I don’t know why it didn’t work. I’m devastated, it was my last chance and I blew it. Maybe I am stupid and worthless, I can’t get anything right. Maybe he knows me better than I know myself. He always calls me “stupid” and “stupid cow” and when he whips me he calls me “stupid whore”. Today I believe him. I am a stupid cow.

It was the only opportunity I’ve had since he took me. Bodyguards watch my every movement. My multi-lingual assistant goes into the bathroom with me when I’m away from home. No piece of paper or pen or knife, for that matter, is ever permitted to be in my rooms. So I can’t even write HELP in my own blood. My phone is hooked to his, I don’t know how that works but it is. Everything I send out is translated and examined. I’m permitted ten minutes of telephone time to my family every Sunday. My assistant listens to every word and signs them to a video hookup.

I’m so afraid of him, he is unspeakably cruel. I won’t go into detail as I don’t want those words and images to be forever linked to my name. He lives to torture me. My ass is branded and scarred, bikini bottoms hide it. My perfect body, used by him however he wants. Images of me in skimpy clothing is staged by him and sent out to make other men want me. Only he can have me. I am his like his jet is his, like his hotels are his, like his persona is his.

I was told I had to speak in front of the convention, in front of the cameras, the thousands of people. I was terrified. Terrified to do something wrong, to do something stupid, to be so exposed. I was given a speech, written by his employees. A white dress was made for me. White because it symbolized the wedding dress he had made me wear those years ago. And made for me to pretend to hide my body and make it seem demure while showcasing my ass for those he wanted to have see it. He is so smart and so diabolical. He knows it hurts me to be paraded like that, it gives him pleasure to hurt me.

I took the only opportunity I’ve had in years. I asked for tapes of former First Ladies in their convention speeches for their husbands’ Presidential runs. I watched Nancy Reagan, Barbara and Laura Bush, Rosalynn Carter, and Michelle Obama. I asked for the latter two by saying I wanted to watch the other side to avoid what they had done. Because he thinks the other side is totally stupid and inept. It made him happy that I was thinking that way. He petted me and spanked me only with his hand.

I watched the tapes over and over, my assistant grew tired of watching me watch tapes. She finally slept. I watched Michelle over and over and over and I memorized her words. I stayed up all the night learning them. I then put Nancy Reagan’s tape in the machine so that it would be the one found.

I spoke at the convention. I read the words from the teleprompter and did my best to enunciate, to stand up straight, to speak of my husband in honeyed tones. I had the crowd right with me. I looked beautiful, poised, confident; everything that had been beaten out of me came back in those few moments. And when it came time I went off script, Michelle’s words in my mouth, hope in my heart. It was the only thing I could think of to let anyone know something was terribly wrong, for his wife to speak the words of his second greatest enemy. I knew I would be saved, someone would figure out what I had done. I would be rescued, saved. I would be freed, my parents would be freed. We could live again. But I was stupid.

(These are the words spoken to the officers who freed her in April 2017 after her husband’s arrest.)


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