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Mimi and "Oda" were both in love with the same man, at different times. They both experienced what it means to live with a violent man. They tell their story.

Photo: by Jen Theodore on Unsplash 



The case itself can be found at nrk.no, but here we give you a little review.

 

Charmed and felt seen

They write:





He was tall, masculine, charming. A little mysterious. And a little like everyone. On Facebook today, he has a friendly face. But pictures do not tell everything.

Mimi was with him first. She was 15 when they first met. A little insecure, but also determined, concerned with justice. Maybe a little lonely.

He was 17 years old when he noticed Mimi. Made her feel seen for the first time. She daydreamed about how nice they were going to get it.





 

Signs that something was wrong

They eventually stayed together, and it took a few months before the violent behavior showed up.

It takes a few months before he starts pushing her, grabs her cheeks, squeezes her mouth together.

He can't stand Mimi having other friends. The mind is explosive, but she is not afraid. Not yet.

When she moves into his apartment, his need for control becomes apparent. He is often jealous, but that is normal in a relationship, right? Jealousy only confirms that he is afraid of losing her? Isn't it?

 

- I can help him

In the time that follows, Mimi is busy "helping him". - Maybe they can work together to strengthen trust, and get an even closer bond? she asks herself.

Margun Bjørnholt at NKVTS elaborates to nrk.no that such thoughts are common.

When victims of violence talk about their partner, it is often a person who appears to be unwell, and they go to great lengths to understand and help their partner. Many endure much for love.

But for Mimi's part, the situation only got worse, and the violence increased in strength. 

 

More serious violence and greater control

Nrk.no writes:

After a while, she has to start running away when he's angry. But he usually gets her. Throws her on the ground, presses her knee under her ribs so she can not move.

And one pattern is repeated: - He never says sorry.

In addition, the control that the man had over her became stronger and stronger. Nrk.no writes:

Gradually she becomes more enclosed. If Mimi talks to "wrong" boys at school, he punishes her. Therefore, she wanders to get thin. The world becomes a dangerous place where it is only safe at home with him.

 

Obstacles to breaking out 

Over time, the relationship becomes increasingly difficult to break out of, although it also becomes increasingly clear that the relationship is very unhealthy. 

Some are concerned that they themselves are to blame for the violence. It may be the result of a form of "brainwashing" where the experience of reality has been shaped and disturbed through violence and psychological degradation, explains Hanne Netland Simonsen, at the Trauma Clinic Modum Bad in Oslo.

Although it may be difficult for outsiders to understand, breaking out of such a relationship is easier said than done, which is elaborated in the article. Simonsen elaborates:

A woman exposed to violence does not stay in the relationship because she is a special type of woman, but because she is exposed to extreme experiences that create certain bonds and obstacles.

 

Many women are exposed to partner violence

Mimi is not alone in these experiences. Nrk.no also describes the case of "Oda" who had many common features. And the list is long of women who could have told a similar story. Nrk.no writes:

Mimi and Oda are part of an ominous statistic. Almost one in ten women, or 9.2 percent, have been exposed to serious violence from their partner, according to the report «Violence and Rape in Norway» from 2014.

 It is therefore a very important topic that nrk.no addresses in this case. 

 

Advice for victims of violence

Nrk.no highlights the following advice from Mimi to other victims of violence.

 

  1. Write down the dates, times and other details of the events in a notebook only if you know where they are. It can help you much later.
  2. Take pictures of bruises and other marks on the body.
  3. Tell someone what happened.
  4. Is it difficult to talk about what has happened? Write what you want to say on a piece of paper and give it to your GP. The doctor has a duty of confidentiality, but writes it in the medical record - which is important.

They also refer to the online resource dinutvei.no which is a guide to help services available to victims of violence (Norwegian).

 

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