I have a friend who is loud, confident and is always the life of any party. She always appears self-assured with no sign of anything that distracts her from her goals. From time to time she would do stupid things like all young people, but she always appears to be a strong woman.
There was a time when she had this certain boyfriend who always seemed like he was in her shadow, but was always supportive of her in everything she did. He was the quiet type who would hold her hand whenever she needed comfort and would offer his shoulders whenever she cried. At parties they would often irritate everyone as they would be the lovey dovey couple that plays with each other and kiss from time to time. They would break up, but we always knew that a passionate make up session would follow.
When they would have their seemingly minor fights she would complain of how she found him a modelling agency and now he is acting like he did it himself. There was even a time she said she suspected him of cheating with her friend, but soon got over that and they made up again.
I recently learnt that the seemingly perfect relationship was worse than most relationships. I heard that she appeared on a magazine recently talking about an abusive relationship she was in. The way she described the man it became obvious that it was her ex-boyfriend who was the sweetest and nicest person you could ever meet.
She spoke of verbal fights that would often turn violent. I remember that there were times when she would walk around with a scarf around her even on hot days but I always thought it was a fashion statement. There was even a time when his car was involved in an accident but now it turns out that he crashed it on the wall of her apartment during one of those heated arguments.
When asked about her reasons for staying she responded by saying she always thought he would change and convinced herself that it wasn’t as bad as it appeared to be.
This makes me wonder how many of our friends go through similar experiences. Girls seem to endure bad, abusive relationships because of love, fear and the hope that one day he would change. Most girls want to be in relationships so much that they would endure even the toughest pain. A relationship seems to put a woman in a certain social standing.
Sometimes I think that as people we do not look hard enough for signs of abuse and we think it’s only couples who scream at each other in public that get involved in physical fights. What this experience has shown me is that even the closest and seemingly perfect couples go through such pain, anger and hurt. Maybe it’s the seemingly perfect relationships that we need to view with a microscope.
It’s great that my friend left the abuser in the past and is now talking about her story so she can finally heal.