If I’m honest, I know where it all stems from…

It’s quite a read, best get a cuppa….

THE BEGINNING

I met my ex-partner when I was just 11 years old. He was 14, bit of a lad, and in all honesty? I did not like him one bit. When I was 12, we started to hang around in the same social circle, and I still thought he was a tool. He was someone who was trying to date all the girls, someone who fancied themselves quite a bit, got into fights, into trouble with authorities, just a general menace. When I was 13 he pursued me when I was dating my now husband, and I wasn’t interested. He started to hang about my Mum’s house, offering to do jobs in her garden and around the house, of which she found to be great. My Mum always had a soft spot for Voldemort (this is not his real name, but fitting none the less, as he is someone who shall not be named), and would then make him cups of tea that would encourage him to stay. Voldemort was quite charming when he wanted to be, and actually quite funny. He managed to worm his way in, and eventually we started dating (if you can even call it that).

The way we got together isn’t exactly conventional; I had arrived at a mutual friend’s house to meet my boyfriend, and when I arrived I was being heckled for being a ‘slut’. Voldemort had told my ‘friends’ that he and I had done things (bearing in mind I’m 13 at this point) behind my boyfriend’s back. I tried to assure everyone that it was all lies, but this is when Voldemort smacked me in face. I remember my cheek feeling like it was on fire, and my jaw throbbed. I couldn’t even cry, although my eyes filled up and my vision was blurry. He did this to me, to show the room his frustration at me lying. My then boyfriend had turned his back on me and didn’t want to hear it. As I got my coat to leave, Voldemort followed me out the room, pulled me in for a hug and whispered in my ear “You know I did this for ‘us’ right?”. I honestly didn’t know how to react, so I just pulled away and I ran home.

I wanted to tell my Mum, but as someone who never believed a word I said, what was the point? I stopped going out for a while, just vegged at home watching movies feeling sorry for myself and doing my best to avoid those who chose to believe the lies about me. I was mortified and hurt that I genuinely didn’t have a single friend that thought better of me, to know it was rubbish. A few weeks went by and Voldemort started to come around by my Mum’s again, asking for me. I would just get her to say I wasn’t well, or I was out. This didn’t stop him. He’s one determined, relentless person when he wants something. He even started standing outside my bedroom window in the early hours throwing stones at my bedroom window. He then started turning up at my school at breaks/lunches, begging me to listen to him. Eventually I gave in. I just wanted him to go away and leave me alone.

He suggested that we go for a walk, as it was a sunny night. I went and dropped my school bag at home, and we set off toward one of the villages just outside our home town. We just talked and talked, and what started as a serious conversation, ended up a light hearted one. Turned out we had a lot in common, our love of 80’s action movies for one! We laughed and enjoyed each other’s company that much, that we ended up 3 villages away! And it was getting dark. With this being in the days before mobile phones, and us being so far away from home, we attempted to jog most of the way back. When I got home, my Mum was so angry with me. Given I’d gone out around 4pm and this was now 10pm. However, Voldemort turned on the charm and the apologised and I was off the hook. We started to spend all our time together. I could see another side to Voldemort, one that he didn’t show to many. The side of him that liked to goof off and have fun. I have so many fond and funny memories of us being together, some still make me laugh.

In our first 3 years together, it was bumpy. We were on again off again. We even saw other people in between our breakups, but we always ended up back together. I was often being told of him cheating on me, but I didn’t believe it. We spent so much of our time together, where was he finding the time? And why would he if he loved me? I lost a lot of friends over this time, due to him cheating and me not believing them. Or the fact he would try it on with them, they would say no, warn me, then I would refuse to believe it possible. He was quite a possessive guy, but I didn’t see it as possessive, I saw it as protective and for the fact that he loved me so much. He would tell me things about my friends, and I would believe him whole heartedly. He would ‘suggest’ that I don’t go to certain social occasions, or not be friends with certain people, and I would just follow his word. He was older, wiser, and loved me, he was only looking out for me. He would encourage me to not go to school, so that we could spend the day together. So, I would just go to his house and lounge around with him all day. I didn’t see it as a bad thing, as I was where I wanted to be, and that was with him. Needless to say, I was head over heels for this guy, and nothing and no-one was going to persuade me any different. Others could see how he was, my best friend tried to warn me relentlessly, but naturally she was just jealous. Perhaps she wanted him for herself?

Voldemort liked to drink. He had been drinking socially from a young age, as did most people my age. He would often have that one drink too many, where his whole demeaner would change. It was like Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde. He could become nasty, saying horrible & hurtful things and often do his best to make me cry. Always, the next day, I’d be met with flowers, a hug and an apology. He’d always do his best to make up for it, and me being the doting girlfriend, I’d believe it and accept. I was no angel of course, I too had a bit of a sharp tongue on me and I could hold my own and retaliate. Often, he would win and I would be the one crying, but that’s not to say I didn’t try and hold my own. It was a volatile relationship to say the least, but hey, we loved each other. Right?

 

THE MIDDLE

My life spiralled out of control when I was with him. I’d dropped out of school, my parents could see me far enough, I was homeless at 15 and my life was an utter mess. I had my boyfriend though and he loved me, so that’s all that mattered. I was homeless on my 16th Birthday, and my sister insisted that I stay at her house on the eve of it. I did, but I felt awkward in the morning. My baby niece woke up to get her breakfast and here is her waste of space aunt sleeping on the couch. I drank my cup of tea, opened my cards and got out of there sharp. My sister gave me money in a card, and the first thing I wanted to do, was go out and spend the day with my boyfriend.

When I got to his house, my ‘friend’, Lisa, opened the door wearing nothing but his T-Shirt. I just stood there, not knowing if I wanted to hit her or cry. He had then flown to the door when he realised it was me, with some bull excuse. All my ‘friend’ could do was smirk. Voldemort was tripping over his own lies at this point, and then shouted at me for being early. It was agreed I would go to his house for lunch time, not the morning. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. There definitely was no denying his cheating now. I hot footed it out of there and went to my friend, Gordon’s, house where I got very drunk and tried to forget how utterly shambolic my life had become. Gordon said I could stay on his couch that night, and I was glad, as I couldn’t face my sister and having to let her know she was right about him being a waste of space.

The next day, Voldemort found out I’d been staying at Gordon’s house, and he was not happy. Well actually that is an understatement. He was furious. He arrived at the door, causing a scene, shouting obscenities and threats to Gordon. He demanded that I leave with him right there and then, and I did. Gordon’s neighbours were now at their doors threatening to get the police involved if this didn’t stop, what else could I do? As we walked back to his house, I got some excuse about how Lisa had been at his house to see his older brother, not him, and that she only borrowed the T-shirt. He assured me that things looked way worse than they were, and that he loved me. Well, of course I believed him, and then I ended up apologising for running off and not letting him explain.

