I want to say before you start reading that this is not strictly my normal type of post, and contains subject matter I never thought I would publish, however this post is coming from my heart and was spurned by a ferocious feeling that meant I've had to allow a cooling off period before I pressed publish, and every time I have tried to proof read this I've done so through tear blurred eyes, but if you read this and you think it can help anyone please share it. Ok enough pre-emptive waffle.......
I have very strong feelings on how to deal with domestic violence. DO NOT TOLERATE IT! But before anyone jumps up and tells me how its not so easy, I KNOW. I have watched my mum move from one violent or abusive partner to another, you see my mum is an alcoholic (there's the bit I never thought I would say, but the reasons for that are in a currently unpublished post about why we don't keep secrets) now this brings with it a whole host of issues and one of those is her need to not be alone, a codependent need so strong she would rather be with someone who belittled her and hurt her physically and mentally, than be alone. I've watched this and thankfully it has made me very single minded in my conviction that I would never tolerate such treatment, thankfully there's only one person who ever attempted it and he was promptly put in his place and removed from my life (not in any gruesome or illegal way you understand!) but I'm lucky, its not always the case
4.6 million Women have experience domestic abuse (est)
2.5 Million men have experience domestic abuse (est)
1 report of domestic violence is made every minute
2 women a week will be killed by a partner or ex partner
But I know that some folk have seen these things growing up and so it becomes the norm, somewhere in your deepest thoughts you believe this is normal and acceptable behaviour and you should just say nothing, they didn't mean it, they wont do it again. YOU Pushed them too far. This is absolutely not true, there is no excuse, you deserve love and respect and kindness and if this isn't your reality I beg of you, talk to someone, plan an escape. WALK AWAY. And when their words of apology and promises of a fresh start begin to wear you down please please hold this thought in the very front of your mind,
'what if it wasn't you who felt the demoralising insults, what if it wasn't you who reeled from the power of a slap or punch or kick? What if it was your daughter or son, sister or brother? What if you were standing as an adult watching this happen to your mother or father? What would you do, what would you say?'
Because believe me when I tell you his or her promises of never again, the assurances that it was just you, they would never harm a child. They may well believe that but they can't make those promises honestly, the only way to stop is to walk away, remove yourself, remove your children. You can be better and happier and less fearful without them no matter what they have led you to believe. And there will be bribery and wheedling. 'I'll lose the house, my job, the car if you report me' 'no one will believe you' its not true, none of that matters none of that is worth losing your life or watching your child lose theirs. You must be strong in your convictions and believe you are worth more, your life can be better, it will only get worse if you keep tolerating the abuse. You WILL NEVER CHANGE YOUR ABUSER, I'm sorry to be blunt but it is true YOU can not make them change no matter how much you want to believe you can.
Please please get help, please please know you are not alone, you are a warrior and you can win back your life, you have to love yourself enough to believe I am rooting for you, I am willing you to be free because I know you can be and you should be.
You can read more information on staying safe here , you can call 999 in an emergency or 101 to ask for help or you can contact any of these people (taken from the Metropolitan Police Website)
- National Domestic Abuse Helpline (24 hours) (opens new window) - 0808 2000 247.
- The National Centre for Domestic Violence (24 hours) (opens new window).
Telephone 0800 9 70 20 70 - emergency free phone number.
Telephone 0870 9220 704 - legal advice.
- National Victim Support (opens new window) - 0845 3 030 900.
- Women's Aid National (opens new window) - 0808 2000 247.
- Rights of Women (opens new window) - 020 7251 6577.
- Asian Women's Aid - 01494 446366.
- Asian Women's Helpline - 0800 0526 077.
(Operators speak: Tamil, Punjabi, Hindi, Gujarati, and Bengali).
- Sahara Asian Women’s Project - 0118 9266 333.
- Rape Crisis (opens new window).
- Asian Family Counselling Service (opens new window) - 020 8567 5616.
- National Samaritans (opens new window) - 08457 90 90 90.
- Broken Rainbow Project (opens new window) (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) - 020 8539 9507.
- Northern Ireland Women's Aid Domestic Violence (opens new window) Helpline (open 24 hours) - 028 9033 1818.
- Scottish Domestic Abuse (opens new window) Helpline - 0800 027 1234.
- Wales Domestic Abuse (opens new window) Helpline - 0808 80 10 800.
- Shelter (opens new window) - 0808 8004 444.
- Elder abuse (opens new window) 0208 765 7000.
- Citizens Advice Bureau (opens new window).
- Victim Support's Male Helpline (opens new window) - 0800 328 3623.
- The ManKind Initiative (opens new window) - 01823 334 244.
- The Dyn Wales/Dyn Cymru (opens new window) Helpline - 0808 801 0321.
- Male Advice and Enquiry Line (opens new window) - 0808 801 0327.
- Changing Ways - 07818 054563 (only for men living in East Berkshire and Wokingham).
- Making Changes - 01635 264694 (only for men living in the West Berkshire (Newbury) area).
- Respect (opens new window) - 0845 1228 609.