How I Learned My Relationship Was Abusive
By Estelle Laure
The night I lost my virginity was the first time my first high school boyfriend turned on me, though it wouldn’t be the last. We were all ready, had been planning for weeks, and at the last minute I got scared and said I wanted to wait. He told me calmly that no one besides him would ever want me and that if I did not “put out” he would leave me. Did I not realize how difficult I was, how much patience it took to be with me?
Those words resonated. I had heard them many times before throughout my life. They sounded true. I put out, terrified of what my life would be without him. In the end he dishonored me in every possible way. He cheated on me repeatedly, stalked me when we broke up and smashed a window in my house.
The next time it happened I was eighteen and in college. This boy and I moved in together right away. People said we reminded them of their grandparents who had been married for fifty years. People said we were perfect for each other. People said, awwww, because of how he loved me. Because my household growing up was unstable, I felt I had finally found a home. He meant everything to me.