etc and the answer was a mumbled yes to all 3, and also that came out was 'if u sleep with anyone else ill bury u 6 feet under' ...yet another threat, nice!! and of course i was to weak to not do this i rang him most days or texted and never got any reply i tried so so hard not to but as i was in my flat alone (aas my uni term hadnt yet started) i literally had no other distractions, in the end we argued and argued and argued, i tried to get my stuff back but tht led to more arguements, 1st him saying he didnt want to see me, then too i 'was'nt allowed in his mums house' then too denying tht he had anything of mine, and when i fought back he bruung in the violence again threatening to knock me black and blue and beat me up if i came any where near his house.... to this day i still havenet had my stuff back. i no my relationship wasnt as bad as some of them on here but i also recieved a lot of emotional bullying too which i found very hard to deal with, i still thing about what happend when im lying in bed at night and end up crying my eyes out. something like an abusive relationship i find is so so hard to forget, at the moment i keep telling myself to 'THINK POSITIVE' and that 'THE BOY ISNT WORTH IT' its sorta working but not totally, imm still findinin it hard to get close to men, im fine with all the flirting and the texting an tht but when it comes to meeting and getting physically close i just cant.

as much as i hate to say it being in that relationship has definately made me stronger and MUCH more picky about men, im so cautios now

i no we can (and will) get through this eventually and just think of the fact that u are probably stronger than u ever would have been if this relationship not have happened.

take care everyone...sorry about my essay lol

bec xx

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A reader, anonymous, writes (18 December 2008):

I am 21 years old, and i am currently dealing with this situation. I have been in a relationship with my ex boyfriend for two almost three years. I have dealt with all the usual problems most women have dealt with when you are with an abusive man. He is an alcoholic who refuses to face that. He has been in and out of trouble with the law for years, and has EXTREME paranoia.

The first two years were absolute bliss, he always had a drinking problem, but for some reason i didnt seem to realize that that was what it was. I remember going out with him and he ALWAYS had to have a drink. When i look back now, i realize that all the problems we have now were staring me in the face back then, but i just didnt realize it. Things didnt really start to go bad until june of this year. 1st problem, he doesnt have a job, and hasnt had one since he's been with me, and wasnt trying to find one. He kept asking me if he could borrow my car on the weekends so that he could find a job since i had to work on the weekends and was riding the train to work. BAD idea, but me being dumb, i agreed. So one night, i was coming home from work, and he was to pick me up at the metro station. When i got outside to get in the car, he was there drunk. I thought he was, but wasnt sure, since i didnt see any alcohol with him, but he was, and as soon as he backed out of the parking space, he hit a parked car. When he hit the car, he drove off, starting a high speed chase between us and the car that we hit.Somehow, from all that, he turned it into it being my fault, and was screaming and yelling at me. Now we're dealing with a hit and run case on our hands, and to make things worse, him and his "mother" were trying to get me to go in court and say that we hit the car, but we didnt run! what the fuck?

You would think that with him getting me involved into a hit and run case with MY car would be enough to leave him. But i didnt. I stayed with him. Then about a month later, we're out, and he's kinda drunk, and we're yelling and screaming at each other, he hits me. And i start fighting with him too. Then he decides that when i try to take him home, that he's not gonna leave my car. my cell phone died so i couldnt call anyone, and i didnt want to go to the police, since i know what kind of trouble he's already had with them ( they know him like they know the back of their hands)i didnt want to make it worse. So i had no choice but to get my mom in it. I thought that if i just had her ask him nicely to go home, without telling her what had actually happened, it would be ok. But i had a bruise on my arm, and she saw it, so i told her, when he came back, cuz he had left something in my car, she told him to stay away from me, and damn near went off on him. And once again, i went back to him, about a week later. And i had to BEG HIM to come back! Then on Halloween night, we got into another fight, this time, he was not only pissy drunk, but came knocking on my door after i came home from dropping him off down the street, since he wouldnt just let me take him home, at 1 or 2 in the morning, but then starts banging on the door, yelling obscenities at me, in front of my mom, we had to call his brother to come get him, but that just made it worse. Then he came back to my house about an hour later, and took a brick to my car! he slammed the brick down into the hood of my car, then keyed the back of it. It was so humiliating, and to make matters worse, he denied the whole thing! Then blamed me for all of what happened that night. How manipulative can you be? And once again, eventually, i went back. The pain of not being with him felt worse than any of the stuff he had done to me. I was miserable without him, i cried constantly. Along with all that, i was constantly being grilled about where i was, who i was with, when am i coming home, and accused of sleeping with and having some kind of relationship with one of his ex friends. The accusations started at least a year ago, and he would bring it up randomly,whenever he was drunk. He also would use that opportunity to break up with me, and then call me in the morning and apologize. He would call at all times through the night even though i told him that it wakes my mom up and she needs her rest. he didnt care, and he had this paranoia that everyone was out to get him, which was just a way for him to feel sorry for himself.He had no job, no education, no prospects, no future, all he had was his alcohol, and then me, to give him money from every paycheck that i worked hard for, and my car to take him to whatever probation meeting or pawn shop he needed to go to.

So last night, literally last night, we decided to go and talk, because the past few weeks its just been us at each others throats, and he called me yesterday getting pissed off because i had gone to the mall to take care of some business when i said earlier that i would be going home. I think he was drunk, or high, but anyways, we were arguing, driving around the neighborhood and fighting, all in the car. Eventually, i decided that i was gonna drop him off, and go home. So we're still fighting all the way, until we get to a stop sign. When i stopped, he reached over to my seat and got on top of me and tried to choke me. unbeknownst to us, there was a cop sitting in the corner with his lights off. As soon as he grabbed my throat, he pulled up right in front of us. I was telling the cop that it was ok, its no big deal, but they wouldnt listen, they already knew how he is, and were fed up with him. They arrested him on the spot, and took him in for 2nd degree assault. I went to his parents house, and told them what happened, maybe i shouldnt have now that i think about it. But when i told them, they said that he should stay there for the night, and that it didnt matter, as long as i didnt press charges and that i tell the officers that i was fighting with him too. Then this morning, his mother calls and speaks with my mom, she wants me to go and release him! My mom damn near went crazy on her. Its not like i called the cops on him, but i still feel bad. I've got a lot of mixed emotions right now. I love him so much, and i wish that things were not like they are, but I'm also tired of all this. I'm not someone who causes trouble and acts a fool in the neighborhood, and he has made me out to be one. He's taken away my dignity, my self-respect, and some of my backbone. I dont know why i feel like i owe him something, and why i cant just let go of him, but it feels like something is pulling me back. The last thing he said to me when he was in the police car was "fuck you" and i still want him. Part of me wants him and misses him tremendously, and the other part of me was fed up and tired of his bullshit. But all i can think is that i'm not ever gonna experience being loved by him ever again. I want to cry all the time now, even though it was just last night, i dont know if i'll ever move on.I dont wanna go through the pain of losing him, as odd as it sounds. Why do i feel like this?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2008):

so its obvious that you are so not alone here.

first i do not think this is an obsession! you cared about this guy whether or not you wanted to.

i was sitting here trying to think... cause my ex and i broke up about 2 months ago. we were only together for about a year.. a little less. the first few months were good, but i remember the first time he controlled me. i didnt even know what i was getting myself into. i bought me a $400 purse. he told me to return it. he said that i couldnt afford it and if i didnt return it then he would know what kind of person i was. irresponsible etc. i remember my friend i bought the purse with, was like OMG you want it so keep it. i remember, sitting on the phone crying, for like 4 hours talking to him. man he was lecturing me. i thought it was the end of the world if he left me... THAT is when i handed over my self-respect. when i returned the purse..

i remember i had to prove everything. he was very jealous. very controlling.. and HOW could i not see that? wow. so the first time that he hit me, we were out of town. we drank so much alcohol. i literally dont even remember leaving the bar. what i do remember, is i was laying in our hotel on the couch, and i woke up and the first thing i said was "why does my face hurt" he was holding ice on my right eye, and my left cheek. i open my eyes and hes sitting next to me crying. i dont know if i was knocked out when he hit me or if i was passed out from alcohol. when i asked him what happen, he said that i was kicking him in the face and he just had a reflex. then a woman saw him hit me, and so we had to switch seats cause she was screaming that she was going to call the cops and when we switched seats he said that i started to kick him again and bam another reflex (this is what he told me). well the next day, i forgive him because hell, i dont even remember what happen. how can i be mad, if i dont remember??? the result left me with a black eye, and a swollen jaw, huge bump on my jaw.

k so the 2nd time... in between there have been fights. he didnt like my friend stephanie and when he told me to have her leave my apartment, i told him no and he literally flipped out (he was working in alaska). shes my friend, im not telling her to leave. well so i lied about 2 other people that came over. her boyfriend came over, which happen to be friends with my ex, so he was over too. but he wasnt there for me, we were just all friends! well i never told my boyfriend that until after we broke up. anyways, he held that against me, because i wouldnt tell her to leave. for a very long time. so he comes home from alaska... things ended up being patched up. he lies to me about doing drugs a few times, donesnt come home a NUMBER times, doesnt even bother telling me hes not coming home. i mean.. i would wait up for him!!!!!

well one night, he went out and he said he wasnt coming home so i told him i was going out with some girls frome work. well at 2:30 am hes driving home and hes trying to hunt me down. im with my friend teresa and i make her turn around to meet him, i swear i dont know how i could have been so stupid (i wasnt even drunk!!), well that night i end up getting back into his car, i get in the backseat cause i didnt want to get hit.. well he starts making phone calls to my girlfriends and asks 100 questions. i reached to grab my phone and bam.. he backhands me again. my lip has busted, and blood is everywhere. i actually have stains on my jeans to prove it. i think i cried myself to sleep. he apologized, and he said he thought i was going to hit him and it was reflex.

there were a couple times in between where he would just push me, leave bruises on my arms.

but the 3rd time, is just as memorable as the 2nd. we went to eat dinner, had a few drinks there. i remember we were laying in bed, and my highschool friend stephen calls me. just to say whats up. well my boyfriend starts to ask all these questions and i dont remember what i told him. i think i said that stephen has a thing for me, but we have always just been friends (i shouldnt have said that i know). well he gets on the phone, and starts talking mad shit to stephen. after they get off, my boyfriend is like im leaving fuck this.. well i beg him to stay. im pulling on him, begging him not to leave me and that stephen is just my friend. by God, i have NEVER begged anyone to stay. NEVER EVER EVER. who is this girl??? so anyways, he picks me up and slams me to the ground and starts to choke me!!!! when he lets go, i get up and im yelling "what are you doing to me!!! OMG what is your problem" and he like chucks me across the room on my on the bed and walks off. less than an hour later "we are okay" again and go out.

its so weird.. you know to think back. i dont miss him, as i type this. but before i did. an hour ago i did. but when i talk about what hes done to me, i dont miss him anymore.. i mean ok im not innocent. i have lied to him. i never cheated. he thinks that i did. but i didnt. he cheated on me actually. he lied about doing drugs, and cheating on me. hes brought some ex girlfriend into my apartment, that i paid for. does that compare to lies? oh yeah and he was collecting unemployment for about 6 months, i was paying the bills and working full time. he was too lazy to even leave the effin house. he said he was depressed from hitting me. i did do a few things wrong, i was not perfect but i think i acted out because i was screaming for independence. he had complete control over me, and i handed it to him when i returned my coach purse.

now i understand why he hated my best friend stephanie, because i was myself around her. i had control of myself when i was around her, i made my own choices. but you see he wanted me to make the choices that HE wanted me to make. not what i wanted. gosh he is such a peice of shit. nothing but a waste of time. wow. all the memories and pain are like streaming back now...

one night, after doing meth he had like a raging temper... well by the end of the night his mom called him out and he wanted to walk. he wouldnt get in the car, so i told her to just take me home. well i was just trying to avoid being hit!!!!! so he comes home... he walked the whole way and he is pissed off. he ends up breaking my glass top coffee table, punching a hole in the wall, breaking a huge vase on the counter, tearing the handle off the fridge and shattering my cell phone by throwing it against the wall.

wow that was a crazy night. i remember telling him to get out, and that i was done with him. i took his key back, and ended up giving it back to him the next day. what an idiot i am!!!!

stay away from these kinda guys. i remember when i left him, and cut him off completely he was holding my furniture hostage. i had to file harassment complaints on him just so he'll leave me alone. i think ive called the cops on him about 4 times. bailed him out of jail twice within a year. he is crazy and i remember that now. i am safe though.. i moved back in with my parents,and he hasnt called me since the last complaint i filed. hes tried to contact me, but ive blocked his numbers, i even changed my number and he found it out. he started dating another girl, 3 days after i left him... they are together now 2 months later.. he is so weak he needed to replace me. whatever. hes not my problem anymore!!!! you girls be strong. there is better out there.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2008):

This is a really hard thing to deal with. I don't think my situation is even close to as bad as some of the young girls on here...I'm 29 and I just got out of my first abusive relationship of three years. It started with playing a little too rough, but not one to be bested, I played back.

Because I am drawn to broken, beautiful things, loved him right away. He is attractive, rough around the edges, into great music, a talented chef, funny, charismatic and great with people. He is also needy, emotional, infantile, an over-reactor and an alcoholic. It's stupid, but because I've always felt like someone with emotional pain and I saw that in him, I felt like we were meant to be together. When we met he told me to run away from him, that he wasn't good enough. That just made me angry and more determined to be with him. I began to drink more than I normally did to fit in with his lifestyle.

I don't remember when it went to far, but sometimes when we were drinking and I'd taunt him or say things he didn't like, he'd throw me across the room or push my head onto the ground or the floor. When we were driving and it happened he'd smack me in the head or hit my head onto the dashboard. I usually hit back. Once I broke a bottle over his head. I was far too critical of him and took out my anger with his drinking on his self-esteem. It got to the point where nothing he ever did was good enough. We'd fight, he'd steal the keys to my car and hide them so I couldn't leave. Alcohol is his first problem, so when all this was going on, he was drunk. I'd never hit anyone before him. Whenever I talked to him about it he'd say that I hurt him too. I'd tell him that that was no excuse, that I deserved better and that no matter what, it wasn't o.k. to act like that to me. Sometimes it would be good for a while. Once he broke my nose. I was angry at him about something and he went to bed without talking to me, so I went up there and started hitting him I think because I was hurt and mad that he was ignoring me, I'm not sure. He woke up and with one swift hit, blood was gushing out of my nostrils. Our friends listened to the story the next day and didn't tell me to leave, or tell him he was wrong. It wasn't the worst broken nose ever, it healed on its own and didn't need to be reset. We moved and things were better for a while. But his drinking got in the way of everything in our lives. I started to be unhappy all the time. I was more critical of him. He would tell me I didn't have any friends, that I didn't do anything, that I was hiding from the world, that everyone thought I was wierd. I would tell him that he was a pathetic, worthless mess, a failure at life, incapable of becoming a functioning human being. Through it all, he loved me and told me I was beautiful. He never told me I was ugly or fat, he was always enamoured with me and my body.

