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Millennium Post

Walk away from a violent relationship

The most important thing to realise by a victim of domestic violence is that it is absolutely not your fault. Every victim is beaten down into thinking the problem is theirs, but it is not.

Walk away from   a violent relationship
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Hi! I come from a small town in North India. I'm a student and I live with my uncle in the city. I'm 17 and I'm not sure whether I'm gay. How can I be sure? I'm very worried!
V Jha, New Delhi
You are gay if you are sexually or romantically attracted to the same sex. It can be confusing to know if you are gay, bi or straight when you are still going through puberty. Not everyone grows through this period fully aware of their sexual identity. You should not label yourself at this age as it can all change by the time you have grown through and out of puberty. Sexual urges come in many forms. When we are young, sexual orientation is mixed in with all kinds of dynamic and sometimes uncomfortable things that we are dealing with every moment. There is no need to seek labels for these experiences, and in fact labels are often more harmful than helpful. As we mature and begin to seek and form important relationships with individuals, the sexual piece gets clearer and clearer. It's something you feel deep inside.
You may not know for a while and be unsure, but it's only something YOU know. No one else can tell you. Either way, listen to your heart and soul and trust that they will lead you in the direction that is right for you.
My wife snores a lot. I can't sleep at night. Please guide what can be done?
Akshay Ram, Noida
There are some couples that choose to have separate bedrooms. It works for some people, happily. They may go to one bedroom to watch TV, read or get close and then go to sleep in their respective bedrooms. Space in life is never a bad idea. You could also try to train a person to sleep on their side or stomach, which may help prevent snoring. You can prop pillows in a position so the snorer is on her side or stomach and can't flip onto their back (the position which shoring is most likely to occur). You can nudge them to turn over, but if that doesn't work, it may be a sign that your partner has obstructive sleep apnea (a problem that should be evaluated by a sleep specialist). To save your situation for the time being, you can also try earplugs. Good luck.
I am a regular reader of your column and love reading it. I am in a relationship for last 4 years but in my mind, I know, it's over. I don't know how to convey to him. Roopsha, please help!
Nisha, New Delhi
Telling your boyfriend that your feelings for him have changed is going to be painful for both of you. It is important to prepare what you want to say in advance so you can make your feelings clear and express yourself without getting emotional. Practice what you are going to say several times before talking to your boyfriend. Modern technology makes it easy to avoid difficult conversations, but few things are more painful than receiving a breakup text or email. Unless your boyfriend has become violent or threatening, you owe him the courtesy of a face-to face conversation. Arrange a time to meet with him in person but choose a public place like a coffee shop. Giving him the bad news in person will show that you still care about his feelings even if you don't love him anymore. If your boyfriend still has feelings for you, he may try to convince you not to break up with him. This is why it is important to be emotionally strong when you talk to him. Staying in a relationship when your emotions have cooled isn't fair to either of you. If you truly don't have feelings for him anymore, you need to stick to your guns and tell him that the relationship is over. Best wishes.
I live in Noida with my girlfriend. Since last year she has been beating me up almost everyday. Initially she was not so wild but now I'm scared and broken. Is it my fault? I have no answer!
Name unknown
You are being bullied and mentally and physically abused by your girlfriend! The first and most important thing to realise is that it's absolutely not your fault. Every victim of domestic violence is beaten down into thinking the problem is theirs, but it's not. Your girlfriend clearly needs counseling and anger management therapy to deal with her issues and discover what's at the root of her violence. You didn't mention, if her parents are aware of her behaviour. If they're not, you ought to tell them. You have to walk away from this relationship. I'm sure if you explain the situation to your friends and family, people will be there to support you and offer you somewhere to stay in the short term. You cannot stay in an abusive situation. Get out now before your­ self-esteem is battered even further. Seek help and move on. Take care!
(Send your questions to roopshashotm@gmail.com)

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