It's not that unusual to start out a new relationship thinking you've found The One, only to eventually end up feeling you've found The Wrong One. How exactly does that happen? Well, people change. And sometimes they change a lot -- and not for the better. Imagine being 17-year-old Nadine Ascencao, who lost her virginity to her first boyfriend, who happened to be none other than Boston Marathon bomber suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
That sounds pretty gross, but back in the day, Tamerlan was just another handsome teen who liked to smoke pot and box and who loved Nadine because she "hadn't been with any other guys." Dreamy, right?
But over the course of the three years they were together, Nadine says she began to notice a huge change her boyfriend. He began to become fanatically religious and wanted his American girlfriend to convert to Islam. Nadine told UK's The Sun newspaper:
One minute he's this funny, normal guy who liked boxing and having fun, the next he is praying four times a day, watching Islamic videos and talking insane nonsense. He became extremely religious and tried to brainwash me to follow Islam. Tamerlan said I couldn't be with him unless I became a Muslim. He wanted me to hate America like he did.
Nadine began covering her head to make her boyfriend happy -- and avoided clothing that would make him flip out, like tight jeans. Nor could she watch or listen to "Western" pop culture anymore.
In 2009, Tamerlan was arrested after slapping Nadine when he saw her wearing cut-off shorts to a party. She dropped the charges but they broke up soon after. He would go on to marry Katherine Russell shortly thereafter, and have a daughter with her. Katherine also converted to Islam.
Nadine told The Sun that she "didn't cry" when she heard Tamerlan was dead and is grateful she got out of the relationship when she did. "Looking back, I had a lucky escape," she says.
I wouldn't say it was "luck." Nadine had the strength to get out of the relationship, even though it sounds like she was already well under Tameralan's sway. It was her determination that gave her the escape, not luck. Katherine Russell wasn't so lucky.
Getting out of bad, controlling relationships is difficult, but it can be done with enough will power. Luckily for Nadine, Tamerlan quickly turned his sights on another woman and left her alone.
Have you ever dodged a bullet with a guy?
Image via Cambridge Police Dept.