Today I found out that my ex-fiance got married this past December. And no, for the record, I'm not upset that it wasn't me. I also got married last year to a wonderful man, and am happier then ever, but the news of my ex's wedding upset me none the less.

 In 2004, my boyfriend and I got engaged, just before Christmas. We'd known each other for 2+ years, and it seemed like the right time for us to take the next step. I transferred schools so we could get a place together, and things seemed like they were really headed in the right direction. His parents liked me, I liked his parents-- he had always treated me wonderfully, and he proposed romantically with the most beautiful ring by the river at a Christmas gathering we were attending.

But after Christmas, and after moving in together, things started to go downhill just as rapidly as they had gone up, if not faster. It wasn't until I moved in with him that I found he was nothing like he had ever been before. I noticed it more and more as time went along. Once school started after Christmas break was over, his attitude and the way he treated me made a complete 360. If a class ran late, or I had a rehearsal after class (I'm a theatre major), and I called to say I was going to be home a little later then usual, he'd flip. He suddenly disapproved of any of the extracurricular activities that I had previously been involved in...or in my doing ANYTHING that he wasn't involved in as well. He even started to be upset by the fact that I was going to school at all...he wanted me home all the time...to know where I was and what I was doing. 

I didn't like...but I let it slide. I figured he was just concerned for my well being, and that he just liked spending time with me so he wanted me home as much as possible. But then it got worse. At a family gathering (his family) he blatently stated to everyone there that he hated what I was majoring in and thought it was a ridiculous choice of a career..."not that you can make a career out of performing anyway"....and that he didn't want to me to participate in it anymore. That hurt. Not only did he not support something that I LOVE, and that is my life, and has always been, but he had the nerve to bash me in front of his family, some of whom I was meeting for the first time. 

That particular incident started a chain of events that eventually led to my leaving him in the midst of all our wedding plans, and suddenly finding myself no longer in the wonderful, happy relationship I had been. The man of my dreams suddenly became a monster.

In the middle of watching a movie one evening, he had asked me out of the blue if I would give everything up to be with him. Everything...school, theatre...my hopes and my dreams and everything I wanted in life...and my family. Would I give up my family...my parents whom I was/am VERY close to...just to be with him. No. I said no. No I wouldn't give up my family for you. Of course a fight ensued. A fight which resulted in my being pushed down a flight of basement stairs, as well as my packing my backpack full of things and walking out the door. Thankfully I wasn't seriously injured from the fall, but I was seriously injured...seriously hurt...mentally, at that particular moment and the moments leading up and following, I had become unstable. 

He denied it. I told his parents about what had happened and he denied it. I guess the bruises weren't enough for him. The fact that he had pushed his fiance who he loved SO much down a flight of stairs wasn't enough...he even had the nerve to say it didn't happen...that I was lying. I think deep down they knew I was right, but of course they would stand by their son one hundred percent. 

After I left, and moved in with a friend, and had finally gotten all my things the "home" we shared together, I began to look back and realize all the little things...all the signs I had missed over the time we were together.  The fact that he treated his mother like she was a slave ("cook me dinner"..."I don't want to eat that"...he was downright mean to his mom). The fact that when we would go to the movies, he wouldn't let me have my candy until he wanted me to have it. The fact that if I didn't answer my cell phone every single time he called, I was obviously cheating on him. The fact that when he'd get angry at me, he'd hold me down or push me, sometimes leaving bruises on my wrists from squeezing so hard. And it hurt to suddenly realize that I had known all along there was something not right about the situation I was in...but I had failed to see it. How stupid was I to move in with a guy who treated me the way he did...to say I loved him and wanted to marry him. I blamed myself in part...for a long time. Not enough to stay with him, thank goodness, but enough for it to weigh on my mind. 

But the real point to this is that upon hearing that that man got married recently, I wanted to scream...to cry...to find that girl that he married and warn her. I sincerely hope that he realized what he did wrong with us...what big mistakes he made with me...and I hope he NEVER treats that girl the same way. I can only hope that maybe he finally figured out that HE was the one who did something wrong...really wrong. It scares me to think of anyone with him...he still shows up in my nightmares sometimes...and for a long time he was always lurking around the corner in the shadows. 

So, to anyone out there in an abusive relationship...PLEASE, for your own sake, get out now, before it's too late. PLEASE don't let someone treat you this way. No one deserves to be abused....physically or mentally. No, it's not okay. It's not okay and it's not YOU who is doing anything wrong. And for that girl who is now married to my ex...I hope you're okay...and I hope he treats you better then he treated me. 

From someone who knows...

Sophie 

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