From Victim to Victor

One reason we love providing you with informative, inspirational, or even humorous blogs is that we get to have conversations about topics that matter in our day-to-day lives; things we might not otherwise talk about.  We dialogue on a wide variety of issues from how to work through family conflicts, to the health benefits of our favorite music.  Some conversations are harder to have than others.  This is one of those conversations, yet we believe it’s important to address the topic of domestic violence. 

Research shows that abusers in domestic violence often have some type of unresolved grief in their life–perhaps the loss of a job, a reputation, a home, or a loved one.  Some abusers were made fun of or bullied, while yet others may have been in active combat or witnessed other atrocities.  Whatever the case may be, unresolved feelings fester inside us and impair our ability to heal from trauma.  When we don’t appropriately deal with negative emotions in our lives, negative actions are sure to follow. 

And these negative actions can be harmful—sometimes even fatal. 

The actor, Patrick Stewart, best known as Captain Picard from the TV series Star Trek the Next Generation, is one of many celebrities advocating for the victims of domestic violence.  His reasons are heartfelt and personal.  His own mother was regularly bruised and beaten at the hand of his father who suffered from post traumatic stress disorder after his combat experiences during World War II.   His father’s PTSD was never treated and so anger became his driving force.  At age 74, Stewart’s voice still breaks during an interview on NPR as he recalls his feeling of helplessness watching his father abuse his mother, and he being too small to help rescue her. 

Some of us may relate to his story—either as the victim(s) or the abuser.  In either case, we must be willing to openly acknowledge this and to seek the help we need. 

The World Health Organization recently released their report on violence against women, and domestic violence worldwide.  The number of victims was staggering.  On a national level our statistics are equally as frightening.  One in every four women in the US will experience some form of domestic violence.  This means our moms, sisters, aunts, friends, and neighbors could experience this in their lifetime.  Most are victimized by someone they know.  Is this really what we want for the people we love? 

Some men are also at risk.   This is especially true for men who are ill or handicapped and require a level of care from a caregiver.  They are helpless to protect themselves from their abusers.  Regardless of gender, victims are at risk of physical assault, sexual assault, verbal abuse, or a combination of these things on a daily basis.  Yet sadly, most cases of domestic violence are never reported to the police.    This should not be.

You don’t have to remain a victim.   If you or someone you love is being abused, help is available.  Please contact: 

  • The Milwaukee Women’s Center at 414-449-4777
  • Sojourner Family Peace Center at 414-933-2722
  • Hope House (for men and women) at 414-645-2122

Or call the Milwaukee County Central Assistance Hotline where a community resource specialist can be reached 24 hours a day by dialing 211, or from a cell or pay phone by calling 414-772-0211, or toll free at 1-866-211-3380.   If you need assistance make the call today.

You can make the leap from victim to victor and live the happy life you know you’re meant to be living. 

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