Friday Fictioneers: The Letter

Every week, the lovely Rochelle shares with us a photo that has been donated to her so we can use it as a prompt to write a piece of fiction in around 100 words.

WARNING
SOME PEOPLE MAY FIND THIS DISTRESSING AS IT

REFERS TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

For three years I have put up with your drinking, your infidelity and your aggressiveness. I cannot put up with it any more. I am sorry. I loved you when we first met. I loved you when we started seeing each other, and I loved you when we married. I am sorry to say that I am unable to stay in this marriage. I cannot continue suffering the beatings at your hands. I cannot continue receiving the verbal abuse. I am sorry Hannah but I am leaving you.

Warren

The letter lay on the bureau beside the murdered body of Warren.

63 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers: The Letter

  1. A good twist on this prompt — especially since it is told from the man’s perspective. Too often the focus on domestic abuse and violence is about battered and abused women; perhaps statistically women do suffer more at the hands of men, but since more often than not, victims who are men don’t often report or speak up, it’s very easy to forget that it does go both ways.

    Well done Al.

      • Really?!

        Well, on the one hand, I can understand how people would respond – because it’s not a point of view usually considered, but on the other hand, I’m not surprised at all Al. The piece is very strong and well written. 🙂

        • I wanted to make it seem the standard female wanting to leave and changing it at the last moment to show that men can and do suffer from it as well.

          • Well you succeeded Al.

            Traditionally one would expect a scene representing the domestic violence from the female as victim point of view – but it’s sadly, not always the case. It’s just rare that we get a man’s point of view – although it happens far more frequently than reported for sure. Men suffer, most often, silently, from domestic abuse, due to society’s stigmatization and ridiculously stereotypes.

            Abuse is abuse — all victims, regardless of age or gender, are victims. It’s just sad that those who fall not into the “mainstream” view, suffer silently.

            Your response helps stream a bright light onto a very dark, secret subject. Very well done Al. Although it pains me to say that it’s a terrible subject matter — but the shadows need to be illuminated, without prejudice or judgement. So, once again, very well done. 🙂

            • I too share your sentiments, but sadly, I don’t think it will end. One of the worst aspects about it all – it the stigma associated with it — completely unfair —– no one should be made to feel ashamed for suffering at the hands of another.

              But perhaps, because we do have hope, and there are those who are willing to speak up and out – and share – then slowly, things will change.

            • We can only hope. I know a friend of mine (who was a man at the time) was physically, mentally, verbally and emotionally abused his his wife. He went to the police and ended up helping to start a telephone helpline for abused husbands.

              Two years ago, he started the process of gender realignment, and what is really weird is the woman who used to be his wife, is helping him with everything!!

            • Wow — now that is weird — I mean the abuser now helping the abused! hmm … but sometimes, people can and do change their mindsets, attitudes and try to make amends by helping those in need.

            • It is really weird. She (as in Mel who used to be Matt) has also kept custody of their little girl as well.

  2. Very well written. Any kind of abuse is wrong.Poor Warren. And, you had me thinking the opposite in the start. I see what you wanted to convey 🙂 Good one.

    • Thanks very much Shanx. I wanted it to be a shock at the last moment that it was man who was abused. I also had to had to change the end slightly to say that he was murdered so it ruled out the idea of suicide.

  3. Excellent story covering a very distressing topic. The cases that come to the attention of the media are almost always about abuse against women and we tend to forget that men suffer too and almost always in silence.

    Thank you for speaking out about this Al

    Dee

    • Thank you, I appreciate the comments. It is too often the case of men beating women in the news. There is a soap over here, Coronation Street, and earlier this year, or it could have been last year as I don’t generally watch it, and they covered a man suffering abuse at the hands of his girlfriend, and how nobody could see it as they seemed so happy outside.

