Living With The Memories Of Domestic Violence: Red Flags

I didn’t know who to trust. Who I could talk to.. Who would keep my secrets for me? I was lost in a world spiraling out of control.. The only person (I thought) I could lean on to express my emotions; was my abuser.

Never in a million years did I think I would be the person in a domestic violence situation. In High School, I was in Air Force ROTC, sports, the chess club, hard working, outspoken; chyyy you name it all! All while remaining humble of course! I was just really out here being me. I’ve always been a free spirit.. I’ve learned over the years, it’s made me more vulnerable to “Energy Vampires”

When I got accepted to Fayetteville State University it was kind of shocking. Honestly I wanted to go to UNC-Greensboro & didn’t want to go to a HBCU only. I had the opportunity to visit UNC-G during a college tour and loved it! I applied but didn’t get accepted πŸ˜– and continued my pursuit for a higher education.

I ended up going to Fayetteville State University and got settled in with my awesome roommate and new college friends I adored! **Shout-out Alert**

Once I got there, I started burying myself into my school work. Admittedly, for a while I started on strong in my freshman year. You know, going to class on time, turning in work, etc. But then I started to get a taste of “freedom.” Eventually, my time wasn’t focused on my work, but focused on what the plans were for the evening?! That’s why I always encourage the teens heading off into the new world of college to stay on top of their work! It’s okay if you want to have fun, TF ITS COLLEGE; you just need to be on point with your school work! I advise you to stay safe and make responsible decisions. I didn’t realize what the old heads were saying back then. They we’re telling the truth to us on so many levels but we wanted to show how “grown” we were.

Anywho, one day I was in my dorm room studying, second year in college, when I overheard the conversation of fun πŸ˜–πŸ˜‚ A few of my good home girls were thinking about walking around campus to scope the new eye candy! I knew I had a massive amount of school work to catch up on… Failing high school sweetheart situation.. SMH Everything in my soul told me to be responsible.. SMH I decided that would would try to squeeze my school work into my schedule at a later time to enjoy the madness πŸ˜‚ It was always a good time when we got together and we intended to keep it that way! Mind you, I was just coming out if a “high-school sweetheart situation” too.. I just wanted to see the new pool of fish at the pond of “Whatever I’ve been missing out on.”

It was a dark-skinned, pretty teeth, charming yet flashy fella riding through the college’s main road. His hair was freshly cut and his line up was clean! Gold necklace shining… We locked eyes immediately.. It was like he saw us walking and had a mission.

He had a really clean, well maintained Lincoln Town Car that was appealing. Pearly whites, seriously dark tented windows.. I had already mentally erased his best friend from the passenger seat and placed myself into it! Lol

He came off really amazing at the beginning. We entertained each other for a while. I even helped him back to health when he got shot at a popular nightclub (he told me he was going to bed). He showed appreciation for my loyalty.

He was involved with the serious street life, he obviously had an off switch when it came to communication. He knew all the right things to say to me and I went happily into this new bliss. Back then, he was what I was looking for to get over my past.

As time went by we became closer than ever. Long ass phone calls.. Messaging all day.. Everyday I would meet up with him, we would leave off campus, and we would hang out, talk about life, sports, EVERYTHING seemed so perfect. I really could tell he was feeling the vibe we had.

I was craving the attention I was receiving because my ex really didn’t show me the affection I needed. He wouldn’t come visit me. He wouldn’t speak on the phone with me. He had just gotten himself a new apartment so I guess he was too busy breaking it in when I really needed him most. Soooo, let’s just say, I was taking everything this new fella on my radar was throwing my way!

One day, about 7 months into our fling. I decided to go to a basketball game on campus. I didn’t tell this fella I was talking to that I was going because I didn’t feel the need to tell him. He was acting strange and I needed “girl time.” I felt smothered by him now. Texting me while in class, unlimited calling, sitting outside my class buildings daily… Uggggh, I was in college doing my own thing why should I ask permission to go to a game? I was enjoying my life.. Two, we never made anything official. I wasn’t entertaining anyone else, but he was for sure.. So I put my big girl pants on & started to claim my life back by having fun… Without him..

This made him really upset with me! I left the Cafeteria and went straight to the annex gym with friends and enjoyed myself! I met new people from campus and was really having a good time! I finally get a chance to put a charge on my phone (I had a raggedy Keyocera flip phone that wouldn’t hold a long charge) At my college homegirls apartment. The phone could of damn near blew up.. I started to receive all types of crazy texts & menacing voicemails. I told my friends and showed them everything.. All I wanted to do was hang on campus with some friends, just to hang out, and enjoy a basketball game! I didn’t feel like going straight back to the dorm room after dinner. I just didn’t understand why he became so angry.. I grew increasing uneasy inside seeing his angry face in my mind. His eyes… They become so cold when he’s angry..

