There is no greater Hell than knowing that you’ve failed as a father. I’ve done okay in some aspects, but I’ve failed hard in others. There’s a big difference between bad circumstances and knowing that you are responsible for your current situation.
Everyone has been in a bad relationship, but not everyone stays long after it has become terribly detrimental to your life. And it is that realization, that knowing that you knew that you should leave, but didn’t out of fear or naive hope, that turns it into Hell. The realization that you are the only one to blame for your Hell.
I should have left sooner. And I’m paying for it now. I should have left when she got addicted to drugs and drained my bank account. I should have left when my car was repossessed. I should have left when she spear tackled me and beat me with my own shoe so I couldn’t even walk to work.
I did leave. But I should have left sooner. That’s why this Hell is of my own making. I’m responsible for it.
I did leave. It was New Year’s Eve and I knew that I couldn’t spend another year of my life like the last one. I had reached my breaking point. I called a friend, packed up my boys and whatever possessions we could fit into my friend’s car, and left. The emotional turmoil of that time has dissipated for my boys, they pretty much have returned to normal. But I’m still dealing with the consequences.
I had returned to the house later to get our nonessentials, only to find that my ex had pilfered everything that she could. Anything that I had that she could pawn, presumably for drugs, she did. All my electronics, my tools…she even hawked my boys’ bikes.
That is a small circle of Hell. How do you as a father tell your sons that they can’t even ride their bikes because they were stolen by someone they were supposed to trust? And this could’ve been prevented if I had left sooner.
I could go on about all the negative consequences and the things that I lost during those few months. The mental anguish of her stalking me, showing up at family and friend’s houses and my workplace. Or of her relentlessly contacting me by any means available to her…the last of which was to inform me that my dog was dead. But I don’t want to make this thing too long, so we’ll move on.
Things started to look up. I managed to get a car and a place. And thankfully, I kept my job through the whole ordeal. I could get my boys where they needed to go, had a roof over our heads, and was able to keep working. I work hard and I love what I do. I’m a certified nurse aide at a long term care facility, and I also managed to pick up hours as a transportation driver for the home as well. Which means that I get even more one on one time with each resident when I take them to their doctor appointments.
But I’m here because I need help. My ex stuck my with an electric bill in the thousands of dollars. How it got that high, I don’t know. I paid some on it, but not enough to prevent a shut-off. I have exhausted every other avenue of help. I have applied for multiple grants, loans, government assistance, have asked family and friends. But I’m still stuck in Hell. I make just enough over the poverty line that I don’t qualify for assistance (I’ve tried several programs). The bill is $5251.39. They also want a reconnect fee of $14 and a security deposit of $660. Total to turn my power back on is $5925.39.
We have been without power for two weeks and for my boys, it’s been like camping at home. But for me, it has been Hell, knowing that I’m responsible for it. Knowing that I could’ve left my abusive ex sooner. Knowing that I could’ve juggled the necessary bills better. Food, shelter, transport and electric…which one is more important than the other? Knowing that my boys are depending on me. Knowing that if I don’t get help, I could lose them.
My PayPal link is paypal.me/jameslevibowman
I have nothing to offer you if you decide to help me. Nothing except my heartfelt gratitude. Thank you. Thank you for even considering helping me out. Thank you from all of us who are here looking for a Guardian Angel.