I cheated on someone that I love dearly. For a while, I carried on an intimate affair with someone who manipulated me just as much as the person I cheated on.
Abuse comes I many forms and the signs are always there. When you love someone you just want to see the best in that person. But I wanted to have my cake and eat it too.
My partner is a good man. A strong, hardworking man who doesn’t take no shit. I love him dearly despite all he’s done to me. He’s a drinker, and sometimes he may get a little aggressive but he assured me that no one else would love me like he did and that this was just “tough love.” The first time I was called out of my name by him I cried until I could fill Niagara Falls. He was aggressive with his words, but I told myself I knew what I was getting into because I knew who he was before. We didn’t speak for a while and when he ignored me on my birthday I ran to the first person that flashed a smile in my face, my beloved.
For some weeks I saw my beloved off and on until my partner decided I was punished by the silent treatment for long enough. We were good for a few weeks, until his next outburst. And just like that I ran to the man that who said he cared about me, my beloved.
Over time the same routine continued and before I realized it I was living a double life. The more aggressive my partner was the more I wanted to seek comfort from my beloved. Every day my conscience grew more guilty. I halfway gave-up caring if he found out about my cheating the night he threatened to beat the shit out of me. He was away for work, and I must’ve done something to anger him. And he told me he would beat the shit out of me, because I was a “bitch” and was “worthless” to him. He told me he didn’t care if I cried. But I knew this was tough love, I also knew this wasn’t the love, or at least the love I wanted. I didn’t see my beloved but he was on my mind.
The next day my partner and I talked about things, and he told me he gets so angry because he couldn’t trust me and I knew he knew that I knew why but I didn’t have the guts to admit my infidelity. I knew I could leave when I wanted, but I felt obligated to stay because my partner really I made him happy, I didn’t want him to be unhappy even though that meant sacrificing my happiness.
The things that stand out the most to me, what traumatized me the most are simple, because the abuse was never physical. On two different occasions he tried to choke me. I told myself it was okay because he let go. On the second occasion he even laughed at me and told me how pitiful I looked. I can never forget that day. He’s tried to drag me out of his apartment from the bed. He told me to sleep by the door but I eventually moved to the couch. When he calmed down he called me back to bed and we slept until the next day, and carried on our day like nothing happened. I remember he tried to force me out of the car on the side of the freeway. He assured me that he wasn’t really going to do it and he says he doesn’t remember any of these things happening but I do.
My beloved knew I was seeing someone but he never mentioned it, mostly because he was probably seeing someone else too, but I didn’t care because he gave me love when I needed it. I’ve had some of the best days with my beloved.
I’ve also had some of the best days with my partner. I tried leaving on many occasions because I wasn’t happy. I blamed it on his abusive ways but it was because I just wasn’t happy. When I came to the realization that his tough love was abuse I tried to make him aware. He told me that I pick and choose the good and the bad days and the good days always out weigh the bad. I still hadn’t come clean.
Guilt was eating me alive and all I wanted was to escape my reality. I was tired of crying, tired of lying, tired of lying to my partner but I couldn’t seem to bring myself back to reality and come clean. I knew I shouldn’t be with someone who didn’t respect me, as I didn’t respect him enough to stay faithful. I told myself i deserved better, I deserve someone who wasn’t going to make me feel like an abused woman. But I doubted myself with that too, did I really deserve better? “I’ve been unfaithful so this is just the worlds way of punishing me,” I thought on many occasions. Recently I was forced to come clean about my affairs. I take full responsibility for my actions, I knew it was wrong but at the time I didn’t care because my beloved made me feel good.
Many people I know never knew about my affairs, they just knew I wasn’t in the best of relationships. I’m not condoning what I’ve done because “it I felt like an abused woman I should’ve just left.” But it’s not easy. The day I got called out on my bullshit was the same day I realized that my partner was just as manipulative as I was. I know that nobody will agree with my actions nor will they understand. I have to live with my decisions and take responsibility. Guilt is still eating at me. I can’t correct what has been done but I wanted to share this because I know things aren’t always as they seem. I also want to say just be aware of the signs and signals of abuse. If you aren’t happy it’s okay to let go of what’s making you unhappy. The sun will still come out tomorrow.