July 05, 2016
My high school boyfriend backhanded me on prom night. The force of the blow made my nose bleed and my head throb. I was so stunned I didn’t utter a sound. I just sat there, holding my nose shut and letting the tears stain my white dress.
I never told anyone at the time. I blamed myself. Not because I deserved it — god no — rather because I was too naive to see it coming or believe it was possible. Afterwards I simply pretended it never happened. Everything is just fine, thank you. There were reputations to protect and images to uphold. He went on being a jock. I went on being a cheerleader. We were voted “Best Couple” the same year I was to become homecoming queen. We never spoke of “the incident” again; as I referred to it, refusing to acknowledge it for what it was: abuse.
when you share your story, inevitably you will touch someone else. the someone who needs to hear it most. you may never know it. but they will. and that alone is reason for telling. ready to share your truth?
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