Domestic Violence Resources…..Courtesy of AARDVARC

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESOURCES

The organization affectionately called AARDVARC stands for An Abuse, Rape, and Domestic Violence Resource Center. Their fabulous website is a treasure trove of information and help that most victims do not even know exist. Take a look here and then go check them out! http://www.aardvarc.org.

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
or #HOPE on Verizon wireless phones (toll and airtime free), TTY: 1-800-787-3224

How to Change Your Social Security NumberChanging Your Social Security Number: The SSA joins with other Federal agencies to provide greater assistance to victims of domestic violence. Some victims seeking to elude their abuser and reduce the risk of further violence choose to establish a new identity. As part of that effort, it may be helpful to obtain a new Social Security number (SSN).

Give Back a Smile ProgramGive Back a Smile Program: This program is dedicated to providing cosmetic dental care at no cost to all survivors of domestic violence. Potential applicants should call 800-773-4227 to inquire about participating in the Program. Leave your name, mailing address and telephone number including area code and an application will be mailed to you.

FACE to FACE
FACE to FACE: The National Domestic Violence Project

1-800-842-4546: A joint program of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Provides free reconstructive surgery for victims of domestic violence, male and female.

ADT SecurityADT – Free Security Systems for Victims of Domestic Violence: The ADT AWARE® program is a coordinated effort among ADT Security Services, representatives of local law enforcement agencies, prosecutor’s offices and battered women’s shelters. After these community groups have selected participants for the program, ADT donates and installs electronic security systems in the homes of victims of domestic violence. The systems include a hold-up alarm pendant, which can be worn or carried with the victim while in the home. In the event of an imminent attack, the victim can press the button on the pendant, sending an immediate, silent alarm to ADT, which in turn notifies the appropriate police agency. Law enforcement agencies participating in the AWARE® program have agreed to respond to these AWARE® alarms on a priority basis.

Why Does He Do That: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men
Why Does He Do That: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men
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In this groundbreaking book, domestic violence expert Lundy Bancroft uses his unique perspective as a therapist for abusive and controlling men to help women, their children, and other family members who have been touched by abuse understand why abusers behave the way they do and what can be done about it. Bancroft teaches women how to survive and improve an abusive relationship; how to determine how dangerous an abuser is and when it is impossible to rectify a situation; and how to get out of a relationship safely. This book identifies nine types of abusive men, addressing different styles, from the physical batterer to the strictly verbal abuser. He dispels the pervasive societal myths surrounding abuse, exposing common excuses used by abusers, such as having experienced an abusive childhood or substance addiction. Bancroft answers commonly asked questions, such as what warning signs of abuse to look for early in a relationship; what is and isn’t abusive behavior; how to know if a woman and her children are in danger; and how to tell when a man is really changing.

 

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World Suicide Prevention Day


Abused and broken

Confused and withdrawn

Struggling…..wondering

Are all my dreams now gone?

The lives of my babies

Their mamma’s soul now torn

No money, home, or family

Wouldn’t they be better off on their own?

Can’t find hope for a future

Mine or theirs…..all alone

Life insurance and guardianship

Everyone’s better off if I move on.

The pills in my hand…..

Pain relief will come by dawn

Then a small voice pleads         Mamma keep on going,

I will help you be strong.

This voice gave me hope

Hope I thought was lost

Took and threw the pills away

Hugged my babies

And made a call.

When you have feelings like all hope is lost, pick up the phone and call 800-273-TALK. There is a voice. There is hope.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When Getting Back Control Of Your Life Means Letting Go

 

Scared child

Scared child (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Anyone who has suffered from the trauma of abuse of any kind knows that one of the scariest feelings is that of having no control. Feelings of grief, sadness, and loss are common. With help and time those feelings tend become easier to resolve internally than the feeling of fear. Fear is debilitating. Fear is paralyzing.  And with abuse, fear comes in many forms.

 

Adult survivors of abuse commonly report one of their biggest fears as losing control of their lives. This is so common because of the survivor‘s primed physiology. When an individual is physically threatened…..or perceives that they are….. the body’s complex biology kicks into gear releasing hormones and other chemicals which we typically refer to as the fight or flight syndrome. A component of that syndrome with particularly negative consequences is that of repetitive thought. Put simply, your brain lays down a specific neuronal connection associated with the event that is easily activated over and over again. Many survivors feel like they are “losing their minds”, an expression of this repetitive thought process over which they feel they have no conscious control. Out of desperation, trying to silence these thoughts, many survivors turn to mind numbing substances both legal and illegal. Sadly, this typically creates more problems than it solves in the long run, even if the survivor achieves a measure of temporary relief.

 

So as a survivor, or a member of that person’s support system, how can one take back that sense of control? How can you stop the cycle of unhealthy repetitive thought? Is there a way to reclaim some measure of control without creating additional havoc? In my experience, there absolutely is a way.  Nobody is going to tell you this will be easy or without some pain, but the payoff is worth it. And believe it or not, one of the first steps is to learn to let go.

 

As a survivor of abuse, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to take inventory of the people in your life. It’s proven through many studies that like attracts like, so if you find yourself surrounded by people with negative energy, your thoughts are then pulled into negativity. Identifying the people in your life that are not positive and supportive, then taking the necessary steps to let these people go, will be one of the best steps you can take towards living your best life. Another critical step is to reach out for help. Not one of us lives in a vacuum, even if we wish we did, and finding someone you can talk to without fear of judgement or criticism is vital.

 

There are many new fields of trauma therapy available that help you regain control and release your fears. These include techniques such as energy psychology, visualization, meditation, mindfulness, and self-hypnosis. Research the different forms of therapy available to you and find the one that fits best.  With time and support, you will find a way to let go of those negative thoughts and move on. Keep on going forward, you are worth it and you matter the most.

 

 

 

 

You Matter

You Matter (Photo credit: Krissy.Venosdale)