Survivor Story: I Graduated College and He Tried to End My Life

Written by: Kris, Survivor

Trigger Warning: This story contains descriptions of physical and sexual violence that some survivors may find particularly upsetting. Please consider your triggers and well-being before reading past this point.

Kris endured years of abuse, while attending college. A month after leaving her abuser, she came home to him waiting for her and brutally attacked her. He stabbed her 18 times, and she is alive today to tell her story.

My story is in no way typical, yet incorporates every textbook example of Domestic Violence. Unbeknownst to me, the first year of my relationship with my abuser is where he set the groundwork, isolating me from family and friends, while remaining charming and captivating, winning me over. It was the best year of any relationship I had, we were happy – I thought.

Things changed slowly, but much quicker when I moved into my own apartment. He mentally manipulated me and gained control slowly until I rebelled. When I did not do something to his exact liking, he got drunk or high, or thought this or that; he would beat me. And I do not mean just a slap or a push. The very first night he EVER laid a hand on me he choked me, hung me over the loft balcony of my apartment, and held me down until I was unconscious. I woke up the next day in so much pain I did not move for three days. This night was just the beginning.

The next four years continued with beatings like this, including mental and sexual abuse, and being tortured. I endured this all while completing college. I graduated in June 2014.

It was mid-afternoon in June. My father and I returned to my college apartment for my final things. My abusive ex, whom I broke up with a month prior, was there waiting for me. He attacked me. He stabbed me with a kitchen knife. He stabbed me in the eye, neck, and side. I escaped, and ran outside, he caught me, I escaped again, this continued for 18 minutes while 23 people watched. 23 witness left statements with the police. He stabbed me 18 times; 14 times in the back of my head and neck, one to my eye and twice to my side, which caused my lungs to collapse. I survived! I can see, walk, talk, and except for some numbness and discomfort in nerve endings, I am fully functional. Six years; it was six years ago, June 2020.

My message is to every single girl, all of you; know your worth, do not let anyone steal your joy or keep you down. Domestic violence can happen to anyone. I thought it would never happen to me. It does not discriminate. It does not only happen to people who provoke it, who are poor, or uneducated. I am a privileged Caucasian woman with a Bachelors degree, and it happened to me.

I am finding myself again and loving me and my second chance. Break the Silence!

**If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, there is help. You can visit the Break the Silence website at www.breakthesilencedv.org, chat with one of our helpline advocates at 855-287-1777, or send a private message through our Facebook page. For crisis services, you can contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233.

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