I finally left him in August of this year. Then I sliced through a tendon and had to have surgery. He showed up at the hospital and helped me through it. Then he was juvenile and upset about the breakup and left. We started to see more of each other, and even slept together a few times. We felt like we did when we were first in love. I knew that nothing had changed, so I drew away. We went out to dinner a few times after that and then I told him I needed some time away, to really get over him. He didn't like that, but we parted ways and that was that...until he showed up at my house and broke in after I locked him out because he was drunk and belligerent. I felt guilty about it, but my sisters were at the house, and it really bothered them. I couldn't let him just push his way in with them around. So that was it for a while. He apologized eventually and we started to email. Then on Halloween we ran into each other and went home together. It was very nice and I missed him, but I knew that I didn't want him back. A few weeks later, he called me and was having a really rough time at work, finally I caved an went and picked him up and had dinner with him. I dropped him off in town and didn't go home with him.

Of course he says he wants to change and he wants me back, really we don't even talk about the hitting, we just talk about him needing to get his life on track, stop the drinking, get his license back and get into a good place. I never thought I would be this person. I know I have taste that gets me into trouble, but usually not this kind of trouble.

I'm not running back to him, but I think about him all the time. Especially now that we are not seeing each other as much. I check my email everyday hoping to hear from him. Often I do. He keeps telling me that he wants to marry me, wants me back in his life. I obviously don't want that if it means the booze and the rest. So why do I still want him? What is wrong with me? When I read my own writing about what he has done to me, I start to make excuses for him in my head. I know what he did was wrong. I feel like I wronged him too, I was verbally abusive, I harmed his self-esteem. I hit him too, but I don't give that much weight. It was definitely wrong, but he is stronger than me and that was his game. I've been with people that had drinking and drug problems before and I was usually able to be a positive influence in their lives. I don't know why this guy and I were so destructive to each other.Can it ever work? Even if it can, it probably won't with this guy, so why do I still love him so much? I am trying desperately to do the right thing, but the person I am fighting with about it is myself. Why does a part of me have no sense and never ending forgiveness when it comes to him?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 September 2008):

brace urself if u are going to read this, cuz its gonna be a long one. im just trying to get it all out of my system. and after typing all this realize that i am soo much better.

like most girls/ woman, i thought i was the only one going through this shit. my names Kristen, and i am 19 years old about to turn 20. & i have been in an on again off again relationship with my ex boyfriend for the past 5 years. i met him in grade 9. i was 14 years old. and he was also one of my brothers best friends, he was 16 years old. now im almost 20 and hes almost 21. so here it goes.

when i first laid eyes on him i thought he was the sexiest thing i had ever seen. since he was friends with my brother he was at my house like all the time. i knew i wanted to date him. i found out after we started dating that he felt the same way when he first saw me.

so now were dating. but thing is .. its a secret. nobody knows becuz he is my brothers best friend and no one can no or elsee, 1. my brother and all of his friends would freak for dating my brothers little sister.

so we kept our relationship a secret for the first 3-4 months until word got out. and believe me it was so hard to keep it a secret.

so everything was good with us for about the first 8 months. he was the first one who told me he loved me, he would do anything for me, he bought me whatever, whenever. i was so happi. and happi that i met him & that we didn't have to hide our relationship anymore becuz i wanted to show him off.

so around 8 months, came our biggest fight to date. i cant even remember what it was about. i just remember sitting in his car yelling and gettin yelled at and all of a sudden a force again my face. i was in soo much shock. i couldn't even figure what was going on. he was my first real boyfriend and i couldn't believe that just happened. i didn't know what to think. i started balling my eyes out. and of course here comes the saying.

"omg im sooooo sorrryyy, ive never done that before. omg baby, imm sooo sorrryyyy, it will never happen again". & of course i believed him.

yea. stupid on my part. so time goes by, about a month. and boom. here we go again. anohter strike to the face. after that. its just became normal. i knew if i had sed the wrong thing to him or pissed him off in some way and we starting fighting, i knew it would happen again. so agian about another 10 times it happened i forgave him, and let him have his way.

around our one year he bought me a promise ring and told me how much he loved me, and how happi we would be and how everything was going to "change", yea heard that before. well let me tell u. it never did. and it never will. once a man feels he has power over his woman. the girl who loves him and would do anythign for him, and would take him back no matter how bad he has treated u or hit u , he will never change. he loves that power. men loved to feel like they own something. and especially if he was picked on as a kid, or seen his parents doing that. or grown up having that happen to him.

he has hit me so bad. i couldn't even explain. ive had soo many bruises on my arms, legs, face, back, he has literally pull my hair out of my head before, he has thrown me down to the ground and kicked my stomach. a lot of times when we were driving in his car he would drive far from somewhere close. just so i couldn't get out of the car and walk away. cuz i tend to do that when we were fighting. he would grab my head and throw it against his dashboard and start hitting me in the back of my head and back. i wuold be screaming for him to stop and he wouldn't. once again like always. he would apologize and i would hear the same shpeeel. and beleieve it. and i had to lie about it. cuz i didn't want ppl to know he was doing that to me. for his safety and for mine. and by that i mean, if he knew i told ppl i did that, itd be bad.

i cant beleieve i was ever in that relationship. i would cry everyday. i would be sitting at home watching maury or sumthing about abusive men, and i would be thinking. i cant believe i am one of those girls now. i always used to watch those shows and feel sooo bad for those girls. and i never fully understood there pain. but now i now exactly how they feel and maybe even worse. i was physically abused and almost everyday emotionally abused. i would get called names. like bitch, slut, ugly, fat. im none of those things. but i believed them when he sed it to me. i felt like nothing. i hated myself abut i still loved him. i was now in a relationship where i couldn't ge tout of without being afraid.

i have tried to move on. and had a couple of boyfriends in between. (on our off stages). and he would always scare them away. call me 24/7, telling me he loved me and he was so sorry and he wanted me back and how everything would be different. he would show up at my house un announced. he would find out where i was or be at my house when my new boyfriend was dropping me off. and start following us. it was intenseeee. so around the 3rd year. like the 100th time we have called it off. he was soo serious when he told me he never wanted to talk to me again, he hated me, and he was movin on. so i decided to move on. i met this great guy. everything was cool with us & then the second he finds out im happy, hes back to ruin my life. i ended up leaving this new guy to be with the ex again. after all of that shit he had put me through. why????. when at the beginning of the relationship when u fall inlove with that person , u think their amazing and u would do anything for them and making them happy made u feel happy. so somehow, u will always beleieve u love them no matter what and how one day it will work out. so u keep giving them chances cuz u remember how good it was in the beginning and u just want that back. so u take it back.

i wish i never did. i wish i gave it up the very first time he hit me. and im not trying to act all innocent i did hit him back, only after i was already hit. u never have the right to hit someone. but in this case it was self defense.

even after i left that ex to be with him again. i stayed with him for another alomost 2 years coming up. i just talked to him 2 days ago fucked up i knoww trust mee. it just got so intense and "love" got in the way. its so hard to move on. trust me. i want to and i try everyday.

i know im better then him, i know i do not deserve what he has done to me. my self esteem just got totally erased after being with him. and its really hard for me now to except compliments or look at myself in the mirror and feel "pretty". but im doign it. im gettin better. im starting to find myself again after all of that. and believe that i can be independent and i dont need him. he's a peice of shit and he knows it. throughout of whole relationship i was always blamed. for everything. and it was bullshit. things i was being blamed for made no sense at all. but after having no self esteem left and feeling like nothing. u start to believe his lies. and believe that maybe u did cuz this or that fight. and its stupid. my friends and family have told me to get aeway from him. and i am trying really hard to just forget him and move on. i know its really hard. he was my first love. but dont give up. u were fine before u met him. u can be fine now without him. ddont think that thats the only "love" u will ever find, becuz its not. there is great men out there. men who can treat u with respect and love you for who u r. trust me i had one. and i regret letting him go for that jerk off.

dont ever let a man treat u the way i was treated. it is not worth it. u will become depressed, feel like shit everyday, have no self esteem left over. hes not worth ur tears u cry, its not worht it for ur health and ur mentality. get out. the second u start seeing warning signs to an upcoming abusive relationship, get the fuck out. im telling u. becuz it only gets worse. and its a constant cycle until u end it.

warning signs :

he gets jealous so easily. over u even talking to a guy friend

he wants to spend ever second with you of every day

he looks through ur cell phone, just cuz.

he calls u every 15 min when ur out with ur girls

he hits u for the first time (definatly get out)

little things u will be able to notice. and if shit starts feeling weird. and he starts acting obsessive and or controlling. leave him. even if u can never picture him hitting u. trust me it will come. and u will regret not gettin out while u can. just do it. for ur safety. please.

i wish i did. and i hope readin this for most girls who havn't been in an abusive relationship helps.

thansk for taking the time to read my story, and beleieve me thats not even close to half of it. i just wanted you to read a brief part of it to understand that its no joke. and it can be prevented. good luck to all u girls in the future with ur relationships and i hope none of u have to go through it. or go through it again.

Kristen.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 August 2008):

Hi, This is too the fifteen year old who still talks to her abuser. Honey, dont. It's a bad idea, and I can see that you know it. What makes him so special? Im also 15 so dont think that i couldnt understand. It's been 6 months since i broke up with a boy that i met almost a year ago in school. he was a jerk, arrogant, but i was in love with him for 5 months, and i thought he was one of my best friends. however much love i gave him, i never got anything back, he was just, i dont even know how to describe it. So finally I asked him out, and he said sure. However all I got used for was his manly show prize. He wasnt popular, I am, but i thought he was nice, and just quiet. however suddenly I became the thing that was his way to popularitty. he would make out with me in the halls where the more popular guys would hang out. and tell them that there was more going on then there was. He didnt get me anything for valentines day, accept getting up my shirt. And I cried the whole bus ride home. He would give me hickeys where everyone could see them, like he was marking his teritory almost. It was horrible. I brokeit off with him, but after he still kept asking my friends if i was going out with one of my other guy friends (who rightfully hated my x) and when i went to tell him to leave me alone and bud out of my buossness, he told me he could still "keep tabs" on me, if he wanted to. Thank god he moved away. I had to change my screen name and everything to avoid his "tab keeping" . It was horrible, and while I know that I shouldnt, I still think about the things we would do together when ever i see something that makes me think of him. But please. Dont put yourself in the situation for abuse, it's not a good place to be. I know my story isnt anything like some of the other womens on here, and to them I wish them nothing but safety, and that they will be surrounded by people they can trust. And most importantly strength.

- Lou

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 August 2008):

all the drama keeps you wrapped up. fear and love are easily confused. they feel alot alike. be strong, and you already know your better off. keep your head up.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 August 2008):

I am 13 years old and this is my first real boyfriend with my luck i was in an abusive relationship. Lets call him will. Me and him met in my seventh grade year. At first he and his friends were in almost every class i had. He seemed like a nice guy but i never talked to him. Evanutually my friend lets call her sara ended up liking his friend. we would stare at him angd giggle like 5 year olds. Now me and wills friend ended up being close and i started to hang wit will almost everyday. We eventually ended up going out this was the first time and we went out for awhile till about a three weeks wen i founded he had cheated on me. He called me a slut if i cried or said i was hurt. He told me i deserved all the hurt. I took him back and the absuse happened just before i went on this trip to washingto n d.c. he would call my phone and text me the whole night with his friend jess. I got dumped just before this trip because i went sara's house and me and another guy danced wit each other. The day i got back from this trip he called and yelled at me the whole time. I was hurt so bad that i was numb. He would calll me a slut at school and make me cry. I asked him to take me back and he said i was a " whore who was whorthless and never gonna be loved by anyone" even after this i begged for him to take me back. I stopped begging he evantually asked me out again and i was excited. But the truth was the only reason he ever loved me was because he "fingered me" and we had phone sex almost every day. In my mind i was a slut for this. Im now healing and sometimes its easier sometimes its harder. Now i have a new boyfriend and he isnt abusive and he is helping me smile and bulid up wat will crushed and hurt. Everyone remembers their first love but ill remember mine a lil different. I guess i do deserve better then him and i can finally beleive that. Being only thirteen proves that even wen me and him are 20 he wont change. It also says that its not only in adults its in middle school elemetry school its everywhere. Im hoping this helps for others girls hope and healing to be better. Love

Kitty :) (You will be ok)

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (28 July 2008):

I miss him so much I cry at night. Sometimes it is hard for me to get through my day. I have to remind myself that I am not stupid, ugly or unworthy.

I was in a abusive relationshi off and on for 6 years. Like so many of you, it did not start out that way, in fact I would say the 1sy 2 years well pretty o.k. Then our arguments became so much more. It started with verbal abusive and just got worse as teh fight progressed. I would confront him with lies and he would get mad at me for actually confronting him, like how dare I question him. He would get mad because I would not accept his lies and his abusive way.

I became always to blame for all the problems in the relationship, every argument. I was to blame for his foul moods. I just didn't know how to "accept him" how he was so I really didn't love hime. He would get mad at me because I asked for basic respect.

He would say how much he loved me, I would believe him and at the same time ask him, if he loved me so why do I have to beg for respect? I would tell him I didn'y feel loved, he would get mad and say well, if that's how you feel, leave, why are you here. That still makes me feel bad b/c I should have left a long time ago.

He had no problem humiliating me in front of his friends, his family. He cheated on me several times and bragged about it to friends, he brought these women around his fiends while I was at work. He would bring these women to his father's house. Then when I would catch him, he would get made at me for being mad at him. he was never sorry for what he did, just sorry he got caught. I believed his sorry b/c I wanted to.

He has kicked me out of his car, reached over me opened the door, raised his leg and kicked me out while I had my seat belt on. He has tried to hold me captive in my own house. I got in a fight with him soo bad, it ended with me in the ER getting 11 sticthes in my hand for the 1st time in my life. He has gotten me fired from my job ( around year 4). he has left me stranded, abandoned me, hung up in my face countless times, calles me all types of crazy bitches when I confront him with lies ....which by the way he never admits the truth...he has slapped food out my mouth, knocked cups out my had, chocked me, pushed me down when my back was turned and you would think that would hurt the most but it is not.

what hurt the most was his constantly putting everything over me. The knowing that my love for him was NEVER enough. Knowing that I gave him everything I had to give and it just was not enough for him. I was waiting for him to wake up and love mr back and be my friend. i dont know what he got out of it.

i called the police on him and got him arrested 4 times. i went back each time. I in a sick way missed him so mmuch and then it would be goood for about 4 months before we were back at it.

I am trying to get over him. I have moved but he knows were I live. I have changed my phone number twice. i have an active restaining order against him.

The sickest part is the 1st sentence. I still cry at night. I gave him something, my love, and he basically shit on it. He made me feel worthless in so many ways. He is a liar and a munipulator.

I have to live with the fact that I am hurting everyday, missing him everyday when I know he is not even thinking about me. He has moved on with his life to the next gurl or the girl he always had and I still wake up in the night with tears in my eyes over a boy ( Ido not call him a man) who is ok everyday. He is somewere laughing, having fun continuing on with his life. He has comforted ihmself with blaming me even still.

It's hard. Idon't know why women stay or why you have the conflicting feelings, you just do. i dont know how long it takes to get over. i can tell you that it is normal for your situation but it doesn't mean that you go back, if yo miss him or still care for him. it just means that your feelings WERE real and that is nothing to be ashamed or stressed about.

and i can tell you, you don't miss him, you just miss having some one around. because there is nothing he can do for you that someone else can't. And then you have to absolve to the fact that, sometimes it is better to just be alone that with someone that makes you even feel like less of yourself.

Something my mom told me, I will share.

Love is an verb, it is an action, not a word you say. You can show a person you love them and have that person feel like the most loved person in the word without saying a word.

