I’m back to blogging again after a short hiatus. I needed some down time as my day job is becoming quite demanding. Since I’ve been putting in a lot of work into it I want to dedicate today’s post to all the survivors of domestic abuse.
I started working for a women’s refuge three years ago and even still I’m often met with surprised statements such as “Wow, it must be so hard, I don’t know how you do it” “Don’t you get sad or upset when you’re at work?” “You must be so strong”.
The truth is, these women who are forced to choose between life and death, to leave everything they’ve ever known, their support networks and even precious belongings behind just to find safety are the strong ones. They have endured countless blows to their self-esteem and been made to feel worthless, yet something inside of them kept them going. Something in them rose up and spoke out, sometimes in just a whisper, but loud enough to be heard saying this is not right. I deserve more.
The most dangerous time for a woman fleeing an abusive situation is the moment she leaves. Not to mention the emotional stress that she must be going through. I’ve witnessed women have full on psychotic breakdowns, withdraw, or come in with the most horrific injuries. The thing they all have in common though is not the fear in their eyes behind all those tears welling up, no, it’s that light within them, that voice that spoke out; it’s hope.
Hope is what helped them get through the punches, the insults, the put downs and hope is what gets them to the refuge. By the end of 6 months, they’re moving out and moving on with their lives. A small rose blooming in a concrete jungle, standing tall and reclaiming her beauty.
So to all those wondering, my answer is no. No I don’t feel sad or sorry for the women who arrive at the door to come into refuge. Why? because they’re survivors. Strong fearless women who are making the best decision of their lives. They just don’t know it yet.