We need to help end domestic violence and sexual abuse!! But how do we do that??
Growing up with domestic violence in my family, and then experiencing it first hand, was horrible and very difficult. I remember as a child crying and hiding in the bathroom when my parents would fight. It was so loud and I would hear things being thrown and screaming. I never went to church or was spiritual, but I prayed and prayed to God to make them stop. As I got older and into a relationship in high school I thought jealousy and domestic violence was a way of life. I believed it showed how much he cared about me. Unfortunately I got into a pattern.
After finally leaving that relationship and into another abusive relationship it was all down hill. I remember in the beginning of our relationship my boyfriend slapping me across the face for questioning him and we were only a month into our relationship. But I was in love and he promised to never do it again. He hit me because he loved me more, right? Unfortunately it happened for years and I heard broken promises over and over. I finally got the courage to leave that relationship.
After finally figuring out what I don’t want, I started on-line dating. I made sure my dating page on Plenty of Fish or Match.com read at the top “No jealous and controlling men please.”. It took me a long time to find Mr. Right, but I met a fantastic guy and I am so thankful I beat that pattern.
Unfortunately, sexual abuse has affected my family and friends as well. It is horrible what it does to the victims and the long term effects on people. We need to say NO MORE!
Mariska Hargitay is one of my daughter’s mentors. She plays a detective on the hit show Law and Order SVU. In her personal life she has been working with an organization called No More. NO MORE is a unifying symbol and campaign to raise public awareness and engage bystanders around ending domestic violence and sexual assault.
Did you know:
- One in three women report being physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives.1
- Every two minutes in the United States, someone is sexually assaulted.2
- More than five children die every day in this country as a result of child abuse and neglect,3 and up to 15 million children witness domestic violence in their homes each year.4
Mariska started the Joyful Heart Foundation to help victims. The foundation has a mission to transform society’s response to sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse, support survivors’ healing, and end this violence forever. This foundation has programs to help survivors reclaim their lives. A great way of giving back is going to the foundation’s Heart Shop, where you can purchase items such as shirts, jewelry, pillows and part of the proceeds go to victims. One year for my daughter’s birthday, she wanted all gifts from this foundation to help support this amazing cause. Please click on the links above to learn more and visit the Heart Shop to help contribute!