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What I've Done
I hope people will understand that it doesn't matter who you are, bad things can happen, and there's always a light at the end of the tunnel.
It was late. The bearable lights of the road we were on shone, their light diminished by the tinted windows. My headphones sang Rihanna, P!NK, and MCR over and over. I only had 8 songs. So I knew every lyric, every guitar line, every drum beat. I sat next to my brother, his son and father in the front seats. Of course, I was only half related to them, but that didn't mean I didn't love them all the same. I was silent as I looked out the window, my thoughts reflected just as the lights in the mirror.
It was the beginning of 8th grade. I was excited and nervous. Nerve-cited I decided on as I walked into school. I had been there for a year, but this time around it was different. I had made and lost friends and pissed off a lot of people. Probably for being too nice. Back in July, my ‘boyfriend’ Nick broke up with me. It wasn't a big thing, we were together for a month, but I was attached. Afterwards, I promised to make him miss me. I looked fierce and held my head up high as I stepped into my first block. I was greeted with some new and old faces. Great. New people. I sat across from a girl I thought was my speed. She was pretty and had the same shoes as me. Knee-high canvas sneakers. I was silent the entire class, as first days normally went. At the end, the girl and I stood up, and I complimented her on her sneakers. She said you too, and we became friends. She introduced herself as Raven, and later I found out She was actually a He. Raven was trans and I was taken off guard but still accepted him into my friend circle because; and let's be honest, he's the coolest guy in school, all though we don't agree on feminist issues. Oh well. His name is Jason now, and he's doubly as cool. A couple months went by, and it was time for my school’s mid-year period of paideia. I was taken into rock climbing for my PE requirement and I had a blast. A week into the period, I was at dinner with my mom and dad. I got a text. Slam the brakes. Someone is texting me. Wait! Not just anyone, my crush, Brad.
Oh god, how I fell for him. We bantered back and forth for the entirety of dinner, and we said our goodnights. And then, our friendship blossomed into love. We confessed our feelings, and I was over the moon. My friend then, Beth, told me to go after him, though he kinda gave me some stance vibes. Nonetheless, I followed her advice. But I was stupid to follow it. What was puppy love turned to a hell I never thought I'd be in. It was texting all day and all night. I was dumb and infatuated with him. And every day he showed a new side, and the one that caught on was a controlling personality.
I had things to do. Rules to follow. He preferred me a certain way. He wanted my hair in pigtails whenever he wanted a picture of me. The rules dictated me. No being with other boys, doing whatever he said and wanted, the usual things you'd expect from an abusive relationship. But then, we crossed a line. He never put a hand on me, but he ruined my psyche. He told me to call him a name that relinquished my control. He called me a name that would dictate my life for how long I can't tell. He called me Servant, and I called him Master. I was trapped now.
There were late night texts. Talk of what we would do alone. The most intimate things. I hid our conversations. I had to! He crossed lines that gave me panic attacks, but I still went along with it to make him happy before anything else. I was diagnosed with Maladaptive Daydreaming Disorder, where I created people I could talk to when I felt lonely, or just as more friends. Brad said that it was him or them. He said it was unhealthy. I cried and cried, screaming into a pillow trying to get rid of the people in my head. All for him. And then he made me say the most intimate thing partners could say.
“I love you.”
He made me say it. I wasn't ready. I said it anyway. And the worst of it all was that he kept me there. He toyed with my compassion. He told me he tried to kill himself before he met me, and that told me that I had to stay with him or he’d end his life. He preyed on my kind heart and ripped it to spreads. I told him we needed to cut back the texting, per my mother’s orders, and to which he didn't respond well. He pouted, he got upset. My worst fear. Our entire love; if you could even call a sickening thing like that love, happened over six weeks. And one day, he pulled me aside and simply stated he didn't have feelings for me anymore. I was crushed. I was broken. I bawled my eyes out.
It was a good month before I met someone. His name was Roman. Tall, handsome and charming. I didn't like him at first. To be honest, I didn’t like him at all. To this day I laugh about it. My first introduction was a hi and a hello and we went our separate ways. The next introduction had a bit of a cuddle puddle involved. My friends, Amanda and Beth decided it would be a great idea if They, Roman and I were in a pile. We got a chair, and Amanda sat first, then Roman, then me and finally Beth. Great. I was in his lap. I didn't want to make any stupid moves, so I balanced on his lap, my arms around Beth’s waist. It was a struggle getting down, and thank god we didn't break Amanda’s legs.
After a while, Roman and I got to know each other a lot better. We texted back and forth, but it was controlled. He knew when he had to go. We had friend boundaries. But then he made small hints. He liked me! I was sure of it! I would have pursued, but two things were out of place.
I liked someone.
He did too.
I was head over heels for a tenth grader, Hayden. But I found out he smoked weed and had pretty bad anger issues. Roman, on the other hand, started dating Beth. Yeah. I wasn't too heartbroken, but then, they split, and I forgot about my feelings for Hayden. One memorial weekend later, and we had admitted our feelings for each other. I didn't realise I had feelings for Roman! But I did, and I sure as Hell don't regret them. It was a Wednesday, on the last day of May. He asked me to be his girlfriend. Hell yes! It was soon, and it was fast. But we really liked each other. In fact, that's what we said until we were ready to say “I love you”.
It was a couple of weeks into the romance, and I decided to tell about Brad, and what he did to me. Roman didn't leave me. He didn't shun me or call me names. He said he would make sure Brad would never hurt me again. Roman made perfectly clear what Brad was. He was sadistic, hence the Master/Servant bind we were in, and Pedophilic, as shown in the way he made me dress and act. Roman said he used me, and I understand now that he did.
And now I'm back in the car, thinking about what's happened to me in the span of seven months. How everything went from a great life to a life filled with love and pain. I told my therapist only half of the sadistic nightmare, and I have been therapeutically diagnosed with PTSD. Roman has helped me through it all. So, hit me what I have, in my short 14 years of life. I have four disorders, 16 imaginary friends, two months of summer behind me, an amazing boyfriend and his jacket ‘till school starts. And I plan to make the most of it. Summer, not the jacket.
I lack the words to state how I feel now that it's been 8 months since I was in that relationship- if you could even call it that. I still have frequent panic attacks and a still have vivid nightmares. With my mom's, therapist's and Roman's help, I am on the road to recovery. I must not that not everyone gets better overnight. I would know. I'm now 2 months into school, and I can barely walk through the halls without my anxiety buzzing in the back of my head. I'm just sitting here, my back to the door, and I know at any second, I could be hurt. Who knows what's behind that door? Like I said, recovery isn't an overnight thing. I have good days, bad days and really bad days. I'll never stop fighting this, even when I want to give up, stop trying and just curl into a ball and die. I keep fighting, and with every person I tell, I feel more strength in my bones and I know my life's start will start right around the corner.
The names used have been all changed for privacy reasons. This is a true story revolving my life from just this year so far. I would like to point out that this story isn't a short story showing how “Roman” is an amazing person, it is a story depicting that no matter how young you are, domestic abuse can happen to you. Whether it's from a parent or partner, emotional or physical, it affects many people. This story is a very specific example of a sadist entrapment emotional and mental abuse.
I would like to thank my boyfriend for always being there and helping me through the tough times and for accepting every little part of me. Even the people in my head.