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Thank you for visiting Violence UnSilenced, a speak-out platform for survivors of domestic abuse, sexual assault, and sexual abuse. If you are a survivor and it is safe to do so, we encourage you to share your story here. If you are not a survivor but you want to support those who are, please click around this site and find out more about what you can do.
After reading this post, I went and looked up the Women's Refuge number for my area, and entered it in my phone's address book. Just in case I ever have to do what you just did. Thank you, too, for pointing out that the man would likely have taken it out on the lady later if you had been direct - that is the route I would probably have taken if I hadn't read this.
I have never experienced real abuse, nothing like anything on this site, but once I stumbled across this site I found that I feel a sort of duty to read these stories, to acknowledge what has happened to others. I will never let these things happen to me. I will never turn aside when I see it happen to others.
And for giving me that sight and courage, I thank you.
Congratulations to you for having the strength to do this for someone. I don't know that I have had the courage to approach someone like that.
You did a really great thing.
You did the right thing. In the end handing her that piece of paper was something more than you could ever know. That's how it happened for me, A friend handed me a piece of paper with the local domestic shelter's phone #. I held on to that single scrap of paper in the palm of my hand through the beating that came later, it was still in my hand the next morning when I called for help.
It would be another year before I left my abuser for good. But that call was the beginning to getting me closer to stepping outside the door of my abuse. These days I keep the number on multiple slips of paper in my own purse. For that day and chance I pass it on to someone else.
Thank you for this! (Hugs)Indigo
What you have done for this woman is awesome. One of the worst things that happens to us in these relationships is that we lose the sense of knowing something is wrong - we are confused, by the abuser who insists nothing is wrong, or we're the ones who are crazy. When someone steps in and says "this is not right," suddenly we can hear ourselves a little better. She may call right away, or not for a while, but she knows NOW that someone out there, someone objective, sees that something is wrong. That is a big piece of the puzzle.
RT @MyBottlesUp: RT @MaggieDammit: Please support yesterday's survivor: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #dvamonth #domesticviolence
RT @MaggieDammit: . Please support yesterday's survivor: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #dvamonth #domesticviolence
Whoops, sorry about that last link. Please support yesterday's survivor: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #dvamonth #domesticviolence
I just want to say thank you. Thank you because I wish someone had reached out to me that way. I don't know if I would have done anything if anyone had ever reached out. But just knowing that someone knew, someone cared, would have made a world of difference. So I thank you.
That takes courage to tactfully step in. So many others would have just walked away - some judging, others just feeling helpless and afraid of making a bad situation worse.
I hope she uses the number.
RT @jodisvoice Pls visit Violence UnSilenced 2day as 1 survivor reaches out 2 another: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #domesticviolence
RT @MaggieDammit: Pls visit Violence UnSilenced 2day as 1 survivor reaches out 2 another: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #domesticviolence
Thank you all so much for your comments. It's so hard to know how to handle situations like this. When people hear my story, particularly men, they want to help the next person they see who needs it. Every time a man tells me about how he stepped in between a batterer and a victim (it happens more than I thought) and how good it made him feel to know he put a stop to that abusive moment I cringe because I know it's highly probable that the woman he helped in a public parking lot suffered much, much more within the walls of her home later than she would have if the original scene had played out. That's a horrible thought but it's the truth. I know, I've been on the recieving end.
I never ran into this woman again but I like to think that even though she went home with that man and went through the process of trying to decide what to do she was at least able to envision her escape. I hope her subconscious formulated a plan that revealed itself to her in her dreams and gave her confidence to walk away.
I hope she's in a quiet place, healing her broken spirit, and that she'll eventually be able to pay it forward.
You did an awesome thing. I admire you very much, you did a good thing. I deliver newspapers very early in the morning and as I fold and bag them, I work in a warehouse with other carriers. There is a man in his late 20s-early 30s who dated and lived with a 17-18 year old girl for a long time. I would listen tensely everyday as he belittled her, bullied her, told her to "give me a reason" as he raised his fist to punch her. I never had a chance to hand her the tiny piece of paper I'd written on with the info for our battered women's shelter. He would never leave her unattended. One day recently she just stopped coming with him and I hope to God she left him. I hope to God he didn't hurt her so badly that she can't come for a while. I think of her everyday as I fold my papers. Now I will think of you too. Thank you for having the guts and the forethought to give this woman info about resources that could help her be free from her tormentor. Everyone deserves to be free. Susan
You're my hero. Even if she stayed with him, she knows someone cares. If there were more people like you in the world there'd be less need for people like you.
