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In two months, I will be turning twenty-two. To me, that’s super old. I’m almost in my
mid-twenties! But, to most people, I’m still incredibly young. You could even say I have my
whole life ahead of me. At the age of twenty-two, I will become a university graduate and I will
be prepared to face the world on my own. At the age of twenty-two, I will have had so many
amazing experiences and have met so many wonderful people. At the tender age of twenty-two, I
will have participated in two abusive relationships. Most women wouldn't classify this as a
normal relationship once they reach the age of twenty-two. By the age of twenty-two, I will have
finally learned the signs of this calculated offense.
I should clarify the word “abusive”, because there are probably a lot of people who still
only associate the word with physical violence. When I use the term “abusive”, I’m talking
mentally, emotionally, and psychologically. I don’t believe one is worse than the other, and in no
way do I think physical abuse should be discredited. I am simply writing this on emotional abuse
because that is what I have experienced, twice. The first relationship took place while I was
sixteen and seventeen, and the second, which I’ve only been out of for less than a month,
happened at the age of twenty-one.
I believe that if this has happened to me twice within the small number of years which are
considered “acceptable” to start dating within our society, that it has most definitely happened to
other women, and still currently happening. If at any point you are reading this article, whatever
gender you may be, if you can relate to what I am saying, my heart is with you. You will never
be alone. And if you are reading this article, and can identify with the things being said to your
current relationship, stop making excuses for them. Do yourself a favour, and leave. You will
never be alone.
When I was sixteen, I finally got my first boyfriend. I started dating this guy who I was
talking to on and off for a year, and who I had a crush on since I was in grade nine. There were a
few friends of mine who warned me not to be with him, but I had seriously been crushing on this
guy since I was thirteen., I didn’t want to listen to anything negative anyone had to say about
him. This was my first experience in love, and, painfully, my first experience with abuse. We
were together for a year and a half, or somewhere in and around there, and it took me the next
entire year afterwards to realize I had been in an abusive relationship. Within that year and a
half, I had lost all of my friends. If he wasn’t at school, I would sit alone at lunch. We would
spend most weekends together and even some weekdays after school. I didn’t go out with my
friends anymore, I never saw them or spoke to them, and that’s why I lost them. I was
manipulated into thinking that if I decided to hangout with my friends and not him, that I was
being a bad girlfriend. He would ALWAYS come first, and if I wanted to hangout with a
friend(s), I had to ask. I had to ask before making decisions, as if they were no longer my own.
And forget even the idea of going to a party, because that would not happen in a thousand years
unless I wanted to get into a huge fight with him. But for some reason, it was totally okay for
him to go to parties, because I had no reason not to trust him. I had no reason to be mad at him
for going out. What about me, then? Why couldn’t he trust me enough to go out? It’s not like I
ever gave him a reason not to trust me. One time, he read a text conversation I had with my guy
friend. It was about a girl in one of our mutual classes and he wanted to ask her out. I didn’t talk
to that guy friend again until after we had broke up.
I have always loved makeup and all things beauty. Even now, I’ll do my makeup when I
know I’m not doing anything, just because it’s fun to me. I remember one day I was getting
ready for work, and he asked why I was putting makeup on. “Who do you need to impress? You
have me,” these are some of the words that actually came out of his mouth. At this point, it
seemed totally rational for him to say those things. A bunch of boys did just start at work, but I
didn’t want to impress them. Immediately I took off my makeup, and for the remainder of our
relationship I wore a lot less of it.
Let’s fast forward to nearly four years after we broke up. After almost four years, I finally
believed I was ready to be in another relationship. It took me four years to work on myself after
being controlled and manipulated during some of the most vulnerable years of my life. It took
me four years to love myself, and I figured if I could love myself, then I could love somebody
else, too. And so I got into another relationship. He was one of my guy friends who had been
trying to ask me out for nearly three years. This relationship was a lot shorter than the last, only
three months. Don’t be fooled by the amount of time, though. Sometimes all they need is three
months to cause enough damage to last.
This one was very rushed. He told me he loved me a week after our first date. I was told
all these lovely things for about the first month, or until the end of June. Then things inside him
flipped, almost instantaneously. I was constantly being put down, and when I would get upset by
it, he would reply with “I just want the best for you”. Some examples of these things were “if
you order something bad for you, I’m going to break up with you”, “I want you to look good for
me”, “go to the gym”, “I’m not happy with your body”, and, he even used the word “fat”. Over
three months I heard the words “beautiful” and “pretty” a conjoined, maybe three times. He
created so much anxiety in me that, in mid-July, I admitted myself into the hospital because I
couldn’t cope with it anymore. I have dealt with anxiety my entire life, and have never ever
come to the point where I didn’t know how to cope with it. That’s when my friends and family
knew something was wrong. But, I believed I was in love, and I truly believed he did want the
best for me, so like before, I mistakenly ignored every word they said.
