Stuck is the word that surrounds many domestic violence victims. They feel stuck in their situation, so they continue to stay in a violent and unhealthy relationship. But, it's also a word that a domestic violence survivor wishes they would forget. She wants to tell people that they aren't stuck, and there are resources out there for them.
October has long been known unofficially as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but earlier this week, President Obama made it official. It takes an average of 8 to 10 tries before a victim is able to leave her abuser, and awareness about programs available could help to change that.
Places like Providence House work hard to spread the message that domestic violence is an epidemic, effecting 1 in 4 women. If crosses socioeconomic groups, education levels, race and even gender. To keep the cycle of domestic violence from passing down generations, they want word to get out they there is help in a bad situation.
The survivor we spoke to hasn't even been in the program at Providence House for a year yet, but she is already living on her own, divorced with full custody of her two children, and back in school. And while she is still scared that he ex-husband might find her, she knows that she did the right thing for her and her girls.
Providence House hopes that by educating people, more people might have the same outcome as our survivor. They know there is a fine line between scaring and educating, but they want to remind people that domestic violence is a problem that is in absolutely every neighborhood, in every city... and losing the stigma around it, is the only way that this epidemic can really end.
If you or somebody you know is in a situation where a place like Providence House can help, their crisis line is 318.226.5015 or you can visit their website at http://theprovidencehouse.com/