Personal story dating violence
I told him that wasn't the way it worked and he slapped me again, harder and twisted my arm behind my back.I was afraid to tell my Mom or anyone what happened, but I stopped going over to his house after school.Most afternoons after school, I would get into trouble with my Mom because Benny made me stay with him while he worked on his car.When I told him that I had to leave, he told me that I wanted to rush home because I didn't care about him and that there were lots of girls who would want to hang around him.I am 17 now and will graduate from high school this year.I know now how different my life would have been right now if I had stayed around Benny.
She said that I didn't have to be with Benny if I didn't want to and I said I knew that, but I didn't know how to get out. She explained to me some things called dating violence.
We walked into the back where she had a little office and she closed the door.
I didn't even know her very well, but I started to cry. I said that nothing was wrong, but she just waited for me to stop crying and didn't ask me any questions. That's when she said words that I remembered ever since: "You don't deserve to be treated like that." I knew she was right, but I just couldn't see it before she said those words out loud.
Around the holidays, I agreed to meet him face to face. He told me that he didn't drink alcohol and I liked that about him.
He lived about two hours away from me, so we picked a town halfway in between and agreed to meet at a popular restaurant. After that, it became a routine that we would meet there every two weeks.
These stories are representative of survivors served in Florida's domestic violence centers in the past and do not depict a specific individual.