Ally: “The person I was with held a knife between us (not necessarily at me) and told me that he’d kill himself if l left him.The weird thing is, if someone asked me outright if I felt I’d been in an emotionally abusive relationship at the time, I’d say no. All my colleagues at work know how crazy you are, I’ve told them and they said they don’t know how I put up with you. You’re fucked up.” This was what my then-boyfriend shouted at me as I was crumpled on the floor, sobbing.
Usually he would make spiteful comments about how ‘stupid’ or ‘ugly’ I was.
I put it down to his grief talking, but the behaviour didn’t subside.
I’d even go as far as to say that the guy was, fundamentally, a nice guy - that’s fucked up isn’t it? Reena: “My self-worth and confidence was slowly destroyed over a period of 11 years by my high school sweetheart and fiancé.
Lies and mind games became a part of daily life; I was labelled paranoid when I suspected he had been cheating on me. This led me to points in my life where I felt so worthless I wanted to cease to exist, to end the misery I was stuck with being me.
For a long time while we were living together he was unemployed and he never offered to cook or contribute towards the running of the house.
One time I came home from work during the day because I was ill and he shouted at me for ruining his day at home alone and refused to go out to get food or medicine for me.We were together four years - I look back and think that all the signs were there, I was just blind to them.”5.Tom: “He openly flirted with other men, messaged them on dating websites, and met up with them while I was at work, but always told me I was being paranoid.I thought I was taking steps to save the relationship, but ended up in a zombie-like state.After the umpteenth row I finally found the strength to move out.I am now in a relationship where my feelings matter and my sanity isn’t called into question just to gain leverage in an argument.