Six years ago when I left my abusive relationship I was very lost and confused. I felt the world I had been living in was torn apart; I was being told by so many people that I had gone too far in calling the police. Classmates egged my house for weeks and his best friend threatened my life. Kids at school were telling me I had done the wrong thing; I began questioning myself and wondering if they were correct.
My life got flipped upside down, I didn’t trust anyone; I had been betrayed by the person I cared about the most and didn’t feel I could trust anyone. My parents encouraged me to continue therapy but I couldn’t trust him either and was uncomfortable talking with him so I stopped going.
I have found my own sort of therapy; speaking out. I have spent six years telling my story to teens, parents, schools, support networks, Girl Scout troops and many others. After every speech there is usually at least one person that comes up to me to tell me about a relationship they used to be in or are currently in and how they felt they could relate to my story.
That one person after each speech is why I do this. That one person whose life I helped just by sharing my experience. Giving what I went through a purpose and working through my problems has made a huge difference. I get to tell my story and not be silent about it and help give others that strength.
A few years ago I was asked to speak on the Today Show about my story, the helpline and the curriculum. You can watch the Today Show video by clicking here.
Nobody likes to talk about teen dating violence or even think that it happens all around us. But it does.
I just finished watching the new Lifetime movie “Reviving Ophelia.” It is an excellent movie that shows how easy it is to get caught in an abusive relationship. The movie shows the cycle of violence, warning signs, and all the different sides of the relationship.
I think this is an excellent movie please have every teen and mother of a teen watch this movie. At the end of the movie the Love is Respect Teen Dating Abuse Helpline phone number is given: 1 (866) 331-9474
Relationship Violence. Break the Silence. Be Part of the Solution.
You Can Make a Difference, You Can Save Lives.