Scars - One Shot

Three years ago, a violent incident in my then-relationship changed me. It changed my entire life, and probably rewrote my future.
For the first time ever, I've succeded in writing it down. For once I am not hiding behind characters and stories.
I won't tell you to enjoy it. But you might learn something for it. Might see something you wouldn't have otherwise. 'Till this day, I still wish someone could have showed me the face behind the mask. But truth be told, I don't think I was ready to see it.


2. Scars

When I was sixteen, my boyfriend of two years tried to kill me.

There – I said it.

I'm not supposed to. I'm supposed to shut up, play it down, pretend it was coincidence and accident, that it was no one's fault. But there is nothing coincidental about his hands around my neck, and it was no accident when he bruised and broke me. It was his fault and no one else's when he choked the air from my body until I lost consiousness, and who knows how much longer.

And I'm tired of pretending that it didn't brand me for life, that it didn't change me. Of course it did. It should.

And at the same time, it didn't change me at all. Really, it froze me. Since that night more than three years ago, I've been stuck in the mind of that scared sixteen year old girl. A girl who apologizes for making a floorboard creek or for sneezing. A girl who, however subconsiously, had been afraid for her life for over a year. Someone who was conditioned into believing she was worthless, useless and utterly undesirable. Someone who was always to blame, for anything and everything.

I left him the morning after this attack, and I'm still the girl his abuse conditioned me into being.

That makes me more angry with him the more time passes. He got out scot-free, and I'm still trying to figure out who I'm going to be if not a cowering victim of domestic abuse.

Sometimes, especially on the hard days, I regret not pressing charges. But I was sixteen, and I loved him, and part of me believed that it was my fault, because that was what he'd taught me.

And more than anything, I just didn't want to hurt him more than I had to. It was a very confusing time for me, because my upbringing and general personality told me to get out of there as fast as I could, because I didn't deserve what he did to me. But the person I had been for two years... She wanted to put up with it. She told me to stay because love conquers all, and in spite of everything, even now, I know he loved me.

He loved me too much. Love can be a poison too.

And I loved him, so much that every red light, every warning signal, flew right past me unnoticed. Looking back, he was the perfect picture of an abuser. Controlling, angry... He never apologized, not even if he admitted he was wrong. He never said the magic word, because that was admitting he was to blame himself.

I remember all the times he smashed glasses, or ripped clothes apart in anger. Always he'd say: “Look what you made me do.”

And at first, I just told myself it was his anger speaking. People act irrationally when they are angry. But the more times I let it pass, the more I started to believe his words myself.

“Look what you made me do.”


“You made me.”

“Look what you made me do.”

And it got so bad so that that night, when his hands were around my throat and I could feel the blackness creeping in, I remember thinking one terrifying, disturbing thing; I'm going to die now. And it's my fault.

That's what made me leave when I woke up. That last thought, ringing in my mind. Because like hell it was my fault. For the first time I saw a sliver of what he had made me, and I didn't like it.

He proceeded to stalk me. Obsessed, insane, and broken. And I felt sorry for him. I still do. Back then, I didn't know the effects my relationship with him would have on me.

I didn't know that three years later I still couldn't be in a room with an angry man. That I wouldn't be able to be in a traditional relationship because of the fear that my current boyfriend would cut me off from the rest of the world like my abuser did. And he wouldn't. I know that, it just doesn't change anything.

Because rationality doesn't change post-traumatic stress disorder. It will be there no matter how ridiculous it seems. Chances are it will remain with me for the rest of my life. Loud noises will probably always make some nerve-endings in my mind spark, telling me that I will die now. Some songs will most likely always make me feel sick. His name might never sound like that of a human being again.

But I refuse to let him win. Giving up would be letting him win. Succumbing to despair would be letting him win. What I need to do is tell my story. It is to carry my scars with the pride that they deserve, because I survived. Against all odds, I got out alive. And I didn't go back. I am never going back.

My scars might remind me where I've been. But I will never again let them dictate where I'm going.

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