Content Warning: This article contains depictions of abuse and self-harming behavior.
Safe. You just want to be safe. Safe from the temper tantrums. Safe from the bruises, both physical and emotional. Safe from the accusations because apparently everything wrong in this world is your fault. Safe from the place you once considered to be your home but is now a cage you burn yourself out trying to escape. You are so hopeless in your search for safety that you decided that the only road leading to it… is death. You think back to all the times your mother beat you because you’re a disgrace; to all the times your parents fought, both physically and verbally, and the reason was you; to all the times your sister burst your eardrums, screaming about how you’re the reason this household is being torn to shreds and reduced to a fraction of what it was; to all the times you thought it was a normal thing to be treated like that; you think back to all the times you wanted to leave and never look back and could not, and you decide you will endure no more. You hold the blade to your wrist and think of what you did that was so wrong that you deserved this cruel fate, and that you would rather burn in hell than go through it for a second more.
Meanwhile, your mind is a battlefield, in which two sides clash, determining between themselves whether or not you deserve to die. Eventually, your logical side won, and you’re left to spend the rest of your life feeling weak because you just couldn’t do it. Enough time passes since then that you feel tormented enough in this life that you decide to give it another try. You set foot in the balcony and as you look out to the world beneath you, ready to take that step towards ending it all, your cat walks in. In that moment, you lose every particle of control you’ve had on yourself and just break down with her in your arms. She was there for you when nobody was. From then on, the balcony transformed from your plank to your haven. Fast forward a couple of years, you’ve found yourself some friends who cherish you and whom you trust, and you decide to tell them your story. You completely open your heart to them and you do not regret it. You realize that you do have things to live for. You have hope that things will get better, and that someday, somehow, your wounds will heal, and you will be complete again.
I’m one of the friends she confessed to, and my devastation with what that gem went through could not be put into words. The fact that she, as well as so many like her, go through something so horrifying and have trouble telling someone about it, in fear of being judged or sparking the anger that would be the cause of nothing but trauma, is heartbreaking. We live in such a toxic society that people are afraid to speak up about their hardships in fear of being shut down and undermined.
The fact that she trusted me enough to tell me and her willingness to raise awareness about what happens behind closed doors and can only appear underneath the skin shows that she is not just a gem, she is a whole treasure. If you are a victim of domestic violence, please seek help, and do not make a decision that will alter the world’s course.
If you need to talk to someone or have any advice on how to help lessen the burden victims carry, do not hesitate to contact me on my instagram (@mariamtouny), and just know that in time, you will heal. Maybe you will not be as whole as you were when you were brought into this world, but you will heal, and your life will go on, and you will experience the joys of life to the fullest, and you will not regret one second of it.