What is it like when you are in an abusive relationship?

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Jacqueline

Jacqueline

© Gori History

“The longer I was around him, the more angry he got at times,” says Jacqueline. gory history† She had an abusive relationship.

Note: Jacqueline’s story is about domestic violence. This can be considered shocking.

Gauri: How did the relationship start?
Jacqueline: I was 14 years old. I was on summer vacation and went to stay with my aunt for two weeks. He was sitting there one night when we got home. Later, I started feeling some feelings for him. He was ten years older than me at the time. This is where the first problem was. We were really aware of that. At some point I found out that he started feeling these feelings for me too. We’ll see where they are stranded. We tried it for a while and after about two months it completely changed.

Were there any kind of red flags in the first period?
“He wanted to be with me a lot. Whenever I went somewhere, I got a message saying, ‘Hey, when are you coming back?’ Later on, that was actually my first red flag.

But I also get that you can think about it: Oh, he’s crazy about me. We are in that stage of love…
I was in the middle of puberty at the time, so you think: Oh, it’s so amazing. In the past, this was not the case at all.

So how did his behavior begin to change a little?
I had a date with a friend at his house. He came home and didn’t agree at all that I brought a girlfriend to his house. Then he got really scared, started screaming, started throwing things. Where she was. Then she also asked: “Is everything OK with him?” I didn’t really know what was going on either, because I don’t know him very much. I really thought: What did you start with? I really knew it was a mistake. He once said, “You just don’t go to school anymore, you just do what I want.” Of course I didn’t agree at all at first. Then he manipulated me by saying, “If you go to school, I will literally come and take you there, or I will kick him there in front of everyone.”

Then So why did you go to school and then sit with him?
“He literally locked me in his house. So I couldn’t leave either. I didn’t have a phone, because he took it, so I wasn’t allowed to do all that either.

What kind of things did he become aggressive about?
Literally everything: my existence, how I breathed, how I looked at it. The longer I was around him, the more angry he got at times. 9 times out of 10 I didn’t care and just did what I wanted to do. Also in his house. At one point it became too much for him and then he started screaming and throwing things. But at some point, it’s really hitting and kicking, until he bleeds. For example, he would hold me or I would put his flat hand on my face. At some point it became a fist. When I was lying on the floor or lying on the couch, I suddenly got a kick out of nowhere. I could never get anything back, because that hit or kick was already so hard that I was already in pain. This is of course an opportunity for him to continue.

So weren’t you afraid every time such a fight started you thought: This might be the last?
‘every-time. every day. This really happened 24/7.

How many times a day did this happen?
“At least 3 times a day, at most all day really. And that’s for a year and a half.”

Why didn’t you leave him?
“Pure manipulation. Of course I have this question a lot.

meIs it a stupid question or a stupid question?
No, I don’t think so at all, actually. Because of course that’s the first thing people think of when I’ve been through something so powerful. If you haven’t experienced it either, it’s very easy to say, “Just leave it. It’s very easy: you walk out the door and you go.” But this is not the case at all. My parents who had just moved in, I didn’t even know they owned the house at all, then at one point I got a picture of my parents’ house with: “We know where your parents live, and we know where everyone is sitting.” I didn’t even get it, I got it through a boyfriend or girlfriend. I do not remember exactly. Every time the word “we”, I also knew that there were several. My family was being watched and then I also called my mother to see if the house belonged to them. Then she said, “Yes, we picked up the key this afternoon.” I didn’t even know they lived there and then I knew: I can’t leave now, either because leaving and killing my family or I stay and get hit.

What was the tipping point where you decided it couldn’t continue like this?
“I was on the phone with a friend. He came and I wanted to hang up quickly. Somehow it didn’t work. My girlfriend was on speakerphone and he immediately started shouting, “Who are you on the phone with, you know you’re not allowed to do that.” He grabbed my phone and hit him There was an antique knife in the closet in the living room. He took it and tried to stab me with it. At first he was waving it like, ‘I’m going to stab you and this time it’s really over.’ Do you have any final words?” Then I grabbed this knife in my bare hands on the sharp side and pulled it out of his hands. I have a scar from it. I gave him a shove and opened the door for him to go to the neighbors. They weren’t there, so I ran into town screaming, “Please help me.” Everyone He really looks at you like: Are you burned? No one came to me. I called the police myself. They didn’t help, because they said it would be a small thing. Then I knew: I have to do it myself. Now or not.

Police said over the phone that they often get calls like this and don’t take it seriously. They turned off the phone at that time. Then I thought: I’ll go back to him and that’s literally the end or I’ll see myself now and do what I can. I ended up going to the hospital myself and then went there. I was immediately admitted to the hospital. There was a nurse of about 25 who saw the bruises on my body and asked about it. It’s a shame I said I fell. Then she said, “I went through the same thing. These bruises are not from a fall.” Then I knew they understood me and then I really got rid of everything that happened. She said they would help me and they asked for help for me too.

Do you know about domestic violence?
No, I never told my parents and siblings. I knew my best friend and helped me a few times. But I didn’t want that either. I never came home. For example, when I was at home, I covered him with makeup or clothes so that they did not see him. I didn’t notice that either. When they asked me about my condition, I said I was fine.

Do you need it?
“Yes a lot. When I think about it now, I wish they knew that, too.

Have you ever ran into your ex?
“Not even a month ago. It wasn’t too severe for me. I was on the bus to school. Income. I kept looking at him directly. I wasn’t afraid, because I was in control of the situation. At first he didn’t get it. When a few people came out, he realized it. I was very curious how he would react after four years. It was very clear that he was shocked. He immediately started pressing all the stop buttons to get off that bus as quickly as possible.

What made you this?
“It really made me a lot stronger. That no one would ever take back control of me.”

Have you ever thought about that?
“No, sometimes you think: This just happened, so I’m going to carry it my whole life. But if I’ve really made it through therapy and talked about it a lot with anyone, it’s very, very easy, very quickly.”

Are you a victim of domestic violence? Or are you worried about someone close to you? Call Safe at Home toll-free at 0800-2000. It is available to you 24/7. In the event of immediate danger, call 112.

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