Facing The Truth

by Sandra on September 28, 2014

Fall is in the air and October is just around the corner. I felt led to write on topics related to Domestic Violence. October is deemed Domestic Violence awareness month, yet it gets over shadowed because it is also Breast Cancer Awareness month. These are both important issues for women. However, I want to focus on domestic violence because it is in the news so much and we have women who are still sitting in silence due to shame, embarrassment and a host of other things. It’s time for us to face the truth.

I am a conqueror of domestic violence and sexual assault (I will share my story later). This is near and dear to my heart. If you  are still carrying the pain and hurt of the abuse or you are someone who is still in the relationship know you are not alone. There is help and resources out there for you. Connect with me. I am not just my sister keeper; I am my sister. For those of you who know someone who has experienced it, I hope this article will give you a little more insight.

Many think domestic violence is only physical. Domestic violence is also emotional, verbal, and mental abuse. It takes many different shapes and forms. It affects people of all ethnic, social, and economic backgrounds. You may be thinking, “Well, I feel sorry for all of the poor, abused women out there, but my man doesn’t hit me. Yes, he does make nasty little comments from time to time. He is jealous, but what man isn’t when he has a woman that he really loves?”

Or perhaps you say things like, “Sure, I feel a bit disappointed, disgusted, and disrespected at times, but no one ‘abuses’ me. My relationship is manageable and I’m going to keep my man. Listen. Emotional abuse can be as damaging as physical abuse. Some victims feel that it is worse. Please be honest with God and yourself, if no one else. Emotional abuse strips you of who you are. Emotional abuse takes the form of put-downs, betrayal, passive aggressive acts, neglect, threats, rejection, etc. Numerous women have said that they would rather be beaten than hurt emotionally. Physical bruises heal, but emotional scars last a long time. They change who you are.

Many people adopt a “blame the victim” type of attitude when it comes to abused women. They come out with the proverbial, “Well, if he was abusing you so badly, why did you stay?” Even this question is abusive when asked by someone who is most likely only trying to pass judgment. It is very evil in nature, but many people–shamefully, even other women—pass harsher judgment on the women who have suffered abuse than they pass on the men who have abused the women.

There are some people, however, who ask the question so that they can understand and help battered women. Some of us ask the question so that we may understand the problem better for ourselves It is not as easy as we may think to leave an abusive partner. Abused women need help and support. The most important thing we can all do is to educate ourselves and one another on the issue of domestic violence. Laws must be changed. Resources must be allocated. The abused and the abuser desperately need help.

In my next article, I will talk about why women stay and how to recognize the signs. It’s time we face the truth and stop pushing the issue under the rug. It’s not going away.

I am my sister!

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