As I’m preparing to head back to campus; he continuously calls my phone threatening me to come back to dorm room. He had been sitting outside my dorm parking lot; waiting to see me come in. He claimed he was waiting to make sure I made it inside safe. He also claimed he wanted to have a conversation with me.. Off campus..

In retrospect, I probably should have listened to my homegirls when they were voicing their concerns. They didn’t want me to leave and were very worried for my safety because of the messages left. Me being young, dumb, and claiming to “Know It All” reassured them that he was just talking shit & was worried about me. They wasn’t buying it.. I was more so convincing myself though..

I fucked up my year academically; so I’d gotten my car taken away by my parents! At least until I can pull up my grades. My dorm was just across the street and a 5 minute walk across campus. Stupidly, I set out towards my dorm around midnight. The whole time I’m walking I’m defending my honor, vagina, and everything else. He believed I was leaving another fellas apartment. A “College Nigga” as he would call them. He felt one day I would meet someone better from my college and leave him.

Remembering who TF I was.. This pissed me OFF! I WASN’T USED TO THIS VERBAL ABUSE! Im a lover, not a fighter.. I finally made it to my dorm and he pulls up beside me and asks me to get in his car. I was hesitant at first but after he cut on his charm, clever words, and lightened the situation… I got in. Strange thing is, while I was outside being convinced one of my homegirls ended up walking towards the dorm. She checked with me and made sure to tell the story of the night in his presence. His friendliness changed then, I just didn’t recognize the signs. He increasing asked me to get in the car. My friend whispered “Just go inside” as she hugged me to leave.. (And I planned to) I didn’t use better judgement.. I should of left with her then. I still regret the decision to “talk it out”

Initially, I got in planning to explain the rules and boundaries of the relationship. This warranted a break. I wanted out. He was just something new, no plans to attend my college, and we both understood weren’t together. I’ve never had to deal with a situation in this manner before. Light arguing, but never anything disrespectful or derogatory. Before I can even close the door, he punched me in my face and wrapped his arms in mine. I try to unlock the door as he’s driving off. I try to fight back but his punches are heavier..

We are still intertwined riding down Murchinson Rd., Fayetteville,NC. I’m screaming, crying, and pleading but he is in a fit of rage. He’s calling me derogatory names so his driving becomes more dangerous with each hit. I eventually give in as we pull into Mount Sinai apartment complex parking lot.

We spent about 30 minutes there arguing. I was now at his mercy. He liked being in control. This is not my hometown. I had no idea where I was; I knew I wasn’t too far from the dorms to walk.. I didn’t care.. I had to get AWAY! The first chance I got. I took it.. He stepped out the car to use the bathroom..

I get out the car & I start running away.. Running for dear life away from this lunatic. I see a woman walking up the street. She sees me running & screaming for help but she just turns the other way and jogs away. I’m a horribly embarrassed that I’m even going through this situation. I’m that moment fight-or-flight kicked in.. But I never got to use it because I was literally football tackled… Full speed… Full pressure.. I could not hear.. My ears are ringing horribly.. I’m bleeding… Still dazed but trying to not allow him to get me back into his car.. The commotion seemed so silent.. Nobody bothered to help.. You can surely see the cracks in the window blinds though.. smh

Why did he feel this sense of entitlement over my life? The audacity of him to put his motherfucking hands on me. To draw blood.. Where was he trying to move me to? I really don’t know what happened when I blacked out a couple times. I have no idea what time it was.. But I fought long and hard to stay conscious. I didn’t want to die. We we’re literally just riding around Fayetteville.

I came to in his parents driveway still in the car. I’m literally in deeper shock because this shit wasn’t a dream… He looked like he had been crying; when I opened my eyes the apologies began. He claimed to love me and didn’t know how to process his love. He denied me going back to to campus. He wanted me to stay at his house for the night. I just want to get back to my dorm room. Away from his fuckin crazy ass.. I wanted to contact my family but I had no idea where my phone was. Still never turned up..

I slept in his bed and he slept on the couch in the living room.. It was a really uncomfortable night. I went back & forth with disturbing his family and telling them what happened. I didn’t want to be there. I felt like I was being held hostage.. I was exhausted, swollen, and sore.. So I just laid down. For some reason his actions seemed like he’d done this before.. It seemed calculated.

The next morning he took me back to my dormitory and I didn’t tell a soul. I was too embarrassed. I basically went to 1 class and straight back to my dorm. Often times, I could see his car sitting in the parking lot from my classes. (Red flags I ignored) I definitely saw him twice that day. I wasn’t trying to relive the night prior.

I wasn’t expecting my homegirl (who walked up on us talking before everything took place) to see him punch me before he rolled up his tinted window.

To Be Continued….