[November 30, 2020] As a child who witnessed domestic abuse, I believed abuse was only physical. I saw daddy hitting mommy too many times. I was too young to see the other forms of abuse that took place under the surface. The emotional abuse and manipulation my mother suffered were just part of the family dynamic.
As an adult, I found myself in an abusive relationship. The abuse was subtle in the beginning. I was a social butterfly, but any time I had a conversation with someone other than him, he would accuse me of cheating. He called me names and humiliated me in front of his family, making me feel guilty for just being me. When he wanted intimacy, instead of caressing me, he’d grab me, making me feel that intimacy was a duty and role I had to play. He made me feel guilty for going to work, as his interpretation of being a mother was staying at home with the kids and not working. He believed the only role of a woman or wife was to be submissive. What I believed did not matter.