When I met you, I was drawn to you like a magnet. You were smart, sexy, funny, charming, and you made me want you. You showed me the perfect man, and you made sure that I saw it. You made me aware that I was lucky that you chose me. From the start, it was as I see it now, a very un-equal relationship. You were my God and I was your puppet. You were my savior, my protector, my teacher, and I was your student. You wanted to teach me, and control me. I wanted to please you, and to make you happy.


It was a roller coaster. When things were good, they were incredible. When things were bad, they were awful. You made me believe that I was the one controlling this roller coaster we were on. If I could just keep you happy, things would be okay, but when things went downhill, it was all my fault. In your eyes, I only deserved to be treated nicely when you decided it was okay. When I did something you didn’t like, you decided how badly you would treat me to teach me a lesson. All along, I thought I was in control of what was happening to me. As a result, I felt that I deserved all of the bad things that you did and said to me. Your voice of judgement and disapproval over me took over my own inner voice, and my focus became on you. Your rights and needs became more important that my own.


Over time, your words destroyed me, your control overpowered me, and your actions terrified me. I was trapped and I felt I had no way out. I wanted to disappear. I wanted to run so far away from the monster you had become, but it was the good part of you that I wanted to run to. You were my kryptonite, and you were also my super power. You were the person that I loved more than I’ve ever loved before, and you were the one who hurt me more than I have ever been hurt before. You took away my confidence, my self worth, my sense of security, my peace, and my control over my own life. I should have been furious at you, but you took away my right to be angry. So instead, I blamed myself. You insulted me, put me down, pushed me, slapped me, terrified me, and you said you loved me. That was love?! And I was crazy?! In a way I was lucky that you made me feel crazy, because it was then that I went looking for help.


I found a place where my kids and I could be safe. A place where I was respected and supported. I found a place where I had rights, where I was able to speak my mind. I found, as it turns out, the best thing that could have happened to me. In this place, I could cry, I could laugh, and I could be myself. I had the support of incredible counselors, and companionship from women who understood, because they had been there too. I was given the chance to learn about conjugal violence, and to regain power over my own life. I learned about rights, equality, limits, communication, self-expression, emotions, control, manipulation, and the importance of caring for myself. A wealth of information was offered to me, and there was always a friendly face to talk to. This place brought me back to life. With their help, I dug myself out of the hole I was hiding in, walked through the thick fog that living in a violent relationship had created, and with much determination, I began to climb back up the mountain. I know that as long as I keep moving forward, I will reach the top.


You may have succeeded at controlling and manipulating me, but I have succeeded at breaking out of it. From now going forward, you, or anyone else for that matter will never have control over me again. I am my own person. I have rights, I have needs, I have my own thoughts, and I make my own choices.