Things I never thought were abuse. TW

TW: I write about very not fun non-consensual things that happened to me with my ex. Steer clear if you feel at all triggered, be safe.

I had a bit of a wake up in therapy today. Dr K told me that I have been very badly abused. I still don’t feel like this is the case, but that’s exactly what has happened. I was raped, and other sordid things came to light today before the rapes started to happen that I had buried in the back of my mind that I had completely forgotten about. I had never even associated them with abuse til I saw them through Dr K’s eyes today and realised that I have only just broken the surface of the evils done to me.

Remarkably, I’m not feeling too horrible yet. I think I’m either still desensitised or in shock.

Dr K was asking me why I had been dreaming about horrible things with huge, devouring mouths over the past few months. She was wondering whether there was some sort of deeper rooted thing in my head that I hadn’t explored yet. Apparently, I had told her a while back that he had bitten me, but I had no memory of telling her that.

Thing is, when she asked me about being bitten by him, memories of sharp teeth grating against my hipbones and sinking into my thigh swam unbidden into my head. I told Dr K about all the times I would have to turn up to ballet class with bruises from his bites splashed like a calling card across my skin. I told her about the fact he would bite hard in the middle of sex and it would throw me, and I would try so hard to cling on to the fleeting pleasure of the moment before- ride it out, it will be ok, you will be ok. I would dread sex sometimes because I knew he would want to bite me. I knew the bruises would last for weeks, too.

On another occasion he had me handcuffed to the bed and he whipped me with the end of a belt. It drew blood. It stung. It left marks. I wasn’t happy with where it was going but he told me I had to obey him because that was a master and slave thing, a contract between us. It wasn’t. I’ve seen the BDSM community’s reaction to Fifty Shades of Grey and I know they despise it. They call it abuse, without proper safe words and guidelines, and there’s certainly no pushing of your partner past his or her boundaries.

What used to happen between he and I, what he sold to me in his lies as BDSM, was actually just abuse. I didn’t like how I felt when he was treating me that way. I felt wrong and humiliated and frightened a lot. I was always worried that one day there would be something worse than a belt to contend with.

The biting was painful and left bruises, and the whipping was even more so. But I knew I couldn’t say stop- he would never allow it. He would have carried on anyway without mercy.

Maybe this is something else I have to realise- I was a battered woman, but not in the way everyone expects. I was sexually battered.

I can’t stop seeing Dr K’s concerned face as she said that I was very badly abused. She was looking at me with horror for what I had been through.

Maybe I should start looking at other things that happened through her caring eyes, too.

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