The training session was even harder than I had assumed. With an hour to go, I started to get a migraine.
I used to get migraines ALL the time. After two thousand types of meds, I ended up going on atenolol everyday and for about seven years or so, I've only averaged two or three a year. Thankfully, they are merely uncomfortable and miserable as opposed to debilitating with a need for medical intervention.
But today, my body said "ummmmm. no." It was when I heard the presenter talking about abusive relationships and it was laid out in front of me that physical bruises are by no means a necessity of an abusive relationship that I started getting a little veklempt. Then, when I heard her say, word for word, a phrase that STBX said to me early in our marriage when I tried to explain to him how hurtful his behaviors were.
"I don't know what your problem is, I don't beat you."
It was at that exact moment that I looked down at all the behaviors listed for an emotionally abusive relationship and saw my entire marriage. Seventeen years. The early years being lived in isolation in Oklahoma, told that anytime I was unhappy about the way I was treated that I was in the wrong and being a bitch. As long as I didn't have bruises, I had no right to complain.
And all the years afterwards of putting up with it. Why didn't I leave? Why didn't I stand up for myself and say "You are a horrible horse's ass and I hate the way you treat me and I despise you."
Have you ever had the sudden realization that you are no different from a lab rat? That, like a lab rat exposed to an electric shock at their food bowl, you learned to go to the other corner of your cage, sit alone, and starve yourself. Even after the electric shock had been removed. Even after his level of overt hatefulness turned into sullenly ignoring us, with frequent spikes of making it obvious that we were the bane of his existence (after doing the math, this attitude started after he stopped molesting our daughter). Even after being called a bitch stopped. Instead, he physically and psychologically sat down one day in front of the computer and just never got up again.
Too many things for his selfish, childish personality to get involved with. Porn. Online games. Cheating wives with young daughters, willing to offer them up as jailbait.
His world was all about him. We were just the inconvenience. Oh yeah, and the cooked meals. And the only way he could keep this roof over his head. And his personal secretary...and an orifice to fuck until I got sick of the sight of him..
The overt knowledge that he was sexually abusing my daughter is the most devestating thing. The creeping knowledge that he was psychologically abusing us all is yet another crumbling piece in the foundation that was our life.
So, this is what I learned this afternoon. And then I had a migraine. And I puked my guts out. And I curled in the fetal position on the floor and cried until my dogs were howling downstairs.
Every day seems like a thousand little deaths. Thankfully, I have a fuzzy possee to take care of me.