The worst part about being in a relationship where you are disrespected is that you make excuses for the other person. You deserve better.
I forced a smile on my face as my friend gushed over a picture of my fiancé and I. We look so happy in the picture. As she went on about ‘how we make the perfect couple’, I couldn’t help but wonder…
‘When was the last time I was that happy?’
I truly couldn’t remember. Maybe when I first started dating Markus. He was the perfect gentleman- remembering those times brought a small smile to my face. He used to always text me a cheesy line every morning, something along the lines of:
“Good morning beautiful. I just want to let you know that I love you and hope your day is great so that when I see you, I can see your beautiful smile.”
When I asked why he sent those texts every morning, he said it was to let me know that I was always on his mind. The first thing he taught of in the morning and the last thing he taught of at night.
It was really sweet actually and one of the reasons I feel for him in the first place.
He used to take me on a date every Friday. That was our date day. Then Saturdays and Sundays were spent having movie marathons and making out.
It never went farther than that- making out. I was hundred percent against sex before marriage and it was something we had talked about before we started dating. Markus had always said he was okay with my decision. I never really doubted him.
I was just really happy that I found someone who respected my values.
He used to buy me gifts all the time and I always complained. I told him that I felt uncomfortable with him always spending so much on me and that it was unnecessary. That was our first fight.
He said my not wanting to take his gift meant that I wasn’t depending on him and that I didn’t see him as a man capable of taking care of his woman. He also implied that it meant I was cheating on him, that’s why I didn’t want to collect his gifts- so my ‘other’ boyfriend wouldn’t see it.
We didn’t talk for three days. He apologized and I caved on the present thing. A month later, he proposed to me and I said yes.
The change came about six months into the relationship.
My morning texts became less frequent because he was always ‘busy with work’. He started finding reasons to cancel our date on date day and when he came over during the weekend, he would pick a racy movie and make out with me when they were making out on screen.
Only, he didn’t want to stop at making out now. He kept trying to touch me and got angry when I told him to stop. He told me he did not understand why I was acting like a prude when we were already engaged. He began to consistently complain about how I kept taking his money in form of gifts and never allowed him to go farther with me.
I started wondering where the sudden change was coming from. He knew my virginity was important to me especially because of my religion but it suddenly seemed like he did not care. It seemed like I was a prize, something he could buy with gifts.
We started to argue all the time and it scared me. I loved him and didn’t want to lose him, so I caved. I began to allow him to touch me, even though it made me uncomfortable and went against my beliefs.
I kept telling myself that I would not lose him if I let him do what he wanted to do. One Saturday, when he came over, he did something he hadn’t ever done before.
At first when he tried to do it, I complained, telling him that it was too risky and that I wasn’t comfortable with it but he kept telling me that he knew what he was doing and that he had done this countless time with his other girlfriends.
He basically forced himself on me.
A part of me was annoyed that he was speaking to me about the sexual things he had done with his ex’s. Another part of me was scared that if I didn’t let him, I would lose him- that he would go back to one of those girls who would let him do whatever he wanted and I would be alone.
So, I did. I let him use my body. We didn’t have sex but it was basically sex without penetration. I felt disgusting afterwards.
The next month, my period didn’t come.
I panicked and reluctantly told him that I had missed my period- I never missed a period. I was terrified- what if I was pregnant? A child out of wedlock? I was technically still a virgin- could virgins get pregnant?
While I was going through all the scenarios and losing my mind, he was angry at me. I wanted to go to the hospital and I begged him to come with me because I was terrified. His exact words were ‘Stop exaggerating. Go pee on a stick or let’s break up. I’m tired of your whining’
I couldn’t lose him but I was too scared to buy a pregnancy test. What if it was positive? I would rather not know yet. So, I stopped talking about it.
The next month, my period came. The relief I felt was overwhelming but it made me realize that I wasn’t ready to be a mother.
After the scare, he made me go on the pill, even though we weren’t having sex. He began to force himself on me- always doing something sexual but never really having actual intercourse with me.
He called it experimenting. If he wanted to ‘experiment’ and I refused, he would hit me. He always hit me in places where it wouldn’t show- like my stomach or my thighs and he never hit me hard enough to leave permanent scars.
After each beating, he would storm out, come back drunk and cry to me about how sorry he was and how it wouldn’t happen again.
“Lydia, Lydia?” I shook myself out of my thoughts when I heard my friend call me while nudging me. “Sorry. Did you say something?” I asked with a small fake smile that I had mastered.
“Yeah. When’s the wedding? Have you set a date?” she asked obviously still hyped from talking about what a ‘perfect couple‘ my fiancé and I were. “Not yet” I say with a small smile.
I zoned out as she started chattering away again. Why did everyone think my relationship was so perfect? Was it that they really couldn’t see the cracks in the wall? Or that they just didn’t care?
Was my relationship meant to be picture perfect only?
I know that though he hits me, he does not mean it. He loves me and I love him.
I love him.
I just need to find a way to be happy again.
© 2020 Yvonne