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It’s Not Your Fault

It’s Not Your Fault

Sayre Savage No Comment

Disclaimer: The entries in this post are fictional.

Dear Diary,

I had to call in sick today for the second time this week. I don’t think my concealer will hide the newest bruises that now adorn my neck. It’s my fault, really. I know better than to leave dishes in the sink. Last night had been the worst by far; I’d never seen Roger so enraged before, if you could even call it that. The way he clenched that knife had me questioning how far he’d really go.

Of course, I know that Roger would never hurt me on purpose. He just shows his love for me differently than what people are used to. At least, that’s what I told my sister when she saw my black eye last month. She didn’t understand; but that’s only because she doesn’t know Roger like I do. He really is a loving man, one I’ve been head over heels for ever since we met that day in the coffee shop. It was like something you’d read in a fairytale, with the subtle glances from across the room and the way time seemed to stop when we locked eyes. He made me feel like a princess. But lately, it’s like our dream romance is beginning to feel like a nightmare.

This is the diary entry of a normal woman. Let’s call her Margaret. Margaret is your average romantic. She enjoys long walks on the beach and kissing in the rain. When she met her Roger, it was a dream come true. He was so sweet to her, always buying her chocolates and bringing home flowers. They were in love, the kind of love that makes you blind to the world around you. Margaret and Roger were the happiest a couple could be. However, that feeling didn’t last too long.

The first abuse had been a couple of months after their honeymoon had ended, and they’d been together for almost a year. Their love was still going strong, but the happiness had started to fade. It all started one Tuesday night. Margaret was home cooking dinner, when Roger came slamming through the front door, rattling the whole house. He’d had the most awful day at work. Roger was infuriated, swearing the world was out to get him. So when Margaret accidentally burnt his chicken dinner, his fuse went off. He slammed his hands down on the dining table, cursing at his wife, telling her that she was incompetent and stupid. Margaret had never seen him like this before and tried to comfort him, saying she was sorry and that she would make him a new dinner. This only angered him further. He saw her as weak, cringing every time he let another curse fly from his tongue. When Margaret tried again to soothe her enraged husband, like a whip, his hand struck out, hitting her cheek in a flash of pain. She drew back, completely startled, holding her own palm to her throbbing face. That’s when the first tear dropped. That’s when the pain began. That’s when she became a victim of domestic violence.

If this were a book, when Roger came through the door would’ve been the moment that the readers started screaming for Margaret to run. Or, when he started cursing her out. Or, when he hit her. All of these moments would have been perfect for her to leave. These are all strong warning signs of domestic abuse. According to domesticviolence.org, domestic abuse, or violence, is an intentional act that one person uses in a relationship to control the other. This abuse does not have to be physical; it can be emotional, sexual, or psychological. Anyone can be a victim of domestic abuse, and anyone can be an abuser. Like Margaret and Roger, the relationship can be perfect at the beginning, a fairytale, but then suddenly change for the worst. I’m not saying that you should give up trying to find “the one”, but just be cautious if your significant other starts acting a little strange and showing the above mentioned warning signs.

It is also important to know that if you are a victim of domestic violence, you are not to blame. It is never the victim’s fault, although it’s common for the abuser to make them think so. Domestic violence is not an accident, so don’t make excuses for the abuse. They might say that they’re doing it out of love, but trust me, if that were really true, they would be giving you kisses instead of bruises.

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