Forever and All the Afters by K.I. Lynn

Author: K. I. Lynn
This a series: No
Side note: There are situations that are very delicate and is not for all. 

Rating (1-5): Good reads 3.71
     * Characters- 4
     * Plot- 5 towards the end 3
     * interesting- 5
     * tie up loose ends- 4
     * length- 4
     * overall- 4

 Would I read other books from this author: Yes, This was my first one. I am very interested in    
                                                                      reading others.

Book Info:
   * Kindle Unlimited: Yes
   * Cliffhanger: No 
   * P.O.V. : Dual both heroine and hero
   * Main Characters- Aubrey Hart
                                  Pike Warren

   * Characters have a back story: Yes, they were high school sweethearts.
   * Thought about the author:  This is my first book by K.I. Lynn.  When I seen this book on my amazon should read list I was like let me try a sample.  I was hooked and sounded interesting.  So, I went ahead and added through my Kindle unlimited and started to read.  I did read this book in one day.  I think for the most part the author was spot on in her descriptions and I think she has a lot of potential.  The one thing I didn't like was the end.  The last two chapters seemed a little rushed.  I would have liked maybe a time jump. 
   * Main story-  Aubrey Hart is getting married in 6 months and she is merging her business of design with her fiance who owns a construction company.  Until one day she walls into a coffee shop and sees her high school sweet heart there.  He left for NYU 10 years ago and hasn't been back since.  As she is struggling with moving in with her fiance, dealing with her business, and wedding planning there is no time for anything else.
                         Pike Warren left for NYU to make his life better and be able to have financial stability to take care of Aubrey.  Well, with opportunities and a great job offers time got away from him.  Now that he hears Aubrey's getting married he can't let her get away with out throwing in the towel one last time.
                        Will he succeed?  Will there be heartbreak? What is a happily ever after?

My thoughts:

When I started to read this book I thought of one thing and by the time I got to the third chapter my brain took me in a totally different direction.  As the chapters went on I just kept thinking that this book is again something I can related and I do know others who can too.  I do want to be perfectly clear I am not talking about my husband this is one of the guys I was with during our break up time. I truly believe when you are in a situation such as this there is a different prospective than when you are the outside looking in.  

When people hear about abuse their go to is usually child abuse, sexual abuse, or physical abuse.  I can't express to you how much hatred I have for these "people" who do this and how much I feel for the survivors. What I want to talk about today is mental abuse.  Mental abuse is damaging to a persons psyche.  I have noticed people who are in these relationships do not realize what is happening to them.  The abuser makes and demands their partner to please them any way they want.  When the abusee doesn't comply to there standards the abuser punishes them.  Not all mental abuse turns physical or sexual.  The abuser likes to demean the person.  They need to feel superior to them and will use guilt,  call names, and hone in on their insecurities.  The abuser will never take responsibility for their actions and will always put it on the other person.

I have found most abusers fall into one of three categories.  First one is they want to show their money and flaunt it to whoever will see.  They use their wealth at first to wine and dine the person enough to where they have caught them in their web.  They are constantly giving them expensive gifts and giving them all their attention.  Slowly, they use the fact they make more than you or have more than you a weapon to punishment you.  I feel like they train the person to believe they are not good enough.  The abusee learns to feel like they do not appreciate anything.  

Second one is the one who does nothing.  Barely works a job and makes the other person not only work all the time, but makes excuses as to why they can't work.  They are constantly pushing the person to believe they are not doing enough and the person needs to do more.  They make the person feel as if they need to be the perfect person and just maybe they will stay with them.  The abuser uses insults and will degrade the person for their own satisfaction.  

The third is the one who will sit back and never really raise their voice.  They think by making the other person explode they can swoop in and make them feel like there is something wrong with them.  They like to harp on the insecurities of the other to make them feel like everyone feels the same way they do.  A few examples, could be their personality, their job, family dynamic, their weight, cheating on your part, etc.

And sometimes they fall into multiple categories.
I find it hard even now to retell my story, but here goes.  I was with a guy for a while.  At first, he was flirty, always complemented me, and gave me a lot of attention.  I would describe him as a person my parents never would want me with and I was right with that assumption.  He was a few years older than me and his parents were well off.  Which in return means he had money to spare.  When he asked me out on our first date I was very eager to accept and thought I was so lucky.  Four months into the relationship I started to see a change in behavior.  He would instantly get jealous and accuse me of cheating.  He would make comments like no one would love me the way he could.  I decided this was not for me and broke up with him.  For the next month he would send flowers to my job, call every day, tell me how much I mean to him, and how he could see a future with us.  He would say he just liked me so much he didn't want to loose me.  I stupidly took him back thinking I was just not used to someone like him.  For the next several weeks everything seemed great and I was excited to see what could happen with us.  

I am sad for the me then when I look back.  I really wish I would have been in a better head space I guess.  He would say things about my weight (too skinny), he would say things about my make-up ( looked like a prostitute), he would accuse me of cheating (if i spoke to a guy), I wasn't giving him enough sex (everyday and when he wanted it), he would complain about my friends (no good for me and take too much of my time), my job (I worked too much), my hair ( hated when I changed it), the clothes I would wear (I was a whore), and if I loved him enough I would move in with him.  I will say I gained 52 pounds, stopped wearing make-up, would only go out with my friend when he said I could, try to be available as much as I could, would not do my hair, and started wearing t-shirts and sweat pants with an occasional hoodie.  I lost my self trying to please him.  Now looking back the less attractive the less threaten he felt.  He didn't care I had no self esteem left.  He didn't care how I was no longer my self.  All that mattered to him was him.

Another sad example is Elizabeth and here is her story:

Elizabeth: I’ve been in several emotional/ mental abuse situations. My mom was one. She blamed me for things that were wrong in her relationship with my step dad.
Dating relationships, my most hurtful would be an ex that happens to be my kids dad. (Not the man I am with now.) He started off a great guy. Someone who was kind, thought of others, was patient and what I thought to be understanding. It was about a year and half into our relationship that it all changed.
He started to care about everyone but me. He started complaining about things more often. Simple things at first. Like my feet on the dash. I’ve done it when we first started dating, there was never a problem. Then it was my job wasn’t good enough. When I lost my job, told me to stay home and take care of my other kid, clean, cook...etc. Then it was I was too lazy, didn’t clean good enough. He stopped taking me out. He was always out with his friends. He just complained and yelled constantly. Even cheated on me.
I was so desperate to have a man in my kid’s life, that I dealt with it for too many years. Which was wrong of me. Realized after we went our separate ways, that I was settling for him. Thankfully it’s all over.

Your partner should be the one supporting you and routing for you to succeed.  They are suppose to be there when you fall and the ones to encourage you along the way.  There should never be ripping you apart and bring you down.  No one is better than the other and should be an equal partnership.  A partnership needs to be on a balancing scale and there need to be compromise.  Mental, physical, and sexual abuse in a relationship happen to all people.  They happen to men and women.  They happen to straight or anyone in the LBGT community.  

I am a big fan of SVU and I have seen every episode at least once.  I am a huge advocate abuse. I encourage all to get the help they need and leave.  Help someone if you know they are in the similar situation.  Sometimes they will not listen, but just be there for them.  Remember no one should ever have to go through something like this.

I know this was a little darker than most of my post, but I am very passionate about this topic.  The more advocacy there is the more I hope for a better future for all. 

As always:

Shh!! Me Time!!

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