Never Stay

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is a story of something that happened in my life that gave me strength. All names have been changed but it is based on 100% true events.

Submitted: March 15, 2016

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Submitted: March 15, 2016

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As I lay here in bed holding my 5 month old son while my 2 year old daughter sleeps in her room over crowded with every Frozen related toy you could ever imagine, I feel so safe. So content. A few years ago I would have never imagined I would be here. Back then my mind set was that I would be lucky to live past the age of 18. But here I am 21 years old and living a life I never thought would have been possible. I look back on those times and wonder how I fell down such a dark path and how I ever got out. I often think of how naïve and stupid I was then. However, I have to remind myself that that is not the truth. I was manipulated. I know you are all wondering what this dark time in my life was. I will tell you. This will be the first time the truth will see the light of day. So here it is….

It is 2012. I am 17 years old. I live in a small town in Georgia of maybe 2,000 people. Everyone knows everyone. It is that kind of town where you wave at everyone and everyone waves at you. Even if you do not recognize them at the time you probably know them somehow or maybe they know your parents or your grandparents. You just wave. It is like an unspoken law of the south in a small town. At this time I was a great student. I would not say the top of my class but pretty damn close. I was a good kid. I had a best friend. Her name was Sarah. We did everything together. We were inseparable. She was the sister I never had. My mom was a single mother at the time. She had to drop out of college when she got pregnant with me at 19. She worked in a factory at that time to support us. I always felt guilty. Even though I knew I shouldn’t, I did. My dad was never around. I saw him once when I was 10 and never saw him again. I never reached out to him. If he left why should I put any effort into having a relationship with someone who did not try to do the same with me?

This is where my long seeded issues begin. At this time, I was the perfect kid on the outside. But on the inside something was wrong buried deep down inside of me. I kept it hidden. I knew it was there but I didn’t want to realize it much less anyone else. Maybe some call it daddy issues. Whatever you want to call it, it was definitely there.

It is July 2012. Sarah and I are hanging out just like every day. There was a charity softball tournament in a nearby town that we decide to attend. I have played softball all my life. It was my passion at one time. But that’s a story for another time. So we arrive at the softball tournament. We are sitting on the bleachers in the hot summer sun. When out of the corner of my eye I see a blonde hair blue eyed boy. I stared the whole time we were there. When I actually worked up the courage to ask Sarah who it was. “Hey Sarah, who is that boy over there?” “Which one Lauren?” Sarah asked. “The one with the blonde hair?” I asked feeling a little nervous of how she would respond. “Oh that idiot? My ex step brother Chad.” She replied sarcastically. At this point it all sunk in. Wow. I realized who it was. See Sarah’s dad was married to Chad’s mom a couple years ago. They got divorced not too long ago. I had heard some things from Sarah at that point. That she’s crazy. Bipolar. There were many different stories. At that time I did not know much about Chad. Other than he is rebellious and sort of a player. He is also what one would call a redneck. He was the kind of guy that dressed all country but would turn around and listen to rap music. That kind of guy.

Later after the game Sarah and I went for some dinner. We were at Taco Bell sitting down inside. This is where everything in my life goes straight downhill. It all started with just one question that I just had to ask. Why did I even ask? This I still ponder to this day but I did. I asked Sarah for Chad’s number. She refused. She warned me. She told me he wasn’t good for me. She told me he was a bad guy. A player. So many things and to me it went one ear and out the other. I really should of listened but I didn’t. That night I went home and I went on Facebook and messaged him. I got his number and we started talking. He had me fooled. He was so nice. He sweet talked me right into my heart. I was stupid enough to let this guy in I was naïve.

Fast forward to November 2012. Chad is in jail. I have not heard anything from him. This should have been a red flag for me. He was in jail for public drunkenness, resisting arrest, and a few others. This wasn’t the first time either. He has a record 10 pages long and I am not exaggerating. Little ole me being the naïve ignorant teenager that I was just went along with it. I thought maybe I could help him or change him. But I was so wrong. I did not realize it then but I do now.

He got out of jail. We started hanging out very frequently. I would skip school so he could come to my house when my mom was at work. He was 20 at the time so he was not in school. I was beginning to change into someone I did not recognize. But for some reason I was okay with it. My mom was definitely not happy with my choice of boyfriend. My family and my friends did not like him but I still defended him every time. Because I thought I “loved” him. Boy was I wrong.

The day of Thanksgiving Chad makes me text Sarah and tell her we cannot be friends anymore. His reasoning was that my friends are using me. That they are no good. And just like that I did it. I was a horrible person. Looking back now I am so ashamed. I know I really hurt Sarah and I can never forgive myself for that. But I did what he asked so that he would stay. After all, why wouldn’t I trust him he had never done anything to hurt me, he was so sweet. He really cared. That is what was going through my head at the time. So untrue.

In January 2013 I got pregnant. I told Chad he seemed happy. My mom was definitely anything but happy. She literally threw the test in my face went in her room and cried. I was happy because I thought I would finally get the family I always wanted. At this point I had dropped out of high school because Chad wanted me to go to online school and spend time with him. I agreed. Blindly, without considering anything else. My focus was him. I did not have time for family or friends or school. I was becoming obsessed. Manipulated. After all he was a master manipulator.