    • Thank you Lynda. I have known of a couple of men who have gone through this, one went through all of it, one went through emotional abuse, and one physical abuse, and one was with a serial cheat who also hit him, and during a divorce, she stood in front of her children and said “go on then hit me” even though he had never raised a hand to any woman.

    • Thanks Elizabeth. That was what I was aiming at. Women are shown being the victims in domestic violence, but men rarely are, and they tend not to tell anything through fear of being laughed at.

    • Thanks David. It is rarely brought to the attention of the police due to the men thinking it will be laughed out of court. I know several men who have suffered some or all of these. One man (now a woman) even helped start a helpline for men suffering from domestic abuse.

  4. I like how you showed a different than the usual take on domestic abuse.
    Women can be just as evil as any man that does such things.
    Sadly – most men won’t report it or admit it fearing that they will be made fun of or not believed.
    Bravo for bringing attention & awareness to this matter.

    • Thanks Rosy. I thought with the warning it would cause less people to visit, but I think this has had the most comments of any story I have written

    • Thanks Kim. It is more often than people realise. Men usually won’t say anything for fear of ridicule and nobody believing them

    • Thanks very much Alicia. I wanted to leave to the last moment to show that it is the male who was suffering where everybody would have assumed it was the wife.

  5. God Al, you are indeed such a kind and gentle soul. You are also quite witty (as evidenced by where we met), and clearly very warm and loving, patient and giving. I am proud to know you.

    • Thank you Julie. Ssshhhhh or people will think we have met in person. haha.

      Nothing kind and gentle about my soul. I’m evil to the core. I even have the laugh to prove it.

      MWEHEHEhehe

  6. I was attracted to read because of the beautiful photo, which made the violence of the story even more poignant. Domestic violence is much like that; everything is perfect to the outside world, but inside is a dark secret. Very good contrast of photo to words, and a very well written piece.

    • It is. I wasn’t sure whether to put the warning on at first, but after reading it a few times I decided it may affect some people.

      Domestic violence can involve children attacking parents as well, I have seen that, It is devastating to know of any type of abuse goes on. Thanks for reading Celestine

    • Yes it does, and it is awful. Nobody deserves to be treated in that way. I got out of a relationship because I was emotionally and verbally assaulted on an almost daily basis. I found out a few weeks later that she got into another relationship and he wasn’t as forgiving as I was. She posted photos of her face covered in bruises. I wanted to say that it was her own fault, but even if she did treat him the way she treated me, she didn’t deserve to be beaten for it.

  7. The case of a man being abused by a woman is probably most more rare. However the general assumption is at it doesn’t exist.. there are a few interesting “forgotten” facts..

    • It does exist, and there are men going out public, despite the fact that they are being ridiculed.
    • With limited statistics it seems like women tend to use tools rather than fists (quite understandable given less strength)

    • Male suicide is much more common than female, which would have been the most common end for Warren.

    Good tale that made me think.

    • Thanks Bjorn. I know someone who suffered badly from abuse when she was a man, and even started a charity and helpline for males who were suffering domestic violence. Men think they will be laughed at for being treated that way by women. I saw an experiment on the internet a while ago. A man was beating a woman in the middle of the street, and loads of people ran to her defence. Then they did it the other way round. A man was being beaten by a woman, and people were just watching and laughing.

    • I had to add the word “murdered” as it would look more like a suicide, and I think considering the shock of the last few days, it would have been bad taste to imply that.

  8. Dear Al,

    How ironic that the abuser in your story is the wife. We most often think of the brutality coming from the husband. However a male friend of mine went through it. Thankfully he was able to escape with his life and children intact.

    Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    • I’m glad he did. I wanted to show that it is not only women who suffer from abuse, whether it is infidelity, verbal, emotional, or physical abuse.

      I did a runner in my previous relationship to get me and the kids away. There was never any physical abuse, or cheating (that was my marriage) having my daughter (12 years old) being called a slut and a tart was too much. If I couldn’t get out, I was going to send my kids to live with their mother which is something I never ever want to do

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