Many people don’t know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month – even though 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime and an average of 3 women die every day at the hands of a current or former intimate partner. My Tattered Brim (Preciouslyfe) is a 501c3 organization dedicated to supporting survivors of Domestic Violence by helping to answer the question ‘I’m out of my abusive environment-now what?’. We provide support, education, life skills training and assistance in the navigation of resources of other Domestic Violence agencies we partner with as survivors rebuild their lives.
Think of four women in your life. Know that one of them has or will be a victim of domestic violence in their lifetime. Here is one that survived and shares her story from Under Her Tattered Brim.
A Life Saved: *Heather´s Story
I did make a difference in my life to better myself and my children.
My name is Heather. I am a 36-year-old single parent of two children. I have been married twice: once to my son’s father, which was not an abusive relationship, it just didn’t work out; and once to my daughter’s father, which was the worst mistake of my life.
During the 9 and a half years of my second marriage to Sean, he lied, beat, cheated, threatened, stole and made my life a living hell. The physical and mental abuse of me was enough, but my kids had to weather these storms as well. This was just the life I had hoped to avoid for my kids! I had grown up in a violent home and I didn’t want my children to suffer the same things that I had.
I was introduced to staff from my local Domestic Violence Program in a courtroom. I learned that they could help me! I wasn’t alone! It took weekly meetings with them for 18 months, but I was able to break free! I have been through numerous court hearings and multiple stressful situations along the way. Only experienced and educated mentors could fully understand and direct me through this correctly.
My son is now 19 and starting to discover his own relationships, which I will try to lead and support him in making good, positive decisions. My daughter is a vibrant 9 year-old that is very smart and happy. Me? I am a successful business woman with a job that I enjoy!
I am incredibly grateful for the help I received at my local Domestic Violence Program. I encourage anyone who feels hopeless and is afraid of changing her life because of hurtful people, call your local DV Program. They can help! I can. I will. I did make a difference in my life to better myself and my children.
Survivor, Women In Need, Franklin/Fulton Counties, PA
*This is a true story, only the name has been changed. source: PACDV