Sefton and Liverpool Women in Business

Being A Domestic Abuse Goddess

The Domestic Abuse Goddess! Sounds insane right? But the thing is, each and every woman who experiences domestic abuse in any one of its guises, is in fact a Domestic Abuse Goddess (DAG – and yes I get the Ozzie slang similarities but what can you do?). Any woman who experiences abuse on any level knows the facade that you have to put on for the outside world. The whole performance that says day in and day out, we are a normal family, I am a normal woman, my children have a normal upbringing. My husband, boyfriend, partner loves and respects me like a normal husband, boyfriend, partner. Everything is just fine here. Please don’t interfere and please don’t ask too many questions. It is ever such a delicate facade.

So, that’s me, or at least it was. My life was a constant performance, in which I tried to portray the image of a happy wife, one who had a loving and caring husband, who provided a safe and warm environment for his family. The reality couldn’t have been further from the truth. I was in fact married to a man, obsessed with appearance, money and social status, but completely devoid of emotion and feeling. He was only ever interested in the children and I when he needed to wheel us out in public, to promote his own image. Basically, he was incredibly shallow, and we were the victims of his complete lack of self confidence and ability to function in a normal relationship. Later on, after I had left him and began telling people what he was really like, I realised he ticked every single box for a sociopath, and sociopaths often present as perpetrators of domestic abuse!

And there are maybe nearing a billion other women round the globe (if not now, at some point in their lives!) who are putting on a show every day of their lives. Here is the maths part for those of you wondering about the figures – the WHO say 1 in 3 women will be victims, the world population is roughly 6 billion. Lets say there is a roughly half and half male:female ratio. So that means 1 billion women give or take, will fall victim to domestic abuse! So, like I said, me and another billion or so women, we deserve the Oscars, because we are the DAG’s!!

I haven’t told you much about me have I? I mean before the abuse, and there were 27 abuse free years you know? I think sometimes we forget when we look at people who have survived horrific situations and experiences, and forget to look beyond that isolated period or event in their lives.

I was 16 years old the first time I met my abuser, via a mutual friend. I was young, naive and innocent in some ways (I had never had a boyfriend and wasn’t in the market for one either!) and worldly wise in others (my family had by this time suffered a couple of tragic losses), but I was largely a very confident and bubbly girl. I was chatty and friendly and kind. I wouldn’t get involved or entertain bitching, the way many other girls in my peer group did. I think for the most part it was because unlike others, I was comfortable in my own skin, even as a teen. I was almost apathetic to how I looked, and I was never ever worried about speaking my mind. Now I don’t know why I was like that, but I would guess it was down to my mother in many ways, and the way she raised me, and in turn to how she was raised.

And here is one major point I want to make to you, before anyone thinks different. I do not, never have and never will hate men. I do not put them all in the same category, and I do not look at all men as potential abusers. On the contrary, with the exception of my abuser and my biological father, all the men in my life have been wonderful, strong yet kind, clever yet humble, loving, considerate men with unlimited respect for women in general. My maternal grandfather was a wonderful man and a true gentleman, who encouraged all three of his children to follow their dreams equally. In fact he believed that society underestimated women and gave them responsibility for things they shouldn’t attend to (I must get my mom to write you a little something about his quirks!!). My stepfather, who we got when I was 11, is a darling man, soft as butter and kind, loving and ever reliable. My brothers (I have a full one, a half one and three step ones – two Canadian and one English!) are all just gorgeous. I have every confidence that they are or will be lovely, kind husbands and boyfriends, because they really genuinely are good men, with good hearts and strong minds. My son is a fabulous young man and I can assure you after all that he has seen he is as determined as I that he shall follow his own much happier course through life rather than turn out to resemble his father. And finally, I have found love, the kind I craved all my life, the kind of pure thing built on respect, love, trust and mutual aims and goals in life. I have Darren, and with him I have the relationship I remember my grandparents having. Sure we fall out every now and again, but it is never serious, never lasts and never results in me being put in my place. Darren would never raise his hand to me, and I know that. I know it like I know the sun rises in the morning, and that is the best feeling in the world. Love doesn’t need to control or threaten, and love doesn’t hit, punch, kick or spit. Abuse does!

So, to all my fellow DAG’s, and to their friends and families, you are not alone. In fact you are inadvertently members of one of the biggest clubs on the planet! 1 billion and counting! For those of you who can relate to my story, please know you are not alone. It is happening to women all over the world, and the pattern of behaviour is similar everywhere. There are places you can go to get help, and you can find the nearest to you on the internet when you are ready. I hope sharing my story will inspire a few of you to get help, and sooner. To family and friends, I hope my story helps give you a better insight into the complexities of an abusive relationship. Education and understanding will really help you support your loved one.

Take care everyone, stay safe and stay positive. There is another way, so consider letting it in. Wishing you all the very best for Christmas and the New Year.

Steph x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

* = required field

HTML tags are not allowed.

* *

Website kindly donated by KL Web Limited