The other day at work we were celebrating All American Day and we were eating and playing games. Well, this one game came up where you had to tell two truths and a lie about yourself. It was then up to your co-workers to decide, depending on how well they knew you, which one was the lie.
Well I decided that mine were: I had been a dancer most of my life, I have 3 small children and I was a domestic violence survivor.
If you know me at all, you know the first and the last are true, and the middle one is a lie. Many people at my work already knew I was a domestic violence survivor, and and advocate for victims and survivors. Many of the ladies I worked with were survivors as well. After the games and eating were over, a young lady approached me and asked, “How can you admit something like that, out loud, in front of all these people?” I asked her, “Why not?” I then proceeded to inform her that I was not the one who needed to be ashamed, that I had done nothing wrong.
I explained to her that I was the victim, and that I had no reason to walk around hiding the fact that I was the one that was abused. The one that was made to feel like I was worthless, unloveable, and undesired. I explained to her that if anyone needed to feel ashamed, it should be the man that made me feel this way.
I am not ashamed, I do not hang my head and want to hide the fact I was abused. If anyone should be ashamed it is the abusers NOT the victims. Once I was free, it took me years of therapy to understand that the violence occurred not because of something I did but, because he was insecure and did not love himself enough to love me the way I was meant to be loved. It took me forever to realize that none of my suffering was my fault. I finally realized I could be loved for me the way I was meant to be loved, and there was help out there, and another life free of pain and suffering.
If you are suffering, you are not to blame, they are. Reach out, I know it is hard and frightening, but that phone call could save your life, and lead to a new life of health and happiness. If you need help please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline Number 1−800−799−SAFE (7233). There are people waiting there who care.