Are you an honest man? A truthful man?
Or do you bleed the souls of others solely for your personal gain?
Will you convince a woman that you love her, when your deep underbelly quietly reveals you’re using her for whatever you can get out of her – money, sex, a responsible partner who can pick up the slack of your irresponsibility, and the children you deserve to have?
Will you quit drinking tomorrow? Or is that just a story you keep telling me to kick the can down the road another day?
Will I have to tiptoe around you and watch my every word, so I don’t say or do a single thing to push your buttons and trigger your rage? Or is that an impossible feat – one that I’ll never be able to master, no matter how hard I try?
Will you stop holding me against my will and slamming me into the wall?
Will you stop throwing things at me?
Or will you deny it ever happened to me, my friends, your friends, our friends, my family and the police…anyone who will listen?
Will you tell everyone that you’re the one being abused because you got an elbow in the gut during a scuffle you started when you couldn’t control your anger and frustration?
In the aftermath, when we’re finally alone again, will you once again promise you’ll never do it again?
What will you say the next time when it’s worse than the last time? It’s always worse the next time.
Will you turn my world upside down and gaslight me so I’m completely convinced I must be the crazy one in this relationship? Am I crazy? Most days that’s how I feel.
Will you spend all our money on toys you want even when you’re unemployed, racking up credit card bills for which I’ll have to figure out how to at least pay the minimum amounts due every month? Will I spend years trying to recover from the financial ruin you left in your wake?
Will you demand I give you the money I’ve been saving for our children and their future, so you can buy yourself a brand new car, even though my car is ten years old and the ‘Check Engine’ light has been lit up for over three years?
Will you demand that you get the ‘good’ reserved, covered parking spot where we live, because obviously you have the nicer car?
Will you refuse to take out the heavy trash bags because you’re “too busy” even when your wife is pregnant with your child and has already suffered one miscarriage?
Will you step in mud and get sharp rocks stuck in the bottom of your shoes, then spread that mud all over the carpet I just shampooed, and scrape deep scratches into the floor with pebbles, because you don’t have to listen to anyone’s demands to remove your shoes at the door when asked to?
Will you demand to get dogs…multiple dogs…then leave the house for 14 hours a day and expect everyone else to take care of the dogs they didn’t want?
Will our children hate me forever because I didn’t do enough to protect them from you and your angry outbursts? Will they be in therapy for the rest of their lives to try to find a sense of normalcy in their upside-down worlds?
Now that I’ve finally left you, will I ever feel safe again?
Will you send the police to my house at eleven o’clock at night again, for a “wellness” check on our youngest child who's been sleeping for hours already? What does he need “wellness” from in my home, when it’s only you that's a danger to our child?
Will you show up at my house at three o’clock in the morning again, banging on the door, screaming that you love me, and demanding I let you in?
Will you hunt down our daughter and drag her by her beautiful long flowing hair again because she said or did something not to your liking? Or is it just that she looks so much like me that makes you so angry?
Will I have to find new schools for our children yet again because you showed up drunk and noisily demanded to have a ‘much needed visit’ with your kids in the middle of the school day?
Will I get another call from a police officer, telling me you’re roaming a park and rambling incoherently about needing to meet our kids there and that you’re terrifying the other park goers?
Will I be held liable and sued because I forgot my name was still on your car registration and you committed a hit-and-run, ditching your car at the scene?
Will I lose another job because you got drunk and stormed into my office making a loud and humiliating scene, or called me thirty times a day at work to make sure you knew exactly where I was at all hours of the day?
Will you keep buying more guns and knives, hiding them at the bottom of every drawer and at the back of every shelf?
Will you accost me in my office parking lot with a weapon and finally end it once and for all?
Did you ever truly love me? Or was I a means to an end? Was I just the person that was responsible enough to be able to constantly pick up the pieces of the very messy life you lead?
I just had to say it. Somebody had to say it. This is who you are. A destroyer of all that is good and right in this world. But I survived. My children survived. We will move on with our lives and be happier than we ever thought possible.
Where are you now? I don’t know. I don’t care. I no longer have to hear your lies or suffer your abuse. You no longer have power over us. You are alone. You will always be alone. Because the only person who truly matters to you is you.
We survived the hell you put us through, me and the children. We may not have much and we still struggle with our inner demons. But we have each other. And you can no longer inflict your pain on us.
There. I said it. I had to say it.