Take a minute and think about all of the women in your life…A mother, a daughter, a sister, a sister-in-law, a niece,an aunt, a mother-in-law, a best friend, a female co-worker, a cousin, a college roommate. I could think of about twenty people who fell into one of the categories mentioned. Now what if I told you that of the twenty people who came to mind five of those women will be the victim of domestic violence inside their own homes. Six of those women will be raped or sexually molested in their lifetimes. All of their children will be drastically affected by living in violence. Leaving their daughters with a greater chance of becoming a victim… their sons with a higher possibility of being abusers. Startling statistics and yet these are so much more than numbers. All of their voices are the screaming silences that seep out of closed doors only to fall on deaf ears.
Domestic violence is not just being beaten or hit. It is being controlled, manipulated, shunned, repeatedly cheated on, publically embarrassed, black mailed, and financially strangled. It is being scared… feeling that there is no way out. I know because I too screamed and cried and begged myself to leave only finding myself giving him one more chance. Finally, one very dark night I finally found the front door and the hand of an angel who was willing to help me. I got out. My children got out.
We were given safe haven and to my disbelief the abuse continued and in some ways got worse. I went to the police who could only encourage me to take the matter to a higher authority…the courts. I was scared. I felt sorry for him. I hated myself for not making all of this better somehow. I regretted not leaving much earlier. In many ways, I had become sicker than the offender.
Things escalated. I filed for a temporary restraining order. I went to court. Twenty minutes before I was to go before the judge I almost left fearing that I couldn’t go through with it. Finally, I was granted the permanent restraining order. Peace.
I don’t share any of these details to defame the offender. It is not easy for me to actually write the words because seeing them dance across my computer screen makes them real and I have become an expert at down playing these events. It has become a way for me to survive. I am sharing my experience, strength and hope because while the abusers are the direct vehicle in which the abuse is delivered…it is the silence of all of us that fuels the efforts.
I watched a video tonight which I am posting at the bottom of this blog. I encourage you to watch it. We spend more money each year in this country saving native birds than saving the women and children of this country. An epidemic that will surely devastate the mental health of our people in the future. It is not easy for a victim to speak about this. It’s embarrassing but it is necessary.
If you are reading this and are suffering, please know you are not alone. Find someone to help you and leave as safely as you can. We need to break this cycle. If you have survived abuse, share your story and lend your strength to someone who is feeling powerless. God does not want any of us to suffer but perhaps he has chosen us…the survivers to reach out and save one of our own…another human being.
A portion of all the sales of www.DeborahStilettos.com, our store on Bridge Street in New Hope, Pa, and our eBay store will donate a portion of our sales to help women and children recovering from domestic violence.
I encourage to hear from anyone looking for help or those who can offer some advice from their own experiences.
16 W. Bridge Street
New Hope, Pa
Join us on the fight against domestic violence – www.Facebook.com/HeelingInc