I'm not able to thank everyone individually; I get overwhelmed when I try. But thank you.
No, Seriously, Thank You.
Special thanks to those who noted that a break with reality this sudden and severe is likely to be a medical issue and immediately reiterated that this does not excuse any of it or absolve him in any way. I agree with you, and I appreciate your reiterations.
Thank You, But
We have gotten many offers of financial help; I'm overwhelmed and sorting things out, and we haven't gotten to any of the financials yet. I hope that we can find a way to not need help. We're just dealing wit the more immediate concerns first, and probably won't get to sit down and talk about financial planning for another few days. I greatly appreciate all of you, but don't want to take money unless I know we need it, and don't want to take more than we need.
Why I Used the Words I Did
Copying and pasting from FB, where someone tried "but it's not rape-rape": I used the word rape very deliberately. The definition of rape in MA:
"Rape is a legal term that is defined in Massachusetts by three elements:
Penetration of ANY orifice by ANY object,
Force or threat of force, or
Sexual contact against the will of the victim.
Consent cannot be given (legally) if a person is impaired, intoxicated, drugged, underage, mentally challenged, unconscious, or asleep."
As Judah penetrated me with his fingers when I was impaired, drugged, unconscious, and asleep, this does meet the state's definition of rape. And the federal definition of rape used by the FBI is “The penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.”
I am a writer and know what words mean!
I also found it important to name it as what it was because, in our society, many people turn a blind eye to spousal and intimate partner rape. It is important to speak up about these things that are very common and are very commonly silenced.
We're looking for recommendations of good lawyers who are friendly to our community; I'm assuming I'll need to file a civil suit in order to collect the several thousand dollars he owes us for back utilities/rent/groceries. Any recommendations?
I have heard that he's saying the accusations against him are untrue. This is interesting, given that he confessed to all of them in the courtroom - no questioning, just the judge saying "what's your side of the story" and him giving a detailed list of everything he did with no prompting. Which is why I was given a restraining order. Restraining orders are actually not that easy to get, particularly for a first offense... but when the perpetrator is glaring and giving the list of every action in detail ("and then I grabbed her right wrist and twisted it", etc.) in a cold, threatening tone of voice and with no remorse, the judge will grant a restraining order. And, y'know, this is all public record. So.
Our landlord is being very understanding. We have assured him that we love this house and want to stay here! He's given us permission to seek out another roommate, and asked if we still wanted a dog or if that was just Judah. YES WE WANT A DOG. Judah claimed before assaulting me that he would pay his share of the rent that's due today, but. Y'know. If he doesn't, the landlord will work with us on this. I am very thankful for that. There are protections in MA for victims of violent crime regarding housing, but obviously the ideal situation is one where the landlord doesn't even need to be told that and just does the right thing, and thankfully, that's what we have.
Apparently the magic words are "We have a 209A restraining order", because that gets emergency service at cost. Last time I had to get a lock changed it was over $100 (when Elayna tried picking a lock with a piece of wood back in middle school). This time? $39 outcall fee and $30 per lock. (Which we'll get reimbursed for.)
I am incredibly lucky that I knew about the resources available to me - that BARCC can help me not only with counseling, but with negotiating housing and safety. That the Victim Rights Law Center is available to me as I go forward. That, if necessary, I can get reimbursed for expenses incurred due to this mess from the MA victim compensation fund. This has strengthened my commitment to make sure everyone knows that these resources are available to them.
I have been feeling very isolated from my community, due to the chaos of his depression and flailing about his work/financial situation and then his sudden break from reality and abuse, the latter of which I was trying my best to hide in order to protect him -
Yes. I know. But when you're in the situation, it is hideously confusing and gaslighty and you can't look at it objectively and say "Oh! This is clearly abuse and it is clearly escalating", not when you're thinking "I don't understand what's wrong and we just need some time to figure it out."
(So much gaslighting.)
ANYWAY. Yay people!
I am going to make a commitment to reconnect. This will probably go slowly and awkwardly, as I'm not used to being at gatherings or being able to actually talk about what's going on in my life. And I may veer into overscheduling myself and have to back off. I've never been through something quite like this, so I can't predict what the next few weeks will be like. I know that I will be going to a party tonight and hot tubbing tomorrow with some wonderful people. If you wish to invite me to things, please do, and I will try to be there.
Okay. Breakfast! Breakfast is a thing.
No okay a few more things.
Last night was hard.
I had friends over and that was good and helpful. But when I went to bed alone, it all crashed in on me, that my love, my heart, my "future contract spouse", had become this hideous unrecognizable thing.
And I hadn't been hit by a partner in 13 years. Not until yesterday.
And I can't be touched right now, I don't think. I am not safe in my body. And I don't know how long it'll take for me to get that back, and I hate that he stole that from me. I know it will be temporary. But still.