As the days went on, he kept making snarky comments about Gordon. He would rile himself up and I would try to calm him but he wasn’t for listening. He was telling me that Gordon wanted to sleep me with me, and then would ask me to look him in the eye and assure him I didn’t let anything happen when I stayed. It was continuous. Didn’t matter how much I assured him, he didn’t believe me and his hate for Gordon grew. He told me he didn’t want me to see him anymore. Well I told him no, I was going to keep being his friend. You see, Gordon was my best male friend. He wasn’t a guy that ever looked at me in that way, he was just a nice bloke, that I enjoyed spending time with. He too was older, but always had my back and would do his best to look out for me. He was the one person in my life at that time, I knew would believe me and wouldn’t be like my other so-called-friends. Telling Voldemort no just made him hate Gordon all the more.

The next weekend I popped down to Gordon’s, as I always did, and when I got there he told me about Voldemort paying a visit. He said he was quite threatening and told him to stay away from me, or else. When I asked him what he said to that, he told me “I told him that you were too good for him, and one day you’d see it”. Gordon then shut his door, for Voldemort to start kicking it before giving up and leaving in a rage. I was mortified. Why had he done this, I’d already told him I was going to be Gordon’s friend regardless of what he thought.

One evening, during the week after Christmas, before New Years Eve, Voldemort and I were babysitting for a neighbour of his. I have no idea why this woman let him babysit, as it was just an excuse for him to invite his friends over for a party. The house was jumping, drinks were flowing and the music was blaring. There was a younger girl, I think about 13, called Stacy. She had been acting weird all night and wasn’t very chatty to me. I kind of left her to it, perhaps she was just shy. Well no, as the night went on, she got more emotional, and left a letter for Voldemort in the kitchen. I walked in on him reading it and asked to see, he said no. Tore it into confetti and threw it out of the window. I was furious. As I looked out the kitchen window, I could see the girl now standing at the bus stop at the top of the road, just looking down, as if she were waiting. I said to him, “well if you won’t tell me what’s going on, she will”. I went for the front door, he chased me down and pushed me against it. He then forced me into the bathroom where he locked the door. He was telling me to stop being so nosey and just to leave it. I was then being shouted at for always trying to involve myself in things that don’t concern me. It was then I realised that I’d seen this defensive behaviour before. I felt my heart sink. I looked him right in the eye, and I asked him “Have you been doing anything with this girl?”, and instead of a flat no, I just got abuse back. Arguing got heated, we were now screaming at each other. He tried to grab me and move me out of the way of the door I was now trying to get out of. I slapped him. Hard. He didn’t even flinch. He shoved me again. So, I slapped him again. He then picked me up and threw me, and I mean literally threw me, into the bathtub. He held me by the scruff and repeatedly punched me in the head. He then opened the bathroom door and dragged me up the hall by my hair. People were  in the Livingroom playing the PlayStation with the music blaring, bar a few stood in the kitchen who watched this unfold. He threw me onto the bed and continued to punch me until I fell to the floor where he repeatedly kicked me until I was unconscious. I woke up to the boy who were supposed to be babysitting telling me the police were on their way. I don’t remember too much after the fact, just that I felt disoriented and really sore.

My friends Kerry & Lori had been phoned and they promptly marched up to see if I was ok. Lori helped me get myself sorted and got me some water. She also tried to help me get my shoes on, but my feet were so swollen from trying to defend myself that I couldn’t. When the police eventually arrived, I refused to give a statement, go to the hospital or press charges. I just wanted to know that he was ok. Can you actually believe that? I’m shaking my head at myself as I wrote that. My only concern was that he didn’t hate me, and that he wasn’t now with this girl Stacy. I told the police it was all my fault and that if I didn’t slap him, he wouldn’t have hit me. I told them that it was entirely instigated and deserved.

I stayed at Kerry’s that night, and when word got to Gordon of what had happened, he came up to visit me the next day. He couldn’t believe the state of me. I was a complete mess. Gordon tried to tell me that this was the wakeup call I needed, and that I needed to get out of the relationship, move back home and get my life in order. I assured him that this was a one off, that I deserved it and explained how I’d slapped him and instigated it all with my meddling.

Whilst we were talking in Kerry’s Livingroom, the door went and it was Voldemort. Kerry was refusing to let him in, and things were getting heated. I could hear him demanding to know if Gordon was in. I knew I had to go to the door to calm things down. When I got to there, he was so apologetic. He told me that he’d had too much to drink, and that he would never ever do that to me again. I didn’t want to bring any trouble to Kerry, or Gordon, so I quickly got my stuff and headed back to his house. My friends were so annoyed with me. After all that, I still went back. I couldn’t understand why they couldn’t see what I saw, that Voldemort was just misunderstood and the only one to get him was me. In fact, that was something he would say to me often, that I was the only one who truly got him and it made me feel special. Like I was the only one who ever truly knew him, and that helped me rationalise the way things were.

New Year’s Eve that year was explosive. Not because it was going to be the year 2000, and the world was predicted to end, but because he turned again. We were in his neighbour’s house for a party, and there were a few old female friends there, one of which he was getting very friendly with, despite me being stood right there. I sat there and took the flirting and the laughing, but when the touching started I said something. He and I started arguing, and he dragged me up the hall toward the bathroom again. I was scared, and still very much bruised from earlier in the week. I managed to push past him and get into the bathroom first, and I locked the door. He started kicking it and shouting abuse at. I had some credit in my phone so I texted my sister who was out for a new year’s eve party, told her I was trapped in a bathroom. I didn’t have much credit and back then, you know, not much characters. Needless to say, she phoned me quite frantically wanting to know what was going on. I explained the best I could and she told me she was coming to get me. I held tight in that bathroom, all the while I had Voldemort shouting through the door, his neighbour now shouting threats for me to get out her house. I would have gladly done so, if I didn’t fear him grabbing me on my way past. I’d seen this look in his eye before, and I wasn’t being subjected to that again.

A good while had gone by and I hear someone from the party shout “I think that’s her sister out there”, I was so relieved. Next thing I hear the front door open and my sister demand to know where I was. I felt safe enough to open up the bathroom room door at this point and I legged it toward her. I had completely ruined my sister’s night, as she was stood there with her best friend Cathy, my brother-in-law and Cathy’s partner. They’d all left a big party in town, to come and save me. I felt terrible, but also relieved that I’d gotten out of that house. Voldemort tried to follow us, as he wanted to talk to me, but my brother-in-law managed to politely persuade him to stay put. Once in my sisters, I went to lay down on my niece’s bed when I heard someone shouting my name outside. There was Voldemort, shouting threats up to the house. Demanding that I go outside and go home with him now. I was about to go, as I didn’t want the trouble, until my sister told me under no certain circumstances was that happening. The next day my Sister gave me a talking to, and begged me to get my life in order, she then phoned my Mum and asked her to please let me come home. I moved back home that afternoon and focused on the job I was starting in January.

