My name is Lawrence Durden. I suffered from Depression during my second marriage due to abuse. You don’t seem to notice it at first when it starts. If you think someone knows more about a subject than you then you tend to believe them until you research the truth. My second wife used manipulation, lies, mental and physical abuse to beat me into a depression. She did not like how everyone felt that I was such a great guy and I that I always smiled. This resulted in the abusive actions directed towards me. Some of the things she did were meant to torment me. So, she would do things like throw outrageous fits of rage where she would break things in our apartment. She would hit me with things, knowing that I would not hit a woman.
She believed that because I am a man and she is a woman, that I would automatically get put in jail for trying to restrain her from hitting me even if I didn’t hit her. She pulled a knife on me in my sleep and woke me up with a knife to my throat. Eventually, when she realized nothing she did worked and I would not touch her, she started lying to the police. One time she even punched herself in the leg to cause a bruise so she could report it to the police. I went to jail and when they set bail, she bailed me out. It was ridiculous. All the while I sank deeper and deeper into depression. It was obvious that she was dealing with her own issues, however, this is still abuse.
I wanted out of the marriage; I wanted a divorce. I didn’t know if that was even possible. I wanted to die but I believe you go to hell if you die. I could not win for losing. After the third time of her lying on me, getting me thrown in jail and being in a marriage where I had to walk on eggshells because I did not know what personality I was going to get from my wife at the time, I knew it was time to go. God told me I was better than that. I knew He had promised me a wife that would love me, and that I was going to financially recover, I trusted Him. I trusted God even though I felt discouraged because of the jail time I had served and the charges I was facing. It didn’t help that I was getting divorced for the second time.
God had a plan. I knew I needed to get my degree. My father always said, “get your education because that is something that cannot be taken from you.” That’s what I did. I graduated with my bachelor’s degree in Business Management. Although I began feeling much better, I knew it wasn’t enough for me. A week after completing my bachelor’s degree, I started my MBA program. I received an MBA in Finance 4 years later. In the midst of getting my MBA, I met my current wife and was hired as a full-time government employee. I completed my MBA in finance. I am making a decent salary to take care of my family. My wife and I have bought our first house together. We lived in it for a while, then sold it and upgraded to something new. I credit my testimony to the grace of God and Him bringing me out of the toxic situation and the depression that I was in. I now have a loving wife, two children that are wonderful and an adult daughter that lives in Ohio.
RallyUp Magazine had the pleasure of meeting Lawrence Durden and felt the need to share his story. This is a topic that is too often overlooked. Domestic violence against men isn't always easy to identify. We want men to know that getting help is NOT a sign of weakness! CDC found that 40% of the victims of severe, physical domestic violence are men. Abusive relationships always involve an imbalance of power and control. An abuser uses intimidating, hurtful words and behaviors to control his or her partner.
In Lawrence's case, it was emotional, mental and physical abuse. Because men are traditionally thought to be physically stronger than women, they are less likely to report domestic violence. Domestic violence against men can have devastating effects. Domestic violence can leave you depressed and anxious; which often leads to self-medicating and other things to cope. If you're having trouble identifying what's happening, take a step back and look at larger patterns in your relationship. Then, review the signs of domestic violence. It's time to break the cycle of abuse. Although you may not be able to stop your partner's abusive behavior, you can seek help. Remember, no one deserves to be abused.
RallyUp Mental Health Magazine is not to diagnose individuals. It is to inform consumers about mental health in all aspects of life; in this case Love and Mental Health.