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A female reader, mirsor14 United States +, writes (19 July 2008):

i know exactly how you feel and what you are going through. i broke up with my bf after 2 and a half years. at first he was amazing but after the first year we started to fall apart. he would hit me, manipulate me and other people, tell lies, cheat. it was always okay for him to hang otu, party with other girls and take off without me but it wasnt okay for me. and i recently found out that the girl he cheated on me with had their baby. and he still denies that the kid is his! he makes me sick! knowing what he's doing and it doesnt bother him in anyway. i still find myself crying over him and remembering the good times but we cant think like that. we are giving them the control over our emotions. thats what guys like them want. we have to really think of all the pain and hurt they caused us and realize thats who they really are. they wont change. it is hard, very hard, but i try to remember the bad that way i dont care. we deserve better than that. i try to go out and just get my mind off of it and do things to occupy me. but just know it will pass and what doesnt kill you only makes you stronger. dont let him have the power.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (30 June 2008):

You are falling for an abuser - you are caught up in the grooming tactics of an abusive person – stay with him and you will see what I mean! All you have to do is accept the behaviour and you will be a victim, Narcissistic people don't "love" themselves. He only knows control and cant love - he will drain you, if you don’t understand Co-dependency its time you read up on it. Dangerous people these manipulators, move on and find love, he wants to own you. He keeping moving the goal post, blaming, manipulating and dominating with grooming skills that only an abuser can forge

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A reader, anonymous, writes (26 June 2008):

We met at school and I was extremely attracted to him he was so nice in the beggining of the relationship, taking me out calling me all the time and buying my stuff.

Our first fight was because i was shy around my friends when i was with him because he was basically my first realy bf and of coarse my friends teased me. He then ignored me(which was during a pep rally) he put his hood on and fingered me while i was standing at the door.I was so sad that I cried and walked to the train. He then called me and begged for me to come back and he was scared i was gonna leave him. So i went back and we fought and yelled and i asked him to forgive me.

We made up (6 months later he told me the night before he got drunk because he was so in love and i "hurt" him)after that we had the honeymoon stage, and the abusive cycle. He was manipulative and always demanded things from me.He said he slept with 6 girls before me. so I didnt have to be worried about giving my virginity to him because he was experienced. I then found out 13 months into the relationship that i was really his first.

I got my first job and had to work on a day that he "wanted to be with me" and he got so mad that he said fuck you leave me alone.The next day at school he ignored me and "went with his friends" and I begged and screamed and cried for him to see me and he then said no.. you dont care about me.. you went to work. its over.

And then I called him a million times and we met up and he said that he hooked up with a girl from his work the day before when i was at work. I was shocked but I forgave him right away then we went to his house and had make up sex.

Then a month later we had a fight and I scratched my wrist not to cause any harm but to get his attention. It worked very well but then he swore and showed his true colors and he called me a stupid bitch and then said sorry after that. But we had other fights and I did it again then he started hurting himself as well to get attention too. Then he started to swear more at me and that escalated into him slapping or hitting me when we had other arguements. Some one even reported him to the police when they saw him trying to kick me. But I lied to the police and said he never hits me.

From then on he was careful no one saw him when he was hitting me. He hits me even if I "raise my voice" even when I don't think I'm being loud at all. He spits on me and even demands "come over here I'm going to punch you on the head" and when I go over he punches me. He also forced me to quit my job. But I got a new one and was careful not to tell him about anyone joking around with me or anything.

I gave him presents for our First Anniversay of when we started going out and also his birthday but he didn't get me anything on my birthday or our anniversary or even Christmas. I got fed up with him and broke up and started seeing another gy, but my bf kept absuing me and threatening me and then eventually convinced me that he had learned his lesson and had changed and things will be ok if we give it another chance. But he was soon back to his old ways using the the fact that I had been with some one else to abuse me more than ever.

He was the same abusive controlling guy. If i told him he was abusive or controlling he would deny it and get mad at me for it. Everyone around me, my bestfriend, my friends, my co-workers, my teachers even my own parents were telling me to leave him. I just cant take it anymore. I'm not allowed to talk to my friends anymore because they keep telling me what to do. But only because it is the right thing to do. I have to lie if I want to see my bestfriend. I turn off my phone and say its dead. this was yesterday.. i then called him when i got home and he kept hanging up on me over and over again.

I think I literally called 50 times. I then said to myself this is enough I cant do this anymore I cant play these games, is this what he calls controlling his anger? I know deep in my heart all I did through the whole relationship was try and please him and not anger him and if he hurt me I made myself believe I deserved it. He doesnt even deserve a proper breakup I'm just gonna ignore him forever, and no, this is not our first break up, its probably our 9th now.

But this time I'm not gonna say its over and see his crying act or put up with him swearing at me and saying; "I dont care I dont love you". I'm just gonna stay away from him and talk to my friends again and do what I want with MY life, not live my life for him.

I dont know if this answers your question but whatever you're going through I promise you this; there' no one out there who hasn' survived it, or going through it right now. Time will heal and one big tip;dont fall for his guilt trips and DO NOT GO BACK. Anyone is better than an abuser.

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A female reader, Wisewoman44 United States +, writes (13 May 2008):

I was in an abusive relationship for about one year and left ten times and finally for the last time this past December 2007 and relocated to a new state to begin a new life. My life is much happier since I left, but I am still grieving.

I understand your issues regarding your conflicting feelings about your ex. I have begun to recover one day at a time and have so many mixed emotions. I still can't believe I got the courage and strength to relocated and really leave him. I love/loved him and even though he abused me, I still think of him and the good times. The relationship was bad, but not all bad. It is normal to feel conflicting feelings, even though it is perplexing to others not in the same situation.

I try to let my feelings out and write and just expereince them even thought it is very hard. I am also attending a domestic violence/abusive relationship support group. To this day, I still miss him even though a lot of days I can't stand him. I cannot ever go back to that abusive relationship. My biggest feeling is guilt about leaving without telling him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 May 2008):

Dear Reader,

I'm 19 now but 2 years ago my junior year in high school I was in an abusive relationship. It only lasted 8 months because thats about the time he started changing and I broke up with him. Its like he had split personality or something, one day he would buy me flowers and be so sweet the next day he hit me just because I "made him mad." I thought about putting a restraing order on him but at the time I was so scared I've never delt with anything like that before so I just kept quite about it and now me and him don't talk which is good. He was also a year older than me at the time which made it a bit intemidating for me when things started changing. I still think about him too but I think its only because everyone thinks about their first boyfriends, I am so glad I am out of that relationship. I am so much happier now, I just wish he could spend his time for hitting me and I know he hit his other ex's too, but I think its too late for a restraining order.

-much happier now

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 May 2008):

Hi,

I'm 38 and just got out of an abusive relationship 3 days ago, which lasted 2 and a half years... And just like all of you, I did this at LEAST 10 times. I'm hoping this time is the last. I'm still asking myself why in God's name do I miss him?!? And now I have my answer, thanks to all of you.

Just like you, this guy was a dream. But I also let go of the HUGE red flag sent when I met him. We met through friends. We spoke on the phone for two weeks before I agreed to go out on a date with him. When we set the date, he called to make the plan while I was at work. Now keep in mind I saw him once and we just spoke on the phone. Well I told him I would meet him at this lounge with my girlfriend, at around 1 am, as my friend was working. He responded by saying: " why? you have another date before me??" THAT, was my red flag. I spoke about it to one of my co-workers, who is a psychologist, and she encouraged me to go, saying he was probably nervous. But I should have listened to my gut. I didn't. BIG MISTAKE....

The first three months, we were in our little happy bubble, spending every minute with eachother. Another red flag: he was saying how he loved me and found his wife... After three months... But I was so blissfully happy, I fell for it. I wanted a stable family for myself and my daughter (from a previous ABUSIVE marriage, YEP! pattern!!)

The first abusive incident was during an outing with friends, I was with my friends, him with his. We met up afterwards and he accused me of cheating on him for no reason. I got upset and called him on it, as I do have a character and do not appreciate being accused for no good reason. Well, he spit in my face... I was in total shock. I couldn't beleive he did that. But after the anger passed, I escused it, saying he was angry and reacted. I would never do that, but I escused it anyway.

After that came the name calling: bitch whore slut, etc... Well I fought back with some of my own.

Fast forward and he cheats on me with a friend of mine, THAT HE MET AT MY HOME. Yep, worst feeling ever. Yet, I loved him so much, I forgave that too.

I started getting some self help books, that'S where I realized HELLO?!? You are in a bad situation, but love and my need to help him left me there.

SO I told him here are my boundaries, cross them and it'S over. Of course, he crossed them a couple of times before I finally told him enough is enough. The last straw was when I found another woman's phone number in his phone. I asked him who she was. He told me this crazy story, thinking I was going to be stupid enough to beleive it. Well I asked him to prove the story: call her up, put it on speaker phone, so I can hear. I needed to see for myself. He pulled a major fit, grabbed me by the hair to make me listen. That is when I calmly asked him to leave.

So ladies, please listen to those red flags!!!

Take care

XXX

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 April 2008):

omg I feel your pain so much. It so hard to go through this and not have anyone else around me who has been in this situation. I have been in a relationship for 1.5 years, but have been pushed brusied, called trash for having a cigarette, and even had a beer can throw at my face infront of people. I have been through so much, and have called it quits but i still love him for osme reason and hope he will get better. But i know that by me staying with him, i am enabling him to be abusive. I need to and so do you, leave him alone and move on. Its so hard, and I think about him everyday, we have broken up atleast 4 times and something always happens, and its usually worse then the thing before.

I fear my safety and am thankful I am not married or have childrem with him, because mine, and your situation could be a hell of alot worse.

I wish you the best. And pray for myself to stay strong.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (25 March 2008):

i just wanted to say how glad i am that i read the stories posted here. The woman who abused me is in the process of moving her stuff out, and i was struggling as to tell her not to go.

I first got inolved with my now ex partner about 3 years ago. She had been in a long term relationship with his other guy, who abused her badly. He would hit her, put her down, even rape her. I guess i was sort of her knight in shining armour. i would sit and talk to her long into the night, telling her that everything would be ok, that she would find someone else who would treat her like the amazing person she was. Feelings grew and she finally worked up the courage to leave him, and we got together.

At the time i thought that she was everything, she was funny, fun to be around, attractive, everything i was looking for. I completely doted upon her. I wouldve given her the whole world.

After maybe a year and a half the cracks began to show.She would have me take her out shopping, spend stupid amounts of money on clothes, and then return them and keep the money. I'd take her away for weekends away and she would be moody the whole time and ruin the time we spent together, no matter how had i tried. At the time i thought she was high maintainance, but i was blinded by love for her.

about 6 months ago we moved in together, bought a house together, and i thought that this was it, this was me set for life, and i was blissfully happy. It all went downhill from there.

My friends would come round an be thrown out by her, and then id be made to choose betwen her and them, She would monitor my phone to see what i had sent and recieved. I'd go out with friends and be accused of cheating.

I'd be put down terribly, told i was nothing, that i ws a pathetic waste of space that would never amount to anything no matter how hard i tried. I was told that my friends all hated me behind my back and told her they thought i was a liar and that i made stuff up all the time (im guessing mostly so i wouldnt say anything about the abuse to anyone) I act in plays, and shed come along and tell me how awful i was, crushing my confidence.

i have been physically attacked 3 times, when she was at her worst. Each time i was left with deep scarring, but couldnt touch her back. I was raised never to hurt a woman, and i'd never harm someone weaker than me. my biggest scar i got from opening the washing machine and putting my stuff in the empty machine, because she was planning on using it later. I'd ben locked out of the house before, "so she'd have peace to watch her tv shows"

sex was also a really bad aspect. It was used on her terms, and only given when for example she got her own way and i wouldnt go out with my friends to spend time with her. I was told that i was useless during sex, and ridiculed throughout.

i finally mustered the courage to throw her out. and she's leaving tomorrow. The way i see it is the day you cry yourself to sleep is the day youve gotta take some kinda action.

The reason i posted this story is partly because i feel mens abuse should be admitted to more, and men shouldnt feel demasculated because of the actions of a psycho. i also posted it to plead with victims of abuse that they shouldnt eep themselves closed in future relationships for fear thatit'll happen again, but to find someone kind, and to open up to them. AND remember, no one deserves to go through what victims of abuse go through, so learn from things and move on.

and if you dont have enough courage to leave them, id advise cleaning the toilet with their toothbrush :)

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 March 2008):

I too am experiencing something like this. I am 22 years old, and have/had been with a man for 7 years, we were highschool sweethearts. off and on we would hit eachother, when he woudl hit me and woudl sure as hell hit him back! Iam 4'10 and 90lbs and I have a chronic illness so i work out of the home. he is 5'9 or 5'11 and 160-some lbs. i am small but i can be very feisty, so i never thought this was an issue, being hit, i mean. i always pitied women that were in that kind of relation ship and told myself "man, i am so glad i found the love of my life early on." i felt so comfortable where i was at. but i jsut turned 22 a few days ago.

on my birthday--he didn't get me anything because i told him just being with him was fun enough. and... it usually is. he seemed grumpy that day, and later after we did a few shots of gin (not totally wasted) he hit me, i hit him back, grabbed his shoudlers and told him never to touch me liek that again, then, suddenly I was on the floor. my ears were ringing, my whole skull hurt. it took me a long while to realize that there was blood coming out of my mouth and down my face. I hae worked as a petit model, and now.... he broke the teeth out of my head, my lip was split open and bleeding, my nose was broken, and he gave me a concussion.

for the next few hours he got me ice for my face and kept telling me this has never happened before, he was sorry ect (and everyone knows of him as such a sweet kind man. he is chubby and rather small-boned and soft spoken, so not even his friends thinks he has a violent steak in him). I was drifting in and out of consciousness, I kept asking him if my eye was bleeding, because there was so muhc blood everywhere.

i told my mom i slipped on the ice. it's Minnesota in the wintertime, and she beleived me. I had ot get dental work done, cost a grand or so. but the worst pain is that my best friend would hurt me so badly ot leave me disfigured. we wanted ot have babies together. because I am so ill most of the tie, he is THE ONLY friend I have (we also live in an isolated part of Minnesota).

so that was my birthday present. i got my skull broken by this asshole, but i still remmber all the laughs we had together and all the memories and times of loving and tell myself "It's not that bad--he usually is such a gentle guy. everyone knows that". but then again, I ask myself when will i be hurt badly enoguh that i finally leave him? whaen is it enoguh for me? do i have ot finally die or have him hurt me if i was pregnant before i can stand up for myself?

i am so glad I found this site. that mixture of broken hearts and anguish is soemthing that these women here can identify with. i wish there was a self help group i could go to.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 March 2008):

hi its been a week and a half since my ex boyfriend moved out of my house. which is what i wanted him to do. im a 37 year old who is mentally drained from this man and his empty promises! He lived in my house free for a year and never had a job! we dated off and on for four years. i was married when we meet and ended up getting divorced, but he was such a great guy and totally beautiful! i was so physically attracted to him and thats how it all started. our relationship was so intense from the beginning, i felt like i was in a dream land when we were together, like a euphoria. The sex was like something ive never experinced before, we were so connected on every level, thats how he sucked me in and drained the life out of me. he was very mentally and verbaly abusive, he would say the worst things to me, that i had cellulite on my ass, my teeth are yellow, just anything to hurt me and lower my self esteem and iam in great shape, i workout five days a week. i would tell him, thank god i do have a lil self esteem bcuz if i didnt i wouldve killed myself by now! He would get mad and baracade me in the bathroom bcuz i didnt want to fight with him. hes cheated on me and promises hes changed and will never do it again, bullshit you do it once youll do it again. He called the police on me bcuz i threw a remote at him bcuz he had the nerve to bring up one of the girls he had sex with. He told me while he dialed 911 say goodbye to ur kids and proceeded to tell the dispatcher that he has been assulted, mind u he is a bodybuilder six foot 230 pounds and i assulted him? he would call me so many names, bitch was his favorite, and i got so used to it that it didnt even bug me anymore. I feel like my head is so f**ked up! I just need to get him outta my life for good, i saw him at the gym today and i havent contacted him since he left. It was very hard to stay strong but i did it, even after his im sorrys and his tears. i just cant fall for it anymore. It feels really good to share my feelings and i hope it inspires sumone else.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (28 February 2008):

I know how all of you feel. I just broke up with someone yesterday. He is currently in jail because he took my car against my wishes, hit another car, and got out and ran. He was drunk and is an alcoholic. Throughout our relationship he would always put me down and make me well aware of my flaws, while never looking at his own. He too showed up at my job and made a complete fool of me. He always had alcohol as a crutch and excuse. To make matters worse, he claims to never remember what he does when he is drunk. He always appologizes me afterwards and worships me. However, it got to the point where the bad outweighed the good. He has gotten physical with me before and because he is very strong I have always had a fear of him. I have gotten attached to his family- but I am now ready to let go of everything. I think I was in love with who he could be- not who is really is. Just like all of you he swept me off of my feet, but that was just a game.