RT @MaggieDammit: Please visit Violence UnSilenced today as one survivor reaches out to another: http://tinyurl.com/yahaqc4 #dvamonth
Violence UnSilenced -- http://bit.ly/2iy2rH
I wish someone had been there for me like this. I probably wouldn't have listened, not at first, but in hindsight--it would have been so much more encouraging when I did finally get out, if only I thought that someone really cared... You did the best that you could have given the circumstances. I'm so glad that you didn't confront him directly, my ex was like him and he'd have smiled at you, snarkily thanked you for your concern and later that night I'd have kissed the walls. You spoke from the soul, I hope she truly heard...
AND you did a service by educating us on how NOT to interfere and make things worse--even with the best of intentions.
You really thought this through. This might be her first step.
I'm with the majority of commenters here - I think you did a brave thing, and the right thing. Whether she makes that call or not, at least she knows someone cares.
And I'm saying a little prayer that she makes that call and gets the hell out.
I left a relationship just like this 3 1/2 weeks ago. I used to cry daily because I was so depressed, I have not cried in 3 weeks. Sometimes you just don't realize that verbal abuse is still abuse, and in my opinion being on the receiving end of both physical and verbal/emotional abuse the emotional leaves more scars to overcome. I hope that she seeks help from someone. I hope that one day she will decide enough is enough and when she does she will know what it's like to be free.
as the child of a woman who was married to a man like this, i used to sit red with shame as my step-father hurled insults at my mother, at me, at anyone around him and i prayed so hard no one would say anything to him because it would just make him angrier. and then i would be filled with rage that everyone just ignored it and acted like his behavior was acceptable. it was a no win situation. if someone, ANYONE, had done what you had, so discreet, so sincere, i would like to think my mom would have maybe left earlier than she did.
you did a great thing.
I want to thank you on a very personal level for this story. Because it takes me back to a long-ago time when a 16-year-old kid had his first encounter with domestic violence. Only in 1976 we didn't call it that yet. It hadn't gotten its own official name. That 16-year-old kid in the A&P at midnight didn't know what he was looking at, he just knew it wasn't right. And he said as much to his buddy, apparently loud enough to be heard down the aisle by the asshat who'd just grabbed his girlfriend/wife/whatever by the arm and hissed at her to "shut.the.fuck.up!"
Confronted by a very angry cat who had probably 4 inches and 40 pounds on me, the list of options was short -- and bad. So I took the one least likely to cause damage and stepped back from the fight. And for 33+ years I've been second-guessing that decision, disgusted that I didn't do more -- that I didn't do anything.
Until I read the last line of your story here. And realized that if nothing else, at least she knew someone gave a damn. Even if that someone was a long-haired skinny kid in the grocery store at midnight that she'd never see again.
Maybe it made a difference, I'll probably never know. I'll always wonder... But because of your story, I can at least believe that she knew somebody cared.
Thanks for that. You have no idea, no idea.
As was said already - she now knows that she is not alone, and someone else cares enough to give her information she can use to help herself when she is ready. Thank you for showing you care.
Just knowing someone cares is a seed that has been planted. It could be a first step towards escape and healing. Thank you for having the guts to do it.
By letting her know that you saw her pain, and understood, I'm sure, if nothing else, she felt less alone. And sometimes that can make all the difference in the world.
It takes balls to be so forward, and I wish I had them. Many a time. I hope she is OK and will realize that there is another way of life. I also hope that she's safe. Knowing you did all that you could do is the best comfort you can have.
God bless you! You did SOMETHING ... the rest is up to her. But, you may have provided her just the kind of positive push she needed to help herself. That's why people like you and sites like this matter so much.
Here's hoping that she followed your lead.
This is what life experiences are ultimately about: Using them to envelop others in should they have need of embrace.
Good eye, kid.