The comments about my weight and my body weren’t the only things he used to make
me feel bad about myself. When I would bring up the fact that we only see each other once a
week despite living 15 minutes away from each other, I would get told that “you’re lucky to even
see me that much” and to “appreciate it”. The same went with texting. I like to text, and I like to
text funny stories that happen to me throughout the day. After a month, he decided he didn’t like
to text a lot. He claimed I was being super “clingy” and “needy”, when in reality, I wasn’t either
one. He only wanted a girlfriend when it was convenient to him, and not convenient for me.
Whenever I brought these things up, it was always my fault, and I was always in the wrong. I
always felt like a bad girlfriend.
Both of these experiences I’ve described are examples of abusive behaviour. After going
through them, here are some things I want to say to you. Whether or not you've experienced
abuse within a romantic relationship: the things that make you, you, are incredibly important and
special. Never let anyone make you feel like those things are wrong, or weird, or not supposed to
be there. Because they were there before that person came into your life, and they will be there
long after they leave. All of those little things make you whole and make you unique. Don’t let
someone belittle you, for any reason. Don’t let anyone control you and the things you do to the
point where you have no one but them… to the point where you don’t even have yourself. If they
don’t understand you and they don’t try to, they’re not meant to be in your life. If they really
loved you and cared about you, they won’t dismiss any of your emotions. You are not always in
the wrong, and if you are to someone, then something isn’t right. Because everything you feel is
real, and everything you feel is valid. If it feels wrong, it is wrong, it is so important to trust your
gut when it’s trying to tell you something. Try not to let people bring you down, because when it
comes down to it, all you really have is yourself. You are the most important person in your life,
please look after and take care of yourself. You shouldn’t hate yourself, and you should
especially not let anyone else’s words make you hate yourself. You are unique, you are
intelligent, and you bring so much more to this world then you probably think. Don’t let any guy,
or girl, significant other, friend, family member, etc. take any of that away from you.
In my short twenty-two years, I have met some amazing individuals and I have met some
who were terrible. When I got dumped three weeks ago, I had so many people message me, text
me, inbox me, just to to see if I was okay. They all told me they was there if I needed them…
half of these people, might I add, I didn’t even know very well. Those are the people you want to
hold onto. The people who are there for you during your worst, accept you for who you are, and
who want to see you succeed and be happy. These are the kinds of individuals to keep in your
life. You don’t have time for anything less.

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absynthepiece3

  • 1. In two months, I will be turning twenty-two. To me, that’s super old. I’m almost in my mid-twenties! But, to most people, I’m still incredibly young. You could even say I have my whole life ahead of me. At the age of twenty-two, I will become a university graduate and I will be prepared to face the world on my own. At the age of twenty-two, I will have had so many amazing experiences and have met so many wonderful people. At the tender age of twenty-two, I will have participated in two abusive relationships. Most women wouldn't classify this as a normal relationship once they reach the age of twenty-two. By the age of twenty-two, I will have finally learned the signs of this calculated offense. I should clarify the word “abusive”, because there are probably a lot of people who still only associate the word with physical violence. When I use the term “abusive”, I’m talking mentally, emotionally, and psychologically. I don’t believe one is worse than the other, and in no way do I think physical abuse should be discredited. I am simply writing this on emotional abuse because that is what I have experienced, twice. The first relationship took place while I was sixteen and seventeen, and the second, which I’ve only been out of for less than a month, happened at the age of twenty-one. I believe that if this has happened to me twice within the small number of years which are considered “acceptable” to start dating within our society, that it has most definitely happened to other women, and still currently happening. If at any point you are reading this article, whatever gender you may be, if you can relate to what I am saying, my heart is with you. You will never be alone. And if you are reading this article, and can identify with the things being said to your current relationship, stop making excuses for them. Do yourself a favour, and leave. You will never be alone. When I was sixteen, I finally got my first boyfriend. I started dating this guy who I was talking to on and off for a year, and who I had a crush on since I was in grade nine. There were a few friends of mine who warned me not to be with him, but I had seriously been crushing on this guy since I was thirteen., I didn’t want to listen to anything negative anyone had to say about him. This was my first experience in love, and, painfully, my first experience with abuse. We were together for a year and a half, or somewhere in and around there, and it took me the next entire year afterwards to realize I had been in an abusive relationship. Within that year and a half, I had lost all of my friends. If he wasn’t at school, I would sit alone at lunch. We would spend most weekends together and even some weekdays after school. I didn’t go out with my friends anymore, I never saw them or spoke to them, and that’s why I lost them. I was manipulated into thinking that if I decided to hangout with my friends and not him, that I was being a bad girlfriend. He would ALWAYS come first, and if I wanted to hangout with a friend(s), I had to ask. I had to ask before making decisions, as if they were no longer my own. And forget even the idea of going to a party, because that would not happen in a thousand years unless I wanted to get into a huge fight with him. But for some reason, it was totally okay for him to go to parties, because I had no reason not to trust him. I had no reason to be mad at him for going out. What about me, then? Why couldn’t he trust me enough to go out? It’s not like I ever gave him a reason not to trust me. One time, he read a text conversation I had with my guy friend. It was about a girl in one of our mutual classes and he wanted to ask her out. I didn’t talk to that guy friend again until after we had broke up.