I am working hard to become an attorney and to allow a man to put me down the way he has makes me question myself. I think all of us need to see the pattern we get into. There are men who will not abuse us and if we can recognize our self worth perhaps we will never make this mistake again. It is hard to love so much, just to get hate in return. Whatever these men tell you- they are lying. This is not love. They will find someone else to prey on once you let them go. Be strong and have faith in yourself.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (30 December 2007):

Honey, I know exactly what you're going through. Believe it or not, I'm only thirteen years old, and I'm still striving to get over my abusive ex. No one really knows about the bad parts of our relationship, just my best friend and my cousin, but it gets harder and harder every day. I don't even like to leave my home because I am afraid of running into him.

You may think that I'm young and have no idea what I'm talking about, but I know what it's like to feel like you're choking and cannot breathe when you remember hitting the cold floor. I tremble in his presence and shake uncontrolably if he acknowledges me.

But it will get better if you have a breakup buddy. My cousin, Jake, and my best friend, Keshia, are my breakup buddies and they work wonders. When I have it rough, I have my breakup buddy by my side and everything's better.

Maybe you should get a breakup buddy of your own?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 December 2007):

Reading your letter was like reliving me life again on screen. I went out with my ex for 4 years and it was quite emotionally volatile. he was so possessive and couldn't allow me the space to spend any time with any of my mates or family, and even got upset when i went to work or uni. when i realised that i couldn't take the pressures anymore i left him and it was so hard. i still saw him occassionally, however, in between i realized again that it was not a healthy relationship and had to cut it off. As he continued to follow me and wait for me outside my place with flowers as if nothing had happened, i had to get a restraining order and it was so difficult. but now, nearly a year later, i still think about him more than ever, and wonder what would have been if i had stayed, but realize that it would have only got worse with the prospects or marriage and children with him. i don't know if i think that i can't do better than him or that we spent so much time intimately together, but just knowing that it was so bad that i had to walk away makes me realize that it really was as bad as i thought it was. Maybe there is noone else out there for me, but at least i'm free and get to be myself without pain afflicted from the one person who you beleive loves me. he just loved himself.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 November 2007):

As I was reading your story, the last question really stuck out to me is it love or obsession?? I think the fact that you were intimate with him and loved him and gave so much of yourself is why you don't want to see him with anyone else. I am in the proccess of trying to get over an abusive relationship myself, and I have to fight so hard to stop going to see him and wanting him to call me or just hear his voice, we live apart now and I have a restraining order. But with everything he has done I still remember the good times. That is what makes it hard to move on. While I was in the relationship I and being abused I didn't think straight or rationally. After it would happen I would say to myself "what can i do differently so he doesn't put his hands on me again", sounds nuts right? Anyway thinking how things were before they turned bad, kept with him willing to try and work it out, but things only got worse, and when I realized they were not going to get any better..I left him...the hardest thing that I have ever done. He claims he is getting counseling now, but I know I could never be with him again. Anyway I don't think it is obsession. It is just hard to let go. You can't stop or control what your heart feels, and if it hurts you to see him with someone else that is perfectly normal because of what you too have shared. However, you can control how you act on those feelings. Good luck to you

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (10 November 2007):

just because you had to split with this sick ex off yours doesnt mean u didnt love him! thats what you are missing. and there is nothing wrong with that but im glad u remember why u split. he obviously hasnt changed he is still trying to control your encounters as the scene in the bar shows. as with all things time heals.so try focusing on the positive things in your life at present. well done for wising up and stay strong.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (28 October 2007):

Hi, I am a 33yr old woman with 2 children. One 9yr old boy to a previous non-abusive relationship and a 3yr old daughter to a man who i am presently finishing up with bcos of emotiotional and mental abuse & who ive been with off and on for about 6 yrs We met on a dating ph line. I got talking to one guy who i thought sounded really nice. I was over the moon! He was hesitant about meeting up with me but he did and the animal attraction was instant. (

I couldn't resist him and thought about him all the time.

He started coming over frequently and i blindly thought we were an item and there was no-one else in the picture on either side. I was wrong. He casually told me in bed one day about an incident with another woman. Natually we had an argument about it and i threw him out. I tried to forget about him but couldn't there was just too much of a connection. After 3 months of trying to forget him i contacted him again. I had moved house and thought that we could put it all behind us and move on.

He sounded keen on seeing me again but when i asked, he said he had been seeing someone else since the last time i saw him but they had finished. So we met up and again I had the same feelings as before. I thought nothing could match it and thought he would be thinking the same and surely there would be no room for anyone else. Surprise surprise! He was checking his messages from my ph one day and i asked if i could use the ph, he hadnt hung up properly & Instinctively suspicious i checked his messages and heard the voice of a female telling him she was free that night. I was dissapointed and talked it over with him. He said she was just a reply from the ph line & he didnt know her! I wanted to believe him. I was just desperate to get on with it and make him realise i was the one he wanted and he would soon learn thats what he wanted too.

The next thing i know he wasnt taking my calls. When i did call he was teling me he wanted to nip it in the bud and finish up! I just couldnt believe it and when he handed the ph to his friends i started asking why he wasnt talking to me. That was to be something he would use against me from then on. To him the fact that I was talking to his friends that one time, meant that i had got their ph number & had started sleeping with them! Nuts! (I had never met them!)

He arranged for one of his friends to start making bogus calls & started saying he got my number off the ph dating line.

I just went with it and wanted to talk to any man to help me forget what was happening in the hope that i would get over it all. Well he was bogus and gave me a fake address and that was that. I didnt care. I was just starry eyed about my abuser and it was all i could think about.

Time went on and i managed to pursuade my abuser to come and see me again. For a while things seemingly were ok and he was comming over often. I moved house again so my son could go to a good area to start school and to be closer to my abuser. Because it was in a more convienient location for him, he started to visit more often and basically started to live with me & my son. We started doing lots of things together like going to the pools and renting videos but something was always amiss. i could never really figure out what he was doing with his spare time. But he always kept me in the dark. He always used the fact that i had chatted up his friends as the reason i could never met them. so i was never invited out with him as i was flirtatious and not normal (as he would put it). He also used the fact that in my teens i dabbled in prostitution. I believed him and started to think of myself as someone who wasnt worthy of his glorious self because i was a slut. He asked me if i trusted my self and really started getting into my head. Things started getting all too much quite fast. I tried to better myself and got a job as a saleswoman he started calling me right in the middle of my sales pitch and asked what i was doing, when i had told him numberous times i couldnt take calls unless i was on lunch & i would call him. But if my ph was switched off he would start accusing me. He made it impossible & made me feel like i was out slutting around if i wasnt taking his calls. I felt doomed. Same thing when i was doing a computer course & he told me he doubted i was there as he reckoned i was just out having an affair! I started a job as a telemarketer as that was all i felt capable of doing but still wanted to get out amongst people to feel better about myself. I remember i was on my way to work one day on the motorway & not knowing where he was the night before rang him to see where he was. I ended up in tears wen he started telling me i was sleeping with his friends again and ended up taking the off ramp & went home an emotional wreck! I was constantly wondering where he was and with who. I had stopped concentrating on my son & the school he had just started attending. Then i found out i was pregnant. I was so happy i thought that once and for all this would make me the most important thing in his life and he would concentrate on me for a change. So i gleefully told him. This was something i knew he wasnt going to get out of for life! We had a child something that belonged to us both 4 ever! All i got was a hateful remark and 'who's is it?' Thats when i really went cold. That was a real gob smacker.

I thought he needed time to let it process so i backed off a bit and carried on with organising things for the baby. Knowing he would eventually come round. One day his brother & sister turned up and i felt like I could announce the happy news & start gettin things a bit more on a happier family note. But when they had left he asked me why i had told them & suggested that i was trying to tell his brother it was his!!! Sick. Omg.

Things wernt improving. I was getting really curious about his hatefulness and one day started snooping through his ph to see what he really did with his world. I shouldnt have been surprised to find not one but two girls messages on his mob ph.

Athough i was trying to create my family dream, I threw him out. I was trying to convince myself that I was ok and that he would be sorry if i ignored him again for awhile. But more punishment was to come.

After i was accused of throwing him out to pursue some aledged affairs (with all his friends!), he proceeded to tell me (when i asked) that he had seen another girl 3 x or so in the three weeks since i threw him out. His punishment tacktics.

This was a REAL blow. i howled my eyes out. This was my man! He was out sharing what i thought was our love with someone else! I was in mourning for days. i was a mess. I think my friends got sick of hearing about it. They could see that i was caught up in something that wasnt good. But there was little they could do. I just wasnt the same anymore. I wasnt happy or settled. I was totlally roped into this nightmare. And my son had begun to suffer. He wasnt doing well at school & through the truama of it all i had mentally seperated from him & couldnt put my energy into fixing things.(Selfish as that seems) I thought it would be a temporary blunder and we would get through.

Bacically at this stage i was moping around all day on edge, depressed and pregnant. Not knowing which way to turn. My mother called often but all i had was misery to talk about.

I couldnt go anywhere or do anything because everywhere i went & whoever i talked to,I was apparently having affairs! I felt i had to explain my moves during the day and validate them incase he somehow found out. I began to get a concience about the smallest things (eg: looking at anyone else) Once i was at the shopping mall and he told me he'd meet me in the car park. When i did he asked me who i was at the mall with. I told him i was with myself and he threw his beer in my face saying it was bullshit and that i was having an affair!!!! We had many arguements like this. Where i would just get out of the car after screaming at him i wasnt having any bloody affairs with his friends or anyone and start walking home. He would drive up next to me and tell me to get back in. I couldnt stand him but i was pregnant and eventually gave in & got in the car. He made me feel guilty for the slightlest things like whether or not i had caller id on my ph so that i would know when his friends were calling and said the message i left on my answerphone was slutty (sugessting i was leaving my contact details & mobile number as an invitation for affairs! Omg.

Well my pregnancy was progressing and one night i woke (by myself) to find i was feeling a bit odd. I was in labour. Great the time i was meant to be having my big day, i was all alone with my son in labour. I called my friend at 7am to tell her and lit up a cigerette. I called my mother who lived 6 hrs away, sent my son to school & continued with the pains. I managed to get in contact with him after much anxiety about trying to get someone to contact his friends to tell him i was in labour. He was pissed & didnt know what that meant. So the midwife had to explain i was having the baby. Duh!!! he arrived half way through & explained he was hardly in a state to drive there. When she was born he was acting all fatherly & congratulating other fathers in the same ward like he was an big time daddy.

But i could still sense his restlessness never the less. i wept some 'post natal tears' to one of the nurses & she was all ears so that was something.

I guess he 'went out of his way' to help look after my son with my mother in the week i was in hospital. I was holding on to any hope of family committment i could get.

the months passed. My every move was not so much scrutinised, but gave way to what i was doing wrong with the baby every five minutes to the point where i felt he was almost the one with breasts! Omg.

I had lost my motherly title and felt like a rag in the corner (used when nessessary)

We moved house.I did it all on my own. He never helped. the police were there the second night i moved in bcos he came home drunk accusing me of the same old thing in front of the kids. He was always out. Came home for a breather then went back out into the world i never saw. Was i dumb?

I dunno. My mother rang me concerned that i was turning into a shell. She was right but i didnt care. I just wanted to be there with him even if it was sometimes. Desperate huh!

Well she had plans for me. She caught me on a weak moment when things were really crappy one day and suggested i move back to my home town so she could help me with my son & his difficulties and to help me if i needed it since i was so depressed most of the time. I backward and forwards on the idea. if i was having a good day with him i didnt want to go but if i was having a bad day with him i did. I couldnt muck mum around too much and she had some rentals lined up for me. I accepted the one she thought would suit. My abuser was telling me he would come down too in a few weeks after i left. he actually ended up comming after a few hours. But always had a reason to go back to his home town every month or so. Things quitened down a bit. He was on my turf, my home town. he found work (he was a carpet layer) but refused to pay the rent and wanted me to go on government assisstance & say he didnt live with us. Eventually he wanted a place of his own. So that things didnt look suspicious. Great family set-up. My kids were a bit scattered and never really knew what real family was. My sons school work sufferred and he began to have major anxiety attacks. Sometimes he refused to go to school & i had to call them to come & get him! He also refused to stay over at his friends house. He was feeling very insecure. I was feeling like a failure in all areas. With my kids. My man. Everything. he was ever doting on our 3 yr old and always reminded me that he was the only one who was being the parent etc..The Final straw was wen as usual i was at home with the kids, he was away 'seeing his mother' back in his home town again, when i started to ask about things again like who was he with and why couldnt i meet them and be like normal family. We started arguing again like there was something wrong with my questions but for the last time he told me i was just a slut, whore, bitch & that hed known his friends longer than me and that he wasnt going let me destroy his friendships! How ever i was doing that i wasnt sure. I dont know to this day if they were telling stories about me or him telling them? I will never know. I miss him. My kids miss him but the bottom line is i wasnt being loved.

I think about him everywhere i go and think about he fact that i was never a part of his world. I was just someone to come home to sometimes if he was in the mood. Our kids became used to the tension, the controlling atmosphere, the bickering, the absences, the drama! Now i dont know what to do with myself but i guess its better to start again that to never have any hope of just being myself and doing what i want and having someone being there for me and my kids for a change. Life goes on. Its scary but its good. Now i know i will always ask questiions first!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (15 October 2007):

Grateful for this site and to read responses and know I'm not alone in this suffering that is very confusing. My ex was a master controller and very successful in his work and life. I thought I had found the my true love and sweet heart. He was very sweet and loved to cuddle and be cozy together, and it really felt that he had alot of respect for me too. Since he had women bosses and co-workers and women well. He was really good looking and took care of himself. I did too so I thought we had so much in common, and wanted to marry him. I thought he just had a commitment phobia and was just going to be friends with him. We were friends+ for about 4 years before we got together, and then things completely changed. He wanted to micromanage me when I was over and wanted to direct my life. when I spoke up about something, called me B*#** or A@#**** selfish, when really

he was. He gave me alternate praise and putting on a pedestal fun calling me beautiful, etc. and being sweet, and then telling me to shut up if I wanted to have a serious

talk if he wasn't in the mood, with a face and mocking, cruel, or putting on the water or making popcorn while I was talking. In the books, ("Why does he do that?" by Lundy Bancroft, Rev.Al Miles) it says that the praising and compliments is just part of the cycle. It was good to find that out but still hard to figure. It was good to find this because I thought that I was being too hard on his moods or taking it too much to heart, because after all, he also said such nice things, and I was bad for putting too much focus on the negative when the positive was seemingly there. The books that convinced me that this was abuse, emotional and psychological abuse, and that the sweet times were when he was fantasizing about me or projecting his dream girl on to me and only setting me up for his punishment for not being

that, and then of course, I was buying into it by trying so

hard and wanting to be his dream girl.

