Missing woman’s case stirs memories

Published 6:27 am Monday, September 27, 2021

I don’t know if you’re anything like me, but I’m so fascinated with murder and mystery.
I listen to podcasts on many cases that have happened in the past and even present day.
Recently, there was a 22-year-old girl named Gabby Petit. She and her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, who have been together for two years, went on a trip that most of us would love to do.
They were set out to explore different places in America and travel in their van.
Gabby wanted to start a vlog channel to capture their journey on this trip.
During their trip, the couple was seen in public fighting and was pulled over for the dispute. There is footage of them being talked to by police and they were made to separate for one night. Soon after they were back together on their journey and then, suddenly, Gabby went missing. No one knows what happened, but a lot of people speculate Brian has something to do with her disappearance.
That’s just some information on the case that I’m currently looking into and, while doing so, I can’t help to think about my own experiences in an abusive relationship.
Maybe I could’ve ended up just like Gabby or many other women whose significant others turn on them.
Many women go through some type of abuse. The abuse could’ve been physical, emotional or even mental. My abuser controlled everything I did, he pushed everyone away until I had no one but him.
That’s what happens when you fall in love with someone who only wants control over you.
You have no rights anymore – they own you, you do what they say “or else.”
I’ve told my story until I was blue in the face and, in some way, he still made me feel like I was the bad guy.
I had the chance to get away many times, but I was afraid to leave him. I was afraid of what would happen if I did. There’s more to that story that’s really hard to talk about, but I was able to escape from my abuser. Gabby and many other women wasn’t so lucky. That sentence plays back in my head over and over. Why was I lucky? Why weren’t Gabby, or the others, able to leave? Why didn’t they have enough of the pain? Those are questions that you ask most women when you know in abusive relationships.
Why is it we question why the woman stays, but not why the man has her so broken that she does stay?
These are more questions I have that I can now answer.
The reason I stayed and went back many times was because he shattered me into pieces. He made me feel like I was nothing without him, and no matter who tried to help put my pieces back together, they didn’t actually care or love me.
I guess you’ll never understand until it’s you. I never want to feel that hopeless ever again, where I couldn’t even make my own decisions.
Our lives are a work of art and sometimes that art is darker than others, but I promise it will get lighter, it just takes time.
If any of you out there are going through abuse, don’t be afraid to reach out.
If you need time to plan do that, just think logically and think safely.
To the family and friends who have a loved one in an abusive relationship, don’t give up on them. Be there even if it’s at a distance.
Stay strong and know that you’re worth having a beautiful life.

Skyler Cunningham is an intern at The Irontnon Trivune.