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Candace

Tulsa , OK
September 12th, 2020|

I have lived in my apartment for four years. I have two boys—17 and 7. This is the only home my 7-year-old knows. This is the only place he remembers seeing his father and having racing games with him. His father was murdered in 2017.

I began a relationship with a man that I was involved with when I was 28. I’m 40 years old now, and he came back into my life and everything was so good at the beginning.

Then he started physically abusing me everyday. The fear I felt was insufferable. He abused me one day for five hours. I thought he was going to kill me. I went to the apartment office and told the manager what I was going through. 

In June 2018, the apartment manager banned him from coming on the property, but he continued to come. He knew several people in the apartments and had relationships with them. He moved in with one of the women in the apartments for a little over two months. The apartment manager was aware of it. Every time they would see him, I would get a lease violation on my door. I tried to explain to her that he wasn’t coming for me, and I don’t even know when he is on the property. I told her I can’t control him. But I kept getting the notices. 

There were so many times that I should have called the police on him for abusing me. But I was so scared of that man. He always told me he would kill me before the police got to me. He once pulled out a gun and pointed it at me, then shot it out the door three times. That’s when I knew he would really kill me. 

I felt stuck. I didn’t want him anywhere around me. And the office manager wouldn’t listen to me or believe me. My boys and I left to go stay with my mother for about a month, so that I could get away and so the apartment managers could see that he goes to the apartment complex even when I’m not there. I wanted them to know I was telling the truth.

While I was away, I got a call that the apartment managers had changed my locks. I went home and the managers explained to me that they had entered my apartment and found him sleeping in my bed, and my kitchen had been burned up. He caught my kitchen on fire. I explained to them I hadn’t been there and I don’t know how he got in. The only way would be my back patio. 

They wouldn’t believe me, even after my neighbor told them that I had not been there. I went back to my mom’s for a few days, and then I received a text message that my apartment was broken into. I rushed over to see. The person that broke in went through the back patio. The same way I’m sure my ex got in. I tried to call the office to tell them what happened, and no one would talk to me. I was told to write it down. Then the next day I was served an eviction notice.

I had to go to court on August 27, 2020. They wanted me out within a week, but I told them there was no way I could be gone with such short notice. I lost my job recently, my car, my electric got turned off, my phone, and now I am losing my home. The judge said it was my responsibility whenever my ex came on the property, even if it’s not for me. I don’t understand how that is fair and why I should lose my home, especially when I’m not even the person that he is coming for. The judge said I have to vacate the premises by September 6. She said I only get two weeks. I asked if I could please have 30 days and she refused. Now I only have five days before we have to get out of our home.

I don’t have anywhere for my boys and myself to go. I have no way to move our things and nowhere to put them. I have lost everything—our home, our things—and I have no idea where I can turn to get help. All my hope is gone, and I have that same feeling I used to feel when he was hitting and kicking me. It was that fear again.

This is our home and we are about to lose it. I am out here by myself trying to figure out what to do and I can’t. How can I be homeless with two kids? I’m lost.

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