What’s my name again?

“Someday I’ll fly, Someday I’ll soar
Someday I’ll be so damn much more
‘Cuz I’m bigger than my body gives me credit for
I’m bigger than my body now…”
–John Mayer, Bigger Than My Body

I’ve been blogging since 2003. I started out on LiveJournal, and used my given name. I only commented on other LiveJournal bloggers.

Then I became aware of the blogosphere. When I made the move to Blogger in 2007, I used my nickname, Dory, and I went out of my way to never use my real name, and kept mum on the rest of my family’s real names. I began commenting on blogs all over and cultivating relationships with other bloggers. 

Then I became aware of Social Networking, and that blew apart my M.O. I got on Facebook, and only used the name “Dory.” But then I began wondering how many people I might miss out on reconnecting with if they searched for me by my given name. I decided, eh, screw it; I’ll use my and Tom’s real name and still guard the boys’ names. I put my real name on my Facebook account and moved onto more earth-shattering matters such as the best buy on 85/15 Ground Beef and switching from Bounce to Downy. 

Now my Facebook has links to my blog, and my blog has links back to Facebook.

I told you that to tell you this.

I wrote a couple of posts about my experience with domestic violence, and I met Maggie, the Bonafide Innernetz Aingel who started up Violence Unsilenced. The experience of actually writing those posts was painful. I physically shook while I poured out my pain, but knowing that I may be able to give someone that little oomph to exit an abusive relationship was worth it. I mulled over writing more, but I have a couple concerns.

First of all, parts of my memory are fractured.

For instance, I remember getting into a fight with The Girlbeater over “our” money. He demanded that I sign over my wages to him, and I refused. Before I knew it, I was laying face up on the bed with him straddling me, my arms and shoulders pinned by his knees, one hand hobbling my wrists and the other fist drawn back poised to strike. The bedroom door opened and his father asked, “What’s going on here?”

“Nothing that’s any of your business. Shut the door,” he directed in a voice low, deliberate, and strained with rage. 

And his father, without a word, SHUT THE DOOR. 

I hate to leave you hanging there, but that’s where the memory ends. My therapist explained to me that’s sometimes how our brains deal with trauma that’s just too much for us to handle. If or when I’m ready, I may receive the conclusion of that memory.

I want to write more about my experiences, but how can I possibly tell you a story like the above? Either I leave you hanging, or I pretty much make shit up. Neither option lends itself to the authenticity I want to bring. 

Secondly, the other factor in the equation is The Girlbeater himself.

A couple weeks ago when I was on Facebook, his face popped up on the People You May Know box. I almost threw up. Literally. This meant that one of my friends from my high school graduating class is friends with him. How can I handle the possibility of him finding me on Facebook and then heading on over here, if I have such a visceral reaction just to his face popping up unexpectedly? 

I have a tangled knot of thoughts and I can’t find either end.

I want to speak, to be unsilenced.

But I’m gagged by the possibility of him showing up here. I just don’t even know how I would handle it. What if he *gulp* contacted me? What if he challenged my memories to a debate? 

He’s currently awaiting trial for kidnapping and rape. It’s amazingly easy to get my physical address. What is he capable of? 

I don’t know.

He has no right to know of any details of my life, but here I am, waving them all over the damn internet and hanging big flashing neon arrows pointed towards them. 

I want to tell you a story about a young woman finding her first love and being battered by him in every way possible.

I can’t.

It’s not fair. 

Thoughts?

10 thoughts on “What’s my name again?”

  1. You can even set your picture and your name to private! You are one hella strong woman that took steps to make a better life for yourself and get away from an abuser. I am very proud of you and you should always stand tall and know you did the right thing, the best thing, you moved away and moved on. Love ya girl! Keep your chin up and just know karma is on your side and once he is convicted he will be gone for a long time again. Don’t let him get to you, there are enough of us around we can make sure you will always be safe, that is what family and friends are for :) ;)

  2. Dory,
    I agree with the above comment. Don’t give him any more space in your head. You have your boys and Hunky and your blog is making a difference. In short, you have a life, and he’s not allowed in. You’re past him. Beyond him.
    However, I *would* learn some basic self-defense moves and give your boys permission to whack the Girlbeater with a baseball bat should he, by any chance, show up at your house.
    Don’t let him run your life. It’s YOUR life now. Living well is the best revenge. (The second-best revenge is whacking him with a baseball bat, but that’s probably not gonna happen. Even though it would be justifiable.)
    Stay strong, girl.

    Donna Freedmans last blog post..DIY: Homemade pizza is easy, delicious and cheap

  3. It’s really, really important that you (and others) think about this stuff. Speaking out is very empowering, but safety has to come first.

    That said, yes, you can make your Facebook information private and make sure you don’t accept him or one of his friends as a friend of yours. Also remember not to respond to any potential message sent through Facebook, because when you do that that person can see your entire profile for one month whether or not you are friends. In many ways Facebook is the devil. :)

    You can also submit your story anonymously, as a couple others have done.

    As for your memories, all that you cannot remember is part of the story itself — you know? The places your brain goes dark, that’s OK. It only further illustrates just how traumatic these events were.

    Doubting the validity of your experience, worrying that he may one day argue semantics with you, these are very normal thoughts. VERY normal. Please don’t beat yourself up over them.

    What happened to you was wrong. Believe.

    maggie, dammits last blog post..Why I’m not much better than an Internet troll (but I’m trying.)

  4. I believe the phrase over there, to be used when discussing people of little consequence, is: “meh”. (Did I get it right?)

    Don’t give this oxygen-thief any thought. Any bloke who thinks he can raise his hand to a lady is beneath contempt.

    fatboyfats last blog post..To boldly go

  5. Do not – DO NOT – seek the treasure.
    Or do anything that isn’t safe / that you aren’t 110% comfortable with.

    You can pour your heart out on any one of 100 domestic violence message boards out there. Change your nickname to RapidCedars and type, type, type.

    Or use my blog as a filter. You can guest blog and we won’t link to anything that can be traced. We have several common readers…they’ll find you.

    Go to the shelter, get up on a soap box, and WITNESS, Sister…untraceably. Is that a word? You know what I mean.

    Priorities:
    1. Safety.
    2. Sanity.
    3. Helping Others.

    DO NOT confuse them. We love you. You love us. We’ll find you.

    CityGirls last blog post..TeeVee is King

  6. Yeah. What Maggie said. And Tom. And the rest. The story is yours to tell, or not to tell. Not his, not his family’s, yours.

    But do not jeopardize your safety to do it.

    Just know that there’s a whole community of people who support you. We might not recognize you if we tripped over you on the street, but we support you. You are anything but alone in this.

    And that’s true whether you spill or don’t.

    Mojos last blog post..Sky Watch Friday #31: Full Moon

  7. Your right Mojo. Their were lots of people who will love you more. But you have to live life in a fullest. Even it’s full of challenge but you have to strive in order to overcome such a problem. Thanks!

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