Thank you for your response, Rebekah, and I really appreciate your description of what resonated with your own experience. The random, sometimes very specific ways in which abusive relationships are similar always affects me. I got chills reading about your ex leaving you at a random bar; mine left me two miles deep in a nature preserve during a minor argument. This tactic — demonstrating how nuclear you’ll go as a way to punish and control through fear — absolutely reminds me of Trump, who as you say is much more professional and frightening.
My mother was my greatest supporter, too, even after I went back (after my ex threatened suicide). She wrote a check to my ex for the setting on a ring he’d bought me and couldn’t return; he had threatened to crash an upcoming family vacation if I didn’t repay him. Several years later, she made it possible for me to afford therapy when I was underinsured. I hope your mother reconsiders her support for a man who reminds you (and me, and many others) of an abusive ex, but I’m glad she was there for you when you needed her.
I’m so sorry you went through all you’ve described, especially PTSD. I wish I could convey how much your comment means to me. I posted this, my first Medium story, with the hope that one person would comment and let me know that it had personally affected them (in a positive way). Thank you so much.