My cycle of abuse lasted until I was well into my 30s!

As a young child I remembered being physically abused by both my parents, mostly my mother, unfortunately. She drank a lot when I was kid and was an angry drunk. She usually either hit us with her hand (or spoon) or grabbed the closest object and threw it at us (shoes,ashtrays, pots and the like).  Dad usually got out the belt, buckle side if you were really bad.  Verbal abuse was an everyday event, never being good enough, being the reason for their unhappiness or practicing poor language choices all the while professing to be a good Christian.

As young as 1st grade I remember sexual abuse from my father, the man I was supposed to call Daddy. I was “lucky” that he never penetrated me. All I knew about love was touch, the improper kind. It always happened when I was home alone with him, I prayed so many times to never be left alone. The bigger betrayal came when we sought help from my mother and she never believed us, yes 3 of 4 daughters were abused. When I was 43, my father admitted to my mother that he abused us girls, it was then she finally believed us. Heartbroken all over again.

So I ran away, into a relationship with a boy who really was not good for me, I took the lesser of too many evils a kid shouldn’t be faced with. Spent some time trying to make a life for myself in yet another abusive environment. I worked three jobs while my boyfriend stayed home ALL day. As hard as it was, that lasted eight months, I did so many awful things those eight months just to survive. Two things made me realize this wasn’t the life for me. One, my employer was making sexual advances towards me, knowing I had a boyfriend and he didn’t care. I actually felt obligated to do what he wanted, I needed that job! The turning point for me in this situation was when he made it a group effort bringing in the kitchen help for their fun at my expense. Second was my grandfather offered me a way out by opening up a college opportunity. I again RAN!

In college I inflicted my own abuse, believe it or not. Alcohol in excess, way too many sexual partners and not respecting myself in ANY WAY, looking for love in all the wrong places.  As college came to a close I met my first husband. He actually liked me, I felt special.  He and I were good for a long time, I was on a path that was good. Nice job, benefits, house, babies on the way, bliss lasted three to four years.  When times got tight he started the verbal abuse and financial draining. He became a drug addict, cocaine being his specialty. I did all I could to stay married to him, through it all I remained faithful, found out that he wasn’t throughout almost the entire relationship. Once again betrayal, but this time I had babies of my own to protect.  Honestly those babies are what saved my life. It’s because of them that I made one of the most difficult decisions in my life, end all the abuse and become a single parent of three under 6 years old.  This is where my cycle of abuse ends permanently.

I became free, no more abuse. Lord knows it wasn’t easy by any means. But I am where I am today because I chose that I needed to be healthy and keep my kids safe and secure. I grew up that year at the age of 34.  Almost 15 years later I can say I don’t let people take advantage of me, I protect my family with all my power, I have found true love, a man who loves me for ME, the good the bad and the ugly. I owe so much to my faith in God for this change in my life. One could argue after all you have been through WHY do you believe in a God. I honestly have no answer for that expect I do, wholeheartedly!!!  I still have memories, but thankfully they are few. I have a great life, ups downs and in betweens, I didn’t let what happened to me DEFINE me. That’s the most important part of all this!