It took a while to realize that it was not possible and it was not me and that being my self is okay, but I'm still healing and the books probably saved my life, also the hotlines, and something inside me that reached for those books, knowing that this wasn't right, as much as I loved him, and that he wouldn't get better, that he would blame me even more, and that I would get even more damaged mentally by the alternating behaviors by thinking I could make the

relationship okay by "improving myself" or learning to live

with the behaviors.

I have been out of the relationship for almost a year and a half, still healing I guess, and lonely, so I feel vulnerable to missing him. Or missing what might have been if he was able to be with a partner the way he was with a friend.

It IS definitely a death, a grieving process, for the what the relationship was before the abuse started and the spaces between the abuse, when I felt he was my best friend and

sweet heart.

Thanks for the reminder about the list. I need to look at

that list and the journal I kept in the Lundy Bancroft book, to help me to keep strong and continue my healing process and spiritual path and career. My career path was devastated and so was my confidence, whereas his career is

doing fine.

The hotline of women helping women has helped so much, and I hope to be part of that team when I am through this and on the other side.

Thank you and wishing you support and encouragement with this courageous struggle for your life free of abuse and

knowing you deserve it.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (15 October 2007):

Grateful for this site and to read responses and know I'm not alone in this suffering that is very confusing. My ex was a master controller and very successful in his work and life. I thought I had found the my true love and sweet heart. He was very sweet and loved to cuddle and be cozy together, and it really felt that he had alot of respect for me too. Since he had women bosses and co-workers and women well. He was really good looking and took care of himself. I did too so I thought we had so much in common, and wanted to marry him. I thought he just had a commitment phobia and was just going to be friends with him. We were friends+ for about 4 years before we got together, and then things completely changed. He wanted to micromanage me when I was over and wanted to direct my life. when I spoke up about something, called me B*#** or A@#**** selfish, when really

he was. He gave me alternate praise and putting on a pedestal fun calling me beautiful, etc. and being sweet, and then telling me to shut up if I wanted to have a serious

talk if he wasn't in the mood, with a face and mocking, cruel, or putting on the water or making popcorn while I was talking. In the books, ("Why does he do that?" by Lundy Bancroft, Rev.Al Miles) it says that the praising and compliments is just part of the cycle. It was good to find that out but still hard to figure. It was good to find this because I thought that I was being too hard on his moods or taking it too much to heart, because after all, he also said such nice things, and I was bad for putting too much focus on the negative when the positive was seemingly there. The books that convinced me that this was abuse, emotional and psychological abuse, and that the sweet times were when he was fantasizing about me or projecting his dream girl on to me and only setting me up for his punishment for not being

that, and then of course, I was buying into it by trying so

hard and wanting to be his dream girl.

It took a while to realize that it was not possible and it was not me and that being my self is okay, but I'm still healing and the books probably saved my life, also the hotlines, and something inside me that reached for those books, knowing that this wasn't right, as much as I loved him, and that he wouldn't get better, that he would blame me even more, and that I would get even more damaged mentally by the alternating behaviors by thinking I could make the

relationship okay by "improving myself" or learning to live

with the behaviors.

I have been out of the relationship for almost a year and a half, still healing I guess, and lonely, so I feel vulnerable to missing him. Or missing what might have been if he was able to be with a partner the way he was with a friend.

It IS definitely a death, a grieving process, for the what the relationship was before the abuse started and the spaces between the abuse, when I felt he was my best friend and

sweet heart.

Thanks for the reminder about the list. I need to look at

that list and the journal I kept in the Lundy Bancroft book, to help me to keep strong and continue my healing process and spiritual path and career. My career path was devastated and so was my confidence, whereas his career is

doing fine.

The hotline of women helping women has helped so much, and I hope to be part of that team when I am through this and on the other side.

Thank you and wishing you support and encouragement with this courageous struggle for your life free of abuse and

knowing you deserve it.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 October 2007):

hey i had the same experience and so have many others. The reason i believe is because you were with them for so long. People can tell you to move on and just to get over it and that it will take time and you can talk to a therapist, but the real change is up to you. YOU have to realize why and what it is that you miss so much. Then Just keep remembering all the hard things he put you through. Remember that you are a wonderful person and you do NOTTT deserve to be treated wrongly. the love has gone away and now you are just rememenising on the good times in the past. Like Jay Gatsby in the novel "The Great Gatsby" you work so hard to be with the one you "love". But in the end...it turns out to be just an obsession. Maybe your not in love with him..just the idea of him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 October 2007):

I had the same situation occur. It is because inside you think if the behavior was removed he would have been the perfect man for you. The problem is it takes years to understand it is part of him and will always be. There may be times when you think they have changed, but they have only gotten a grip on it for a short time. It will return, it always does.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 October 2007):

hi you will feel like this as u are still moarning what the relationship used to be when you first met and what u wish it could go back to. I know as i am also going through the same thing it took me 15yrs to realise that things were never going to change i spent more time crying than being happy it broke my heart when he then went on to move in and get engaged to someone else only 3 months after i stood up for my self and kicked him out. He didnt come after me just totally blanked me and the kids out of his life and made a new one after years of making our lives hell. Its been hard heart ache and major ups and downs with the kids as they were controlled and abused aswell not sexually but pysically and mentally but we are now starting to pull together and learning ways of making our lives better its taking time over a year so far but i know we will come through it and the pain does faid some days it comes flooding back even now but u will get there and the only way to do it is to move forward look for a new life with out him

i wish u all the best

take care

xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 October 2007):

Falling for an emotional abuser can be easy. I went out with a guy who on the outside was popular, charming and fun to be around but he made my life a nightmare. He beliitled me, was emotionally controlling (on occassions physical) and played mind games. He used numerous excuses, family circumstances to gain my pity and explain his behaviour. He would call me his princess and that I was his life but the next minute tell me to get lost. He was my first boyfriend and it took me a long time (9 years) to realise how much of me died because of being with him. Have faith in yourself and be strong.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (24 September 2007):

this is my story...............

i met him through his friend. He knew he wanted to fuck me the minute he saw me. He would never take no for an answer. NEVER. He would never let me say no. He never gave me what I needed. He only took, took, took and then blamed me when I wasnt happy.

Our first argument was when I wasnt giving him enough attention. He yelled at me until I cried. He told me in the beginning of our relationship that I should go. I remember this. I should have listened. He berated all of my friends, family and anyone who came in contact with me.

'Dont go to your friends with our stuff' he would scream at me

I thought that was a good idea until he started being really mean. At first I thought he was trying to help me be a better person but he was controlling me into being the girl that he wanted, not the woman I am.

The first time he was physical, I was shocked. He ripped my cell phone from my hand to check who I was talking to. This became a common occurrence. I kept telling him that he was abusive and that I wouldnt take it.

I let him borrow 5 grand. He told me a story about it and how he would pay me back. He purchased clothes with the money when he told me it was for something else. He quit his job and blamed it on me. He was unhappy and blamed it on me. He slacked in every area of his life and put all of his energy into micromanaging every part of my existince.

not cool

He wanted to move me away from my town, to a place where I was completely isolated. He called an old friend of mine a white trash bitch because she hurt his feelings somehow. He told me how he ruined all the relationships with his ex's. I kept hoping that he would realize that he was treating me the same way and change.

We got together because of our love of self help books. He kept wanting to help me but he was too sick to do anything. We are both recovering alcoholics. He didnt care if he made me cry.

He would taunt me until I lost it. I wanted to hurt myself many times. After being verbally assulted I ran into the bathroom crying and started pulling out my hair. He made me crazy. I felt like I couldnt get out.

I was afraid.

I was always given 20 questions whenever I did anything. He was such a bastard. He spit on me one time and told me that is what you do when you love someone. He would pick his nose in front of me. Gross. He would get mad when I wouldnt watch him play video games. He would get mad if I didnt want to watch a movie with him at 2am. He would get mad at me if I didnt want to have sex, He would always complain that he was doing so much and I was doing nothing for the relationship. We would fight every Tuesday and Saturday...........loud fights.

One time he came over after we had been fighting and he pushed me down. I grabbed his arm because I didnt want him to go into my place. He forcefully pushed me out of the way and onto the ground. He sprinted up to my apartment to make sure no guys were in my apartment. I ran into a nearby bar because I was afraid he would hurt me. He found me and convinced me to go to his house. I cried. I didnt want to be with him. I told him I couldnt be with him because he was abusive.

i didnt hit you.......he said something like that. He used force to move me out of the way. He was wrong.

He was jealous and insecure and I felt sorry for him. Sorry for the abuse that he had experienced in his life. The codependant me wanted to heal his soul with the power of my life. All that did was abuse me.

He was mean. He was always mean. He never appreciated anything I did. After a backrub he threw books at me because it was the shittiest back rub he had ever recieved. He told me I needed to get a fulltime job but he made me spend every minute with him.

I spent 75 days doing nothing but being with him. Then I found a job and started working, then the problem was me not spending enough time with him. This 29 year old man was the biggest baby in the whole world. I also started drug and alcohol therapy the same week. All he could think about was himself. All he could think about was how he was giving so much to me and how I was not meeting his needs. He had no life except for me. I knew he was sick and not all of the way there when I met him. He spelled words wrong, was not interested in anything but video games and football. he would do things that i wanted to do and then get mad when i wouldnt want to do what he wanted to do but i never said that i would

we ended things yesterday

he called me bitch

he is getting kicked out of his house for a domestic dispute we had and he kept asking me.......he kept yelling at me

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO TO FIX THIS?

i complied and told him it would all be o.k. and then I made plans to be with my sister. This pissed him off. My world was supposed to completely revolve around him because he made his life revolve around me. It is not my fault he did this. He was cute and I thought we could learn from each other.

I learned the minute you know things are wrong you need to find a way to get out. If you are talked down to, pushed, cut off from your friends..........get out of the situation.

Anyways.........i was tired of him screaming at me. I dialed 911 on my phone, just in case he tried to hurt me. I was in bed, nake. He came up to see what I was doing on my phone, I dialed the number and then ran away.

I hid in the upstairs bathroom of my shared house, waited about an hour and then timidly wandered downstairs to see if he had gone. He was gone.

Then came the insesant texts and calls.

I kept praying to the angels to help me and imagined a protective white light around me. I believe they helped me. I let him borrow money so he wouldnt go to jail. He knocked out someone teeth. He was viciously violent. I have never met a more violent man. He was so aggressive and he was always right and I hated being with him.

It has been over 24 hours since I have taken any abuse. He called my sisters boyfriend and told me that he is not going to contact me anymore. He has erased me from his myspace and I hope to GOD that he doesnt ever try and contact me again. I hope he moves away and I never ever hear from him again.

I want to change my number, move and cut all ties to him forever and ever and ever.

He called me stupid, bitch, whore, selfish. He talked shit about my family. He only saw his needs. I am so glad that it is over.

We only spent 3 months together. I am thankful for this.

Now I can move forward with my life and be happy.

He would flinch at me and pretend he was going to hit me if I made him upset. I flinch at sudden movements now. I have never been afraid of anyone/anything before. I am afraid of him. I know that I will be protected but I am still wary when I walk down the road. I hope he gets help but I know his life is not my responsibility. My life is my own and I can share it with whomever I want.

He told me if I ever got pregnant that I would have to have an abortion. He had no friends. No one like him. He kept telling me about all of the women he could get and about all the beautiful, successful women he has already had. Like I wasnt good enough.

The fact is I am a beautiful woman. I am smart, talented and great. I do not deserve to be illtreated no matter what. He took punishment into his own crazy hands.

I thank the angels for protecting me.

If you are in an abusive relationship.............get out. It doesnt mean you are stupid or dont deserve love. It means you made a small mistake that can be undone.

I already feel stronger. My subconscious already played out what would happen if we got back together. He would be nice for a minute and then he would be screaming at me again. I dreampt that right before I woke up.

I spent a majority of the relationship crying and now I am done.

the end

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A female reader, irelandfox United States +, writes (22 September 2007):

I know how you feel. Four years of emotinal, physical abuse, cheating bastard. I loved him and wanted it to work more than anything. But he never changed, he never wanted to. Its hard to step away and be alone. That is hardest part. Once you are alone and are able to center yourself you will be able to see your goodness. Its so hard. Cry. Drink. Cry. Write amazing songs, poetry. Draw. Listen to music. Hang with Family, friends, your dreams will keep you up. Obvouisly you will think of him and everything that could have be if he was only different. No one deserves to be treated the way these men have treated us. If you know your soul and your strength deep inside just walk away. He will be fine. He will roll on to the next and do it to her and you will shine. Just leap the net will catch you.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (18 September 2007):

It is shocking to see the amount of women who have been in relationships with and who have put up with men like these. I myself have just come out of a physically and emotionally abusive relationship. I met my ex when I was 15 and we had a child together by the time I was 16 and a half. I am 23 now and just threw my ex out about 4 wks ago.

In the relationship I have been slapped, punched, kicked, burned, manipulated, insulted, accused of having affairs, locked out of my own home on numerous accounts, dragged down 3 flights of stairs by the hair, had my possessions destroyed, been humiliated infront of friends and family...and the list goes on and on!

Reading that shocks me but I still dont think I honestly realise yet just how bad things were.

About a week ago my ex started to harrass me. He was calling me constantly for almost 15hrs straight, leaving horrible nasty messages on my phone. A friend of mine was there at the time and decided enough was enough...She contacted the Police. He was later arressted that day and appeared in court a couple of days later. He is being charged, however he has pled Not Guilty and has been released on Bail..The good thing is that he has special Bail requirements and those are that he is not allowed to contact or come near me in anyway.

That is a relief for the time being but I now know that I am going to have more hard times to come. I will have to go to court and try my best to get something done about this once and for all...There has been many times in the past my ex has been arrested and in court about Domestic matters but nothing has ever happened and I myself have never done anything about it....Not anymore though! I know I can't put up with this kind of life anymore (and nobody should!) I have taken the first step..A step I never thought i'd have the courage to take and a step I never really wanted to take...I have been in touch with a Solicitor and set the wheels in motion. I know he wants me to back down and he thinks I will be too afraid to go to court..But just knowing that will be enough to spur me on!

I did get a shock however whilst speaking to my Solicitor...After explaining to her everything I had been through she just sat and looked at me then said " I think you need to see some kind of Therapist" She said the way I sat and explained everything to her was like all that had happened to me was totally normally...When it's obviously not! I was quite surprised to hear that but I think I know deep down that she is probably right! The thing that bothers me is that he has put me through so much as it is...and now Im gonna have to seek some sort of help to get me to realize what i've been through!

