Last week I spent about three hours with a client that finally shared with me that her partner assaulted her the night before our session.
She gave all kinds of reasons why he did it; she did something wrong, he said he was sorry, she didn’t want people to talk about her, she didn’t want him to get in trouble, she didn’t want her family to beat him up, she’s not the kind of person to call the police, and she can take care of herself.
It’s so difficult for someone in an abusive relationship to speak up! They blame themselves or think they deserve to be treated the way they are.
My neighbor’s daughter was murdered by her ex boyfriend. It’s so tragic and terrible.
A little more than a year ago, I worried my daughter’s life was in danger from her husband; when she told me (finally) what was going on-I (with help from others) packed her up and moved her out of harms way in a few hours.
The time that women (usually a victim is a woman but not always) are trying to leave a relationship is the most dangerous and the time when that person is at high risk of being hurt or killed.
I am enclosing a link to a domestic violence website and a PDF of the cycle. Please speak up and get help. There are so many resources out there for you.
Domestic violence cycle
It’s getting close to the New Year and I want to leave you with a few thoughts consistent with my last post.
In treatment with my clients lately I’ve been focusing on helping people increase their awareness of shame and how to combat it. Shame keeps us stuck, it keeps us from reaching out, it tells us we are not enough, we are not important. Shame is paralyzing and keeps us isolated.
Many people deal with depression and suicide thoughts and feel ashamed because they think that there is something wrong with them, they think this is something they deserve, they are suffering in silence and it is not necessary. According to the National Institute for Mental Health shares statistics that 17.3 million adults had at least one major depressive episode (2017-data courtesy of SAMHSA). Depression is no respecter of persons; these numbers indicate anyone is vulnerable to develop depression whether it is situational or genetic factors.
Situational depression can affect people through illness, marital change, employment change, or death of a loved one; even a move away from loved ones could affect developing depression. In addition trauma can affect a development of depression too.
There isn’t a reason to be ashamed for having depression or suicide thoughts. These things affect many people.
I suggest listening to Brene Brown on YouTube; she has a couple of really excellent TEDtalks about shame and vulnerability. These are also very popular, getting millions of views. She emphasizes the way to overcome or silence shame is to be vulnerable. As a therapist I see this meaning: talk to someone about your struggles. Find social support somewhere that you can speak openly about your struggles and discover that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
PLEASE REACH OUT IF YOU ARE STRUGGLING- it works.