As October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, I wanted to share some insight into the ongoing problem of domestic violence, especially during these unprecedented times. As someone who has experienced it myself, I know that there are so many fears and emotions that keep victims and survivors stuck; self-blame, guilt, and shame can stop us from reaching out.
I am the mother of four young adults right now but during my divorce, they were four school-aged children. My ex-husband was in the law enforcement field and so, I hid the abuse for a very long time.
The good news is that there are programs out there that can help survivors of domestic violence and their children. If you are a survivor, I hope you are reading this now: you are loved, you are cared for. If it is safe to do so, please find a way to make a phone call to your local domestic violence agency or to someone you trust for support.
As for myself, I still struggle sometimes. I have lost a lot of friends along the way after my divorce and know how devastating the isolation can be. I gain strength, however, from a domestic violence support group at DOVE once a week and my other spiritual and social support systems. Now, I hope to share my story to make sure others don’t ever have to feel alone again.
So please find somebody that you trust, make that call to your local domestic violence agency, start planning for your safety and wellbeing. You deserve to live a life free of abuse!
Please stay healthy and safe!