Monday, October 10, 2011

Beyond the looking glass - Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. This is part two of a three part vignette that is an account of my experiences. You can read part one by clicking here.

It is morning.  The light outside is sharp, knifing into my bloodied eyes relentlessly.  Fresh snow has fallen to cover the red stains on the icy driveway, but I know that they are there. 

“You don’t have to do this,”  he says, opening the truck door for me and helping me up into the seat.  Somehow, I manage to buckle my seat belt, gasping as my chest prickles in pain from being touched. 

“You don’t have to do this,”  he repeats.  “You don’t have to go back.  I’ll stay while you pack a bag and I’ll bring you back here.”

I hear what he says.  I comprehend.  He is offering me safety.  He is offering me freedom.  He is offering me peace of mind. 

“I don’t know,”  I whisper.  Everything looks different in the bright light of day.  And I wonder what I might be going back to. 

He looks at me for a long moment, his expression pained and pitying, and he backs the truck out of the driveway. 

It is a two-minute drive, and we are silent.  Or maybe we aren’t.  The sharp, winter light slices into my memory and I no longer recall if there were words exchanged at all.

The truck slows, sure-footed on the icy pavement, and he turns left onto my street.  He stops the truck in front of the house and shifts into park.  I am shivering, but not from the cold.

“Are you sure that you want to do this?”  he asks.  “You don’t have to.  You know that.”

I take a deep breath and look out the window.  There are fresh footprints in the snow, and I know that I will not be alone.  Someone else is inside.  With him.  I catch a glimpse of my face in the side view mirror as I turn away. 

I have not looked into a mirror yet.  I avert my eyes.

“I have to do this,”  I finally reply.  “I have to know why.”

End Part 2.

If you know someone who is being abused by their partner, or you are a victim of domestic violence, you can get help!  Visit this website:  National Domestic Violence Hotline or call 1-800-799-SAFE.

Stay tuned next Monday for Part 3 of my vignette: Mirror, Mirror.


  1. Hello. I read this and then went back to read part two because it was so good: compelling and well-written. I'm not going to say sorry, just that I'm glad you're free from that now. :) Also, I think it's awesome that you're sharing your story with the world.

  2. Thank you, Lauren. It's been years now since this happened to me, but the important thing is that I did get away. What so many people fail to realize is that getting free is never as easy as it looks from the outside. Women who stay are not stupid; they have hit rock bottom and don't realize that they have options. I hope that sharing my story might help other women to realize that the situation that they are in is not inescapable. Thanks for reading, and thank you for the compliment on my writing. It's much appreciated.