  • 2. I have always loved makeup and all things beauty. Even now, I’ll do my makeup when I know I’m not doing anything, just because it’s fun to me. I remember one day I was getting ready for work, and he asked why I was putting makeup on. “Who do you need to impress? You have me,” these are some of the words that actually came out of his mouth. At this point, it seemed totally rational for him to say those things. A bunch of boys did just start at work, but I didn’t want to impress them. Immediately I took off my makeup, and for the remainder of our relationship I wore a lot less of it. Let’s fast forward to nearly four years after we broke up. After almost four years, I finally believed I was ready to be in another relationship. It took me four years to work on myself after being controlled and manipulated during some of the most vulnerable years of my life. It took me four years to love myself, and I figured if I could love myself, then I could love somebody else, too. And so I got into another relationship. He was one of my guy friends who had been trying to ask me out for nearly three years. This relationship was a lot shorter than the last, only three months. Don’t be fooled by the amount of time, though. Sometimes all they need is three months to cause enough damage to last. This one was very rushed. He told me he loved me a week after our first date. I was told all these lovely things for about the first month, or until the end of June. Then things inside him flipped, almost instantaneously. I was constantly being put down, and when I would get upset by it, he would reply with “I just want the best for you”. Some examples of these things were “if you order something bad for you, I’m going to break up with you”, “I want you to look good for me”, “go to the gym”, “I’m not happy with your body”, and, he even used the word “fat”. Over three months I heard the words “beautiful” and “pretty” a conjoined, maybe three times. He created so much anxiety in me that, in mid-July, I admitted myself into the hospital because I couldn’t cope with it anymore. I have dealt with anxiety my entire life, and have never ever come to the point where I didn’t know how to cope with it. That’s when my friends and family knew something was wrong. But, I believed I was in love, and I truly believed he did want the best for me, so like before, I mistakenly ignored every word they said. The comments about my weight and my body weren’t the only things he used to make me feel bad about myself. When I would bring up the fact that we only see each other once a week despite living 15 minutes away from each other, I would get told that “you’re lucky to even see me that much” and to “appreciate it”. The same went with texting. I like to text, and I like to text funny stories that happen to me throughout the day. After a month, he decided he didn’t like to text a lot. He claimed I was being super “clingy” and “needy”, when in reality, I wasn’t either one. He only wanted a girlfriend when it was convenient to him, and not convenient for me. Whenever I brought these things up, it was always my fault, and I was always in the wrong. I always felt like a bad girlfriend. Both of these experiences I’ve described are examples of abusive behaviour. After going through them, here are some things I want to say to you. Whether or not you've experienced abuse within a romantic relationship: the things that make you, you, are incredibly important and special. Never let anyone make you feel like those things are wrong, or weird, or not supposed to be there. Because they were there before that person came into your life, and they will be there long after they leave. All of those little things make you whole and make you unique. Don’t let
  • 3. someone belittle you, for any reason. Don’t let anyone control you and the things you do to the point where you have no one but them… to the point where you don’t even have yourself. If they don’t understand you and they don’t try to, they’re not meant to be in your life. If they really loved you and cared about you, they won’t dismiss any of your emotions. You are not always in the wrong, and if you are to someone, then something isn’t right. Because everything you feel is real, and everything you feel is valid. If it feels wrong, it is wrong, it is so important to trust your gut when it’s trying to tell you something. Try not to let people bring you down, because when it comes down to it, all you really have is yourself. You are the most important person in your life, please look after and take care of yourself. You shouldn’t hate yourself, and you should especially not let anyone else’s words make you hate yourself. You are unique, you are intelligent, and you bring so much more to this world then you probably think. Don’t let any guy, or girl, significant other, friend, family member, etc. take any of that away from you. In my short twenty-two years, I have met some amazing individuals and I have met some who were terrible. When I got dumped three weeks ago, I had so many people message me, text me, inbox me, just to to see if I was okay. They all told me they was there if I needed them… half of these people, might I add, I didn’t even know very well. Those are the people you want to hold onto. The people who are there for you during your worst, accept you for who you are, and who want to see you succeed and be happy. These are the kinds of individuals to keep in your life. You don’t have time for anything less.