When I read that Johnny Depp was physically abusive with Amanda Heard, I wasn’t surprised. Not a bit. I never got a good vibe from the actor and found his “I’m-cooler-than-cool” persona trite.
What I’m curious to know is why the bisexual actress who has bragged about owning a gun stayed with the hotheaded star so long? Why didn’t she walk after the first punch or drunken threat with a broken beer bottle?
My guess is there’s something in Amanda Heard’s history, along with low self-esteem that kept her put. I also imagine Johnny Depp was pretty persuasive in keeping the situation status quo. I say this from experience.
I was caught in a vicious cycle of abuse with my daughter’s father 10 years ago, although mine was largely emotional and verbal. By the time I walked it was bordering on getting physical.
Before Savannah’s birth, there were signs Jose was controlling, which, consumed with my pregnancy, I dismissed. Once Savannah entered the world, however, he kicked it up a notch and became a full-blown tyrant.
The situation was exacerbated by the fact that Savannah was diagnosed with a rare medical condition and we were caught in a maze of tests, doctors, and specialists. Adding to the stress was Jose repeatedly telling me that I was incapable of parenting. My self-esteem was in the toilet. Then one night I snapped.
I was feeding our 8-month old and, convinced I wasn’t doing it properly, Jose flew into a rage. He had rules and instructions for everything. According to him, the spoon had to be held a certain angle and contain an equal amount of oatmeal and applesauce.
My daughter, witnessing the scene, became inconsolable. I knew that if I stayed she was bound to repeat the cycle of abuse and I would end up a 200-pound version of Sylvia Path.
A few weeks later I packed my stuff and took shelter in my studio apartment. It was small and dumpy, but peaceful.
For 10 years I’ve been raising my daughter solo. I’m not going to say that it’s been easy, but I never regretted the decision. I knew when I walked I’d rather be alone and starving than put up with the abuse and humiliation I was subjected to daily.
Recent statistics show that every year more than 4 million women experience physical assault and rape by their partners. When Amanda Heard released images of her bruised face, I applauded. My message to her or anyone being abused is simple: “Go, girl, go!”