In His Own Words: How I wound up in the domestic violence industry grinder

October is Domestic Violence Month. Shrink4Men.com and AVoiceforMen.com will publish one story every day this month to help raise public awareness about male victims of intimate partner violence.

To kick things off, “CJ” shares his trip through hell with his ex-girlfriend, a divorced, bisexual, social worker, swinging mother of two. In addition to being emotionally and physically abused by this woman, he was also the victim of false allegations she made to the police.

First of all, I made the mistake of getting involved with a domestic violence industry insider. When we met, I respected “Candi” for her career choice as it seemed noble. In reality, being a domestic violence industry worker made her an especially dangerous and potent false accuser.

It was a long-distance relationship for over three years, on and off again. The last two weeks of it were the worst of my life.

Candi moved to DC from New Jersey in mid-March 2012 to start a job as a social worker. When she applied earlier in the year, I didn’t think she would get the job because NJ social services had suspended her. I didn’t know why at the time. Of course, it was someone else’s fault, and some woman in the office was “out to get her” because she was “jealous.”

I found out later that actually she had been fired for making a false allegation of sexual harassment, among other things.

By the time Candi relocated, I didn’t love her anymore. I didn’t even like her. She was an albatross around my neck that I could not get rid of. The previous three years of her physical attacks, vandalism, theft, bitching, nagging, lying, golden uterus fake-outs, and all-around crazy had taken their toll.

I would actually wince when her name popped up on my caller ID. My heart filled with dread when DC made her an offer and she told me she was moving down. She asked if she could move in with me and I said no, so she claimed she was moving in with a cousin instead.

Her first Sunday in town, she began to text and call, begging me to allow her to stay at my place for a few days because her cousin allegedly backed out of their living arrangement as she was driving down with all of her belongings in her minivan. I knew better and refused, but eventually I let her nag me into it.

After I agreed, I put down the phone, looked at my friend, and said, “I’m gonna regret this.” I had no idea how true that statement would prove to be.

Basically, I gave in for the same reason I gave in over and over during the relationship, to get her to STFU, so I could tend to more important things, like my job. Doing so only provided a momentary respite.

She would get her way on something, then move on to the next thing on her “bitchinlist,” as I called it. She also had a penchant for harassing my prior exes whenever I refused to get back together with her. That was always fun, being harassed by her on the one end and hearing from an ex-girlfriend who you don’t want to hear from on the other that “You need to control your crazy bitch!!!”

Besides, I knew that if I said no, she would show up at my apartment anyway and cause a scene like she had done several times before. I knew the police wouldn’t provide me any assistance because they never helped the two times my building concierge called the cops on her or the time she keyed my car.

The second day that she was in my apartment her mail began to arrive at my place. I knew then that the moving in with her cousin was a complete lie. I didn’t worry about it because I was closing on a house in Maryland  and if she was still in my place at closing I was going to just leave her there.

Those “few days” turned into two and a half weeks of hell. Every day I would come home from work to her incessant bitching, demands, and all-around stank attitude. Every day I would come home to more and more of her belongings littered around my apartment in garbage bags and suitcases. My place had become the pigsty her place always was.

In order to sit on my sofa, I had to move her stuff. Walking through the apartment was treacherous, constantly stepping over bags, trying not to trip into her Chihuahua’s shit that she refused to pick up.

Let me clarify. It wasn’t that every night she would start bitching as soon as I walked in the door. Some nights it was calm for a few hours, I’d get to heat up my dinner and eat in peace, maybe get to watch a little TV, then her “bitch switch” would go off, usually right before I would go to bed.

She would wake me up in the middle of the night, every night, but there was no rhyme or reason to it. Some nights she would wake me up starting shit—“Why won’t you let me into your Facebook, email, or phone?!?!” Other nights she’d wake me up wanting to screw.

Since I’m clarifying things, I would like to go a bit off-topic and explain something I have had to address over and over with lawyers, probation officers, and domestic violence instructors. People often go straight to the sex as if it makes a difference.

They say, “Well, you kept having sex with her…” as if it somehow excuses or justifies her crazy, or that she couldn’t have been that horrible of a person, somehow discrediting what you went through. Or they say things like, “She must’ve been putting it on you!!! Heh, heh, heh,” as if you were some virgin putting up with crazy to get laid.

That’s backwards.

It is not “I’m going to put up with her crazy so I can get laid” or “I’m getting laid so I’ll put up with her crazy.” It is rather “She’s crazy and I can’t get rid of her, so I might as well get laid.” Also, with Candi, anytime I refused sex it prompted “What other bitch you fucking?!?!” and back down that rabbit hole we’d go.

