When is it a good time to
leave him? Maybe now.
by Gracie Lake | on January 28, 2013
y husband and I were driving back from the
grocery store, waiting at a traffic light, when we
were startled by the piercing squeal of a distressed
engine racing up from behind. I looked in the mirror to see
a small rattletrap car, nearly out of control, bearing down
on the car waiting in the next lane. I braced myself for the
Instead, the car came neatly to a halt, inches from the next
driver’s bumper, and it became apparent that this was a
demonstration put on by a hotshot driver who had pieced
together - either by design or default – a strange little car that
could demonstrate his intentions. In that same moment, a
woman tumbled out of the passenger side, running out be- It’s hard to watch someone go through what I had to go through. When it’s time
tween the cars and to the median strip, where she crumpled to leave, you’ll need to get WAAAAY out of your comfort zone, and remember
into a heap. that your comfort zone is no longer comfortable, right? You can turn your life
around and create new magic by making a plan and doing it. Jumping out of
The light turned green and the cars all drove away, leaving a car as it comes screeching to a halt is not the best way, but I hope that the
woman who escaped makes it permanant.
her behind, as if nothing happened. The little car rocketed
off, veering over to turn into the driveway of a fast-food joint bahn. I asked him to slow down. He went faster.
as if he intended to go back and get his passenger.
I just wanted to get out of the car, but that would have been
I followed. “I’m turning around,” I told my husband. “We the end of our relationship, right there on the spot. And
can’t leave her out there.” He agreed. maybe me too – if I had tried to get out when the car was
The emotional demonstration of the hotshot driver had likely
scared the crap out of the driver in front of him, and he had It wasn’t the first time. At least we didn’t have the kids in the
done it all to frighten his passenger into submission. car. Lucky for me, a cop pulled us over, and he issued a ticket
to my ex. It was to be the first of TWO tickets that day.
I didn’t leave the guy that day. It took me a while.
his woman was me in 2000. My now-ex husband was
driving us back from another town, and he was pissed But after seeing the woman today, I knew I would have to try
off, again, as he had been every day of entire marriage. and help her. I can’t stand to see someone bullied the way I
He was driving down the freeway tearing past other drivers, was. Never again.
clocking in at just over 100 mph as if we were on the auto-
By the time I turned our car around and rolled down
the window, she was standing at a light waiting to cross.
“Are you okay? Do you need a ride?” my husband asked
her. She looked into the car and saw me at the wheel. “I
have my phone. I have my keys,” she said. “I’m a little
shaky, but I’ll be okay.”
And that was that. We smiled and drove off – although
my husband called the police to report the incident.
She’s been through this before, I thought. Will she let
him back in? How long can she keep doing this? When
is it time to leave – for good?
I have no patience for bullies anymore.
When I finally did leave, I realized there is no good Jerks are everywhere. Let them go be jerks, and step out of the way. It’s time
way, ever, to leave. You just do it. You simply have to make to stand on your own, and get away from the guy who makes you so unhappy.
up your mind to do things differently. You do it when you’re There’s a better way - and all you have to do is make your plan to leave now.
fed up, and you ask yourself:
Are you better off with or without him? If you’re not willing
to do it for yourself, are you willing to sentence your partner
to a life of misery with someone who doesn’t love him? I
hope not. You’re both better than that.
Where will you go?
How will you pay for it?
lanning when to leave is a difficult choice. Prepare for
the worst – even if it doesn’t happen, you need to be
able to jump out of the car with your phone and your
keys and go. When it’s time to leave there’s no perfect way to Get Gracie Lake’s
make your exit, but you will have to make a plan.
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