The signs of domestic violence are not always outward.
Sometimes, instead of mysterious bruises or inexplicable fractures, abuse looks more like an opinionated writer slowly shifting to radio silence.
I learned last week of yet another person who met me through my then-husband, and who was convinced — because of how reserved and distant I always seemed — that I disliked her immensely. And I’ve noticed that when Facebook shows me “memories” of what I posted in past years, any comments I made prior to 2011 are rarely a full sentence in length…and often so vague even I can’t tell what I was trying to say.
Now, I can’t say for certain (and feel free to correct me, if you think I’ve got this wrong!), but I doubt most people who have met me post-divorce — or who knew me pre-marriage — or who’ve made my acquaintance through this blog — think of me primarily as silent, unfriendly, or disagreeable.
Seven years of progressive entombment in my ex’s reality simply made me appear that way.
I know that I yak on Facebook a lot. (ALOT.) And I have a blogger’s tendency to overshare every detail and thought in my head. I know that I wade into conversations uninvited and have the new-friend-making tact of an over-excited puppy. I know that I sometimes speak out before I have all my facts straight or all the nuances of a situation understood.
Believe me when I tell you: me as I am today — even at my most loud, bossy, nosey, wordy, angry, opinionated, and intrusively friendly — is so. much. damn. better.
(At least it is for me!)
Happy domestic violence awareness month, folks.
Be good to one another out there, and to yourselves.