Talk about a horrible life huh? If being in an abusive relationship was one of the best things it makes you question, then what do I consider one of the worst? Dun Dun Dun! Ironically being in two abusive relationships was one of the best things that has happened to me in my life. It’s quite like a beautiful rainbow after a horrendous rain storm. Except this horrendous rainstorm was my “love life”. Although the relationships themselves were horrible, the aftermath was beautiful. Here’s how:
- It’s what lead me to becoming a mom
When I built the strength to leave my abuser I was a pregnant single teen mom. Triple whammy! Yet, being in an abusive relationship while being pregnant truly opened my eyes and to this day makes me appreciate being a mother more than ever. When I was with my abuser one day I asked myself, “Do I want to be a mom who gets hit, watches my child be abused, and lives a life in fear every day? Or, do I want to be a single, happy, safe parent?” Well that’s a no brainer! Now that I’m a mom it’s my favorite title. My child means more than the world to me and if I hadn’t ever been in an abusive relationship, hadn’t become pregnant, who knows I might still be in that same miserable position; a victim of ongoing domestic violence.
- It helped me discover who I am as a person
When I left both of my abusive relationships I took lots of time to self-reflect, to analyze, to find myself. In both relationships, other than the forms of abuse, they both had something highly in common, I couldn’t be myself.
From my appearance: “Why do you want to wear makeup? You’re cheating on me huh!” “Why do you want to wear a dress? You’re trying to impress another guy aren’t you!” to them even judging my decisions and opinions, “Why do you want to get on birth control? You must be sleeping around!” “Why are you such a feminist? I hate feminists, women belong in the kitchen!”
Everything I liked, said, or even wore had to be changed, rearranged, kept to myself, masked. All in all, this forced me to be secluded, to hide my true self and my true feelings. I felt as if I was trapped in a cage. After becoming single I began to realize who I was as a person and how nobody can take that from me. I realized that no matter what I sleep in my skin every night, nobody else. I began to explore and find hobbies that I enjoyed, reading, shopping, spontaneous road trips, going for walks, museums, art galleries, cooking, scrap-booking, writing! I found who I am as a person and who I’m becoming on this long journey called life.
- It showed me what to look out for in future relationships
Ever watched a toddler touch something hot? Something they know they aren’t supposed to touch, they touch it once (out of curiosity) … burn themselves. Sees it there, wants to discover it, thinking “eh I doubt it’ll burn me again… they burn themselves again. Then they completely walk away and never touch it again. Yeah, well that pretty much sums that up.
- It guided me into my profession
Throughout my childhood, I thought I wanted to be an entomologist, a bug doctor. Ha! Don’t know what I was thinking. Throughout my college years I never truly knew what I wanted to be. I thought I wanted to be a nurse, because that’s what my parents had drilled into my head since day one of college. Yet when I volunteered as a nurse I knew that it wasn’t the occupation for me. Then throughout the beginning of my adult life experiencing being a victim of domestic violence, not knowing how to form healthy relationships, not knowing about healthy sexual relationships, not knowing about sexuality, it truly pointed me in the direction I wanted… Public Health! I knew obtaining my Bachelor’s in the Science of Public Health was my calling. In Public Health, there are tons of different areas to study in, environmental health, occupational health, health administration, nutrition, the list goes on! The one in particular that I plan to pursue is the area of educating others on healthy relationships and healthy sexual relationships. Let’s talk about sex baby!
- It helped me to share my story with others
Last but not least, it helped me share my story with others! Before being in an abusive relationship I was very naïve and ignorant on the topic of domestic violence. I, like many others, would think “why don’t they just leave?” or “that only happens in the movies”. Unless Netflix was secretly filiming my relationships, I’m pretty positive domestic violence is definitely not just “in movies”. Looking back on life if I had a blog to view, a book to read, a video to watch, anything really, on the topic of domestic violence it would have made me look at my relationship a lot differently, I would have noticed that the actions depicted in writing are a lot like the “fake-ationship” that I was in. This is truthfully what made me start my blog. I knew if I could share my story with the world it can really help others, it could be that extra step that makes them leave, it could give them the courage they need to grow, it could be what helps them create their own path to closure.
Anyone who has gone through something traumatic, who has experienced something that has left you feeling damaged, always remember that in life we go through hardships. Life is hard. Those hardships are what help you grow and become even stronger then you were before. As cliché as it sounds, “You can’t have a rainbow without the rain”. It’s okay to hurt, it’s okay to feel lost just know that with “time2mend” everything will be okay!