I can’t even being to explain the loneliness I had to deal with through the years after being left at 21 in Germany to give birth to my firstborn alone. It was very traumatic & honestly, I am probably still not fully healed. My son has had to deal with so much through his life, including always wondering why he wasn’t good enough for his dad. Those abandonment issues can stay, and through the years he & I have both dealt with abandonment from those who “always” loved us.
I’ll admit, I was naive. I always thought that when courting someone you let them see the good, bad, and ugly and you let them know the entire truth about you. This way, if they want to run they can! It’s cheaper to leave before fully investing anyway. Over the years I’ve learned certain men use that against you. They’ll use all of that as proof YOU were the problem. They see you as some conquest and once they get you that’s it. On to the next one.
The thing is…living a life filled with lies ALWAYS comes back to bite you. Sometimes waaaaay worse than just telling the truth would. Sometimes legally. Sometimes physically. Sometimes emotionally. Sometimes you lose everything you ever felt was important.
This man told numerous people through the years that I was “addicted to antidepressants, abusive, and a cheater.” He claimed that on a paternity test our son was never his son. He claimed I was a gold digger because he had to pay…
Wait for it…
Right?! Man. Guess I forgot that was enough to buy a mansion…
Now, I knew when I got tired of telling my story and trying to get him to admit to his lies that I just had to believe one of his lies would eventually make him face the music.
I just didn’t realize it’d be yesterday!
The thing a LOT of people don’t realize is that a man (or woman) can be accused of “substantiated physical abuse” of their spouse or another on a military base AND STILL QUALIFY TO BECOME A POLICE OFFICER! Yes, this is true. See below…
The thing is, they push these cases through the “Family Advocacy Program” so that the couple can get help. Well, studies have shown that abusers know exactly what to say in therapy to be deemed fit to keep living their lives.
Some good reading material… https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/toxic-relationships/201706/the-truth-about-abusers-abuse-and-what-do
The military bases are on Federal soil. So, many times it’s up to the commanding officer of the Servicemember to figure out punishment. This is where we see how totally obvious the good ol’boys club really is. Men protect other men. Women protect these men as well. People don’t want others to fail. They don’t want to believe their loved one is capable of such heinous acts. So, they usually just move these people around or give them…wait for it….Letters of Reprimand. Yes, letters. Ouch. These “GOMORs” are kept in their files for three years & then are removed. Or, the guy can just go to a new duty station and POOF! It’s gone. Promotion boards don’t see them. Now, sometimes they can be permanently filed…but they can still be moved to a restricted file.
How this punishment makes an abuser face their actions I’ll never know. But, if you say that you want things investigated further you’re automatically labeled vindictive. Or evil. Or jealous. When this happens DON’T try to defend yourself to the common folk. Trust me, they already have their views and no amount of proof or emotion will change them. It’ll only be used against you.
This man assaulted me & then when I ran & got away he took MY car, without a driver’s license, and fled the scene. His punishment? Article 15. That’s it. They took some money & rank. He was still able to drive by my apartment and tell others he knew every move of mine. He was still able to try to make others believe I was this adulterous whore. He was still able to visit with my son (if he wanted to).
The military needs to fix their “Family Advocacy Program.” It has failed far too many families & left us with people like this guy.
Do you know what he was able to do within 2 years of this incident? He was able to reclass to a Military Police Officer. He was able to use that to become a civilian officer when he retired. He was able to learn the ways before losing his credentials…to play these games.
The sad part is, I could tell you this is an isolated incident of the system failing. I could tell you he’s the only one. But, sadly, not enough emphasis is put into truly figuring out other people. The standards in the military, especially during times of war, were so lax that so many people had stories similar to this. When will it stop?
When this incident happened I was an active duty Soldier. I had deployed. I was promoting quickly. And they still didn’t care. I’ll never know if it was just because I was a woman. I’ll never know if it was just because of the amount of paperwork. I’ll never know if it’s just because someone felt sorry for him.
I’ll never know.
(My unit was amazing through all of this and supported me so much. But, there was only so much they could do. The federal/military standards are what messed this up. And those who felt he was needing protection from me. All because I stood up to him.)