“To be rendered powerless doesn’t destroy your humanity. Your resilience is your humanity. The only people who lose their humanity are those who believe they have the right to render another human being powerless. They are the weak. To yield and not break, that is incredible strength” —Hannah Gadsby
I survived 23+ years of domestic and sexual abuse. My least favorite thing to hear is: “Wow! Why on Earth did you stay?” or “What did you do?”
Why did I stay? What did I do to deserve that abuse? Hmmmm….I’ve often pondered that, without that being asked of me…being asked makes it even harder to resolve in my mind and makes me question my worth as a person. Here’s the reasons I could resolve:
- I stayed for love. I was “all in” and came from a home where my parents are STILL married — you loved and forgave and worked through things. That was marriage, right?
- I wanted to remain ‘right with God.’ Divorce was an abomination, wasn’t it?
- I stayed because I had children and I didn’t want them to come from a “broken” home. In hindsight, I should’ve left their father and they would’ve been better off. *Shrugs* I felt as long as I stayed, they would be comfortable and cared for, even though I wasn’t. Little did I know that he as abusing them too. God help me…
- I stayed because I didn’t think I was spectacular, but I was a loving wife and person — a worthwhile venture — what did I have to do to get HIM to see that? Why was I never good enough? Hardy people plod along and get better every day…surely, he’d see…eventually…
Fast forward to present day…three years abuser free!
My therapist was good, but a man. I couldn’t progress with him because I could NOT allow myself to tell a man what another man had done to me. I told him it was nothing personal, but I had to discontinue our sessions. He said he understood completely. He told me to keep moving forward, become happy and satisfied with myself, to help other DV victims/survivors, and to write/speak about my experiences. Excellent advice.
My goal, as a human being, is to make sure that no other human being would be abused — no one gets to bully another, to lord over them. I was raised that I am no better, nor worse than anyone and to love my fellow man. My mission is to help other DV victims/survivors/support people through providing resources, assistance, and inspiration to anyone…no matter their gender, their sexual orientation, their race, their religious affiliation, their political affiliations — no judgement, no malice. Everyone deserves the right to live in peace and to love and be loved in return.
I prayed to God for strength and for a purpose, and He has delivered on the opportunities. Aside from being the best person and parent I can be, I want to help others. I’ve been sexually and domestically abused and would NEVER want anyone to experience that.
I hope you’ll accompany me on my journey…read my posted ramblings (of, at least, twice per week)…follow and share my DV Walking Wounded FB page to inspire hope in others…maybe invite me to speak about abuse and survival to groups — I’m always willing to share my story so that it doesn’t play out similarly for others. I’m like a shark in that I have to keep moving forward to survive…and, because, failure is never an option. Sometimes we have to change direction a bit, but we only fail if we quit. Never quit. The world needs you!
Love and light.