Flashback

Last night, I had a conversation with a friend of mine who is in an abusive relationship. I, too, was in one. This friend – my best friend, by the way – mentioned something their abuser did that caused me to flashback to some events from my relationship with my abuser.  You may remember the name Christine if you’re a long time reader. If not, here is something I shared on another website, in the comments section.

During the 1999 to 2002, I was in a bad relationship. Domestic violence kind of bad. If you were to look at the two of us, and heard ours was a dv relationship, you’d swear I was the victimizer: I was a Navy man, she was a bartender. I was 6′, 220 lbs of solid muscle. She was 5′, 95 lbs of waif. I didn’t stand a feckin’ chance. I’m going to tell you about the first – and only – time I heard that I was a victim, and needed to get out.

Christine and I had a little game we’d play every weekend where I’d ask what she wanted for breakfast, she’d say eggs Benedict, and I’d give her scrambled. We both knew from the early days of the relationship I had no idea what eggs Benedict were, much less how to make them. This particular sunny Saturday afternoon, the radio was on KOGO AM, and the Padres were warming up.

She came into the kitchen wearing one of my work black shirts, and a smile. I wore jeans and a white t-shirt. I kissed her in greeting (I was up about 30 minutes prior to her), and pulled the eggs from the fridge. We did our little routine, and I served her her hot scrambled eggs and bacon. I slapped bacon into the skillet for myself, and started to whip up an omelet for myself. I heard a skillet scraping across the counter top – if you’ve ever owned a cast iron skillet, you know the sound I’m referring to – and, I think I started to turn to see what she was up to. I still don’t know. What I do know is I was suddenly looking under the stove at some dust bunnies. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why I was on the floor.

Christine ordered me to get up in this scary flat way she had that informed me I had screwed up again. I tried for several minutes to do so, but it was like my body wasn’t connected to me anymore. After a few sharp kicks in the ribs, which I barely noticed, I was able to pull myself to my feet by holding onto the oven door. I looked at the red-haired beauty in front of me, and did not know her name. Before I could say anything, I felt wetness rolling down the back of my neck. “Oh, I must have just gotten out of the shower and forgot to dry my hair,” I remember thinking, and I went to push some of the water out with my hand. Instead, I found a spongy mass on the back of my skull, and a handful of blood. I woke in the hospital a few hours later. Cracked the back of my skull.

The doc said it was a wonder I was still alive. That part of my cranium was fractured like an eggshell. Funny, huh? He asked me what happened, and I said to ask Christine. She said I fell. He asked her to step outside, and repeated his question. I said what she did. I knew better than to contradict her. Doc said it was bs because I had a mark on the side of my face from a maybe fall, but this was the back of my skull. He then told me I should contact a shelter and leave her. He said that she was abusing me. I got mad at him, then myself, then Christine, and then I cried. I did not, however, veer from the story of me falling.

 

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11 thoughts on “Flashback”

  1. Abuse comes in many different forms. Thanks for sharing your story. I’ve gone through things which I wish not to remember but I have not had the guts to openly write about them. A handful of people knows what’s happened, but it’s not something easy to talk about.

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    1. That is a great way to do it. Another good way is to maybe find someone you trust that you can talk about it. One of the hardest things for me to do was to stop blaming myself for letting it happen. For not being smarter about what kind of person she was, and how she had been manipulating me.

      The self loathing was, for me, the hardest thing to move past. I still occasionally have flare ups, and it’s been almost 10 years since I escaped.

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      1. I have told a few people about it. But its more like just letting them know whats happened. Not much in detail.

        And it happened when i was young, so yea grew up feeling pretty darn bad about myself too.

        Honestly speaking, I don’t think I’ll ever get over it. Theres good days and bad days i guess. More good 🙂

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        1. That’s good that there are more good days. Mine happened when I, too, was young.

          Getting over it isn’t the issue. Allowing yourself to move past it, and to forgive yourself is. That’s also the hardest.

          Do you have anyone you can share the details with?

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          1. I know. I think I’m on the road to forgiving myself. I’m just very angry sometimes, especially when I let myself think about it. Thats the hardest thing for me to do right now. Trying not to let the anger and hate get to me.

            I havent found the right person to share everything with yet. Maybe one day. 🙂

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            1. I understand. Maybe my next post will help some. I’m going to publish it in about a minute.

              By the way, I’m happy you got out, and I’m proud of you for having done so.

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