An Open Letter to My Abuser
Please come in and take a seat. This is a unique opportunity for you to sit and not speak. This is an opportunity for me to speak my truth and for you to understand the abuse through my eyes.
I wish I could remember the first time you hit me. Not because I want to relive the physical pain but rather so I could understand what my thought process was. What did my internal dialogue sound like? Was my initial thought "run" or was it rather "do something to distract him so you don't get hit again" but still stay?
You see, I learned early on in life how to redirect and also a bit of reverse psychology without even knowing it. It was how I protected myself from the stares and the comments that overweight girls get. I learned to "hide" by redirecting conversations. I used humor, sarcasm, and smarts. Clearly my strategy was not without faults.
I don't remember that first time you put your hands on me and trust me I have searched my memory for years. There were so many times and yet the first still eludes me. Regardless of a failed memory it is clear that's the day I became a victim.
That day, that moment, I decided my worth. I decided that my best option was to suffer at your hand in exchange for love. I decided that to love me meant that you could also hurt me (flashback to being molested at age 4). It was a hurt I was all too familiar with and would spend the next seven years living with you.
I allowed you to control me. I gave you control over me physically, financially, and emotionally. I became a shell of who I really am. Fear was a great motivator, still is, and my fear of not being good enough or worthy of love screamed louder than the echo of any slap you ever gave me. Maybe I wasn't pretty enough, thin enough, maybe my hair wasn't long enough or maybe it was the wrong color, etc., etc. My self doubt swelled each and every time you belittled me, threatened me, or physically harmed me.
Reliving those moments now just to even put anything in writing is making me physically ill. I want to run, run far away from this sick, disgusting ache in my body that these memories stir. It's like having a black tornado swirl around inside your body and you just can't shake it off.
You scared me, almost constantly. I walked on eggshells most days as to not make you angry and have to suffer those consequences. There were many consequences. They ranged from verbal abuse, hair pulling, holding a knife to my neck, slapping, punching, and even sexual abuse.
Someday I will write a book about all that hell. That's what it was you know, a literal living hell. I kept it a secret for so long before anyone knew what was going on when the doors closed. You took my will and I was basically broken and with a child. You told me no one would ever love me and I believed you...for years!!
Today I purge myself of the demon I've held onto for more than half my life. I forgive you for the damage that was caused and no longer judge you for what has happened. That will be between you and your creator and is not up to me. I have carried your evil around with me long enough and today you must take it back, all of it, every last moment.
I am a resilient woman because of you. I stand tall today and am thankful I made it through. The woman I am today would never stay with a man who ever attempted to treat her the way you did. The woman I am today is good enough and worthy of love. The woman I am today was broken and learned to love all those broken pieces!