I had only been home a day or so, when I got a phone call from Gordon. We hadn’t spoken since the day I left Kerry’s. He was telling me that he was surprised to have not heard from me, or had a visit. I explained that things had just been so up in the air, and given how Voldemort had felt about him, it was best to keep some distance. It was then Gordon dropped a bombshell on me. He was just out of hospital, having spent nearly a week in recovery. Voldemort had gone to his house late one night, kicked the door in, pinned him under his covers as he slept and proceeded to hit him in the face with his house phone. Now, back then, house phones were like bricks! He had broken Gordon’s cheek bone, and he’d had to have reconstructive surgery as his eye had been hanging out. How had I not known? How could this have happened to one of my bestest friends, and I not know? I tell you why, because Voldemort had kept me so wrapped up in him. I was so angry and upset for Gordon. He didn’t deserve this. All he had ever been was my friend. I offered to go up and visit him and apologised profusely, but he asked that I leave it that evening, as he was just so tired.

The very next day my Mum took me up with some stuff for his fridge and some goodies, you know, given he’d been in hospital I would have thought shopping was furthest from his list. I could tell he was thankful, but still annoyed at me for not knowing or visiting. I stayed with him all day, and put my mobile off to avoid an argument with Voldemort. I couldn’t stop looking at the stitches around Gordons eye. It looked so bad. I felt terrible.  I got so angry, I was determined to give Voldemort what for. The next day I marched to his house to demand answers. When I got there, he was so blasé, clearly thinking I still didn’t know. I just barked at him “What the **** did you do to Gordon?”, and you know what my response was? A smile! An actual smile. No words, just a smile that spoke a thousand words. He walked away from me, headed to his room and took a seat, then shouted “Well are you coming through?”. I was so angry, I marched through and just stood staring at him. He eventually looked up at me and said “Look, baby (yes this was my pet name), he had it coming. No-one gets to speak to me like that…”. Speak to him like that? What? When? What even is he on about? I took the time to remind him, rather angrily, that he was the one with the problem and that Gordon was nothing but good to me, and that’s what he didn’t like. That hit a nerve. Voldemort then shouted at me and told me that Gordon only wanted one thing from me, and that I was too stupid to see it, but that he’d now set him straight. He then demanded to know how I knew, so I told him, and that made him even more furious. He started shouting about how he’d clearly not learned his lesson. I couldn’t take his shouting at this point, I was too angry, and I couldn’t believe he could do such a thing. I went home and we didn’t speak for days, as I refused to turn my mobile on and listen to any more of his shouting. That was it, I was done.

When I started my first ever job as a tax paying adult I was excited. My excitement was short lived though, as I sat on the bus double checking that I had enough foundation on my hands to cover the bruises I still had. My lips were still sore, as was my nose and hands, but thankfully not as noticeable. At lunchtime, I went to head along to the shop for lunch, and who was waiting outside for me? Yup, Voldemort. Here he was, waiting to take me to lunch to celebrate my first day. He took me to a local pub, for a meal, where he slid a box over the table. Inside was a beautiful necklace, one I’d seen a few weeks before and said I liked. I knew this was his way of apologising, and I was quite taken with the fact he’d even remembered that I’d seen it and liked it. I didn’t even remember. By the time we left the pub, I’d almost forgotten why I was angry at him. Gordon was but a distant memory, and all I could see was the charming, funny guy, that had always been there for me. We kissed, we made up, and everything felt like it was going to be ok. I was back home, I had a job, things were better between me and my family, Voldemort was looking to be sincere, all was good. At the end of the week, I got my first pay packet. My first job paid me £60 a week, and gave me a monthly bus pass. At 16, and living at home, I felt pretty well off. I suggested that Voldemort and I go out, however, he’d already made plans to babysit for his neighbour. I can’t say I was thrilled, but I thought that a takeaway and a movie would suffice.

There was no party that night, just he and I watching 80’s action movies, and it was a great night. I started to dose off, until I felt him get up, and he told me that he needed to nip out for something, when I asked what, he came up with some lame reason of owing someone money. I had no reason to doubt him, so I told him it was fine, I’d stay awake and wait on him getting back. Over an hour went by and he still wasn’t back, I was worried that something was wrong. I wasn’t too sure what to do, should I go and get his parents and let them know? After a good while of pacing, and debating what to do, he came in the door looking like he’d been running. I asked him if everything was ok, and he assured me he was fine, he just got the address wrong and it was further than he thought, so he tried to run there and back. Again, no reason to doubt him, so I left it.

The next day, I got a call from Gordon’s flat mate, John, to say their house had been set on fire. John had been out at a party and had come home to the house being ablaze and the firemen putting it out. They lived in a block of flats, and they were two up, meaning that Gordon had to jump out of the Livingroom window to get out. The firemen had gone on to explain that the main gas pipes for the building ran along the back of their front door and the whole block was very lucky they got there when they did. I honestly couldn’t believe it. John then starts telling me he thinks it was Voldemort. I told him there was no way, as I was with him all night. Then it dawned on me. He left to go give someone money back, but did he? I had no idea what to think, but I didn’t want to let onto John that I wasn’t sure. I asked if Gordon was ok, and wanted to know what ward I could go and visit him in, but John said he wasn’t in the hospital long, as he had been sectioned, due to his ramblings of people wanting to kill him. It then transpired that Voldemort had been paying visits to their flat regularly and following Gordon when he was out and about, to tell him about all the things he was going to do to him if he had the chance. I found this to be farfetched. I mean seriously? I get that Voldemort didn’t like him, but stalking him? No way. I refused to believe it. I also refused to believe that he could torch a house. That is seriously ****ed up! No sooner did I put the phone down on John, I was on the phone to Voldemort. I didn’t let on about Gordon, I just asked what he was up to and could I pop round.