Anyway, back to the torment. Any mention or inquiry about her finding her own place brought on her tantrums, so I stopped asking because I was moving anyway.

The third Monday she was staying at my place, I came home from work and she was being all lovey-dovey and affectionate. This made me suspicious.

We had never stopped having sex, but affection was long a thing of the past. She then began to press me about my plans for living arrangements, whether she was going to live with me—make it “official,” I guess.

Not getting the responses she wanted from me, she turned sour, back to the Candi I had grown accustomed to. I later discovered that earlier in the day she had gotten my real estate agent’s info, called and played the “sistuh gurl” angle, and gleaned info about the closing.

I went to sleep and she woke me up several times bitching. The next morning I got up and got dressed as she stomped around my apartment shooting me evil looks. I left without us speaking a word to each other. When I got to work, she began one of her patented text campaigns.

I had gone through this several times before when I would break up with her or when she would break up with me, then decide she wanted to get back together. This happened so frequently over the previous two years that it became routine.

She wanted me to set up a meeting for that night with a couple in Baltimore that she had been corresponding with on a website. (Candi is a “swinger.” When we first met, she claimed her ex-husband forced her into, which I later learned was yet another lie—it was all Candi.)

I refused to meet with the couple. I had gone through this routine several times before and recognized it as her favorite double-bind. If I agreed, she would bitch about it. If I refused, she would bitch about it.

It went further than that. If I had agreed and made plans, she would throw a tantrum shortly before and we would not go, or she would cancel. If I refused, at least it wouldn’t turn into the circus she turned things into and I wouldn’t put other people through her crazy.

She continued to text me throughout the day. By the end of the day I didn’t want to go home to my own apartment that I paid for. I worked late, went to the gym, then agreed to meet a colleague and his boss for a drink. She continued to text, demanding to know my location, accusing me of being with “some other bitch.” I replied that I was fed up and that she had to get her stuff and get the hell out of my place that night.

My colleague dropped me off at home. I went in and she wasn’t there. I emptied my pockets on the coffee table, moved over a pile of her clothes on the sofa, and sat down. She barged in and snatched my phone off of the table.

It was locked, and in her frustration at not getting in she threw it across the room. I said, “That’s it. You have got to get the fuck out right now.” I got up, grabbed a pile of her clothes, walked to the front door, and tossed her stuff into the hallway. Standing behind me, she said, “You throw one more thing and I’m calling the cops.” I picked up one of her thongs off of the floor and tossed it out. She shoved past me and left. I sat back down on the sofa.

Over the next several minutes she made a few return trips, getting her things and talking shit. After the third or fourth time while she was gone, I got up and closed the door. Then there’s a knock at the door. Assuming it was her for more of her stuff, I grabbed a bag and opened the door.

It was a cop.

He walked in and asked me to have a seat as he tracked Chihuahua shit on my rug. Then asked me what was going on. I told him the gist and that she had to leave.

At first he appealed to chivalry.

I told him that I wasn’t going for it as I had heard that before from the last cop that came when my concierge called them because she was banging on my door in the middle of the night a few months prior. Then he stated that I could not put her out because, “DC is very pro-tenant.” I told him that she was not a tenant, she was a guest, and that guests only possess a license, which is revocable at anytime for any or no reason.

For about 10 minutes he stood there arguing landlord/tenant law with me as cop after cop filed into my apartment. I wondered why so many cops had to watch her get her stuff, and why they all looked so scared and shit. Then some dip-chewing, hillbilly, redneck cop comes in and handcuffs me and tells me he’s arresting me for assault. Up until then, no one mentioned or asked me whether any violence had occurred.

Thus began my long journey through the quagmire of the insanely biased domestic violence industry. The next year of my life was filled with biased judges who find guilt to justify having a dedicated domestic violence bench, rookie prosecutors unqualified for cases that require a burden of proof more substantial than “she said so,” a negligent lawyer who took the money and ran, self-serving probation officers incentivized to keep a “full caseload,” and the domestic violence industry’s version of the Ludovico technique—domestic violence classes with instructors that would call Jesus Christ an “abuser” for allowing forcing Mary Magdalene to wash his feet.

And the cherry on top—Candi continued to stalk and harass me for months, and I got no help because, well, I have a penis and she was the “victim.”

And people wonder why more men don’t call the police when their wife or girlfriend assaults them. Thank you, CJ, for taking the time to revisit this travesty. 

In His Own Words is a joint effort between Shrink4Men and AVoiceforMen to help raise awareness about the invisible victims of domestic violence: men. If you would like to submit your story, please follow the guidelines at the end of this article.

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