Listen to your intuition!

by Linda

I am a mother of two grown children. At this time however, my kids were still at home with me. I was an unskilled, restaurant worker trying to support us. I have Crohn's disease. This made holding down a job difficult, as I was ill nearly every day during this period.

Jim sold produce to the restaurant where I worked. He did very well in our little town, employing a small group of people. He was very flirtatious and attentive to me. Although he seemed nice, I had a sense that something was off about him. He continued to ask me out, also plying me with flowers, candy, offers of traveling and taking care of us. I could quit work and enjoy life.

After a while, I pushed my first instincts about him out of my head and I agreed to see him. We dated for a very short time. He invited me to his church, where he sprang a surprise wedding on me (no joke), complete with our families in attendance. In hindsight, it was stupid of me to not run screaming out of there.

So we were married. Within a short time, neighbors began telling me that they heard our dog yelping as if it were getting beaten. It was always when I was gone. I again, pushed away the nagging feeling that I had. I assumed that they were mistaken.

Soon he started putting me down in front of people. It was meant to seem like a joke to others, but it made me feel awful. Things just kept deteriorating from there. His ex-wife called for him when he was out one day. She then began warning me to get away from him, saying he was an extremely cruel person and had abused their two sons sexually.

He and I slept in separate bedrooms, which he blamed on a leg injury and trouble sleeping. We rarely had sex. One night I awoke with him standing over me with a pillow. I knew instantly that he meant me harm. I got up, took my kids and left.

I honestly think something horrible would have happened it I had not gone.

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