I got ready, headed over, and we just sat and chilled in his room. I wanted to gauge how he was. In all honesty, he was perfectly calm. He was laughing, joking, being his usual goofy self, and I just couldn’t believe he would do such thing. So, I decided to kind of dance around the subject, by asking about this place he had to go the night before. He was just being evasive and vague. He couldn’t just give me a street name, then he started to get quite curt with me, then he started shouting at me for not believing him, when at no point had I said I didn’t. We began arguing, and it was getting pretty heated, and I blurted out what had happened to Gordon’s house. Again, no denial. He just sat back down and shrugged, then looked at me as if to say “And?”.  It was then I knew it was him. I just asked him why, and he remained quiet. I started shouting at him to talk to me, to answer me, but still I got nothing. He proceeded to lay back on his bed and put on the TV, turning it up to drown me out. So, pulled the plug on the TV, and demanded that he answer me. He got up, and got right in my face, and calmly told me “The ****ard deserved it. If he knew how to take a telling…”, I honestly couldn’t believe what I was hearing. He was a mad man, and felt justified. He then goes on to tell me how he did it; he had been wearing a jumper that night, that he’d taken off when we were cosied up watching the movie. When he told me he was leaving, he took this with him, but not before going into his own house and taking a canister of his Dad’s lighter fluid. He then went to Gordon’s house, stuffed the jumper in his letter box, soaked it in lighter fluid, set it on fire and ran. He then ran as far and as fast as he could, so as to get his face on the CCTV camera’s in another part of the neighbourhood, and then slowly walked back and thought up a lie to tell me. He then admitted to running the last bit, to make his story to me more believable. I honestly cannot put into words how I felt hearing all of this. It was a very surreal moment. This was the moment I knew, how utterly off the wall he was. A definite psychopath.

Now, you would think that after reading all of that, I would have left, right? Surely, I would have to be smart enough to know, that this is just not on? Well no, I didn’t leave at all. If anything, I felt he needed me more. His Mum and Dad were both drinkers. His Dad was verbally and physically abusive to everyone in the house. His Mum? Well if you ask me, she drank to get through a day. She was not without fault, but she was someone I had a lot of time for. She was a kind woman, who did a lot for me when I had nothing and no-one to lean on. She was always good at taking time to just talk to me and make sure I was ok. One night, she and I were watching whatever the made-for-tv movie  was on Channel 5, when she told me how good she thought I was for Voldemort. She felt that I brought out a happier side to him, and that she wanted me to look after him. I took this as the ramblings of a drunk woman, and just chose to nod and agree to appease her so we could get back to the movie. It was only when Voldemort was admitting the things he had done, that these words resonated with me. Did his Mum know he was a complete psycho? Did she honestly think that I could help? I made the decision to stand by him, but I made it more than clear I was less than happy with it.

Things were strained between us after this, as I found I doubted most of things he said to me. It also made me wary to make time for my friends, especially my male friends. He was relatively ok with me going to Kerry’s house, as she lived right next to him, and he would often just pop over or even call to speak to me. At the time, I thought this was him looking out for me. Looking back? I realise it was him keeping tabs on me. He always liked to know where I was, and to make sure that no guys were around.

A few weeks went by, and I eventually got the chance to visit Gordon in the hospital he’d been admitted to. I didn’t tell anyone I was going, not even Kerry, for fear it would get back to Voldemort. The hospital was very dated, with horrible 70’s style brown carpets, smoke stained looking walls and dated furniture. The place even had a horrible stale smell, almost like a charity shop kind of smell. I waited in this big room with lots of chairs, for a nurse to bring Gordon through. He was only in his Jeans & socks. They’d stripped him of anything he could harm himself with. He looked grey and very withdrawn. You see, Gordon had suffered with anxiety/depression prior to this, but the stress that Voldemort had put him under had broken him. He was almost unrecognisable. I didn’t know what else to do, I felt like I was going to cry, but then I felt like I had no right to cry, as this was all my fault. I just wrapped my arms around him and we hugged for quite some time. We just sat there, in silence, as I believe neither of us knew what to say. I broke the silence and told him how sorry I was, and he said that he didn’t blame me, that he knew it was all down to Voldemort. We talked about what happened, the ordeal he went through when Voldemort broke into his house, and then when his home was set on fire. Gordon also explained that he was now going to be pressing charges for the assault, and that Voldemort should be expecting the police. I knew that was the right thing to do, but I also worried about how Voldemort would react. This made me more concerned for Voldemort, and in turn Gordon. I tried to persuade Gordon not to, but his mind was made up. When I left the hospital that day, I promised we’d not lose touch, and we agreed to write to each other. We did for a short time, but eventually I just stopped writing, due to circumstance. I often think of Gordon, and I’ve tried to find him on social media and I can’t. I wonder if he’s better now, if he’s happy, and if he’s ever forgiven me for not being there. I know if I was him, I wouldn’t.

Soon after, Voldemort was arrested and put into the local cells overnight. As this was not his first offence, he was stood before a judge the next day and he was sentenced to 6 weeks remand until a further hearing could be had to set a court date.  He was furious, as were his parents. They looked at me, like this was my fault, as Gordon was my friend. It was as good as said, that I can’t be friends with Gordon, as how could he do this to Voldemort. I mean really? Did these people hear what was said  in the court room? what he was being accused of? As I did, and I could fully understand the reason. In the 6 weeks he was away, it was tough. I’d not been away from him this long. I would visit him twice a week with his Dad, and each time we went, Voldemort was more and more riled about the whole thing. The time in Jail wasn’t giving him time to reflect, it was giving him time to stew and plot.

With him away, I got my stuff in order at home, and my Dad had even talked me into applying for college in Glasgow, so I could live with him. I’d always wanted to live with my Dad growing up, you know, the grass is always greener kind of thing. This really did sound like a good idea, but I didn’t want to tell Voldemort. No point upsetting him if I didn’t get in. Everything was picking up momentum for me, and I was starting to find myself in a good place, and then he was home. Things just slipped back nicely into the old routine, and no longer was I considering college in Glasgow, but I didn’t dare tell my Dad. Not after all the talking we’d done about it.

On the day of my interview for the college, my Dad called to make sure I was up and ignored the call. He then kept calling and calling, so I had no choice but to answer. I quite abruptly told him that I wasn’t going. Well, if any of you reading this know my Dad, you’ll know that telling him what’s what, is never a good idea. He was furious with me. He told me he was coming to get me and not taking no for an answer. I thought he was joking, or just making an angry threat like parents do. Well, give it an hour, and here he was. He marched into the house, took the contents of my wardrobe, and a few other personal items and frog marched me into his car. Voldemort was there, and was trying to reason with my Dad. Never a good idea when he’s on a mission, best place is to be out of the way. I just did as I was told and I cried all the way to Glasgow. I didn’t want to leave Voldemort.

My Dad lived in a lovely house, with his then girlfriend Jennifer. I was brought into the house and had the lay of the land dictated to me. I was to find a job, get my life in order, and to forget Voldemort. I was even banned from using the phone. My Mum came home from work that night to find my room ransacked and me gone. My sister called the house and my Dad advised that he had me, not to worry, but that he was going to sort me out. My head was a mess, but I knew deep down my Dad was right and that I needed to get a grip, but I couldn’t stop thinking about Voldemort and how much he needed me. Yes, I was that delusional.

