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CHILDREN WHO WITNESS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

09 Oct
Lithography. Drunk father.

Image via Wikipedia

By Terry Loving

I used this picture of family violence in another post, and yes, I am using it again.  When I think of growing up with domestic violence, the scene speaks volumes. I was the little girl in this scene, always trying to protect my mother from the abuse. When my brothers were young, they sat on the sidelines taking in the horror – until they grew bigger and stronger.

……………………………

My oldest brother Joey fought my mom’s abusers, taking on the role of protector. Domestic violence took his life at the age of 27. He lived what he learned – hit a woman (his girlfriend), who fought back. She stabbed him to death in front of my mother’s house in January of 1975. My other brother started down that path, but with the help of God, he changed.

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I can still hear my inner child screaming, “Leave my mommy alone!” That was all that I could do – scream – cry – hurt – and wish I could beat the heck out of the men that battered my mom. Broken dishes, overturned furniture, blood, and confusion were common in my mother’s house. And yet, she stayed. She had family and options, but she stayed with different abusers – the scene was always the same. Oh how she must have hated herself.

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Children who witness domestic violence grow up with issues. Believe me, my brothers and I had our share. Even though we lived in poverty, domestic violence can happen to the best of families, even those with an abundance of resources. Abuse does not discriminate. We were shamed by the poverty, and muted by the violence. But it was there, deep inside – growing – festering – waiting for a chance to explode.  The nightmares finally stopped – but I often dreamed of revenge for my mother – I would be the aggressor in my dreams. My pain turned inward.

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This post is for all those who live with domestic violence and abuse. For the sake of your children, please try to get out. I realize it can be challenging to make a clean break. Child custody, money, legalities, and fear can hinder your ability to make a new start. However, if those aren’t issues for you, please consider the damage done to your precious child, or children. It may not show on the outside, but believe me; the consequences will manifest themselves later on – one way or another.

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Men come and go, but your children are yours forever. Domestic violence stifles the hearts and minds of growing children, not to mention the maze of confusion they must sort through. I am a middle-aged grandmother, still sorting stuff out. I may never fully understand all that we suffered as children, but thank God for His peace. The memories will always be with me. But God is faithful, I can live without repeating my mother’s past, and make better life choices.

Please, if possible – LEAVE!

http://www.spiritual-side-of-domestic-violence.org/

No portion of this web site may be copied, edited, or used in any form without prior permission.

© Spiritual Side of Domestic Violence Org., 2009
All rights reserved.

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2 Comments

Posted by on October 9, 2010 in Home

 

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2 responses to “CHILDREN WHO WITNESS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

  1. letter4everyone

    October 30, 2010 at 3:42 am

    yes you are right. I left, and now its one thing i can have pride in, i eventually saved my children. Thankyou for writing this honest post.

     
  2. ssofdv

    October 31, 2010 at 9:22 am

    letter4everyone:

    Good for you! I am proud of your strength, and happy to hear that your children are safe now. God Bless you always.

     

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