It's not been easy and it's not going to be for a long time I'm sure.... but you have to be strong and put your foot firmly down and say " enough is enough ". If you don't put a stop to it then no one will. Don't live the rest of your life in this situation...I have done it for almost 8 yrs now and yeah it's hard to break away from but things will be a lot harder if you stay where you are!

Good luck to all and remain strong and focused...You know the right thing to do!

Thanks for your time

xx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (18 September 2007):

I can't tell how amazing it is to hear all of your stories! I never thought anyone was like me. I dated a fellow for a little less than two years. In the beginning he was a dream come true, the best thing that ever happened to me, or so I thought. As time went on, he got wierd and he would have these crazy mood swings, one minute I was his princess, the next the bane of his existance. Scarier were the times he would manipulate into doing things by threatening to kill himself. My God, he was so good at what he did. He never once hit me, but he trapped me thoroughly well in a web of psychological abuse. He's the best manipulator that I've ever seen. He even manipulated me into losing my virginity to him. I began losing friends and soon he was constantly jealous and pressuring me to get married, I resisted and began to drift away, the death threats and hearing how jealous and stupid I was started to wear on me. Then he started dumping me and then apologizing, soon he starting hitting things when he got mad at me, I was wondering when it would be me...

I heard a story about his father that scared me. His mother went out shopping without his father's permission and when she arrived back home he put a shot gun too her and told her she would never go out like that again. Several years later I heard that his mother had gone mad. Hers must be a sad life. Anyway, he broke up with me again (over instant messenger no less) and two days later wanted me back, I put an end to it by refusing him. It was far from over for him. I got late night phone calls and many other things from him for the next year, then he gets engaged to one of my former friends, and I too find myself missing him. To stop it, I remember that wanting him is what He WANTS, the abuser is a hallow man, a man that cannot stand for an instant to be himself. I just remember that in his own way it will be me that haunts him because I was the one that did not put up with it, and in some sick way the abuser will respect me for it. He knows how horrible he is.

His game is manipulation, and our job is to stay away from it and respect ourselves enough to experience a bit of pain. The feelings of good toward him will fade, his influence is still new in your mind, he's like a drug to your system, but time will be your healer, all you have to do is sit and stay strong and know that this is totally normal, I've felt it for a while, but I keep little remembrances of how awful he was to me so that I always know not to go back to him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 September 2007):

Like many of you, I was involved in a three year relationship with someone who was verbally, emotionally, physically, financially, and mentally abusive. I am now 24, and he is 32. He had called me names, thrown food in my face, tied me, forcefully had sex with me, degraded me in every way, accused me of sleeping with others, threatened me, stalked me, threatened my freinds and family...we broke up and got back together many times, and what happened to me was one day, after reading so many heartfelt letters from SO MANY women who go through the same thing...it just clicked. Enough now. Women have to take care of themselves, love ourselves, re-program ourselves from what we have learned through the behavior our partners have instilled in us...fear, hatred, anger, regret, low-self esteem...this can all be reversed into what really exists...beauty, strength, self worth, motherhood, bravery, kindness, humility. Here is something that I learned and hope others come to understand and take what is said seriously. WHAT SO MANY ABUSERS DO IS MINDCONTROL, MUCH LIKE BRAINWASHING. THERE ARE TACTICS THAT ARE USED THAT ARE SHOCKINGLY SIMILAR TO THOSE USED IN CAPTIVES OF WAR, AND USED AGAINST ANYONE WHO IS THE TARGET OF TOURTURE AND BRAINWASH. It is used to control your behavior and thought process to pull you in and drag you down in order for them to gain control over you. If you do a little research, you can come across these theories, ( that have been proven true) in the book " Next time, She'll be Dead" Please pick it up from your local library...be strong, the impulses to see the person will fade with time, and realization of what lies behind all of the hurt and abuse. Love yourself, the days will get better.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 September 2007):

I just broke up with my bf of 4 years. It has been 1 month and today was the first time I awnsered his call, it was a mistake I will never take him back but for the first time I doubted myself. He told me about the great girl he is dating(the one I found him having sex with in our bed). When I messed up his day he almsot killed me. I knew that the beatings were just getting worse and I was going to end up dead. He would wisper to me at night to kill myself, when he thought I was sleeping. Tell everyone I was a crazy whore. And I almost believed him. When I left him my life compeletly turned around and yours will to, when you realize its up to you to make your own path. Be responsible for your future.

My point is never talk to them again, it will only make you doubt yourself. AND NO WOMAN EVER DESERVES TO BE HIT OR BELITTLED. So anytime you doubt yourself ask "do I really want to spend my life sleeping next to someone who has so little love for me that his fists become his voice?" Then ask him "what would you do to a man that treated your mother they way you treat me?"

YOU DESERVE BETTER...MAKE SURE YOU GET IT.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 September 2007):

I was in an emotionally abusive relationship for a short time (around 6 months). After reading all of these stories, I am so thankful to realize that it wasn't my fault, even though he told me everything was 100% my fault. When I explained to him that I needed time for myself occassionally, he accused me of either cheating on him, being on drugs or being a lesbian!! He called me so many horrible names and told me that no one will ever love me because I am crazy and told me that I do not deserve to be called a human being. Many of my friends cannot understand why it has taken me so long to get over this, but hearing these things from someone who supposedly loved me hurt me to the core and confused me terribly. He also set out to humiliate me by telling anyone who would listen what a "crazy, psychotic, bi-polar bitch" I am. Sadly, many of the people he told this to believe him and have stopped speaking to me. The thing that finally made me see I had to break up with him was this - I went to visit my mom for Christmas last year and while I was away for the weekend, he threatened to kill himself. I knew that if he would do this just because I was spending time with my mother, there is no telling what he would do in the future and I don't want to live my life as a hostage. I tried to accommodate him throughout our relationship, but nothing was ever good enough. He began seeing someone 2 WEEKS! after we broke up and they are still together. I sometimes wonder if he does the same things to her, which makes me sink back into feeling like it was all my fault. I have spent so much time trying to understand why all of this happened, and I've come to the realization that it is beyond my understanding as I would never treat anyone the way he treated me. I do miss the good times, but none of those times can balance out the awful things he's said and done. I know I am better off without him.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (30 August 2007):

About a week ago my ex punched me in the face. I was completely freaked out. I talked to my friends, and told him to never call me again, along with a few other things.

The whole story is much like so many other posts up here. When I first met him, he was so sweet. However, things didn't add up in his life, I over looked them because he was so nice. I felt like I needed space, and just as soon as we started dating, I got pregnant. This was just weeks into it. I felt trapped, and guilty, and decided to have the baby, with this man that I didn't feel was 'right'.

He became incredibly mean and pocessive. I allowed him to move into my small S.F studio, and even though he lived with me, came back to my house drunk and started calling me a stupid bit*h and a c*nt. He told me to abort the baby. I couldn't believe it. The whole building must have heard him screaming...abort it!

He apologised, and I couldn't get it out of my head. Here I am a couple months pregnant with this freak.

My parents, (whom are also verbally abusive towards me) disaproved of my choice,(to have the baby) and my dad, previous to this situation left a voice message telling me that this guy was going to leave me as soon as he thought I was unattractive to him sexually and that he wouldn't be there for me or the baby financially or emotionally, he had not even met my b/f yet!) Because of that message I stoppedtalking to my parents, and have not since- that may have been the good that came out of this whole thing, because they are so emotionally abusive to me. My dad left another message after talking to my sister about what he said on my voice message, and he supposidly apologised. My b/f made me hang up so I didn't hear it. (b/f wanted to protect me from my abusive dad, and told me my dad was abusive, and a pussy to not say that stuff to his face- hey I guess it takes one to know one)

So I tried to let time go by, but the whole thing was bothering me. I couldn't have another abusive father, my boyfriend do what my dad did to me.

Then one day my b/f bumped into some guy while waking int the street, and tried to start a fight. I couldn't believe it- just walking down the sidewalk!

I started talking to my sister about his anger problems...she suggested I rethink having the baby because this man would be in my life forever.

After telling so many people I was going to have a baby, I went to the clinic with my friend and had an abortion. This whole thing happend in the matter of 3 months.

My b/f was outraged, and upset now that I had an abortion. I had seen ultrasounds, and think about everything all the time.

I was stupid and manipulated. Ever since the abortion, I have been out of it, and felt like I owed this man something, so I allowed him in again. I tried to separate, and he would manipulate his way back in...until last week when he punched me and called me ugly, fat...hours before telling me I looked radiant.

Of course he was drunk...I was lucky when he punched me something blocked my head from hitting the corner of a door.

I am lucky to be free of the most painful 6 months of my life.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (16 August 2007):

I know EXACTLY how you feel. I was in a VERY abusive relationship with a guy. We have been broken up with for two years now. I got strong and left him. Well I guess I got weak and got in contact with him. We've been just friends for two years now. He hit me a few times but nothing too serious. I always thought he would change. Well last night was the worst.

I went on a date with a new great guy. We went to dinner and then a bar. Of coarse I got a but intoxicated. He dropped me off at home and i went inside and called my ex boyfriend for basically a "booty call." We have been sleeping together for the past two years but no relationship. We've been VERY close. he wants me back but I have refused. Any way, last night, he came over. We started arguing about stupid things and I left the room. Well he went through my phone and saw the texts from the guy I went on a date with. he flipped out.

Beat the living crap out of me. Not to mention called this guy from my phone leaving a nasty voicemail to stay away from me or else hes gonna kick his ass. I have a deep cut above my eyebrow which could use stitches, baseball size bruise on my forehead, bruised shoulder, collarbone is all messed up, i dont know if it's broken or if my shoulder dislocated (i had previous surgeries for dislocations) but I can't use it well. There are cuts and scratches all over my face, bruises literally EVERYWHERE.

He stayed to fix my wounds and what not and even called his mom but said i was beat up by some random guysin the street. He also admitted last night to having an addiction to pain killers (which I always suspected)

Anyway. I know how you feel. You feel like you are absolutely the most crazy person EVER to miss and want a guy who treats you like dirt. I think what is important is to keep busy. Get support from friends and family. If you feel like calling him, call a domestic violence hotline instead. They are always willing to listen and talk you out of it. I really reccomend that. Also, definately write down all the terrible thigns he's done to you and read them when you start missing him.

I get so sad thinking that women like us actually miss a guy who treated us like dirt. It really makes you think you've lost your mind. But time will heal all

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 August 2007):

I have been in an physically, emotionally and mentally abusive relationship for 3 years. I know it hurts and you love him, you want him back. But respect yourself, love yourself and move on. You don't want your kids and yourself to be treated like this for the rest of your life. He will never change...ever. And they are never sorry. There are better men in this world. See aa therapist and get onto some anti depressants, it works and helps you get out of this nightmare...

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A reader, anonymous, writes (24 July 2007):

I too was in a relationship with a man who was and still is abusive. Yesterday was my first day, my first day to MY happiness. I loved this man, he was everything you could have ever wanted in a guy, he was charming, huge muscles, dark hair and bright blue eyes, then I started seeing past all the physical appearence and seeing his "true self." We were together for about 2 and a half years, and I should have known 2 months into the relationship that he wasn't for me, but I couldn't get over this physical appearences. He started taking steroids and getting really physical with me, behind closed doors and in front of the public. My friends would pull him off of me, and I'd claim that I would never go back to him, then he would call me the next day bawling and telling me how much he loved me, and of course like many of us I would fall right back into his charming arms. About 1 year into the relationship we moved into an apartment together, what a mistake, but I stood by him, after the pulling of the hair, the punches to the face, I still stood by him. There was just something about him beating me up that I felt like I deserved it....when in reality no human being should EVER have to go through that experience.

Well 1 year turned into 2 years, and we moved into another place together, and it was okay at first then the hitting started again and the name calling. One night he even took the chew out of his mouth and shoved it into my eyes, my nose and my mouth, how humilating huh? I wouldnt do that to a dog....but that next morning he told me he loved and promised he would never do it again...and duh I took him back. Well it kept happening and this weekend was the final straw....

Him and I were at a party with my friends and about 30 other people, someone pulled up into the driveway and my best friend and I walked over well he wasn't fond of me trying to see who was coming up the driveway, (mind you that when I go hang out with friends with him, the first thing out of his mouth is you better by up my a$$ all night long or we will be leaving), he just hauled off and punched me in the face so hard my feet flew up from under me and I fell straight onto my back. The men at the party swarmed him and gave him a pretty good whooping, but of course after all was said and done I went home with him. We woke up and he told me he loved me and I said its okay.

Well my mom found out about the incident, but she's known how he's been with me since we got together, and she bawled to me on the phone, I'm on antidepressents because of him, and she told me that he's either going to kill me or I'm going to kill myself....and then something clicked, and I'm at home with my loving family and my friends around me.

I'm soo happy I found this site and was able to express my feelings and have other people going through the same issues I am. So the next morning when its a new day and a new start don't let him sucker you back into this so-called "loving" relationship....think about your family members, your mother, your sister, your kids...and think about how they are affected by this. How you would feel if they were in this kind of relationship and how bad you would fear for them and want them out. Also think about yourself and how you don't deserve to be treated like that, NO MATTER WHAT!!! There is someone out there that will treat you like the princess that you are....always remember that. And always remember that people don't change....no matter how many "one more chance's" you give him. Don't give him one more day, because you won't get it back....Be Strong!!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (24 July 2007):

I too was in a relationship with a man who was and still is abusive. Yesterday was my first day, my first day to MY happiness. I loved this man, he was everything you could have ever wanted in a guy, he was charming, huge muscles, dark hair and bright blue eyes, then I started seeing past all the physical appearence and seeing his "true self." We were together for about 2 and a half years, and I should have known 2 months into the relationship that he wasn't for me, but I couldn't get over this physical appearences. He started taking steroids and getting really physical with me, behind closed doors and in front of the public. My friends would pull him off of me, and I'd claim that I would never go back to him, then he would call me the next day bawling and telling me how much he loved me, and of course like many of us I would fall right back into his charming arms. About 1 year into the relationship we moved into an apartment together, what a mistake, but I stood by him, after the pulling of the hair, the punches to the face, I still stood by him. There was just something about him beating me up that I felt like I deserved it....when in reality no human being should EVER have to go through that experience.

Well 1 year turned into 2 years, and we moved into another place together, and it was okay at first then the hitting started again and the name calling. One night he even took the chew out of his mouth and shoved it into my eyes, my nose and my mouth, how humilating huh? I wouldnt do that to a dog....but that next morning he told me he loved and promised he would never do it again...and duh I took him back. Well it kept happening and this weekend was the final straw....

Him and I were at a party with my friends and about 30 other people, someone pulled up into the driveway and my best friend and I walked over well he wasn't fond of me trying to see who was coming up the driveway, (mind you that when I go hang out with friends with him, the first thing out of his mouth is you better by up my ass all night long or we will be leaving), he just hauled off and punched me in the face so hard my feet flew up from under me and I fell straight onto my back. The men at the party swarmed him and gave him a pretty good whooping, but of course after all was said and done I went home with him. We woke up and he told me he loved me and I said its okay.