I wrote a letter to Voldemort explaining that things were over, that I needed to get my life in order, etc. I sent it, and within a couple of days I had a letter back, one that my Dad intercepted and decided to read out. He was furious that I’d put his address on the letter and that we were still in touch. He agreed to let me phone him, so long as he was in the room and I told Voldemort that enough was enough, we were through. I got a job as an Office Junior, within a large printing firm. It was a great job, and I even had my own customer. I was on really good money, and found that I was starting to make friends. I even met a guy, Shaun, who worked for BT as an engineer. He had a job, his own car, half a clue and was pretty cute. My Dad didn’t like him as he was 19 and I was only 16, but he was a lovely guy. When he would come to pick me up for a date, he would bring flowers for my ‘Mum’. I never explained that Jennifer wasn’t my Mum, as I just didn’t want to have to explain the meh parts of myself. When I went out with Shaun I was just me. I didn’t talk about things back home, he knew nothing of Voldemort, he just knew I was from out of town. We dated for a couple of months, going to the Cinema, Ice Skating, drives, walks, meals etc. It was lovely, and he was lovely, but, he wasn’t Voldemort.

I would think of Voldemort often, and wonder how he was doing. Was he getting in more trouble without me being there? These thoughts got the better of me, and one day when the office was quiet, I used my desk phone to call him. He sounded so happy to hear it was me. We talked for some time, but I explained that my Dad had taken away my mobile and that I wasn’t allowed to use the house phone, as they’d put a dial code on it. I would phone him most days from work, when I got the chance, and we would talk about missing each other. That was it, I had to go home. I couldn’t be this far away. One day when my Dad left for work, I would usually walk with him, but I told him I was running late so would catch him up. I threw all of my stuff into a bag, well the stuff I could manage, and I got a taxi to work. I then told my boss that my Mum had taken unwell so that day would be my last but I would work until lunch time. I did this, so that if my Dad wanted to meet for lunch, he wouldn’t be suspicious. I then got a taxi to the bus station and made my way home.

In our daily conversations, Voldemort and I had spoken about getting our own home together. We thought this would solve a lot of our problems, having our own space. His Mum and Dad knew I was coming back, and had agreed to let me stay with them until we got our own place. It wasn’t long, say, maybe 2 months of waiting. So here I am, 16, completely estranged from any kind of friends, my family are furious, but I’m now moved in with my boyfriend, so the world is rosy. I also had a new job, working as a telemarketer for a local computer peripherals company. Voldemort still didn’t have a job, but, I was confident he would at least try. He did a lot of on-the-side work, but nothing that warranted a national insurance stamp. For the first while, things were good. We had a home, we had parties, we went out to pubs, I mean, we didn’t have furniture, and we didn’t have food, but we partied. I thought this was how life was supposed to be for us. Work and live for the weekend. Voldemort started staying out a lot, not coming home for days at a time. Every time he’d come home he’d have another excuse as to why. I knew deep down he was cheating, but without proof? We argued a lot. He was always drinking, even from early hours some days. He was turning into his Dad. Our arguments would get heated a lot and would often turn violent. I could see when he had that face on him, and I knew he would just goad a fight. Sit and pick holes in nothing, to rile an argument so he could justify walking out for days at a time, or raising his hands. I became savvy to when he was going to hit me. You could see his eyes narrow and his jaw clench, it would be at that point I would prepare to hit back. For a time, I would take it, as if I didn’t hit back, I may only get a slap, or a shove, and he’d leave it, but then I decided to defend myself. Why should I be putting up with the occasional slap?

There was one time, we’d been decorating the Livingroom, so we had a pasting table up, with a hammer, pasting brush, rolls of paper etc. He’d gone out with his mates, came back in a bit of a state. I was annoyed because the decorating had been stopped, the paste had been left out and I’d been at work all day and here he was, in a state. The argument didn’t take long to turn nasty. I asked him to leave, and he wouldn’t. Told me it was his house too, and that he’ll do whatever he likes. So, he flipped the pasting table, everything went everywhere. I was furious. He lunged for me, but I picked up the hammer and held it out. Told him if he took another step toward me, I’d hit him with it. He didn’t believe me. He went to grab my hair, and I just went for it. I whacked him right in the ribs with it. He let out a yelp and shouted that I was a ‘crazy b****’. I then warned him to get out, before I hit him again, so he left. This didn’t stop him from coming back later that night with a friend of his, threatening to kick the door in, if I didn’t let him into his house. There was broken floor tile in the hall, just behind the front door, and a bit of skirting the council had left when they fixed my stairs, so I wedged that under the handle, then against the broken tile and I stayed awake all night for fear he’d get in.

 

THE END

Our first year living together was like something out a terrible soap opera. One minute we were the happy couple, the next ripping lumps out of each other. It was a very abusive and negative relationship, but despite all of this, I would still tell you I loved him. I now saw this as partly my fault, as I was now hitting back. I now saw myself to be as bad as him. Not long after our first Christmas living together, his Mum died. This hit him really hard, and for a while I thought he was going to go completely off the rails. He started drinking more, doing more drugs, showing absolutely no signs of wanting to build this life we talked about, get a job, or even try to become a better person. He had completely flipped. He was in trouble with the police more than ever, the violence between us had gotten worse, everything was just a mess. Then I found out I was pregnant. Voldemort was over the moon, he loved telling people how he was going to be a Dad. He would talk about all the things he was going to do, and what he was going to change, and I couldn’t have been happier. Maybe this was the incentive he needed?

The drinking curbed, he was getting more on-the-side work, he went on a decorating spree and finished all the jobs he’d been promising for months. He decorated the spare bedroom in preparation for being able to buy a cot. He was much nicer to me, there was no fighting, and he honestly couldn’t do enough for me. I could almost see a bit of the old, goofy Voldemort coming back. When he found out we were having a boy, he was elated. He was going to educate him in all things awesome like Rocky, Star Wars, Van damme, Queen, teach him boxing etc.

When I was about 6 months pregnant, we made the decision that I would quit my job, and that he would go out and work full time, so that I could be an at home Mum for the first few years. Check us out, being all adult. I could honestly see us being a great little family. This little bubble didn’t last long. He was arrested by the police for an outstanding warrant for something he’d done long before. This put him on remand for 2 months. In that time, I really struggled to get out to see him as often as I had before. Mainly due to being pregnant and out of work, and his Dad no longer fit to drive as much. By the time he got home, and was acquitted of all charges due to lack of evidence, he wasn’t quite as happy as when he left. Understandable though, he’d just been in prison for 2 months. He started drinking again, but still wasn’t being horrible or violent. I just left him to it. He’d been through a lot in this past year.

