I remember her well. I met her through a friend. In the short time that I knew her, she seemed so troubled.
I asked her out to a movie once. She seemed really excited to go. When we got to the movie, she started listing all the things I was not allowed to do. I was not allowed to hit her, even if I was angry. I was not allowed to touch her unless I asked her first. I wasn’t to expect sex, not now at least.
I started out by assuring her that I would never wanted any of those things, I just wanted someone to go to the movie with, maybe a casual chat afterwards.
Jo was a woman who had escaped from a very violent relationship with the man who fathered her two kids. Rape is what she called their relationship, which ended when she reached out for help and almost got killed in the process.
The trouble was that she didn’t continue with the help. She stopped therapy once she felt that she was over the trauma that she suffered. She was wrong to think this.
Jo said that men made her feel ‘cheap’ and useless. We never dated again, but she did call, often. She called me on nights were she had flashbacks of her relationships. She called me to tell me about the fears she had, the one night stands she ended up regretting, and she called me to say good-bye.
When she said goodbye, I didn’t realize for how long.
A news report the following day told me just how long she was going.
Apparently Jo lay down in her bathtub and let the water fill up around her until she was no more. She drowned herself to death on that night, forever ending the cycle of abuse that she lived her entire life.