I was married to a monster, but no one knew. Everyone thought we had the perfect marriage and were the perfect couple. Sex was used as a tool to control me. Sodomy, especially, was used to dehumanize me. I found a way out of my many years of the hell of being a prisoner in my own home. It has taken many more years of counseling to even begin talking about the violence I experienced.
My marriage left me with severe panic disorder, PTSD, and depression. One psychologist said that I basically lived like a prisoner of war for almost 20 years. I still have that mentality sometimes. I am afraid of most things.
When I filed for a protection order the police were very helpful and accommodating. They were furious that this had happened in their community, to a woman that they knew. However, when it came time to press charges and the possibility of a trial to put him in jail was discussed with the FEMALE DA, she warned me that the case would not win. I lived in the deep south of the US, the “Bible Belt”, and a small community. She felt that most of the jury would feel that domestic rape wasn’t rape at all, just me not fulfilling my wifely duties. She questioned if the marital discord was really just my not wanting to be married to “this fine man” anymore. She reluctantly agreed to represent me if I decided to go ahead, but discouraged me from doing so. I declined based on her recommendation. I finally had to get a strong female lawyer from outside the county to represent me for protection, because harassment continued. To this day, almost 11 years later, I have yet to be free totally from this man, and have been to court several times over trivial things.
Domestic Violence is not the victims fault! Love should never hurt! Break the Silence.
— Survivor, age 45