Just the word ‘love’ puts a smile across your face. It all feels rosy, great and secure to have someone around you who will be there, doesn’t it?
I used to feel the same. He always used to be there when I needed him. He used to make me smile even in my worst times. He was my friend first and that's what made me love him more. But I never knew things could change so quickly.
We were in our final year of college and it was a chaotic situation. Everybody was busy applying for jobs, and the placement fever was running high in the campus.
My boyfriend and I used to have a live-in relationship and so we used to prepare for exams and placements together. Companies after companies came, I got selected in one, but applied to another company for a better job. But my boyfriend, on the other hand, was struggling to get even one decent job, and couldn’t cope with the pressure.
But after repeated attempts when he could not clear an interview, he started getting more and more irritable. No matter how hard I tried to cheer him up, he just wasn't ready to listen. Instead, he listened to his friends who would always say that I used his time up and that's why he couldn't find himself a job.
Then came the day when my dream company came to our campus for placements. Although mobile phones were prohibited, I still took my phone with me because my boyfriend insisted. He asked me answers to most of the questions and I did my best to tell him, despite the fact that I was also writing the test and wanted to get in really bad. Due to lack of time, I couldn't send him answers to 5 of the questions, and when the results came out, I was selected and my boyfriend wasn't. That was the turning point to a big downfall.
To cheer him up after returning home, I cooked him his favourite dish. But this time again he came home after listening to his friends and I could sense that he was angry. I placed our plates and served him lunch, but he threw everything down, smashing all the plates. And then my boyfriend slapped me, a really hard, rough one that hurt A LOT. I was just recovering from the shock when he took his belt off and he hit me with it. I just didn't know how to react. My head was reeling with shock and my mind went blank. I couldn't even shout or speak and he continued hitting me hard. Tears were running down my face and I was just silent...
If you had known me in college, you would know that I was always the outspoken one, a true feminist by heart. I just couldn't tolerate any girl facing any kind of discrimination because I was brought up that way.
But when this was happening to me, I was so shocked that I couldn't react. He had no guilt, and he just left after hitting me black and blue. I was unable to comprehend anything, and didn’t know how to react at all. I had no idea what to do and couldn’t really even grasp why this had happened to me.
After some introspection, I decided that enough is enough. No matter how depressed a person is, if a person can become this violent and abusive, then not only is he never going to change, but he’s also going to get worse. It wasn’t easy, but I thought it was better to let go of him.
The next day, I went to college, called my boyfriend crying over phone and begged to meet him. I then called all my classmates and, of course, his friends, on the pretext of planning a get together party since it was our last year. And then he came… Everyone was present and busy talking to each other. As he entered, and our eyes met… I moved closer to him and thud came the sound. Yes, I slapped him, and I kept slapping him.
Everyone was dumbstruck and there was pin drop silence... Then, as some of them tried to intervene, I opened my mouth. The very silence that was haunting me just broke and I said, ‘Hope you know how it feels to be beat by someone.’ And turning towards his friends, I said, ‘Thanks for this, and ruining it all.’ And I left.
I know it was wrong to publicly slap him but it was needed so that he doesn't ever think of doing it again to any other girl. I loved him, but that day taught me that self respect is very important in a relationship and if that isn’t there, then you just need to walk out. Living in an abusive relationship is like a crime, not because you’re tolerating it but because you are encouraging the person to repeat it. I just hope this story helps helps every woman speak up against abuse, because it’s your body and no one except you has a right on it.