No, the apology doesn’t come from my abuser. I used to want an apology, pray for an apology from him but I realized that would never come. Now, I don’t need it. I know what happened, I know it was wrong and I know I’m stronger than any words he could say; even I’m sorry.
The apology comes from an unexpected college friend who I’ve not heard from in years. After my last blog, I received a message through Facebook from him. At first, I saw his name and thought he got hacked and it was a spam message but I went ahead and opened it and began reading and then crying.
He apologized for not doing more back in college, he remembers a specific incident where my abuser began yelling at me and he and his other fraternity brothers had to stop him from continuing to yell at me. To be honest, I can’t remember that one time because my abuser constantly verbally abused me on a daily basis so it’s hard to remember one of the instances.
He admitted they could’ve done more and hoped they didn’t enable him. He said he had wanted to tell me something for a long time-“I am very glad you left that relationship….Very happy for you and always wanted to say I wish we had done more for you back then.”
I was speechless after reading his message. I cried. Good tears, tears of relief, but mostly tears of hope. As a survivor, I worry sometimes that my story might not help others, that others who knew me back then will not care or think what he did was wrong. I feel that we are making huge strides in the awareness of domestic violence but then you see comments about how “she must have did something to provoke him”, “she stays, she must like it”, “why doesn’t she just leave” and so on and so on. Then your mind wonders, are we making a difference?
Receiving that message proves yes we are making a difference. I messaged him back letting him know how much I appreciated his apology, how much it meant to read his words and that I am happy I left too.
It was an unexpected apology but it meant so much to me. As tears ran down my face, I thought to myself I wasn’t alone during that time and that there were people who saw and knew I was living in fear but they had no idea how to help me escape.
It’s been a long time, the bruises have healed, my heart is full of love but my memory still exists and I will never forget and now I know others haven’t forgotten either.