The third time I left my abusive partner, I was determined to make it my last. So was he.
In the last installment of My Story, I shared how my abuser moved us back home for a ‘fresh start’, but carried on smoking cannabis and added a gambling problem to boot! Of course, the abuse didn’t stop either: with two unsuccessful attempts to leave already under my belt, it got worse.
He became increasingly insecure and controlling, fuelled by delusional jealousy. I wasn’t allowed to speak to his friends, even when they were in our home. I was to avoid eye contact with men on the street. I wasn’t to answer the door. He had me change my mobile phone number, and warned me to keep it a secret. Unfortunately for me, one day he used my telephone to call a friend. That unsuspecting friend rang him back on the same number from which he received the call.
My partner (almost literally) exploded. After telling the confused caller that he would kill him, he hit me in the face. Then he asked me why I received the call, though he didn’t bother to listen. He smashed my phone. He screamed at me for 50 minutes, telling me that I was a whore. Then, mercifully, he stormed out. Two days later, he ‘remembered’ that he had made the initial call. He didn’t apologise.
The straw that cracked the eggshells
I knew that things weren’t getting better, no matter how hard I tried to tip-toe around him. It wasn’t all bad, but even in the lulls I was on edge, waiting for the next crack in the eggshell. I struggled to sleep when my partner was home. I was happiest when he was out, because I knew our child could then enjoy calm and quiet. I tried to imagine Baby’s future. That all-important stable, happy home seemed utterly out of reach.
Still, I have no idea why I chose that particular day to leave. Nothing out of the ordinary had happened. We had actually had a rare pleasant time as a family, just the evening before. But that morning, he blanked our child, who was crying for attention from daddy. Perhaps that was the final straw. Or maybe I knew that I couldn’t stick around just waiting for things to get even worse.
One thing of which I was sure, was that I had to get out without him getting a sniff of my plans. I was feeling the fear, and leaving anyway.
I waited until he went off to work. Into my car, I packed the essentials – organised some weeks ago. Then Baby and I were off. It was only later, once we were safely installed at my parent’s house, that I texted my now-ex to tell him that I wasn’t coming back, ever. I’d just stomped all over his carefully laid eggshells.
What’s more, I’d triggered his switch-up to determined predator mode. That’s when things got REALLY scary.
Have you escaped your abuser? Was there a ‘final straw’? How did you get out?
ALSO SEE: Find out how my Prince Charming dropped his mask on the My Story page.
© Avalanche of the Soul, 2013-14