Sara’s story

The relationship didn’t start badly but within two years there was physical, mental and emotional abuse. The abuse started a few months after we had been together.

He would accuse me of cheating, lying or just not caring about our relationship. He would always have an excuse as to why…. but each time it progressed.

By our first anniversary I was pregnant and hoping that this was the change we needed. However the birth of our child didn’t stop the abuse in fact it seemed to increase. He busted out the windshield of my car, choked me, restrained me from leaving by holding me against the wall, and disabled the car so I couldn’t leave. I stayed with him nine months after the birth of our child and then couldn’t handle the threats any more. I left him not caring what he threatened to do. Sometimes I still get scared but I won’t let him have control over what I choose anymore.

How I coped

I was lucky enough to have family and friends who were there for me. My baby also helped me to go on because I knew that I was needed. I had to think of how much better it was not to be fighting all the time and how much new freedom I had.

How the situation changed

Now that I was on my own I had more freedom. I went where I wanted to go, I was able to spend time with friends I hadn’t seen in almost two years, I had more time to spend with my child and I had less stress and became less frightened.

What helped me

Friends, family, and police officers helped me to become stronger.

They made me realize that my child and I weren’t missing out on anything, that actually we gained more.

My advice to others

I would tell anybody who is being abused that people who don’t want to change won’t.

You have to realize that the person who is doing the abuse isn’t two different people. The person who is abusing you is the same person who says they love you and who buys you gifts when they are sorry.

I would also tell those who have children that sometimes the child/children are better off with one parent who cares then two parents, one of whom could (even if by accident) hurt them.

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