My family and I are enjoying this holiday season much more than we did last year. Domestic violence and its aftermath ruined many formerly festive occasions for the past twelve months. Now, it’s a year later and we’re working our way out of it. When I asked my daughter what’s different, she says she’s focusing on what’s important to her. Indeed, that’s spending time with and enriching the lives of her family. I’m proud of her for that. However, for many people, that’s easier said than done.
It’s true that the support of friends and family makes a big difference. But not all victims have them nearby. In fact, many are alone and have no one to help them. There are lots of organizations that are available to help victims of domestic violence. Here’s an article with descriptions and links to some of the best support groups.
What’s the aftermath of this horrendous experience?
After acts of domestic violence, damage to the relationship is severe.
Obviously, with physical and emotional abuse, the ability to have a loving relationship dies.
It’s difficult for the children.
Some say the biggest victims of domestic violence are the kids. Through no fault of their own, they are forced to suffer the pain of losing a parent or significant partner. It’s likely that their whole lifestyle will change. They can feel the difference in the family – from where they live, who they see, and especially how their parents relate to each other.
The community helps, but at a price.
Local, state, and federal governments realize the difficult situation that victims of domestic violence face. They will be without some of the basic necessities as they learn to navigate the DV system. Some problems are: missing work as they recuperate from physical or emotional injuries, the loss of income from the estranged parent/partner, and let’s not forget that they’re living in plain old fear. Not to mention, it takes time and effort to deal with the court system as their case slowly works its way through it.
Resources to help families during these DV crises are necessary and the programs are available from governmental and private sources. You’ll find that neighbors, clubs, and houses of worship work together with communities to lend a helping hand to the casualties of this despicable crime.
The loss of self-confidence hurts – a lot.
Sometimes you can’t stop the thoughts running through your head.
“How did I let this happen? I must be a terrible person. It’s hard to believe this could happen to someone like me. I love to help and support my family, co-workers, and friends. Did I really deserve this?“
So there you go…your self-confidence takes a huge hit.
Learn about my recipe for a better life, no matter the circumstances, in this Dance Safari post, “Good Self-Esteem and Ballroom Dancing Go Hand-in-hand“.
What helps domestic violence sufferers?
A strong sense of self-preservation is essential.
Just when you think you can’t take another moment of suffering, your will to survive kicks in. Maybe you’re getting advice from your parents, a counselor, or someone who’s been through it themself. Whatever it is that helps you to straighten your back and stand up to the injustice you and your family are facing is a good thing. You’re learning that you have the strength to pull through and do what it takes to recover.
For domestic violence victims, getting back to the job and working hard is next.
You may not feel like leaving your nest to go to work, but believe me, it’s the best thing you can do for yourself.
- You get to leave the past behind when you’re working.
- There’s nothing like a paycheck to put a smile on your face.
- A major benefit is that as you begin to accomplish things at work, you start to feel whole again. Success feeds self-confidence and that’s what you need right now.
Just keep putting one foot in front of the other and move forward. It might feel impossible, but better times are coming for you. I see it for my daughter and I believe it’s around the corner for you, too!