…d try to maintain a healthy dialogue. And, I have learned to object if affection is being withheld. I don’t have a RIGHT to affection (or sex) but I certainly have a right to know why my partner is not interested.
Well said, Eric. I’m glad you found the presence of mind, the confidence, and the courage to leave when you were in a relationship like this yourself. It’s been sad, but also heartening, to see so many men telling me that they found my story resonating. Apart from the societal influences on me as a woman (which, as you acknowledged, were natural for me to mention, since that’s what I am), I was very careful to write about abuse in gender-neutral terms. I’ve known men whose female partners/dynamics struck me as abusive, and I wanted male readers and readers with female partners to be able to recognize if this was happening to them as well, and the fact that abuse like this isn’t their fault.
Thank you for reading and for sharing your thoughts!