“Sohan, you can also pick up Riya. You can see I am cooking right now!” “Reema, I had a long day at the office. I want to watch my cricket match now. Handling a kid is your responsibility. Come here and make her quiet please!”
“Why did you stay at your mother’s place for so long? What were you doing there?”“Sohan, Riya was playing with Ayansh. And, now I can’t even stay at my mother’s place?” “Reema, you can stay there forever! You anyways never accepted this home and this family like yours. You know what, you should better leave this house if you can’t see me and this home as your priority!”
“Sohan, stop pushing me. You are hurting me!”“How dare you decide to work when I have already said No!”“I want to earn for my baby and save it for her bright future!”“You idiot, I will be spending more on nannies, maids and day-care to take care of Riya than you will be earning! Be practical!“But, I want to work. Don’t worry, I’ll make arrangements to make sure Riya is taken care of!”“Don’t even think of getting a nanny or your mother in my house to help! Just take care of the home and baby.”
These were just a few moments of my painful motherhood journey. Sohan was neither there for me, nor he was there for his own daughter – Riya.
I was living a life no less than a nightmare. Sohan was a controlling narcissist, who wanted the whole world to revolve around his wishes and desires.
From the beginning of our marriage, Sohan wanted to be treated special. He wanted to control all my life decisions. After some time, it felt that he was holding my remote control and I was doing everything to please him. Even after being an educated professional, he made me quit my job so that he gets home-cooked food. He would scold me if I ever forget salt or spice in the dish. He turned me into a slave who had to bow down to all his requests – when he wanted, what he wanted!
I thought things would get better once we will become parents. The thought of taking care of the baby will make him remember his responsibility as a husband and as a father. But, I was so wrong. After the birth of Riya, he became worse. He started abusing me even more. He refused to take up any parenting responsibility. I felt so alone in the parental journey that there would be times when I would literally shake in fear.
Realizing how I would do anything for Riya, he started abusing me even more. He started controlling me more. Whenever I would try to do things that please me, he would not only scold me but also get angry with Riya. So, I gave up fighting against his toxic behaviour for the sake of my baby.
Whenever my parents tried to help me, he would abuse my family, name-call them, shame and shout at me. I was terrorized and wanted an escape but didn’t know how? Even though I desperately wanted him to change but he just got worse.
I was tired of daily abuse, pain, hopelessness and sadness Then one day, he started shouting at me in front of Riya. He called me characterless, worthless, burden and so much more! I saw Riya’s eyes and they were full of fear. At that moment, something inside me woke up! My courage, my determination, my strength! I realized that it doesn’t matter what people will say but I can’t raise my daughter with a man like Sohan around her.
Sohan may have turned my life into a nightmare, but I won’t let him destroy Riya’s life. So the next day, I called up my family and asked them to file divorce papers. And now, as I am starting my life as a single mother, here are two cents for every mother struggling in toxic marriage:
Don’t assume that he will change with time; He will become better after a baby! If he abuses you and refuses to take any professional help, he will not get better. And, with passing time, he will even get worse.
You may be scared of moving out of toxic marriage because people will tell you – Don’t do it, what will happen to your child? Don’t do it, who will be with you in your old age?… and much more.
But, don’t let them change your mind. Because a single mother is better than an abused mother! Because raising a child alone is better than raising your child in the shadow of an abuser! You deserve better! Your child deserves better!
Your child may not get the world of riches immediately but atleast he/she will get the right values! Your child doesn’t have to witness you breaking down every day; Your child doesn’t have to see you being abused every passing day! Atleast your child doesn’t have to deal with an abusive father and scarred mother both on the inside and the outside. And, remember: Single Mother is better than abused mother!