I tell my story in hopes that it will help someone else in this type of situation. My abuse started after two years of marriage. First with small things that I disregarded, but over time it got worse. Each time things escalated. One night we had been out together, and had a disagreement. We went home, and I got ready for bed. Still upset, he came into our bedroom grabbing me out of the bed, forcing me onto the floor, screaming and yelling about how worthless he thought I had been for the past 16 years. He told me this time he wanted me dead. He drug me around our apartment by my hair for hours. My head got so sore, that I wrapped a blanket around it, so he couldn’t pull it. He pulled me from room to room, yelling and punching me in the face, causing my eyes to nearly swell shut. Even though he had been pulling my clothes off the whole time, I saw a chance to run from him, and I made my escape. I ran to my neighbors, yelling and screaming, but he soon followed and grabbed me, wrapping his hand over my mouth. This time he let me have it for trying to run away, punching me till I blacked out. I couldn’t take it anymore, and gave up fighting back. I crawled to the couch. I laid there waiting for him to pass out, the sun came up and he did.
He woke me up Saturday night and said he had to use my car to go to the hospital, his finger was broken. I went back to sleep. After he left, I went to see if any of my neighbors were home. So here I was alone in the apartment with no phone or car. When he got back home he gave me some Vicodin for the pain in my head. This put me back to sleep.
Now it’s Sunday afternoon and I’m not getting any better, so he decides to take me to the Emergency Room. He told them that I had fallen off the boat dock. The nurse took me to the exam room, and he went to get up to go in with me. The nurse explained to him how they needed to examine me first, and then they would come in and get him. This seemed to make him still feel in control of the situation. “Now what’s really going on”, the nurse asked. So I told her what my husband had done to me Friday night. She asked if I wanted to press charges, and I said yes.
The police came, and they ran tests. My parents came and I went home with them. All I could do was sleep. I called my Pastor, and she took me to the Alternatives to Violence Center in Clinton County. While there, I tried filling out the paperwork, but couldn’t remember my birth date, or my social security. They encouraged my Pastor to take me to Clinton Memorial Hospital. I remember thrashing around on the exam table. They came in to tell me that I had a head injury and would be air cared to Miami Valley Trauma Center. I was told later that I had an Intracranial Hemorrhage. After three days in the hospital, I went home with my parents.
I walked like I had just had a stroke, I couldn’t remember how I wore my hair, what make-up I wore, nothing. It was scary to look into the mirror and not know who I was. All my daily living skills were gone.
I went to the Alternatives to Violence Center’s support group. They have helped me learn how to cope with this type of situation, such as getting a protection order and teaching me how to deal with my anger. I felt as if his life hadn’t changed, and mine was a big mess! I had to stay at a Crisis Shelter for awhile, then I got housing in a program called Transitional Living for single woman, working a temporary job packing supplies, as I wasn’t able to do my nursing assistant job for nearly a year. Now I’m back to work in the nursing assistant job, I have my own apartment, I have my own car. I have come a long way.
My abuser received 120 days in jail, 5 years probation and court-ordered to take anger management classes.
This has been a long journey, but now I’m free of my abuser after 16 years. This is my story.