On the day our son was born, he was distant. He’d had a lot of stuff going on within his family, mainly arguments regarding his Dad, that had set him off. So, what was supposed to be our happy day, had a big shadow over it. Even once we were up on the ward, I could see he was forcing the smiles. It didn’t take long for the snark comments to start. I was in hospital for 3 days, due to a C-Section, on the 3rd day he rushed the nurses to get a doctor to sign me out. He then left me to push the pram and to bump it up however many flights of stairs. He also insisted on walking ahead of me, rather than with me. I wasn’t even in the door an hour and my Mum appeared with her friend with lots of goodies and gifts. Voldemort didn’t even sit with us, he just went up the stairs to sleep, as it had been a long day for him. I was barely holding it together. Here I am, 18, new born, and what was supposed to be one of the happiest moments, just wasn’t. He was no help to me at all, and would often complain that I wasn’t ‘doing it right’ if I couldn’t calm our son straight away. We’d been home 2 weeks, when my Mum insisted on getting me out the house for a while, when I came back I had a note from Voldemort telling me he couldn’t do this anymore. He’d packed up all of his stuff and had left. To say I was beside myself, would be an understatement. Mum assured me all would be ok, and that she and my sister would look out for me. That made me feel ok, until she left and I realised how alone I was.

Voldemort came back a week or so later, it wasn’t too long, but he didn’t stay long either. My Dad then got involved and offered us to move into a flat he owned in another city, one where we could try to be a family. We agreed, and moved that month. It was honestly the worst decision of my life. All this did was put me into a city with nothing and no-one, where Voldemort could treat me as he pleased, and leave me on my own. He would often say he was going places, and just not come back for days/weeks at a time. The best one to date is when he said he was going to the doctors, and I didn’t see him for 3 weeks. That was some appointment. Or no, wait, the time he said he was nipping out for rice, came back with the rice but told me some guy was offering him a fight so he had to go. I think it was about 2 weeks that time. Every time he came back, I would have no rhyme or reason as to where he’d been.

When my eldest was 6 months old I found out I was 3 months pregnant with twins. I honestly couldn’t believe it. I was sobbing in the hospital after my scan. I was barely coping with one, never mind 3? What in the hell was I going to do? Voldemort thought this was great, another bragging topic. He certainly wasn’t over the moon at being a Dad. Not long before I had my twins, Voldemort’s Dad died. Well if I thought he’d been a psycho before, I’d seen nothing. He went well and truly off the rails. He’d gotten in with a really rough crowd, back to drinking and doing drugs all the time, the abuse started again. It was by far the most horrible time of my adult life.

He would ridicule me for getting fat, but in the same breath get angry at my Dad for pointing out the weight I’d gained. He would give me the occasional slap, shove, dig, for saying things he didn’t like, but tell me he loved me. He would manipulate the people around me to hate me, like friends I tried to make or my neighbours by telling them lies. He cheated on me profusely, lied to me constantly and was an all-round ***hole.

He once got a job in the local abattoir, but lost it soon after, didn’t tell me, and would proceed to get up and ‘go to work’ every day. To this day I still don’t know where he was going. It begs belief. He was just waiting until he couldn’t explain why he wasn’t being paid. There were times when I had to barricade the door and call the police, and then sit on the phone to my sister until they came. Thanks to Voldemort, his police record, and his violent tendencies toward me, we had social workers involved in our lives for a number of years. I know they meant the best, and they definitely helped me, but I still felt like my life was under a microscope whilst he got to do as he pleased.

I couldn’t afford to work and pay for childcare for 3 children, not with my education level that was for sure. I had done the calculations with the job centre and it just didn’t work out for me. So, I took on things like Kleeneze & Oriflame. When doing Oriflame I met a woman, Denise, who I became really quite friendly with. Her husband worked for a local cleaning group that had gotten a contract for the local shopping mall and he was looking for more workers, I mentioned Voldemort and he said that he’d give him a shot. Things were looking up. I had a steady job, that paid a little, but felt I was doing something, and now he had a job. He was put through training courses and appeared to be enjoying his job. This was until, he told me he was working overtime thanks to a BHS blue cross sale, that he wasn’t working at all. He had been sleeping with one of the young girls on his shift, and was caught in the public toilets.

He’d been planning to run away with her, but needed money. When he didn’t come home that night, I was worried something had happened as no-one knew where he was. Eventually, he came through the door, early hours, walked quite casually into the Livingroom, picked up the box we were saving the kids Christmas money in, took it all and left. Moved to Aberdeen. When I tried to call Denise to find out what had happened, she shouted at me on the phone, told me my family had done enough and to never speak to her again. So here I am, no friends again, no partner, no money and now with 3 kids to support. Later I found out from a neighbour, who was a mutual friend of Denise and I, that Voldemort had been telling the women he worked with that I’d left him on his own, and that he was without any money, food, furniture etc. This woman he worked with felt for him, and was bringing him in food and giving him money. This was until, he was caught for lying, and then it was thought I was in on this scam and that we were pocketing the money. I was honestly mortified. It was this money he used to take out his new bit of fluff.

Of all the things that man had ever did to me, and everyone else around me. All the violence, threats, verbal abuse, lies, stress etc, he had never ever made me feel as low as this whole situation. I was exactly 7 days from my birthday, I was 19 years old, and the arse had quite literally just fallen out of my world. I tried my best to sleep that night, but I just couldn’t. 101 worries racing through my head, all of which I couldn’t see solution for. I felt helpless and probably the loneliest I’ve ever felt. I couldn’t believe he would do this our kids. How could someone, do this to their own children??? The ones he claimed to love so dearly. The very children he bragged about. I felt my heart break that day. Not just for me, but for our children. What kind of life was I going to be able to provide? What kind of **** were they going to grow up in?

Voldemort would phone the house every day, to see how the kids were. He would also flaunt his new relationship down the line to me. Telling me how pretty and amazing Vicky was. How he’s finally found someone who makes him happy, and who he loves. Those words cut deeper than any words he’d ever spoken before. After all the **** I’d put up with? After all the times I’d stood by him, when I knew quite clearly how wrong he was? All the friends I’d lost, the bad decisions I’d made, the situation I was in, all because of him! Thankfully I did have help from social work, and they had this volunteer program where people would be assigned to come and help, even if that meant just watching over the kids whilst I went to the shop. I did my best to pull myself together, with their help, and get on.  When it got to my birthday, I got another call from Voldemort. He sang Happy Birthday down the phone to me, whilst laughing, with Vicky in the background. I just hung up, and he kept trying to ring back. I just pulled the phone from the wall. How horrible and callous is that? Why even bother?? He chose to leave me, so why flaunt it in my face? I will never understand that part of it. He was out to hurt me, and he succeeded.

