It’s finally here. The day i’ve been apprehensively waiting for.
One year ago today i watched High School Musical 2 and got picked up by my boyfriend-at-the-time at around 7pm. We went to McDonalds.
I was already planning to leave him within the next couple of weeks at this point but even now i’m not sure if i ever would’ve had the courage to.
Fortunately, he gave me a push. He asked for my phone to put a Spotify playlist on for the drive home. I offered to do it myself if he told me the name of the playlist. He demanded i give him my phone and he made attempts to snatch it off me. We ended up arguing, him shouting at me that i had something to hide. He probably thought i was cheating on him but in reality, i was pretty sure a friend had just text me mentioning my planned escape.
He drove us home like a maniac. I shouted at him to drive more carefully or he’ll end up killing us both. He didn’t listen.
We pulled up to our flat in one piece and he shouted at me again to explain what i was hiding. I refused and he stormed off inside, and i followed.
He went into the living room, the place that had been his bedroom for a couple of months, and i went into ‘our’ bedroom and looked around. I told myself it was now or never and so i began to make a small pile of things to take with me. I’d already made a plan with Janine a couple of months previous where i told her there would come a night where i would text her at near midnight saying i was coming over. She only lived a 5 minute walk from us thankfully.
I messaged her to let her know that tonight was the night and hunted for my work clothes. My trousers and deodorant were in the living room so i left them until last because i was convinced he would try and stop me leaving, even with physical force if it came to it. It wasn’t something i’d have put past him.
He noticed straight away when i skulked into the living room and asked what i was doing. I told him i was staying at Janine’s for tonight. He got up and followed me around, meaning i didn’t have chance to grab anything else. I never managed to get my trousers.
I put on my shoes and coat and ignored him raising his voice again, questioning me.
When i got to the front door, he opened it and shouted ‘if you leave now, it’s over!’
I repeated ‘i’m just staying at Janine’s for tonight’ and he slammed the front door. I threw myself in the lift, heart racing and smashed the 0 button.
Once i got outside the building, i ran to Janine’s street, looking behind me every 2 seconds. I was completely convinced he would follow me, try to stop me or bring me back. Looking back, i think he wanted it to be over too.
It was a turbulent relationship from the start. He was a very angry person, aggressive and controlling. He never told me i couldn’t see my friends or i wasn’t allowed to do things without him, but by our 1 year anniversary i found myself to be without friends apart from those at work and each time i went somewhere by myself or with someone who wasn’t him i’d be bombarded with texts and calls and questioned when i got home if i hadn’t replied as much as he wanted. He didn’t physically hit me but i had objects thrown at me on a couple of occasions or he would threaten to do things like push me out the car and drive off or throw me off the bed or out the window when i asked him to roll over so he wouldn’t snore so loud.
I was far from perfect. I completely gave in to the dark side of me and closed up. I didn’t want to talk or be touched or even be looked at. I just existed alongside him and replied to conversation he tried to make, trying to resist jumping out of our 4th floor window.
I actually challenged him about his behaviour once. Towards the end i became less passive and joined in with arguments he started. I told him that something had to change because we were going to end up killing each other and that he needed to get control of his anger. He turned the entire conversation around on me, because in his eyes it was always my fault. My fault for making him angry, my fault that i didn’t want to have sex or even hold hands. He seemed incapable of linking my destructive behaviours to events or things he had done.
I don’t regret dating him. He pulled me out of a depression, gave me the opportunity to escape Mansfield and move to Sheffield and drove me to an interview for a part time job that led to a full time promotion within 10 months i’m still doing now.
His family have become an extension of mine and i will always adore his Mum and little sister and see them as my own.
I simply wish i’d had the courage and strength to leave when i first realised we weren’t destined to last.
This is the first time i’ve spoken so openly on the internet about what really happened. It’s good to get it out my head – the year anniversary has been plaguing me all morning.
I feel like it’s finally time to move on.
(Pictures below from my Timehop: the food i ate from McDonalds, my bed at Janine’s when i arrived, my first selfie of a fresh start)