I’m BuzzKitty. When I started at the litter box in April of 2007,and was in the furtive stages of figuring out just what was wrong with my year old marriage, I shortened that to BK1. I did that to attempt to remain anonymous, since I use BuzzKitty as a handle all over the web. Now I don’t care who knows who I am. Getting out did that for me.
Buzzkitty was the coolest cat. I got him my junior year on college, and he died in 2000. I still miss him. He was the best cat ever, in a "if you pat my asss I will bite you" kind of way. He was attitude, and sweetness, he was independence and he was my sweet love. I think I'm worthy of bearing his name.
I graduated from college in 1990. I worked and lived as a happy single. I met my first husband in 1994, and we were married in 1996. He was a very nice person, but we were incompatible intellectually. That probably sounds snobby. I cared about him, we have two children together, he treated me very well, but no way could I spend the rest of my life with him.
The catalyst for change, for me getting out of my marriage was a guy I met at work. We'll call him Massengill for obvious reasons. We met in 2000 when I was pregnant with my daughter. He was going to be the new sales manager at my company, and in fact was going to fill in for me when I was on maternity leave.
There I was, 9 months pregnant, looking like I'd swallowed a couple of watermelons, just waiting for the birth of my baby. He was sitting in the hallway outside my office. I saw him, and actually felt the world shift. Or maybe it was the floor shaking from my incredible gravid girth. Tee-hee. Actually I've talked at length to my therapist about what it was I saw, what exactly I felt. I am the adult child of an alcoholic, and she theorizes that what I saw was the familiar. I saw his addiction, so to speak, and was drawn in.
He was gorgeous on the outside, and I grew to love him on the inside. We were friends at first of course. I was still married to another. But he would spend long periods of time in my office. We talked about everything. When he was traveling for the company, I would miss him deeply, and eagerly anticipate his calls. They started just being at work calls, but then they carried over to the evenings. My husband worked nights. I enjoyed talking to Massengill in the evenings.
He was smart, funny, engaging. I fell in love.
I left my first husband in 2002. Our kids were four and two. He was blindsided. He expected us to be married forever. I don't think I'm actually capable of "forever" but that's another tale to tell.
I divorced in early 2003, and started seeing Massengill. Our early days should have been a red flag to me, but I was too giddy over being "in love" with him. He would constantly throw up roadblocks to our relationship, break up with me, then tell me how stupid he'd been, how much he loved me, how much he wanted to be with me. In many ways, I think it was the early hints of the cycle of abuse. Push away, pull back in. Oh how brilliantly clear hindsight is.
It wasn't long until we were talking about living together. We did so in early 2004. The early days were okay. He drank too much. As in every single day, but I managed to gloss over that. Often, I'd just join him. He was warm and funny and very loving. He accepted my kids. Things seemed fine. He did have quirks though, that I found bizarre. I'd never lived with anyone who got angry about such insignificant things.
He couldn't find his keys and would rage at me or the kids. He'd slam things around. He'd stomp. I would be taken aback by this, but I glossed it over. He was increasingly withdrawn. Just silent. No reason that I could see. I would wonder why on earth he was acting like he was. What did I DO?
His drinking continued, and escalated. He was putting away a big bottle of Jim Beam every two days. He was highly functional though. He claimed he didn't have a problem because he went to work every day. Ahhh, the logic of the addict.
We were happy in spite of what I perceived to be his mood swings. He seemed to have trouble controlling his anger, and seemed to blow things way out of proportion.
The overt abuse didn't start until his father passed away early in 2005. I'm quite certain that his father was physically, emotionally and verbally abusive to the entire family. I'd seen the physical scars on his body, and the emotional scars were manifesting themselves with more and more regularity.
His first incident of outright verbal abuse came after the death of his father. He was drunk as hell, staggering, slurring, and you couldn't ask him much when he was like that. You know, "Can you please turn down the music?" he perceived as a gauntlet being thrown down. He would rage. This night, I can't remember what mundane thing I'd asked him. Probably the music volume, as the kids were sleeping. I've blotted out the catalyst, but boy do I remember the reaction. He called me names. Horrible, demeaning, demoralising names. I remember just shaking with fear and horror. Who was this guy?
I remember the next day pouring out my heart in a long e-mail. Why oh why do you treat me this way? Why are you with me if you think such awful things of me. What a steaming crock of turnips.
This pattern continued and escalated, I'd say. Drunken rages over nothing. Me trying to figure out what I could have possibly done to warrant this treatment. Heartfelt e-mails. Apologies. Sweet and loving, and attentive after every episode. Ahhh, the cycle of abuse.
Things got infinitely worse when his "baby" brother died. He was killed in a car accident. The aftermath was nothing short of nuclear fallout. The abuse became a weekend event. Man he was a Richard. I still couldn't imagine what I had possibly done to warrant this treatment. I still thought I was the cause.
I decided to try to buy a house in early 2006. I would buy it in my name only. He was a financial disaster, and we were not married, so it was only logical to buy alone. I found a cute little condo. We moved. We cycled through the stages of abuse. He asked me to marry him. Of course he did. I was starting to really resent him and his abuse. I was starting to want to get out. The ultimate Hoover, and I fell for it.