Well my mom found out about the incident, but she's known how he's been with me since we got together, and she bawled to me on the phone, I'm on antidepressents because of him, and she told me that he's either going to kill me or I'm going to kill myself....and then something clicked, and I'm at home with my loving family and my friends around me.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 July 2007):

I was in an abusive relationship for two years. I finally got out after much prayer, self-preservation also kicked in. He wanted to marry me when it finally became clear to him I wasn't going to do it anymore. On top of the abuse he was a liar, cheater, and got another girl pregnant while we were together. I still think about him and have strong feelings when I see a picture or he tries to contact me. I often want to talk or even see him even though I have been in a healthy relationship for 5 years. I have to say with much reflection that it is not about him at all but a reflection of my self-esteem and happiness that makes me miss him. Since I did not like myself and sometimes still don't I want someone to validate that for me and he'd be the perfect candidate. Instead of making it about them really make it about you. He is only a metiphor for how you see yourself. Take back the control and make it a daily battle to love yourself instead of a daily battle to love someone who is only a reflection of your own self-hatred. Women's support groups are helpful and also women's empowerment camps. People always say you need to learn to love yourself but first you need to find a teacher. Look for strong women who can mentor you. Peace

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (30 June 2007):

Hello:

I was in a verbally abusive relationship for 4+ years. The first year or so was wonderful, we never fought, got along like the best of friends. I don't understand what happened or where it began, but the controlling with words and intimidation tactics were sutle at first. He was extremely jealous and would call me all kinds of rotten names, slut, whore, etc... Would say things like "I am the only man who has or could ever love you", "Nobody will love you as much as me" or "After everything I have done for you, this is what I get", which made me feel like the guilty one. He lied, manipulated, probably cheated more than I know, drank alot, etc.... Things got very ugly and he was so hurtful. I loved this man with all my heart, tried to make him see that I would never do anything to hurt him and only wanted to help. But it was never enough, something would always set him off, I walked on eggshells the last couple of years.

The final straw was in December 2006 (we had got back together about 2 months before this). At a work X-Mas party, he accused me of wanting to sleep with his friend, screamed "Whore" while I was dancing with a group of girls from work, gestured blow job at me across the room, dumped beer down my back, picked up some girl that night and had sex with her at his apt., took a picture of the back of her head (she was naked) and sent it to me over the phone. The next day, left me horrible messages on my phone. Then decided to apologize, lie about the picture, tell me how much he loved me, etc... I almost fell for it. He ripped my heart apart that night, but the strange thing is, I still find myself missing him, wondering what he is doing and if he is happy. Asking if I could have done something different, I feel like I am losing my mind!!!!! What the hell is wrong with me??? Love should not hurt like this and I know it, so why can't I seem to get past this jerk!!! It's been 6 months!

He still does some hurtful things on the sly, like driving by my place of employment with his new girlfriend on the back of his motercycle. He did this every Tuesday and Wednesday for a month, because he knew my friends and I sat outside of the building during the lunch hour.

I have written down the horrible things he has done to me and read it alot, starting working out again, do alot with friends, I am focusing on my life, but still seem to find myself drifting back into the emotional darkness of that F**ked up relationship. I want him out of my mind!!! and I am hoping that time will heal these emotional scars. I really would love to be in a good relationship with someone, I think I still need to do some "Me" work though before trying to get involved again.

Thank you for reading my babblin', just needed to vent. When I found this site, it really made me realize that there are alot of controlling, obsessive men out there and we need to be aware of all the red flags!!! before getting involved again.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (30 June 2007):

Hello:

I was in a verbally abusive relationship for 4+ years. The first year or so was wonderful, we never fought, got along like the best of friends. I don't understand what happened or where it began, but the controlling with words and intimidation tactics were sutle at first. He was extremely jealous and would call me all kinds of rotten names, slut, whore, etc... Would say things like "I am the only man who has or could ever love you", "Nobody will love you as much as me" or "After everything I have done for you, this is what I get", which made me feel like the guilty one. He lied, manipulated, probably cheated more than I know, drank alot, etc.... Things got very ugly and he was so hurtful. I loved this man with all my heart, tried to make him see that I would never do anything to hurt him and only wanted to help. But it was never enough, something would always set him off, I walked on eggshells the last couple of years.

The final straw was in December 2006 (we had got back together about 2 months before this). At a work X-Mas party, he accused me of wanting to sleep with his friend, screamed "Whore" while I was dancing with a group of girls from work, gestured blow job at me across the room, dumped beer down my back, picked up some girl that night and had sex with her at his apt., took a picture of the back of her head (she was naked) and sent it to me over the phone. The next day, left me horrible messages on my phone. Then decided to apologize, lie about the picture, tell me how much he loved me, etc... I almost fell for it. He ripped my heart apart that night, but the strange thing is, I still find myself missing him, wondering what he is doing and if he is happy. Asking if I could have done something different, I feel like I am losing my mind!!!!! What the hell is wrong with me??? Love should not hurt like this and I know it, so why can't I seem to get past this jerk!!! It's been 6 months!

He still does some hurtful things on the sly, like driving by my place of employment with his new girlfriend on the back of his motercycle. He did this every Tuesday and Wednesday for a month, because he knew my friends and I sat outside of the building during the lunch hour.

I have written down the horrible things he has done to me and read it alot, starting working out again, do alot with friends, I am focusing on my life, but still seem to find myself drifting back into the emotional darkness of that F**ked up relationship. I want him out of my mind!!! and I am hoping that time will heal these emotional scars. I really would love to be in a good relationship with someone, I think I still need to do some "Me" work though before trying to get involved again.

Thank you for reading my babblin', just needed to vent. When I found this site, it really made me realize that there are alot of controlling, obsessive men out there and we need to be aware of all the red flags!!! before getting involved again.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 May 2007):

well i met this great guy well i thought anyway. I fell in love so fast and thought i would be his wife some day. We went out for 3 months before i kinda saw his true colors. The love of my life was an alcholic a very abusive one at that. a womanizer so bad to the point i was believing his lies about where he was at night or after his 2-12a.m. shift. He and i have broken up 10 times in the last 2 and a half years. It takes him all of a couple hours to go and find someone off his 300 phone numbers mind you all woman to come over to please him so that he can forget about me for the night. The scary thing is this guy will not leave me alone for the life of me. He keeps sucking me back into this world that he has me trapped under. My head has been bashed 4 times my wrist almost broken twice I had to see a phsychriatrist to get on depression pills lost 20 lbs mind you i was only 120 at the time and im 5'7 i looked like death became me. After all the counseling i felt a little better and decided to get the hell rid of him. That was a year ago. He played with my mind after that and i tryed to stay so strong and i did for awhile. He would come over and promise me the world and make love to me and the next day be sleeping with someone else still. I took him back after 4 months of being strong he promised hed change and i believed him even promised counseling he failed everything. He only made me lose my mind more drink more and abused me more. its the 12th of may and tonight i think i can finally say its over. My trust was hanging by a thread the way it was and he proved nothing to me tonight but how little i actually meant to him. I told him after he was out all night and he was drunk when he got here that i just had it last night he called me a worthless whore bitch and much worse things he twisted my hand so bad i have no feeling in it right now. Anyway he showed up on his harley tonight drunk like i said and i told him to get the hell out that hes a shady prick here to find out he was out with some other girl all night with her on the back of his bike then i found a home made sex tape of him and another girl dated yesterday. I feel so disgusting right now im crawling in my own skin. I feel like i did when i hit rock bottom a year ago and after all this i still love him even though he has the devil in him. I just cant go through one more day of this ever ever again everyone hates him my family friends everyone. they have all seen what this man is capable of and how he treats me. I look to god for what i need right now. thats the only way im going to get through this. Thanks for listening

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 May 2007):

I have just finished with my boyfriend of 17months, it was hard to finally realise it was going nowhere he was an aggressive, paranoid person always asking questions that irritated me,i am an outgoing person and felt he was was always putting me down and invading my privacy. I didnt live with him but once he helped me out financially, the worst mistake i ever made, he became voilent towards me and verbally abusive,his tone was always nasty and i felt on edge around him, he wanted to know where i was and what i was doing also with my son wanting to know where and what we were doing, he was like a brick wall nothing I said would go in, he blamed me saying he would change but I am so glad i got out, it hurts and sometimes feel maybe i was to blame. He would constantly keep on about my sons father who was not involved. It got to the stage where he started to follow me, walking into my parents house and my friends. It has now been 6 weeks and I am still getting text messages when he has had a few drinks demanding his money back calling me names, the police have been notified, i just want to move on, i feel i have been punished for meeting him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 April 2007):

Hi there. I understand what you are going through. A month ago I left my partner of 4 years. When I first met him I thought he was my angel sent from above. Man was I wrong. 3 months into the reationship, he started to control me,called me ever name in the book, put down all my friends and family, and played every mind game imaginable. We have broken up and he has moved out probably about 10 different times, and of course the sweet phone calls, and flowers and gifts, and mr nice guy sucks me back in evertime. He has dated 4 different women in our 4 years, when we break up he gets another women instantly, and then he kicks her to the curb or vice versa, and then he is calling me again. I have fallen for his shit way to many times, and the last draw was when he couldn't get to me anymore he started on my 5 year old son(not his son.) Putting him down and constantly fighting with him, and even getting phyical with him, and I told him enough is enough GET OUT!. It has been exstremly hard even though what he has done to my son and I, I long for him to call (when he does call he usually bitches me out about something, and then acts all sweet after). Everytime he wants something, and I say no or If I disagree with him he freaks out and I mean freaks out like a 2 year old (it is really sad). But that is b/c I am not listening to what he says or doing what he wants and he has lost all power and control and that infurates him to no end. He is so used to me giving in and doing what he wants and it is not happening anymore. I feel like I am crazy to for wanting to here his voice, or always thinking about him, and he is now with someone else of course yet still trying to get back with me (he is sick in the head), but knowing about this other women makes me angry inside, yet I should not care cause i know he is going to treat her the same way after awhile. The only thing I can say that I have been trying to do is keep busy, live for me and my son, surround myself with positive people, and have a life of my own (which i gave up when I was with him). All the best to you, and it will take time to get over him, and to be able to trust and move on and be happy but it will happen one day in good time. Hang in there everything will work out just fine for you!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 April 2007):

Being in an abusive relationship is very hard and not easy to get over that person. I know this because just recently my boyfriend of a year beat me up, he punched me three times in the face and ripped off my bra. Fortunatly I had enough strength to go to the police. That wasn't the first time it had happened that he did that, I just had the final button pushed. He told me if I did go to the cops he would kill me. He went to jail and court and we still have a court date coming up. Anyways, I still haven't gotten over him completly after all its only been a week and a half but that takes time. I know everyone says that but when you have been in a relationship for so long it's what you are used to. When you get used that you are depending on that person. This is something that is not good for you mentally or physically. You deserve to be treated like a person because that is what you are is a person. You have to be strong, there are more fish in the sea besides him. It is better to get out of an abusive relationship sooner than later. Also just to let you know there is a restraining order and also a protection order they are two different things: Protection Order - This is a civil order for victims of domestic violence who have been assaulted, threatened, or stalked and are afraid of being hurt again. The court tells the "family or household member" who threatened or assaulted you not to harm you again. This order is requested by the victim at any local court. There is no cost for the Protection Order.

Restraining Order - This is a civil order that is usually issued along with divorce, legal separation, paternity or child custody case. It covers property, child support, maintenance and custody issues. A Restraining Order prohibits someone from contacting another person, or doing violent acts. This order is usually filed by the lawyer representing you in Superior Court.

The protection order is specifically designed for domestic assault. You can't keep being jealous seeing him with someone else, you need to go out have fun forget about that dumb a@#. Worry about yourself first because you can't make someone else happy if your not, you need to make yourself happy first. I would also recommend not to go back to him, things could get worse if you do go back!! And DON'T date european men my ex is russian!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (3 April 2007):

I never thought I would be in a suuch a relationship. He used his abuse as a child to make me feel sorry for him, and stalked me for a year before approaching me. Pretended to be everything I wanted very fast. He disguised his drinking and drug taking and violence, vilified me projected his hate and anger towards me. Wearing me down trying to break me, they me to feel his pain and messed my life up too.

Harassment the madness, drama that he's addicted to for attention and respect. He has no life so he tried to live mine, he was like the devil, there's nothing good in him. He's aware of this hence the destructiveness. He doesn't want to change it's easy to live of others and steal - the family environment. It's normal to greive in any relationship, it's just the psychological effects/dynamics in this type of relationship.

The family conceal the dysfunction, creating the problem. He's mentally ill from his environment and abuse as a child, in a lot of ways he still is even in his late 40s. He was never taught how to be and took to the wrong crowd, don't feel sorry for him, he's hurt more people, as he's become the abuser/victim. He doesn't want to grow up, the longer you stay or return the violence and control increase.

One learns to love themselves more and not be vulnerable as women are sociaized to be. He tried to make me feel worthless, that no one would want me, so that I would stay with him. In fact everything is done to make you stay, because one his secret is in the open who wants to stay. You can't live with him, the anxiety the addictions, supressant to calm the fear, the nightmares, the blame, he turns you into the abuser to justify his actions against you. Because he couldn't defend himself when the abuse took place. Only he can help or save himself unless he actively does with or without him stay away. He's damaged beyond repair and the drugs have destroyed or altered the chemicals in the brain for years.

I cry more for my personal and financial loss, time wasted, the pain, lies, deciet but at least I can get my life back and understand better where I must heal so the past will not be repeated EVER!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 March 2007):

Why do we go back? Sometimes, its all we know. Sometimes, there is still so much love left. We have regrets about our actions at times. Sometimes, they have destoyed our self esteem to such a deep level, we are now their puppets, and cant even REALIZE the absurdity of wanting someone back who hurt us for so long. Best Advice? FEEL the feelings. WRite, talk, cry...whatever. But dont go back. Let LOVE be a joyful experience, not one filled with confusion and abuse.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 January 2007):

I've been in a similar relaTionship, not w/the same behaviour, but emotional abuse. Mine was with my Chiropractor (DC). Two sites that can realy help. Dr Sam Vaknin.

Malignet Self Love..Narccissm revisted Dr Vaknin

Richard Skerrit (sp) Meaning from Madness, he wrote several other helpful books...

It is always helpful to know the type of personality whom you have been or are involved with. Borderline Personality Disorders. Dr Vaknin address a lot of this, as well as what abuse it and how it effects the Vitim and how to handle and abuser!

I'm on my journey, wih taking care of me, embracing my self. I was involved for over 4 1/2 years with my DC.

You can always request prayer online with Benny Hinn Ministries for free...I have and I am moving away from this relationship on an emotional level I never thought I could and I am loving myself and starting to enjoy life again instead of obsessing over my DC (boyfreind)

You will come out of this in your own time, but start understanding the personlity of the man whom you have allowed to have so much control over you. And start understanding you. You shall be more than a conquer in this situtaion, and you will! God Bless and Good Luck!

One who joyfully is on her road to recovery from an Abusive Relationship with a Very Handosme and Gifted Chriopractor and Narcssit!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 January 2007):

I don't have any advice on how to get over him, that is actually what I was looking for on here. When I read your story I began to cry. I feel the same way you do. I dated a guy for a year and a half, we had a baby, and were engaged. He also had a terrible temper, he hit me several times even when I was pregnant, he cheated on me, and verbally abused me. It has been a year since we have broken up and I have watched him have several relationships. Everytime him and a girlfriend break up he tries to come back to me. Usually, this is not hard at all, but lately, I want him back so bad. I recently started working on things with him, and once again, he slept with another girl behind my back. I don't know if I still love him because he is my baby's dad or what, but I too, feel crazy... Why is it these guys think they can do this to us?

