It's been a while since I've visited this community, but lately it's been harder to keep all these thoughts to myself. When I was 14 already in my first abusive relationship and being the unknowing little girl I was, I kept with the relationship 3 years before he left me for someone else. He would always beat me down in every aspect in life; some examples include my body image, personal self respect, my friendships etc. At first it was simple little things like a few small fights that he would call me names and then apologize profusely afterwards, but then it picked up into worse names and then to attacking my family verbally. He would punish me sexually and make me watch porn with him; I felt like I was being twisted into a sick person I never imagined to be. He would look at other women sexually and always reminded me that I was replaceable or a place holder for a better girl. He did so many things horribly wrong, but I let the few good times cover up what was really hurting inside. I felt like he would turn back to himself again and be the guy I fell so in love with; that's one of the main reasons why I let the abuse carry on for 2 years instead of getting the guts to leave him. It got to a point where I had to hide bruises from him grabbing me roughly when I made him upset and one day, later on in the relationship, I stopped and I looked at my life; I never thought that at 15 I would have the life I felt that I created. Now I'm trying to be a bigger person and forgive him so I'm attempting to be friends with him till he graduates; however, the other day he was getting upset over a topic we were discussing and almost hit me. The other times he would grab me, when we were dating, but he never has had to stop himself from literally punching me in the stomach. I try so hard to believe abusers can change because I want to believe the good in everyone, but he makes it difficult to be optimistic. In my Honors English class we're doing a passion project and I decided to make mine on domestic abuse because of the experience I've gone through and some of my other friends have. I wanted to tell my class that even if you don't live with your abuser that you can still get help and remove yourself from that situation. It's helped me a lot with knowing credible sources of information about he subject matter and that what I went through is a natural process. I'm actually considering joining a support group so I can remind myself of how important I am and to surround myself with others who have felt what it's been like to be hurt by the one or ones you love.