We married May of 2006. It was a small family wedding. I was happy to be legal and official. I was glad to be able to call him "stepfather" legally. But at the same time, I was terrorized with words every drunken weekend, and many weeknights as well.
I found the Box in April of 2007. I was starting to google phrases like "husband calls me names" and the like. What an eyeopener to stumble into the box. Here were legions of people going through EXACTLY what I was. Seriously. Line and verse. I was verbally and emotionally abused, and the blinders came off then.
I continued to live much the same way. I would have moments of clarity. I would say, "I have got to get out of this marriage." I would tell him I was miserable. I demanded that he stop drinking or leave. I told him get therapy or leave. So in April of 2008, in the quest to pacify me, he found a new therapist and was going to address his alcohol abuse and his abusive tendencies.
For about 5 minutes, he acknowledged that he was to blame. He said, "I am responsible for all of this. The drinking, the way I treat you and the kids. It's my fault." But just as quickly as he took the blame, he shifted it right back away.
He was going to quit drinking. (shyeah, right!) He had weaned himself down to just two beers a day. (in front of me) But, since he was going on vacation back home to the midwest in late June, he was going to "really quit" when he got back.
But he didn't. And his thinly veiled control would slip. I came home from therapy one Tuesday night to him drunk and nasty. He called my 10 year old son a "puss" and told me I was in fact making him said "puss". OMG I was LIVID. He had the mental fortitude to drag his donkey to bed quickly, but he knew the next day he'd crossed a line that couldn't be uncrossed.
I took the kids to DC to visit my sister in late July. Of course the minute I left he was hitting it hard. He called me one night completely schnockered and I was pissed. I sent him an e-mail telling him if he didn't check into rehab he had until the weekend to leave. He threatened to shut off all my utilities and to harm my animals.
Of course the next day he'd been "kidding" about that, but I was done. I came home and told him to get the flock out of my life. My house, in my name, no equity, no joined assets, nothing to split. Just get your drunken self out of my life. Through therapy I'd gained strength. There was nothing wrong with me. There was so much wrong with him.
But he wouldn't leave. I couldn't quite figure out the logistics of getting him out of my house. I figured the only way was to file for divorce and be given the house as a temporary residence. He knew I was done, and he was getting desperate.
He had therapy on August 12th. Of course he guzzled a ton of booze after that and the kids and I came home to find him out cold in bed. We just stayed away from him and went on about our evening. Then he woke up. And he was ugly. He was spoiling for a fight, goading me, telling me he was going away for the weekend and taking my dog. Using every nasty trick in his dirtly little book to try to engage me. I tried to extricate myself, because I could see he was escalating. He was fuschia.
I walked away, and he hurled an entire tub of smart balance at me, hitting me squarely in the head. He'd thrown things before, he'd broken things before, I'd threatened him with calling 911 before, but never had. But this time was different. My children were nearby, he'd hurled a stream of just horrible nasty names at me prior to the butter launch. I was done. I ran to the phone and dialed 911.
As I connected with the 911 operator, he charged after me and grabbed me by the throat and neck, pulling me to the floor and pulling the phone handset from the base. I was charged up on adrenalin and fighting back. Thankfully the police were en route. They hauled his donkey away. The bail conditions were 96 hours of no contact.
I got a restraining order the next morning. He broke it that night. He drove drunk, he violated bail and the restraining order and let himself back into the house I thought I'd secured. He came to the room the kids and I were sleeping in. I was scared shitless. I called 911 from my cell phone. He couldn't pull that out of the wall.
He was arrested, spent a week in jail, and now faces numerous charges. I have had no contact, and will continue that. I got my final restraining order on Monday the 15th of September. Now I just need to file for divorce.
I am so happy now. My kids are happy now. Hell, even my dogs are happy now. Onward and upward. I feel strong, whole and healthy now. I hope he gets everything he deserves. He is one broken individual. I am the witness for the prosecution on November 6. I will tell my story to a judge, and hope that the system continues to work as amazingly as it has for me so far.
I walked the dogs today
in the woods behind the house
I walked upon earth, leaves, pine needles
and as I untangled the leashes
and kept the dogs from jumping in the brook
I noticed a little bottle at my feet
Mr. Jim Beam
Your best friend, your lover
so carelessly discarded
And I thought, "Poor Jim, he didn't fare
any better than I did."
And then a little blue bottle
That once contained the vodka
that amplified the nasty abusive man
that you are, that you were, that you always will be
I stepped over those bottles
I toed them gently with my shoe
As one might the decaying corpse of a small animal
They symbolized everything you were to me
Discarded amongst the leaves and dirt
And I left them there as a memorial
to what I endured, and what I crawled out of
and what I will never, ever live with again.
I wonder if those tiny little bottles will survive under
the weight of the impending winter snows
As I survived under the weight of your cruel oppression
I will find out next spring
Your weapon of choice
Well, beside your bile driven words
Full of whatever booze you were
To illicit power
To evoke fear
To silence any voice not your own
I washed all the stains
From all the broken glasses
Against walls, liquor splattered
Like a crime scene.
I wiped them away
As I've wiped you away
I smiled at the clean wall
Soon there will no traces
Of you ever having been here at all