All I wanted to let you know is that you are not the only one out there that has fallen for a jerk! Stay strong and know WE ALL deserve so much better than this!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 December 2006):

OMG woman you have lost the plot, i myslef as also my friend was in a very abusive physical and sexual and mental abusive relationship for 4 years, i alsways question why i stayed and cannot give you the answer why, BUT i dont still love him never did after he hit me just couldnt leave. You need to find a decent Friend or new man in your life that will help yo uthrough the bad times, also stop thinking its your fault and thinking about that tosser, he is shit compared to you, move on smile you are a better gorgeous person and tell you family they will understand. BUT you do already know this its just hard to say at the moment stop defending him and make sure you know hwo you are, you are loved by many just reach out to them xxx E & B

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (4 December 2006):

Like you and all the women who wrote, I was charmed and completely taken by my abuser. I dated this person on and off for about SEVEN years, oh my god, toooo many. He was addicted to speed and alcohol the whole time and the last three years of the relationship he became a paranoid schizophrenic.

Because he is a drug addict he cannot hold any job for more than a month and as a result, he was homeless, and women like me have been taking him in and taking care of him forever. He is tall, dark and handsome, he is also an instrument builder and when you first meet this guy you think you have met a god. He is a number one charmer, he is a good lover and he is well endowed, it is amazing to see how many women fall for this guy - including myself...

For the first five years of this relationship I saw him off and on, I took him seriously, even though I knew he had countless other partners, but he would always come to see me on weekends and our sex life was so amazing, that I hung on to him. During this time he wrote me countless songs, letters, recited amazing poetry, all celebrating how amazing I was and that he had finally found his mate. I believed in him blindly.

Beginning In Oct of 2003 and ending in March of 2006 he began to call me names and he abused me three separate times. His addiction to speed had worsened, causing all of this mess. We have now been apart for nine months bcs his probation officer issued a stay away order.

Like you and all the respondents, even after all the abuse, the lies, the cheating and the madness, I still miss him and wish he could be a good person and that we could be together. It is really important to remember though that usually these men don't change. I know that my ex is now off of speed because the court has imposed this on him. I have heard through the grapevine though that he is still drinking a lot of alcohol. He has lots of girlfriends and they are all charmed by him, especially since it seems that the schizophrenia has faded now that he is off of speed. Like the other respondents, I also feel jealousy of these new people in his life. I am struggling to get over this guy. I also feel that it has been a struggle because it is hard to meet guys who are fun, dynamic, creative, attractive, available and not addicts. There are prob plenty of nice guys out there, but who would bore me to death....

Don't stay in any relationship as long as I did, though it is hard to meet those wonderful men, they are out there, and we have to keep reminding ourselves of that.

More importantly though we need to reevaluate our self love. Love yourself, pamper yourself, work out, focus on a hobby, hang out with good friends. As the other women said, write about all the bad things that happened, bcs we so easily forgive and forget and we cannot do that.

Time is the greatest healer, may we all heal.

peace

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2006):

You cannot do this anymore! I thought I could, but it only gets worse and I never imagined that I would ever have had brusies and a black eye from my ex-boyfriend. It will never get better unless you get rid of him and I am only 26, so please listen to me. Ya, it took me along time to get through it, but after I did I look back and know I would have lived a miserable life. I was always raised in a great household. My dad is a docter and my mom helps him, but at the same time my mom and sister told him to stay away and leave me alone. Ok, but at that time I had to see him. I Just want you to know its not going to grow into anything good. Get on with your life, and I had to go to a therapist a year ago, but it made me so much stronger!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 November 2006):

I got out of almost two year relationship if that is what you want to call it. I met him on the Internet, he came off wonderful..but there was a big red flag I chose to ignore, or excused him for. He moved in with me and within 24 hrs left bruises all over my arms. yes he cried apologized never do it again. I kicked him out three times and each time he made me feel guilty and sorry for him. He was so abused as a child, his own child died, no one loved him etc.

It was all about him feeling abandoned, when he broke my nose twice it was my fault. I didn't see his PTSD, interesting it only surfaced around me! I tried to love him, he never worked, he took my money, he bite me in the face and took my health, he gave me Hep C. And all the while I didn't want to be like everyone else and throw him away..man what grand self thoughts of myself. Get a grip.

Well, I left I lied and got out of it. but it cost me, I had to leave my home, my things, my job, my youngest daughter and my grandchildren and move to another state, all because I couldn't be strong there and tell him to go.

I wanted him to see the good in me but all he saw was someone he could control. I was scared to death of him, I walked on egg shells most of the time. I couldn't have my own faith my opinions I was always wrong, it would infuriate him to the point of screaming obscenities in my face. that was his way to get inches from my face...to control to instill fear, one wrong move and he would head butt me again and break my nose.

I am not sorry I left him, it hurts that he acts if I did something wrong, but that is him he is sick, he lies, he uses, he is very sick and I can't help him. I only hurt him by bailing him out constantly. No more, I have to love me as much as I loved him or more so. I am worth a lot and spent too much time wasting my life on someone who only used me.

It is not easy, I regress at times and hope to hear from him, but I know and thank God I don't. Time heals all wounds. I am going to support group, I joined a gym and I need to see my self worth now as I am. Not as men tell me it should be. I need to love me before anyone healthy can love me. I am not what he made me feel like, nothing, unworthy to be desired and loved.

I feel truly bad for him, for what a life of hell he lives in but that is his choice.

If you are in this type of relationship, it is not you...leave yes it is painful as anything it is a death of sorts, but you must leave. You can't help them change, you can only help you. do not give them anymore of your life then they already took.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 October 2006):

I've read that the reason we still feel "love" for our abusers and miss them is because we are addicted to the adrenaline rush from being shocked by what they have done to us. Think of how you felt the first time they did something strange to you mentally or physically. A bit dumbfounded. And the reason we don't walk away immediately and never speak to them again is partially because that is how we grew up: In abusive homes and we are accustomed to that environment. We are simply used to having negative energy in our lives. So we have to basically retrain ourselves from associating love with fear. It is the absolute hardest thing to do. But what I've relaized, no matter how much I miss him, I'd rather miss him than be in the center of a horrible relationship. I can handle missing him. I can't and shouldn't handle the rage, the moodiness, the lies, the anger, and him ignoring me. As Winston Churchill said "If you are going through hell, just keep going." There are better days ahead for all of us. Just keep moving forward.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 September 2006):

i am just getting out of a two and a half year relationship, a little over two years of it being emotional and mentally abusive, and about a little more than a year and a half physically violent as well. it was my first real relationship (as im only 17) and it was the most complex event in my whole life, im honestly not surprised it happened to me, i am very insecure and have severe attachment issues, and was probably scared to leave before any serious abuse happened, simply because of my insecurities and fears of being alone, and unloved. this in addition to being with someone who purposely uses your weaknesses against you, has left me in a position where i honestly don't know how to recover. i know what to do, i simply feel like i cant. its too much, and its not worth it. i know in the long run it will be, but now it just seems too far away. i am keeping busy, he still calls sometimes, and i have a really hard time not being manipulated by him, but im working on it. i guess my advice is to pamper yourself, do things you couldnt do while you were with him if he was controlling about how you spent your time, write down what happened and look at it when you are feeling like you miss him, and try to stay positive because you are making a really good decision

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A female reader, boootz9 +, writes (25 June 2006):

I just escaped the worst and LAST violent episode three days ago, with my now ex-boyfriend. We had been together for almost two years, I even waited for him for his 10 mnth. jail sentence and still nothing changed. I met him and he (unhealthily!)became my world as I perceived it. Few mnths. into the relationship he started with the cussing which I chose to make up excuses for or tried to lie to myself for....and eventually led to him striking my head ending up with a huge golf ball bump and brusises all over. I left him and got back together, accepted a ring that was given to me as a means to ty to make up for what happened (but without action to back it up).

about a mnth. later ....After violating his deportation, I (stupidly) waited for him 10mnths. while in jail....all the while knowing that what I was doing was wrong, waiting for an evil liar who cussed @ me, hit me and honestly who didn't care about me period. It was just to painful being so in love to realize the truth, instead I tried very hard to forgive forget and move one hoping that this would become a reality...

eventually he got out of jail....slowly, his true colors re-surfaced, along with his lack of concern for me, I would go days without hearing from him after I did whatever I could to hear from him twice a day when he was in jail....two mnths. passed by and he didn't get a job, nor did he have ay interest in my daily schedule , and the insults, lowering of my self esteem continued.

Time went by and things got worse, he broke his promise of never touching me again, and i broke my promise to myself that I would never go back if he did. I tried to escpae the pain by trying to see someone else...(while we were on a breakup) later I confessed when we got together what I had done. I understood why he'd be hurt, even though he coulnd't understand how he hurt me or why I did that in the first place. So three mnths later (which was as of today 3 days ago), we met up at a hotel...he tried to force me into sex as I refused he suddenly got enraged and drunk, dragging me across the room by my hair so that i'm left with large bumps, strangling and picking me up from the floor only by my neck or hair, and kicking an old hip injury that he knew had altered my life..... keep in mind this happened in juarez mexico, so all the staff had seen and heard what was happening and didn't give a damn. I ran and cried for help and they looked at me without concern. The police even were called in, but since he is friends witht the chief of poloce, they laughed and left with no problems.

I know that I am taking way too long, but I need to vent...the part that hurts me the most was when I realized that while I was waiting outside for a cab that never showed up (an hour ), he had called over some people , one of being some girl in a truck that I know he had sex with or something while I was suffering out there, with no money or phone...I went to the room, and he drug me to the truck to show me "what was waiting for him outside"(that girl)....after this he dragged me back to the room, and I thought my life was over...I was forced out of my clothes, left naked and humiliated , hurt, shocked, and treated like a dog by this person who i thought loved me.....he was telling me the worst things imaginable, about sexual realations with other women,how ugly i was... about her, all the while telling me I'm going to die for trying to get with someone else...telling me that he treated me like a queen and that I took advantage of this wonderful person....i was locked in the bathroom, naked crying, and every time he opened the door was to go in and keep hitting me around full force, grabbing my hair and jerking my neck as if I was a rag doll, choking me at full force till iwould fade out...

I managed to escape thrugh a window, humiliated, as he waved my hip belt( medical belt for an injury that he purposely kicked!) taunting me while I ran into the first car that stopped/.......

I discovered my bag was missing all my money, my phone, and of course my dignity.....

I was taken to the hospital once I crossed to the U.S.A. and am hoping that my aggravated hip injury will recover to what it was before he purposely re-injured it.

I read what I have written, after the abuse, after the humiliation, after the betrayal, after the infidelty...and I do not understand why I am still going through cycles of torment.....one moment I hate him, I hate the world, I wish to seek revenge....the next I fell like I miss this a-hole, like I am dying knowing that he is getting w/ other women...like I will never be in love again........

I do not understand how i can still have those feelings....I guess it's normal, but it's extremely painful and disgusts me!!!!!!!!!!!....I feel like talking about it really helps and finding professional help to break this mental attatchment!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (27 April 2006):

I'm 26 I have been a abusive,verbal relation for 5 yrs now I even have a 2yo child by this guy. When we 1st met he have me the world I felt like. But things suddenly change. He would punch me in my face so I would go to work with black eyes sometimes both black. Even when I was pregnant he put a gun to my face and made me promise to never leave him. He burned me with a iron on my hand. He had cheated on me numerous times. I could go on and on about all the bad things he had done to make u say no way I would stay with that fool. He is actually in jail now for battery against me. But yet still I think about him constantly and wish we were together. But I also think about all the horrible things he had done to me and it makes me furious. So keep your head and always remember God is not going to put u through nothing u cant handle. It is always someone better out there for u. I have not found him yet but that does not mean I'm not going to. Peace Out.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 March 2006):

I don't know if anyone will read this but if it will help one person it's worth writing. I just broke up with a boyfriend of 6 months and he verbally and physically abused me. THe first month I thought he was the nicest guy I had ever met and then he called me a name and I didn't want to believe it. The names got worse then all of a sudden he was throwing cigarettes in my face and was a monster. He would buy me rings and tell me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me and I wanted to believe it so badly. I'm embarassed that I miss him and think about him everyday. We have broken up before but this time I'm going to try very hard to not get back together and fall for his lies, he will never change. Some tips that have helped me so far: block his email address, change your phone number, don't go to places (like restaurants) that you know he goes to, and MOST IMPORTANTLY write a list of everything he did that was mean to you, like every name he called you and every time he hurt you physically. Everytime you feel the urge to call him or get really upset or depressed over him read it. I mostly realized that I am dissatisfied with my life and not upset about the loss of him. Do things for yourself, always do little things like wearing nice clothes, etc and KEEP READING THAT LIST. Remember that what he did is not normal and respect yourself because he obviously doesn't!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 January 2006):

I can't answer your question, but I sure can agree with you because I was in a relationship with an MNPO for an year and a half he physically abused me. Each time it got worse. He even talked about marriage after one incident and I fell right back in. We also went to court and I have a stay away order against him, but still continue to mess with him. He still try to control who I am with and always accuse me of messing with this person and that person, when it's him that is doing the messing around. YEA, I have caught him and he still deny their relationship right today; however, I've told him that I don't want no relationship with him, he still try to have control over who I talk to. I think about our good times all the time as well and that makes me want to call him; even now, but then I think about how he did me in some ways and it makes me angry. Why we go through this I don't know. I read on abusive relationship and it said that we should go to a support group, but I don't know. I am with him and I imagine thousand others. Keep your head up!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (16 November 2005):

Hi My name is Rachelle. I am 15. i just had a recent boyfriend too who beat me up, gave me a black eye and broke my arm with a baseball bat. my parents got a 2 yr. no contact, but i have school with him and i still talk to him, even though i shouldnt. i know how you feel because i am the same way towards him and i dont know what to do. maybe we could help eachother. email me [email address blocked]

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (9 October 2005):

Hi, i understand perfectly in what your going through, I myself have been in an emotional, verbal, and sometimes physical abusive relationship. I was with him for 18 months, completely head over heels for this guy. Things started going wrong after a year, he started disrespecting me before i even knew what was hitting me. I finally told myself Enough is enough, life is way too short to be unhappy. Move on, its not worth it. He´s not the only guy in this world, and if he was I still wouldn´t take it. forget about him honey. Would you be able to say your vows with him and spend the rest of your life unhappy. No!!!!

So find another, another that will respect you and make you unimaginably happy, the way love is suppose to be.

don´t you agree!!!

Take care of yourself. ok

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A reader, anonymous, writes (30 January 2005):

hello,

i myself have just come out of a two year relationship with a man who was abusive and violent, not only to myself but to some of my family. it has been months since we broke up and he still calls me threating violence. i still find myself thinking of the good times we had and getting upset. in my opinion, i feel that i'm doing this as i was completly in love with him but i couldn't make him love me enough to stop hitting me. sometimes i pity him and feel that i should have tried harder with him. but i will not take responsibility for his actions. i loved him and he broke my heart, just as you loved him and he broke yours. it's natural to think, what if? but i'v learned that these people never change and this is what is crucial to remember. if you take it once, it WILL get worse. your feeling of four years for him won't just go away, it's part of the healing process to remember the good times and perfectly natural for you to want to forget the bad stuff but i think it's important to remember that he did hurt you and once is enough. don't put yourself through more grief, now you'v seen him in his true colours, can you look at him and honestly feel love for him after what he did?

give yourself plenty of time, getting over this won't happen overnight. i recomend plenty of parties, plenty of girlie chats and plenty of self pampering. take your experience and turn it into a positive - life is too short to spend it unhappy.

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