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How One Relationship Nearly Ruined All My Relationships

by Ali Etherington 4 years ago in relationships
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Deals with Domestic Violence and Recovery

To the boy who broke my spirit,

This is the first proper time I'm announcing I am a domestic abuse victim, even if it is typed up. It still is a huge leap for me even two and half years after the fact.

I met you in the Autumn of 2013, fresh off the high of new relationship I was in and the chance to get to know new people from the halls I had just moved into for university.

You were quiet and subdued and it wasn't until the new year, after the long distance caused my relationship to break down, did you really start to notice me. I thought this was a great opportunity to get back into someone caring about me, how little did I know that you would use your "caring nature" as an excuse for the behaviour you threw upon me in the following year and a half we were "together."

We were never really together. I could have never called you my boyfriend because you weren't that. You always told me that I'd never be your girlfriend. However, if I befriended another guy I was "cheating" but God forbid was I allowed to say the same to you about the girls you were "friends" with. I think the first time you truly showed me who you were was when you hit me because I was in your way. It wasn't a nudge or a tap, it was a full forced punch to my arm. You didn't apologise when I bit my lip to stop the tears from escaping my eyes. I thought this was a one off spur of the moment action. Oh, how wrong was I.

No matter how many times you hit me over the coming months after that incident I would still accept you in to my life. For heaven's sake I was living with you in a student house with all of our friends. Even if I wanted to leave I couldn't because I didn't have the money to buy out my house contract and my parents weren't going to help. I tried talking to you but you gave me the silent treatment, going out and getting drunk ("because that's what Uni is about!"). You told me you didn't have a drinking problem and I was stupid for even suggesting it. A bottle of gin a night and then extra drinks at the club just so you could "enjoy' yourself" was not because you were a student enjoying university life. No, it was you not being able to function without a bottle.

I hated it when you would drink, you would forget everything you said and did. Well, that was what you told me, but since then I've come to the conclusion you only said that to mask the fact that you knew full well that you would sneak into my room at 2 AM after a night out and try to have sex with me. Sometimes I managed to fight you away, sometimes me saying "no" wasn't enough. I don't know how many times I sat in the bath trying to scrub you off of me. Making me feel like I was dirt, like I wasn't good enough for anyone. You broke me little by little.

The final straw came in April 2015, just after my birthday. You kicked me in the chest, winding me, making me fall off the bed onto the floor hitting my head because I wouldn't "go down" on you. You told me to "fuck off" and to "get out". I had never felt so destroyed by one living person before. Never had I met someone who could treat another person with such disgust and disregard, like I was an old rag.

When I left you put a smile on in front of my family, helping me carry my boxes to the car. You waved me off down the street. You messaged me over summer even when you were inter-railing around Europe, and then everything changed. I realised you were the one person holding me back, making me think all of this was my fault when in fact you were the one who couldn't control themselves. I spent the next six months talking to a therapist about all of it, and ways to deal with situations where I thought I would be threatened again. I opened up to my friends showed them texts and photos I had of everything that had gone on. Even they couldn't imagine what I went through and they lived under the same roof!

In the end I cut ties with everyone. Even though I had told them what had gone on they still remained friends with you. They still spoke to you. I thought I would never trust again, as cliché as it sounds, but I really didn't. When someone takes you for granted and cheapens you out, you can't help but think that you'd be better off alone.

I'm now happy in a loving relationship, but I'm always still scared deep down that it could happen again.


The girl you almost broke, but didn't.


About the author

Ali Etherington

Hello, I'm Ali. I'm 22, engaged and a mother of a little girl. I love reading and doing anything creative.

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