Mourning Victims & Celebrating Survivors- October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and at Kallie & Co., we take pride in being a platform for women of all ages, socioeconomic backgrounds, races, religions, sexual orientations, and ethnicities. Our products are purchased and loved by a diverse group of women. According to The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) "1 in 3 women have been victims of domestic abuse in the United States." An alarming rate that cannot and should not be ignored.
Over the next few weeks, our Blog will feature stories of women who have been victims of domestic abuse. These are real stories, and personal friends who wish to remain anonymous.
Prior to reading these stories, please know this can be a trigger if you have been a victim of Domestic Abuse. Each story ends with an update on these ladies are doing now, and their journey to a new beginning.
My deepest gratitude goes to my dear friends who have trusted me with their stories.
In November 1999, I was a high schooler in the 11th grade just your plain Jane girl that no one even noticed. I was an awkward teenager not one that had many boyfriends or even caught the eye of boys in my school. Towards the end of November my life would change at what I thought was for the best. I met a boy, finally someone who liked me for me and made me feel like I was the most beautiful girl in the world. His name was Michael and shockingly we had the same birthday and were even born at the same hospital I was 45 mins older. We began talking on the phone all day and night, I began going to see him and staying with him more often. Staying with him so much that the idea of me moving in was brought up and he was the perfect guy so sweet and respectful. At the time my parents were divorced, and I was staying with my dad who was not in the best mind state.
I made the choice to leave my dad’s house and move in with Michael and his mother, I was still attending school at this time I was a senior. That soon became one of my worst mistakes, soon after was the first time in my life I had ever been hit by a man. In the middle of an argument I felt a sudden rush of pain on my left cheek. I was in shock, he slapped me across the face so hard I fell to the floor. After processing what happened I was one foot out the door when he fell to the floor crying and begging me to forgive him and he would never do it again and I believed him. In September 2000 I found out I was pregnant, and I thought this would be great for us because we were in love, but in October of 2000 I was given the ultimatum to be with Michael and quit school or stay in school and be alone again and this time with a child. This I found out later was a way for him to control my every move and to always have tabs on me.
The next year was hell I was not allowed to leave the house without him, we lived with his mother and she was to keep me occupied. I was not allowed to have friends or see my family. I was a prisoner in my relationship and was too afraid to even attempt to leave. He had beaten my self-esteem down so low that I thought no one would ever want me, that I was not good enough. We moved out of his mother’s house and I thought that this would be a new lease on our relationship. But after being evicted from multiple homes because of his lack of work we finally found a home long enough for me to feel like home. That house withheld so much pain and torture that I would never want to return there, in that house I was held captive I was not allowed to have a phone, the windows were nailed shut when he left the doors were wired shut from the outside. I never wanted my child to see the abuse that I endured I let my grandmother raise my daughter and I saw her on his time. I often thought of my life and how I should just kill myself and put the pain to rest.
One day after a heated argument I was hit in the head, on the back and while on the floor crawling away he kicked me in my mouth as the blood filled my mouth I grabbed my mouth to find out I was missing a front tooth. He had kicked my tooth out from the bottom and it came out the top of my gum. I was shocked and felt the lowest I had felt and a few weeks later I grabbed a knife I slit my wrist. I wanted to take it back I was sorry that I had done it and went to him in my time of need and at that time he slapped me across the face and told me, “You did it the wrong way!” then went to the drug store and got me butterfly bandages even though I should have gotten stitches I was scared they would keep me and find out my nightmare and he would go ballistic.
For the next 3 years the abuse went on and I kept my daughter away which killed me inside, but that pain helped me build myself up and realize she needed me. The icing on the cake that lead to me being better for myself and her was the day he punched me so hard in the face he split my lip open. We did not have a vehicle, so I had to walk over a mile to the trolley stop just to get on the trolley to go to the ER all alone. I arrived and denied any abuse and blamed a fight with my brother leaving the ER that day with 7 stitches.
I was done, I was not going to do this anymore, but I had to plan this right. In, 2002 I found my first job at 22 even though I still had to endure bruises and beatings I had an end game. So, every day I went to work hiding my bruises and continuing like nothing was wrong. And in 2005, I had another daughter and I knew it was time, I left this man and I didn’t hate him like I should have I had no respect for him. About a 6-year hell relationship and I sustained over 150 black-eyes, 7 stitches, countless bruises and emotional scars that I still carry today. But with my strength in leaving him I was able to get my GED, my associate degree and worked at my job for over 6 years raising my girls alone and showing them that you are responsible for your own happiness and no one can take that from you.
Some would think how could someone recover from such a tragedy? I will tell you how, while at the job I started when I was with Michael I was there for six years and I met a Marine who I married. While being married to him I was able to go to California and to Hawaii places I never thought I would see. I was able to acquire counseling that I needed to help me process and heal from my past.
At this time, I also, went to school and obtained my associate degree in organizational management. With his support I was able to believe in men again and even though we did not work out I am glad we had met because he changed my mind on being in a relationship.
Today, my daughter who was raised by my grandmother is now attending college for nursing. My other daughter is in middle school and a steady A & B student also, in band. I have been a manager at our local store for over five years and am currently in school for pharmacy technician. I am remarried, and I assist my husband in building is own company from the ground up. I never thought I would get a second chance at finishing a man who loved me for my flaws and my past, but he does, and we are about to celebrate our first year of marriage.
Happy endings do happen! ❤️
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse, please know there are resources available to help you.
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