Home! Sour Home!

Let me start by simply stating this, “I pray for the safety and well-being of Janay Palmer-Rice”.

Now, let’s address this: domestic violence is a wide-spread epidemic; it is not a sound-bite, a fleeting Facebook status update, nor should it be just the latest in the shenanigans of our so-called celebrities. The devastation of domestic abuse touches way too many lives; it breaks, maims, cripples… and it kills.

There are so many fantastic benefits since the advent of the internet and social-media; I mean, with this blog post, I am a beneficiary of one of the wonders of same – I am able to reach and affect your lives simply by your reading me. Recognizing this honor however, now puts me on notice to heighten my sense of responsibility with regard to what I choose to write (about) and similarly, how I do so. I am no longer simply “mouthing off” in the relative comfort, safety and anonymity of my home. Here is why this is important to address:

In the United States of America, we are all ‘protected’ by certain freedoms allowed; one of those is the freedom to speak our minds. Great. What those learned fore-fathers neglected to mandate is the necessity to self-censure. As outspoken as I readily admit to being, maturity, decency, sensitivity and plain ole fucking common sense let me know when, where, what and IF I have the right to “touch” certain topics. And, if I insist on putting my particular brand of “two-cents” in, those afore-mentioned traits are employed to guide me on the ‘how’.

People please hear me, a woman, a person being abused by a partner, is not “stupid, ridiculous, pathetic, a loser” or any of the other derogatory names being flung about with regard to this particular case currently in the headlines! I am so offended by some reactions, that I will borrow (because I refuse to stay) a page from your book, and actually state that you may be the one more worthy of said labels! Your ignorance is showing!! (Well, not “you”-“you”; but “you” who may be behaving like an idiot!).

First, a victim of abuse is simply that – a victim! And quite frankly, that is more than enough victimizing; you don’t need to add to the battering! It is so very easy to sit in cozy, safe seats, log onto a computer and begin to pass judgment on something that, trust me, you are fortunate to not have firsthand knowledge of; arrogantly and foolishly believing you know just what she (or he) should do! Okay; let’s have a teachable moment:

A person who is being abused is battling many things; including the abuser. They are fighting against:

  • Disbelief
  • Fear
  • Pain
  • Love
  • Betrayal
  • Helplessness
  • Hopelessness
  • Heartache
  • Broken Trust
  • Hope
  • Sleeplessness
  • Homelessness
  • Anger
  • Belief
  • Promises
  • Ridicule
  • Denial
  • Shame
  • Secrecy
  • Terror

Please understand that many abusers are so-called “loved ones”. Be sensitive to the fact that even while they are being hit, the abused may still love. One definitely still hopes. We always wish to believe. You see, when you fully accept that this is truly who they are, that the person you have loved, lived with, made love to and may have had children with, is now your terrorizer, you then begin to blur the lines; melding their actions with your (seeming) culpability. You may view this as your personal failure. You then also marvel at the reality that you opened the door to your boogey-man!

Then, maybe (hopefully) you get to the point when you say “enough”. But here’s the thing, believe it or not, that’s the place in this madness when you are in the most danger! When an abuser recognizes imminent loss of his/her focus, panic then sits down with rage and dominance; giving birth to desperation and oftentimes, destruction. A woman ready to leave her abuser is at the riskiest point in this cycle. It must be done “well” in an effort to avoid death.

Here’s what I would like – let’s all educate ourselves before we speak. Use the internet for good; not evil! Someone being punched, slapped, pushed, shoved, spit on, yelled at, belittled, ridiculed, or kicked is a person in need to our resources, our kind words, our encouragement, our prayers and our strength…until they find or regain their own. Please, let’s don’t do even more harm. When we belittle, we are lending the strength of our words, to the strength of an abuser’s arm.

The owner of a moving company agreed to send his truck and men to move me out of what was our home, at 5am. He agreed, at tremendous risk to his license and insurance liability, to allow me to ride in the cab of the truck with his movers. The owner did all of this, because I told him my story; my story of domestic abuse and my need to leave – before I was killed.

A little over twelve years later, I sometimes still shudder. A little over twelve years later, I continue to thank God.

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“The moment that you start to wonder if you deserve better, you do…”

7 responses to Home! Sour Home!

  1. cheryl

    36 years later and I still have nightmares. I, along with thousands of women, shudder with you! Let’s guide and help those who will let us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Let's AdDress This... – Author

      Cheryl, thank you for sharing. Indeed, as survivors there will always be a responsibility to guide “those who will let us”.

      Like

  2. Sis2

    Every time I think blogging is just a little but narcissistic, I will remember today’s post, because this is exactly why it is important. Those elevator images are so disturbing, and anyone watching who has not personally experienced it has no way of processing, fathoming how anyone could tolerate or defend it. But you have just given her a voice and us a narrative that we can make sense of. These behaviors exist not because of her individual permissiveness but because we as a society tolerate, condone, make excuses for them, or else are stunned into disbelieving inactivity. She is hopeless because we are helpless, in the truest sense of that word. Thanks for helping me “get it”; now, I have to do something about it…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Let's AdDress This... – Author

      Sis, thank you for taking the time to read and to respond. As a society there is so very much that individually we do not know…but are willing to voice our opinions about anyway. Sigh. Realities such as this need champions and advocates – you will make one hell of both!

      Like

  3. Gloria

    Thank you for your eloquent words. I have been an abused woman. I don’t readily say this. The reason is that twice I have left everything I owned and got out of dodge. I usually view those instances from a position of strength. Understand though if I were not abused why did I feel the need to leave so suddenly?

    The first time was with a man that rescued me from homelessness and I was very grateful. At one point I found myself locked out of the house in the cold and afraid. I remember a policeman came and I went and stayed the night with him and his wife. It was a very small town and everyone knew him including the policeman. He was not arrested. I waited with his sister until my family could send me money to leave. The conversation I had with her was “Is what he did so bad?” I remember thinking, compared to what’s going on with you.

    The thing is that I understood that if I stayed for the pushing and shoving the punching was on its way. So I couldn’t stay. I also remember somehow being on the phone with an ex-girlfriend of his and she was saying “I know that I asked for ‘it’ sometimes”.

    The second time the guy would bring his baby mama drama into my house. Not her but the drama. He would yell at her on my phone. I never liked loud voices…I still don’t. I remember we were ‘playing’ and I accidentally kicked him in the face. He quickly maneuvered to be on top of me fist raised ready to punch me. I was shocked and he said that” it felt like it was on purpose”. This time my mother was terminally ill and I left everything to be with her.

    As I write this, there was a third person…he was supposed to go away and I did not expect him to be home. I went to the house but not inside and did not want go in yet so I stayed out till about dawn the next morning. When I walked in the door he grabbed me and I ended up being dragged down the street by my hair.

    Although in all of these instances I left almost immediately; I was still abused. All I would say to those still finding their way out is to be kind to yourself. Your worth is not determined by this or any one experience.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Let's AdDress This... – Author

      Gloria, first, thank you. Thank you for stopping me in the hallway and initiating a conversation that brought us to this point. And, thank you for being brave and generous enough to offer us all a snapshot into a very private part of your truth. It is in the sharing of realities such as these that both awareness and resolution will (eventually) happen. I am saddened that ugliness has been part of your past. I am encouraged that strength, beauty, determination and advocacy will be part of both your present and your future. Thank you. Fury.

      Like

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