It is a frightening and overwhelming experience to find oneself in a relationship that is abusive and violent. It can leave one wondering, "How did I get here?" or "How did I not see this before?" In turn, these questions can leave the survivor, whose self-image has already been pummeled, feeling at a loss as to how to help herself.
The answers, unfortunately, are not as simple as much of society wants to believe: "Just leave the situation." Each situation has its own complexities based on the individuals involved and their extended support system or, unfortunately, their lack of a support system. As is the case with much of the experiences in life, we often don't know what resources are available until after we need them. How do I seek help? Where do I find it? Who do I tell? What will happen to my family?
Meet Our Experts:
Jennifer Bowles, MSW, LCSW, answered several anonymous member questions and those questions and answers are posted on StorkNet in this discussion.
Jennifer Landhuis is currently answering anonymous questions on our sister site, Exploring Womanhood. You can ask Jennifer a question here.
If you need IMMEDIATE HELP,
PLEASE call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE or the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE.