mental abuse

‘Your chest looks so flat. What have you done to yourself?’: Young woman battles with weight, self-esteem after abuse, now uses her voice to protect women

“During 5th grade, at my father’s office party in some big hotel, I went upstairs to play hide and seek. A completely drunk stranger started following us. When the rest of the group hid behind the sofa, the man pinned me down. After he was done, I ran downstairs to my parents. We were all crying and pointing upstairs. All the adults searched for the man, but he had left the premises. I packed more than 33 pounds. They would warn their kids, ‘Stop eating. Do you want to look like her?’”

‘At 13, there was blood on the counter, a strange calm on my mom’s face. She tried to get help.’: Woman candidly shares effects of mother’s suicide, reminds us ‘healing comes in waves’

“I’ve been to my mom’s grave twice. In 20 years. You won’t find a single photo of her in my home. I know this wasn’t her fault. It doesn’t change the effects her illnesses have had on me. None of it changes that her 60th birthday is not a birthday at all, because she is dead. I want to honor her, I really do. But I can’t face the woman who tried to break me.”

‘My marriage reared it’s ugly head. I was at a fork in the road. I could leave and save myself heartbreak, or I could stay.’: Woman finds ‘strength’ to divorce abusive husband, admits there’s ‘beauty in vulnerability’

“I never planned on writing my story. While I was more fearful of the future than I care to admit, I remember leaving the courthouse the day I filed for divorce feeling like I could breathe for the first time in years. It was the feeling of freedom. For years, I allowed the world to wash over me, resigned to the lies I’d been told about who I was, who I wasn’t, and who I could never be. On the hard days, I have to remind myself to call these thoughts what they are: lies.”

‘I saw him text a girl, ‘I miss you. I can’t wait for her to move out so we can be together.’ I was livid and shaking.’: Woman leaves ‘narcissist’ husband after years of ‘manipulation and lies’

“Within moments, he mentioned that he would be seeing other people. I said, ‘Pardon me?’ He had everything he could ever want. A housewife making homemade meals every day. A clean house, two beautiful happy boys, a gorgeous house. I took care of myself and couldn’t understand why I was not enough for him.”

‘I made the decision to cut my mom out of my life. Now that I’m a mom, I wish she was there to guide me. I wish my children knew her. But I know she won’t change.’ Mom explains heartbreaking decision to protect her kids

“There were no I love you’s. I remember her spending a lot of time in bed, flying off the handle easily, expecting a lot out of everyone while she gave the minimum. I knew something was wrong, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. Was she a drug addict? Or was she just a bad person? I vow to give my children everything my mom could not give me.”

‘He lit my insides on fire. So, I did it. I married him. My body signaled that something was off. I pegged it as nerves. I didn’t know about the pools of women.’ Woman breaks free from abusive relationship 

“It was the same with everyone. The same love songs, the same pet names, the same date night spots, the same EVERYTHING. In a ten-day period, he cheated with 3 people. He played it off as him being drunk and stupid. I believed it at the time. I didn’t tell friends or family. ‘If I can’t even make a marriage work, what else will I fail at?!’ I kept it private, until things began to boil.”

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