November came upon us sooner than I expected! I am happy to introduce our November Lady of the Month, Maria Larrazabal. She is a beautiful, smart, and inspiring young lady that shared her story with us in hopes of reaching out and encouraging other victims of bullying to stay strong, move forward and never give up. Let’s get to know Maria and read her story:
Band-aids don’t fix bullet holes
As October comes to an end, a very important month in my life closes. October is Domestic Violence Awareness month and it’s an issue I hold very near and dear to my heart.
Domestic Violence is taboo to most people, and in the society we live in today, we’ve been trained to not talk about it even though it happens often.
Did you know that Domestic Violence affects every 1:4 women? Did you know that while you’re in college, that ratio changes 1:3?
It’s sad to say that I dealt with Domestic Violence and kept it quiet. I didn’t feel strong enough to say something out loud because the domestic violence I dealt with wasn’t as difficult of a situation as the issues I had heard on TV. To me, domestic violence was when a partner in the relationship was physically abusing the other.
While I could openly admit I loved a past boyfriend of mine, I could never admit it to myself—or anyone— that I was being verbally abused in the relationship. At the beginning of the relationship, I took everything as a joke. As the relationship progressed, I would try to not let my fake smile falter into a frown.
I’m also the type of person who takes everything onto myself. My friends could be having the worst day and I’d be having the worst day beside them. I’m not one to care much for my own feelings; rather, the feelings of other. So naturally, in a situation like that, I blamed myself.
Maybe I really was “horrible”. And maybe I deserved to be called a “bitch.” A lot of questions went through my mind at the time, and in my darkest hour, I contemplated if “you should kill yourself” was a valid point. After hearing so many ugly statements thrown at me, I started to believe it.
I began to loose sight of the things that mattered. I kept myself unhealthy; not eating or throwing up after I ate. Not because I didn’t want to eat or because I hated my body, but more because I wanted to feel something. I had become so innocently numb. The only way I knew how to feel was to let my tummy ache and remind me that I was a human being; one that needed to be fed.
It was more than being fed food, (though food is always welcomed.) It was more about being fed love and affection from someone who cared about me the way I cared for them. It’s sad to say that I loved someone so much I let them destroy who I was and became an empty teenage girl trying to live through her everyday life.
It’s really hard to become emotionally numb, and it’s even harder to come back from it. I am proud to say that I was able to get through that phase in my life.
I am no longer the sad girl I was once. There’s no trace of her left.
I am no longer an emotionless human being. If you ask anybody I know, they might tell you I have too many emotions. And I’m okay with that.
I’m a really bubbly girl who’s coming of age in the happiest of ways.
I am no longer in the abusive relationship I was before, and one of my greatest accomplishments was forgiving and forgetting about it.
I’m in a relationship with a boy who loves me more than I could ever possibly love myself, and he is one of the biggest blessings in my life and I’m proud to say he loves my imperfections.
I’m so happy to have joined an organization that has shaped me into a happier person. I am a part of Alpha Chi Omega, a sorority whose philanthropy is Domestic Violence Awareness.
I’m surrounded by people who adore me, are thankful to have me in their lives and frankly, that’s something I never had before or maybe never realized and it took that abusive relationship in my life to realize that.
And most importantly, I learned a valuable lesson that I live vicariously through everyday. It’s a quote that has really changed my perspective on life and I hope it has some effect on the ladies reading this.
Love yourself before you love somebody else, and then you’ll understand what a real relationship should be like. The only person that will stay with you your entire life is yourself, and you have to learn to appreciate, care for, and love for that.
You can follow Maria on instagram @lulztxtit ❤