Two days before Christmas I got a call from his brother, advising me that Voldemort was now at his house, as he’d managed to piss off the wrong people in Aberdeen and was now wanted. I’m sorry, and what would you like me to do about this? Well, it looks like his brother can’t put him up, and given it’s Christmas could I let him spend it with his kids? I said no, and hung up. Few hours later, I have his brother on my door step, just wanting to chat. He manages to talk me into feeling bad for Voldemort and agreeing to have him home for Christmas. Totally playing on the fact the kids miss him etc. I let him back in, another really bad decision by me. He came home for Christmas, full of apologies, saying that he wasn’t himself, that she brought out the worst in him blah blah blah. I let him stay, but he was on the couch. He was warned we were over, and that I’d had enough and should he ever feel he wants to leave again, to not let the door hit him on the way out. It was at this point he no longer had a hold over me. I could no longer say ‘but, I love him’. I didn’t. Quite the opposite, I hated him, with every fiber of my being.

Months went by, with him sleeping on the couch. We would just go about our own thing, and if he went out and didn’t come back, no longer was I staying up all night worrying. Instead, I was hoping he’d reconciled with Vicky. The fact I could see him far enough, he realised he no longer had the same hold over me. He knew things were now very different. He would try hard to goof of and be charming, but no longer did it work. No longer did I care. This just made him try harder, and one night he actually asked if we could try again, that he missed me, etc. I have no idea what on earth was going on my head, maybe he caught me off guard, but I agreed. Here we were, trying again.

He had yet another job, working for an antique furniture place, doing their removals and helping restore old furniture. He was no longer leaving for days/weeks at a time, and things were starting to settle. I didn’t have the same optimism I once had, and I no longer felt like we were going to be a happy family. I literally took each day at a time. Has he gone to work and came home? Yes. Very Good. We plodded on for a while, neither of us happy. I had honestly resolved myself to this being my life. Being stuck with an utter waste of space for the rest of my days.

One night our neighbour had invited us on a night out with a few friends. We’d never really been invited anywhere since moving there, so thought it a good idea to get a break. When we were out, he was keeping pace with the rest of men out, and I could see how the night was going. I was only having a small drink, as I wanted to keep my wits about me, just in case he kicked off.

I spent the whole night, not enjoying myself, as I was watching him. Looking for his face to change, or his mannerisms to become exaggerated. By the time we got to the night club, he was completely plastered, but for the most part still OK company. I was keeping an eye, but doing my best not to engage with him so as to not kick something off. When we were all inside, we all got a little lost from each other in the crowd. I eventually found my neighbour and her friends on the dancefloor, but no sign of Voldemort. I had a little walk about, only to find him, sitting with some girl, arm around her, looking very intimate. Not a girl we’d been out with, and not one I’d seen before. I couldn’t believe it. The man just cannot help how he’s wired. I about turned, and headed for the exit. He was coming after me, grabbing at me, trying to quite literally twist my arm up my back to stop me leaving. I managed to get the attention of the security, and I told them and I’d never met this man before and he’d been harassing me. They took care of him, whilst I ran off to a taxi with the only house key. When I got home, I packed up all his stuff, and left it at the front door. In the morning, I woke up my Mum and asked if I could move back with her, reluctantly she said yes. We packed up her Toyota Corolla with everything my kids owned, except for furniture, and I left. I managed to get some money together to put my kid’s furniture into storage and I signed our flat over to Voldemort. I’d had enough and I wished to god he’d stay where he was.

My Mum lives in a two-bedroom house, so it was a bit of squeeze having me and my 3 kids there. Me and the kids shared my old bedroom, so my eldest got my old bed, and the twins and I shared the sofa bed. I didn’t even care that we were all cramped in a small bedroom, I was just so relieved to be home. We hadn’t been home very long, when I got a call from Voldemort’s brother saying he was living with him. It wasn’t long after that, when Voldemort started coming around to my Mum’s, begging and pleading me to take him back. He was sorry. Yeah? Tell me something I don’t know. That man spends his life being sorry. He would then ask the kids if he should stay for a bit, well naturally they’re going to say yes! My Mum even started to fall for his bull, and was suggesting that I hear him out and take him back. He stayed for a couple of nights, but it wasn’t working. I made him go again, and he was less than happy. He started the whole “without you I have nothing”. I honestly didn’t care, I just wanted him gone. He left and we didn’t see him for a while.

Then, one night I woke up to him kissing my forehead. The room was dark, and I was trying to adjust my eyes, and all I could see was a figure standing over me. I lay there, unable to speak, just staring, wondering if I was still dreaming or not, that was until he said, “You know I love you?”. What the actual ****? I sat up and just took a moment to process. He then started to walk out of the room, but stumbled on something, he was quite clearly drunk. My Mum started to shout through, asking what was going on. Voldemort then tries to shush me, so she goes back to sleep, but I won’t be shushed, and not from him. I shouted back to her, that Voldemort was in the house. She darted through and asked him what he was playing at, and how he got in. He’d managed to get his arm in side my Mum’s Livingroom window (she keeps it open as she smokes), and push the little button to open it wider. When Mum had escorted him down the stairs, it had turned out he’d then got her shed key, and gotten my brother-in-law’s push bike out the shed and was planning on taking that with him. How long had he been in the house? How long had he been standing over me? We got him out of the house, and made sure that all doors and windows were fully locked.

Voldemort continued to call the house, turn up unannounced and was just generally a nuisance. Didn’t matter how many times I said no, he kept coming back like a boomerang. There was one day when I was playing with the kids in the paddling pool out in the front garden, he showed up, drunk and frantic. Demanding to know if I had money. I did, hidden in the back of a cupboard in my Mum’s kitchen, but this was for when we got a house of our own, to help with moving. I told him no, and he refused to believe me. He tried to push past me into the house and I tried to push him back out. The kids were now crying as Mum and Dad were fighting. I got them to run inside and head up the stairs, to be away from it. He made his way into the Livingroom, where he started to look for money by pulling the room apart. He was so sure that either me or my Mum would have money hidden. I remember thinking I should get the money out the kitchen cupboard before he found it. He grabbed me in the hallway and told me that if I was lying to him, he’d kill me. I just told him I wasn’t, and I ran up the stairs. I got the kids and put them into my Mum’s room, were we wedged her computer chair under the door handle. He then left, and stood out on the street and proceeded call the house. I stood at the window and watched him, but refused to answer the phone. He started to shout that he’d turned the gas on my Mum’s cooker and was going to throw in a match if I didn’t give him money. I went grey. I opened the bedroom window and shouted that I was going to phone the police. So, he ran back in the house and ripped the phone out of the wall. What he didn’t realise, is that my Mum had a separate, wired, phone in her bedroom. I called the police and explained what was happening. I cannot fault their response time, I’d say that within under 5 minutes I had 2 police cars outside the house. Voldemort ran off at the sound of the sirens, and I frantically ran down stairs to turn off the gas, that was indeed on. When the police were taking a statement, they could see that my Mum’s answering machine had picked up most of the threats, so I had proof of what had been said. This lead to me getting a restraining order against him.

