Dating/Sex · Mental Health

#LoveDoesn’tHurt

I walked up the stairs into my apartment and the door was wide open. The kitchen light was on and my keys were on the ground. My little dog Luna was not in the house.

I knew you had something to do with it but I wasn’t sure how far that night would go.

It was Christmastime and I was 8 weeks pregnant. Nobody knew. Except you, my mother and a few friends. I had a tripped planned back home to Virginia prior to you moving in, I knew leaving you alone would cause trouble.

While in Virginia, my mother told me to hide the pregnancy. I was only 8 weeks pregnant but she swore people could tell. She told me to wear a large sweatshirt around her husband’s family. I was 21 and this pregnancy was planned but I was told to hide it.

Typically, while home with my parents, my mom would put me on the phone with distant relatives from other states. This time, I talked with my mom’s sister.

“How is your relationship with the father?”

“Well, I find him very annoying and difficult to be around but isn’t that typical?” 

“No, that isn’t typical.”

This resonated with me. It wasn’t even like she said a lot. She just confirmed that what I was experiencing wasn’t normal.

It was Christmas. I was busy spending time with family. I went upstairs to look at my phone and check out my alleged “baby bump”.

“Why aren’t you texting back”

“Are you really visiting someone else?”

“You’re such a slut”

“Answer me now”

“You’re seriously a bitch”

There aren’t words you can say to calm someone down who acts like this. You can try, You can try for years. But it doesn’t work.

It was time for me to head back to Texas. I was about to board the plane when my phone kept going off.

PING!

PING!

PING!

It was him. Insistently calling me. Obsessively texting me.

Berating me. Again.

This time, I blocked him. I couldn’t explain for the 55th time why it was not okay to keep accusing me, shaming me, pestering me, verbally abusing me.

Once I landed in San Antonio, my aunt picked me up from the airport. He had just moved in 2 weeks prior, and didn’t bring a car with him. My aunt knew something was wrong but I didn’t want to talk about it.

I got out of the car.

She drove away.

After I got into my apartment, completely confused with why my door was left open and my dog wasn’t in, I unblocked him.

“I WILL LET YOUR DOG RUN AWAY”

“WHY ARE YOU SUCH A BITCH”

“WHY DID YOU BLOCK ME”

I tried to speak logically. I tried to speak in a way that made him feel like  I wasn’t the enemy. I asked him where he was.

I went outside to see if he was out walking the neighborhood. At that moment, he stormed up in terrifying frenzy. You can’t un-see a face that has nothing but abuse on it’s mind.

He let Luna go.

I screamed to just let her into the apartment and we could talk about this. I ran after her around the yard. He was running after me, screaming about what a whore I was.

I tried to get into doorway so I could lock the apartment door but he put his arm against my neck. I couldn’t get in.

I was screaming for someone to help me.

My landlord yelled from the big house if I was okay. I shouted that I wasn’t.

I grabbed my phone and got away.

I called my aunt that I needed her to come back and get me.

The police showed up. My aunt showed up.

At this point, he had run away into the woods of the neighborhood. He had to be coaxed back to the house.

Since I was leaving to go with my aunt for the night, the police didn’t ask me to make a statement or press charges.

This was it. This was the final straw.

He left on a plane back to Virginia two days later.

I didn’t see him again for two years.

He didn’t meet our daughter until she was two years old.

Since, he has only met her one other time.

She doesn’t know who he is.

She probably will never know him.

Love doesn’t hurt. Love doesn’t try to control your life. Love doesn’t make you question who your friends are. Love doesn’t make you feel bad for spending time with your family.

Love doesn’t force you to have sex when you don’t want to.

Love doesn’t make you stay when you want to leave.

Love doesn’t call your best friend 60 times in an evening because you aren’t answering.

Love doesn’t feel like that.

 

Want to read other short stories by me?

Birth Story: The day I became your mom

#MeToo

Resources

Domestic Violence Screening Quiz

Signs of abuse

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