Alun rang me this afternoon and burst into tears, worried about his dear friend “Jenny” who is being badly beaten by her boyfriend. Alun cried out “what can I do? There has to be something I can do” and it broke my heart to hear him hurt over his friend. Alun cares so deeply about his friends. I love that about him.
The thing is, though – I’ve been there…and no matter how much your friends love you, want to be there for you and BEG for you to “just leave him”, it’s never that easy. Unless you’ve been in an abusive relationship, you don’t understand the MANY invisible ties between you and the person abusing you and because they’re usually psychological, they’re really hard to “just get up and walk away from”.
It’s damn near impossible and whenever you do leave him/her – you find yourself back there – back with them – sometimes even within the same day.
If you’re there in that place where someone is abusing you and you feel like you can’t leave, I hear you. I understand. It’s a lot harder than “just leaving”, it’s something so big and so scary you can’t even imagine attempting it but that still quiet voice within you that even he can’t snuff out – that voice is urging you to leave and one day, you’re going to.
These are my tips – I hope these help:
Find a great hiding spot and start putting some money away. Even if it’s $1, it will add up over time. Save up enough so that you can buy food, pay for an Uber to a friend’s house (someone you trust) and if you can – maybe a little extra so you can afford to ‘chip in’ on rent/bills while you find your feet. Hopefully you have a good friend or family you can stay with to get away from the person hurting you. If you don’t, then save up enough for a cheap place to stay. There are hostels that rent by the night so if you can try to get yourself into one for a week or so, it gives you breathing space to come up with a better plan. There are also places for women/men to go for support that will hopefully provide free – if not heavily discounted – accomodation AWAY from the person abusing you.
DON’T TELL THE PERSON YOU ARE LEAVING THEM/PLANNING TO GO
They will freak out and I worry they’ll hurt you even more or even kill you to stop you. Don’t tell them a thing. Play it cool, continue to say “yes” to their wants and needs and keep squirreling away that money so you can go.
Confide in someone you trust so they can help you. It feels awful asking for help, I know…but in these situations, it’s important.
Alun Facetimed me on Facebook and I saw a little tear just under his eye. Oh guys, it broke my heart that he’s hurting so much over his friend.
If you’re someone that’s being hurt, please know your friends really love and care about you. Your family, too. You are not alone and there are so many people who want to help you.