So it is Domestic Violence Awareness month so I figure that I'd say something in the spirit.
Sorry in advance if I go out on a bit of a tangent.
I'll start off by saying that in my personal experience, I have been in and have seen domestic abuse in multiple situations and extents.
When I was a child of age younger than six I lived with my mom, my older sister and my father. Literally we were an ideal nuclear family but not so much happy. My father was a mentally unstable man to say the least. He swears to this day that he couldnt have children and disowns my sister and I. But with that my sister was born and just a little over a year later I followed. My mom told me the stories of when she was pregnant with my sister and I. About how my father used to scream at her that she should abort us. But my mom refused. So... he lashed out. Honestly, my father solved everything via alcohol and fighting.
When I first came home as a newborn I cried for weeks, even months straight. Fed up, the man picked me up and shook me. As if that's any way to silence a child.
Then as I grew up I witnessed he and my mom constantly screaming, breaking things, throwing things and hitting... I used to suck my thumb to cope and whenever he saw me with my thumb in my mouth.. WHACK.
At one point in the morning he and my mom broke out into another fight and my sister got between them. She was maybe four at the time. I still see her, wearing her barbie onesie pajamas, casually trying to break the violence, like it was such a norm that parents fight like that.
My mom tried so hard to make things work because He was our father after all... but eventually after many years my mom said fuck it. She sued him for custody of us both and we left.
Today, I see we are all still scarred. Well, I sure am. To this day still suck my thumb. Its like my safe haven, its how I cope. Because my father used to hold my ankles and make me "walk on the ceiling" (not kidding this is bullshit) now I suffer from that ridiculous fear of the sky and falling into the cosmos.
As for everyone else:
My sister shut everyone out.
And my mom chooses to be alone. She is a huge activist for domestic abuse now and constantly helps or advises those she has seen in the situation.
I've watched my father abuse my mom, my sister and I. But that's not all. My grandma supposedly hurts my grandfather, then my aunt lashes on her. My uncles beat his girlfriend, children and his dogs and my (used to be) best friend and mother were isolated by her step dad...
If I can say anything at this point, its please don't fall victim.
Domestic abuse is an umbrella term. It includes child abuse, spouse abuse, abuse of a parent or gaurdian, anyone in the household. And its a variety: emotional, mental, physical and sexual violence all categorize as abuse.
The key is to stay strong and get out or seek help. There are organizations who help and support and advise, some places even take you in until you get back on your feet once you leave!
This is not some sugarcoated social issue. Its actually disgustingly common! Women experience more than 4 million physical assaults and rapes because of their partners, and men are victims of nearly 3 million physical assaults. More than three MILLION children witness this abuse every year. And the worst part? Most domestic violence incidents are never reported.
If you see something, say something. And if you didn't know, now you do.
Shout out to all the survivors out there and to those fighting out of it.
Listening to: Face Down - RJA
Watching: My temper