My brothers also verbally and physically abused women. One of my brothers is serving a five-year sentence for hitting a woman with a baseball bat. Then there's me, kicked out of school often, I became an abuser to all the boys who would mess with me in school, did drugs, then lived a life of homosexuality for 14 years.
My motto was "what happened to my mother would not happen to me." Domestic violence can become a generational curse. I've seen how this sickness has warped our own lives. What happens behind closed doors is normally seen in public through our children, and the cycle continues.
If you're being abused, or you're witnessing it in your home, get help. Not only can it save your life but the lives of the generations to come. There's never an excuse for violence. Hurt people tend to hurt other people. They need help and so do you if you have been abused. There's no shame in asking for help; I certainly did.
Far too many individuals are broken and hopeless because of the abuse they've experienced. Don't let domestic violence define you. I wasn't abused by my stepdad but my abused mom in turn abused me. I don't blame my mom for all I have been through; in the end I'm responsible for my own actions. What could she do when she wasn't given the tools or the help to get back on her own feet? "When you know better you do better." I'm hoping that my story, and others like it, will not only raise awareness but do more to help those who find themselves trapped in this nightmare.
Part of the answer would be if all of us would reach out and offer help to those who are experiencing domestic violence and not turn a blind eye.
"There are far too many silent sufferers. Not because they don't yearn to reach out but because they've tried and found no one who cares." ―Richelle E. Goodrich
Janet Boynes is the author of Called Out and founder of Janet Boyes Ministries.
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