This is a new journey for me, I don’t know a thing about blogging but I will learn as I go. My reason for starting this blog is to not only share my own experiences with domestic violence but to help others that have either been or are currently in a situation where domestic violence is present. I am in no way an expert or a qualified person to give advice but I have endured 10 years of abuse at the hands of a man that I once called my husband. My hope is to reach out to others and to give a voice to those who feel like they don’t have one. I am just an ordinary woman with an extraordinary story. Currently I am in the process of writing my book titled, “Memoirs of a Broken Woman.” However I am choosing to remain anonymous for the sake of my children. It is my story, my life, my scars and it is me. I can finally say that I am on the road to healing. Every day is a new day and I am grateful for every struggle, triumph, tear and smile. I am a different woman today. This is just my way of trying to make a difference!
As Domestic Violence Awareness Month comes to an end, I want to acknowledge all victims and survivors of DV. You matter, you’re important and together we will rise.
Today is the last day of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month but every day of every month of every year is an opportunity to help someone get free from domestic violence. We need to learn to read between the lines. It takes a victim of domestic violence longer than a month to leave, to heal, to feel worthy, valued and loved. I challenge you the next time you are at the mall, your children’s school, a sporting event or even at your church service to look around the room and remember the staggering statistics of Domestic Violence. You will never see Domestic Violence in the same light again.
1 in 3 women have been victims of (some form of) physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
1 in 4 women have been victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
1 in 5 women in the United States has been raped in their lifetime. Almost half of female (46.7%) victims of rape in the United States were raped by an acquaintance. Of these, 45.4% of female rape victims were raped by an intimate partner.
1 in 7 women have been stalked by an intimate partner during their lifetime to the point in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close to them would be harmed or killed.
On average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States
On a typical day, there are more than 20,000 phone calls placed to domestic violence hotlines nationwide
1 in 15 children are exposed to intimate partner violence each year, and 90% of these children are eyewitnesses to this violence
A month of awareness is just a pebble in the sand compared to the vast amount of pebbles that lie on the ocean floor.
Speak Out Today!
Silence is the abuser’s most powerful weapon.When a victim remains silent, the abuse can continue and there is no consequence to the perpetrator. When victims break their silence, a supportive environment for them can be found.
Speak up. Speak out against domestic violence. You are not alone, don’t suffer in silence.
How many people do you engage with on a daily basis? How many of those people are smiling outward, but on the inside it is a different story? Maybe there are dealing with pain, anger, abuse, abandonment, suicide, depression, anxiety, sadness, hate, resentment or loss of hope. All the emotional turmoil neatly tucked away to a deep hidden sacred place. Where they will do anything to protect their facade with a smile while their heart and soul are so broken.
We all have been there one time or another in our life. I spent many years hiding behind a smile. When someone would approach me and ask how my day ways my famous words were, “I’m fine” followed by a smile. I would cheerfully reply with such a heavy heart and my eyes still stinging from crying the night before. My response was in no way meant to be misleading or dishonest however it was a means of preservation, protection and control.
It is very common in our society today to associate crying and pain with weakness. That it’s not okay to ask for help. I was blessed to have amazing women in my life in the midst of my hell. Those friends took the time to read between the lines of, “I’m Ok.” For so many they don’t have the support or friends to read between their lines. We have to make it our mission to look for those that are hurting, who may feel they are not seen or heard. You can learn a lot about someone even a perfect stranger just by their demeanor and body language.
We have to learn to read between the lines. I didn’t realize until many years after I had left my ex-husband that my friends became better than any FBI agent. They had serious skills! Not only would they stalk my house in the late hours of the night but they picked up on the clothes I would wear and from the words I would say. The black dress resembled the pain I had endured the night or nights before. I couldn’t wear jeans or a form fitting blouse after a night of being beat because my skin would hurt as the clothing would brush against my skin. I resorted to wearing this black dress I had because it was flowy and it wouldn’t rub up against my skin. My friends would soon come to Hate that dress. Yet the never once judged me for going back day after day. For years they continued to read between the lines.
God has a plan for all of our lives. Maybe that plan consists of paying attention to those around you, to those that are close to you, to your co-workers or friends of your children. You never know what someone is going through until you take some time to read between the lines and be observant. When we care and love one another it becomes a natural instinct to want to protect. I am so grateful for the two very important women in my life that took that time and gave me a safe place to land.
Remember, it’s scary what a smile can hide. Look underneath the facade and be someone’s rainbow on their cloud.
“Be a Rainbow in someone else’s cloud, no matter who they are.” -Maya Angelou