I decided to keep the baby. However, Chad’s mom had other ideas. She wanted me to get an abortion. I was absolutely disgusted by the idea. At one point Chad agreed. But I never did it. I was keeping her.

Around March 2013 I start to see the real side of Chad. We would have horrible arguments at my house. He would break things, punch holes in my mom’s walls, verbally abuse me. He would tell me things like I was ugly, I was too fat for him, I don’t need to eat because the pregnancy will make me too fat, no one else will ever want me. Horrible things. Somehow I stayed.

Then the physical abuse started. The first time he ever laid a hand on me was during one of our arguments about something he had made up in his head to be true. All our arguments were one sided he would be the one throwing insults and arguing and I would be the one begging him to stay with me. He got so mad he put me in a choke hold and told me that this child was a mistake. He spits in my face and leaves. I did not know how to react. What just happened? How could someone so nice in the beginning turn out to be so mean? Oh it must be because he loves me? He really cares or he wouldn’t do this? That’s what he told me. And I believed him. After every physical altercation he always apologizes, said he would never do it again, that it was my fault, that I made him do it. I went along with it. I believed his lies he always fed me. And I stayed.

We had so many more of these situations. He would punch me, choke me, throw things at me insult me. Even while I was pregnant with my daughter. He did not care at all. We lived together at this point in our own apartment. I had cut all ties with my family. And do not think they did not try to help me. They did and I know they were worried about me. They had Chad arrested numerous times and I still went back.

One of the worst memories I have is when we would go for car rides. He would make me sit with my seat leaned all the way back so I would not look out the window in my own car because if I did I must be checking another guy out, right? And I would deserve the punch in the face that followed after. I would cry myself to sleep at night. I would question myself. Why am I with him?

It was a month before my daughters due date in September of 2013. We were having another argument. Most of them are blurs now but I remember this one so clearly. We had just moved into a new house a day ago. I was now 9 months pregnant and uncomfortable. He went to work that morning I hand nailed all the blinds up while he was gone because we did not have a drill. I thought he would be happy with me. He came home enraged and I knew it was going to be bad. I had to mentally prepare myself for what was to come. He was so mad because I had not unpacked 2 boxes. Only 2 boxes. He began throwing all my stuff into the yard. He broke my great grandmother’s picture purposely while shouting insults at me. And I think this is where I gain some back bone for myself and realize this is not the life for me. It sounds stupid. I am sure you are wondering why I didn’t take a hint sooner. I was so manipulated by him I was numb to everything I became used to it. I began walking down the road. I called my grandparents. I told them I needed them to come get me. I walked back to the house to get my things but he was not having it. My grandparents pulled up and he once again had me in a choke hold. My grandpa called the cops and he went to jail.

He was still in jail when my daughter was born. He did not get out until Thanksgiving that year. He found another girl. And still I tried to get him back. What was wrong with me? I guess I was just asking to be beaten. I was so manipulated my family thought I would be dead before long and nothing would snap me out of it.

I am about to tell you the final thing that happened. And it was the last thing he ever did to me. Because that was my breaking point.

It was March 13th 2014. My daughter and I were staying with my grandparents. They have always been there for me through all this even though I was so horrible to them. That I regret the most. Chad called me. It was 11 at night he said he wanted to talk to me. I walkd out to his car thinking that I would sit in there and talk for 10 minutes and go to bed. I got in and he pulled out. I asked where he was going. He then began accusing me that I was sneaking out at night and sleeping with some guy in the woods. He had made this story all up in his head. I remember looking into his eyes and seeing pure evil. No life or humanity at all. He began punching me in my face any where he could get to while driving. He told me he was going to kill me. I remember seeing stars. He must of punched me in the face maybe 30 times. He drove down a dirt road and my life flashed before my eyes and I knew I was going to die. I began praying out loud for God to save me. And Chad only mocked me. But I prayed louder and louder. Until he held a knife to my throat. He told me he was going to kill me, tie bricks to my body and throw me in the river. Then just like that he stopped. He told me he would take me home. And he did. I still don’t know what happened with him that night. But I truly believe my prayers were answered. God had to intervene and let me experience something horrible so I could get away from Chad before something worse happened. That was the last time I saw him.

I am now 21 years old. I am married. I met my knight in shining armor who has never laid a hand on me. He is the best husband and father I could ever ask for. He truly saved me. He is the father to my daughter. And we have a son together. I know my daughter will find out who her real dad is. Part of me wants to live in this fantasy and never tell her but I know she will want to know and I will tell her. I am just scared for her. But I know there is plenty of time to figure that out. As for Chad, I have heard he has amounted to nothing. He is still in and out of jail. I don’t care what he does really. As long as he is out of my life.

The real reason I told my story is so that people in a similar situation can get out. If you are in abuse relationship, know you are not alone. Get out while you can. It is not worth it. Nothing good will ever come of it. Do not believe your abusers lies, they are all master manipulators. Your life is not worth their lies. You have people who love and care for you. And if you think no one else does. I do.

 


© Copyright 2017 Caitlyn Bonomo. All rights reserved.

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