Trigger warning: This story includes mention of domestic abuse.
You may have come across stories about how people have become vulnerable to abuse because of the pandemic, since the circumstances restrict movement or a change of environment for the victim and gives more time and chances for the abuser to project their insecurities.
I am a 24-year-old lawyer who had to leave her job and come back to her abusive ‘home’ because of the pandemic. And experiencing the abuse all over again only reminded me of my happiest day of my life – the day I left home to study law.
Abuse comes in three forms – physical, verbal and emotional. While physical abuse is considered as the most severe form of abuse, going through an emotional and verbal abuse is no easy burden to bear either, and comes with an equal share of long-lasting scars.
Especially when you have undergone such abuse for almost ten years of your life.
Just imagine a situation where you get beaten up for the smallest of mistakes – like not aligning your shoes properly after you take them off, or because you forget to carry a bag to go to the grocery store. The worst of all is when you primary care giver makes you believe that you are the most undeserving person on the planet by calling you ‘ugly’, ‘incompetent’ and also a ‘slut’ or ‘prostitute’ on a near daily basis.
Also read: Dealing With Abusive Parents in Adulthood
I was pushed to such a point that, on many days, I wondered about whether I deserved to live.
While the rest of my friends got real food in their lunch boxes for school, I used to mostly get biscuits. If I was lucky, on some days I got rice or roti. While my friends enjoyed their summer vacations by doing what they liked, or by not doing anything, I was forced to take care of housework.
And if woke up even a little late, I was made to work without lunch as a punishment.
I was just in Class 6 back then.
Since I was a child, my mother has abused me in every form and way she could. This has resulted in a lifetime of confidence and self esteem issues for me, and a weight on my shoulders that I just can’t seem to get away from no matter how hard I try.
When you have an abusive care giver, you adapt to living with fear. I still remember how happy I used to be when my mom went out for kitty parties, or even for small fraction of time when she stepped out to get groceries.
I’m sure you now have a better idea of just why the day I left home was the happiest of my life. Hopefully, a new rendition is not too far off.