I am a 34 year old mother of three... I was married for over 15 years to a man whom I thought was wonderful... In the beginning everything about him was perfect.. I genuinely thought that I had found my Prince Charming.. He was a military man, provider, handsome and treated me like a princess.. Shortly after our daughter was born things began to change.

He became irrational and controlling.. At first I thought it was just the stress of having a new addition and the fact that he was constantly being deployed or sent for training.. I actually went to counseling and spoke with his commanding officer he told me that he was just being a man to let him rant and that military men are superior to most men. A couple years later my son was born and I had never seen my husband happier... He spent every possible moment with our son.. He was just so fascinated with him. He didn't spend much time with our daughter but I just thought, well.. He is an Alpha male.. He's a Nan's man.. No biggie!!

We moved to Germany and he was assigned to a position which obligated him to do a large amount of time training and in the field.. As a young mom I knew no other military wives and where we lived off base left us pretty isolated. He never wanted us to go to family functions on vase and he even took over the shopping so that I could stay in the house where I belonged with the children. I missed my family immensely so I booked a flight (Hop) back to my hometown Pennsylvania to visit... I was gone for about two weeks.

One day I decided to call my husband's cell phone outside of our prearranged phone times and a woman answered... I was so shaken up that I actually left a message with the unknown woman without asking her any questions... I remember calling his phone for the next four days day and night and he never answered.. I couldn't eat or sleep I was mentally and physically sick from stress.. On the fifth day he called me and said that he had lost his phone and have me a new number.. His story didn't feel right but this was my husband, a Man of Honor!  A few days later I arrived back in Germany and he picked me up from the airport holding candy and a bouquet of flowers.. Everything felt better.. The night I arrived he informed me that he had security duty in the barracks and and he would be home tomorrow.. I was disappointed but let it go.

My son had caught a head cold from being on the airplane and traveling.. His fever had reached 104 and I had no medicine available. I tried my husbands cell phone but I couldn't reach him. I called over to the barracks and they said his security shift was actually the night before.. I was still in disbelief. I knocked on a neighbors door in the middle of the night and she gave me some medicine for my son. My husband arrived the next day and and pretended that he had been tired up the security duty. I was miserable but I didn't let it show.. After all I was his wife and I had to keep my family together..

About two months later after an annual exam I found out that I had an STD.. I was mortified, when I confronted my husband about it he called me every degrading name possible and said that if I hadn't of went back to Pennsylvania he wouldn't have been forced to look elsewhere for sex. I was devastated. He said that he wanted a divorce and he was keeping the kids.. I begged him to forgive me, he had the upper hand, after a while things were smooth and I gave birth to another son...

My husband reassured me that he had the perfect wife and children and he would fix everything. He kept up this facade for a whole year until his mom passed away.. After that, we moved to Japan on another tour. He didn't want me to touch him and he wouldn't even look at our daughter.. Girls and Women made him sick.  We were useless, he referred to us as pigs and said she should be eating out of the dog bowls.. When I refused he hit me, I remember holding my face and him dragging me by my hair into our bedroom and him locking the door so that I couldn't get out.. My kids were out there, my daughter was out there.. I screamed, begged and kicked the door asking to be let out. It was hours later that he finally let me out.

He apologized and said that it would never happen again and that I needed to stop antagonizing him. I agreed. I grabbed my children, kissed them and got them ready for bed. He stopped coming home. Sometimes we would see him once a week.. My brothers wedding came around, the children and I left again to attend the wedding... Once I arrived in Pennsylvania I told him I was filing for divorce. He warned me that I would be sorry..

I sent him the divorce papers, he never signed them. I later was contacted and told that he was AWOL. I started to receive threatening phone calls from women. I knew he was somewhere close and he was watching us.. I packed our things so that I could go stay at my parents for awhile.. I was scared. As I was packing up the car, he grabbed me from behind, carried me in the house and beat me repeatedly.. He left me lying there unconscious.. I woke up in the hospital and I looked like a raccoon..

My children were safe, he had showed up to the school to pick up my daughter first and she wouldn't go with him so they decided to contact people off of their emergency contact list since they couldn't get in touch with me.. He ran away from the school.. I contacted the Women's Resource Center and they aided me with bus tickets to another state, since the police would do nothing and my car was missing.. I moved from state to state for the passed year. I finally was granted my divorce.

No one has seen or heard from my ex- husband. I don't have much as far as clothing, household items and finances but I do have more than I've had in the long time.. Some peace of mind and pride. I have had some very hard times, I've stood in line at food kitchens, walked miles in the rain with the kids, we have slept on floors... It has been overwhelming to say the least at time but I managed, I stayed strong, I struggled but I survived.

It hasn't been easy but I am a Survivor!! 

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