Surely now, that is it? That is the end of it? No. Once I’d moved into our new home, and gotten settled, Voldemort found out where I was. He starts coming around a lot, hanging about outside, in the hopes to speak to me. Again, pleading with me to realise how sorry he is, that he really has changed this time. Eventually he wears me down, again it’s close to Christmas, he’s now homeless, how can I see my kids father homeless at Christmas? I let him back in. Not to be together, I made it very very clear that we were not a couple, and he did sleep on the couch. We were back to doing our own thing, and this suited me fine. He got a job with a local building firm, and things were going ok. Not long after Christmas, my new friends invited us out for a drink. We went, but not as a couple. He did his own thing, I did mine and it was fine. He spent the whole night with some other girl, and you know what? I didn’t even care. Seeing him with others, always gave me hope they’d take him on. He stayed out later than me, as I didn’t want to be too hungover for the kids coming home the next day. When I woke up in the morning, he wasn’t there, again I wasn’t too bothered. When he did come home, it has transpired that he’d gotten himself into some bother on the night out. Bother that would see him in jail for a year eventually. He very much became a wanted man around town, and had to move. He opted to moved closer to his little brother, way down south. This was how I got rid of him. Hallelujah. Not for why he was arrested, but just the fact that I was now rid!

Voldemort has contacted me several times over the years. Sometimes to tell me how much he loves me and misses me. Others to tell me how, if he can’t have me, no-one can. Sometimes he tells me he’s coming for me, and sometimes he’s coming for my husband. I have kept all the conversations via text/social media, should he ever turn up again, although I’m not sure how much help they’ll be. Even with a restraining order, he was still relentless. He’s a very unhinged human being, one of which that does not fear authority.

I was in this relationship for 10 years. 10 very long, very erratic, miserable years. He stole my youth, the very little confidence I ever had, and has made me the woman I am today. That relationship has caused me to hate so many things. I hate my birthday. I tell people it’s because I’m getting older, but it’s because he managed to ruin so many, and it is the anniversary of the saddest birthday I’ve ever had. The birthday when I sat by myself, no money, no hope, and 3 kids to be strong for. I hate my birthday, and refuse to celebrate it. I hate flowers, as he would always buy me them to say sorry. Yet I tell people it’s because I don’t see why we buy living things to watch them die. When really, it just reminds me of every ****ing sorry I ever got that wasn’t real. I hate hugs. Why? Because he’d always hug to make me calm down and defuse an argument. He knew a hug was a way to get around it when he knew he was wrong. I don’t trust what anyone says to me. I doubt everyone around me. Every time my husband tells me he loves me, I doubt it. I doubt that anyone loves me. How could they?

I have spent the last 11 years, trying to be a better person. I do my best to not let the past phase me, or give him the time of day, but I’ll be honest, he crosses my mind a lot. I can go long periods of time not thinking of him at all, but then something will happen that will dredge up a memory and there he is. Consuming my thoughts and my nightmares. I often worry that his threats will come to fruition, leading me to be more anxious. My sister tells me to not be so silly, as if he would actually do those things. Yeah, well, let’s look at Gordon?? There are also way more things that Voldemort has done, even this wall of text only shows the tip of the iceberg. I’ve just picked out, what I feel have been the most poignant things that he’s done.

I have spoken to people about my recent anxieties regarding Voldemort. I had a nightmare not so long ago, that he was back, and found out where we lived. It was so out of the blue, not like I’d been thinking about him prior to going to sleep, or even recently, so it shook me quite a bit. I’ve worried that he’s may be been back a while, and really, how would I know? I wouldn’t. I know it’s totally crazy to think this way, I mean, in all honesty, he’s probably down south, ruining someone else’s life. I know I really shouldn’t worry, but I do. It’s caused me to have restless nights, it’s caused my foul mood for the last fortnight, as I feel that my worrying is stupid, but also that no-one understands. It’s just put down to me having anxiety issues, it’s not taken seriously.

 

AND BREATH…..

If you have managed to get to this part, well done you. That’s a helluva read eh? I wrote this as I felt that putting it down, would make me feel better. I cannot be sure that it has if I’m honest. Even just thinking about it, makes me upset and angry. The whole situation; The fact I was so stupid and naïve, the fact I still let him upset and scare me. 11 years is a long time, why am I not just over it? To have the one person you love, and who is supposed to love you, make you feel how he made me feel, is tough.

My Mum and my Sister have both been in abusive relationships, and they have quite a nonchalant attitude toward it. Like, you know, it’s happened, get over it. That is very much the attitude in this family for most things. With this though, I struggle. I often wonder if they really understand how bad it was for me, how lonely I truly was, how **** things essentially were? Do they think I’m lying, or exaggerating? Or they do know, and still carry the same opinion of ‘get up, and get on’. The three of us can be described as head strong women, that is for sure, but I wonder if I’m as strong as they are.

I remember being about my youngest sons age, and wakening up to a commotion in the livingroom. When I got up to see what was going on, there was stuff all over the hall, rubbish, pots, plates etc. I could hear my Mum shouting, and her boyfriend at the time, who was hitting her. The house phone had been pulled out of the wall, so I couldn’t call the police. My mum shouted at me to get my Sister (not the police?), who was staying at a friend’s house. I grabbed my mum’s  phone book, and ran. I had to run through the housing scheme, in my PJ’s, to find a phone box and make a collect call. I was 9! My mum remained in that relationship for years, and that was by no means the last time I had to deal with a situation like that, on my own. My sister has also been through some **** in her time, and she just seems to stride through it. Me? Well I develop an anxiety disorder and dwell on it for 11 years. What the **** Is that even about?

When I was in counselling, way back in the beginning of my diagnosis, we spoke at length about my relationship with Voldemort, and my childhood, although never in much detail. This blog is the most honest I’ve been regarding my previous relationship. My husband knows what I’ve been through, mainly through knowing me for 22 years, and being privy to some of the things I was subjected to. Really close friends know some things about my ex, but not a lot of the details.

Maybe doing this blog, and getting out what I’ve been thinking about, won’t help me to feel any better about it, but maybe someone else can relate? Maybe you have been me and have found a way to just get over it? To any of you who can relate, I hope you have seen the light and have left. To any of you who can relate, and still live through the nightmare, leave! It will be the hardest, but best decision you ever make.

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