abuse

‘Take your kids, get out of there! Leave him now!’ There was a knock on our door. The cops. They’d seen the video.’: Woman narrowly escapes abusive man, flees home to family who cried when she was ‘finally free’

“My heart was pounding as I stood in the middle of the airport. My two boys aged 3 and 4, gazed up at me with sleepy eyes. It was 6:00 a.m. We were flying home to the USA. I was trying to act calm. The woman at check-in gave me a bewildered look when I told her we had no luggage to check. I was terrified I was going to be asked if I had their father’s permission to take them out the country. I didn’t.”

‘My brother started the ‘naked man’ game when I was 6. I felt so empty I thought I might just float away.’: Woman overcomes sexual trauma, now uses kindness as an ‘act of rebellion’

“I walked home in a dress, but no underwear. I told my mom and dad I was staying with a friend, and then went into the operating room to have my right fallopian tube removed along with the baby that would never be. I went home the next day and said, ‘I feel like I have the flu’ and went straight to bed. My cry for help didn’t work. Nobody noticed. Nobody asked if I was okay. I knew if I didn’t start fighting for myself, I’d end up dead.”

‘Would you like help with his meth addiction?’ the doctor said. I was floored. Once everything was out in the open, our home became a pressure cooker.’: Mom escapes domestic abuse in wake of husband’s addiction, urges us to ‘trust our instincts’ 

“We ended up leaving 5 days before Christmas. The tree was decorated. Stockings hung. I tried to drag my babies out of their good time. I absolutely panicked. I wasn’t rational. But, panic, absolute real panic, is not rational. If I hadn’t left when I did, myself, my children, or all of us would’ve been dead.”

‘My sister and I are polar opposites. I’m Wednesday Adams. She’s Malibu Barbie.’: Woman shares striking contrasts with sibling, reminds us all to ‘accept and respect difference’

“Spirituality drives her, and I’m an atheist. She’s a meat eater, and I’m a vegetarian. While she dresses in beautiful rainbow and embraces her body no matter its size, I hide behind dark colors because it’s my comfort zone. We may bicker and think differently, but despite our differences, we love each other. She’s my role model, and I feel so fortunate to have her as a sister. Her smile can light an entire room.”

‘Why did you cut her?! She didn’t give you permission to do that.’ My blood boiled. He just stared, his face blank.’: Doctor performs episiotomy on mother without her permission during childbirth because he had ‘somewhere to be at 7 p.m.’

“Snnniiipppp. My doctor used scissors to cut me open ‘down there’ to make it easier to push the baby out. ‘What did you do?!’ I asked the male, 50-year-old doctor, with fear in my voice. Even the nurses paused. Just 30 minutes before, my doctor told me, ‘I have somewhere to be at 7 o’ clock, so you better be able to push this baby out soon.’ My husband’s rage was rising. I squeezed his hand. ‘We can’t do this now.’”

‘When they flinch from the stapler dropping, it’s because they weren’t sure if you’re throwing it at them.’: Foster mom pens powerful note to teacher warning of her children’s trauma

“They come from a really, really hard place. The kind of abuse you think can’t be real. They duck for cover. You’ve heard of fight or flight? There is also freeze. One of my kids responds with ‘freeze.’ Her eyes grow wide and her voice silences. It’s how she’s trained herself to survive. My kids need to know you are safe.”

‘Nobody else will ever love you.’ I tried to jump out at a stop sign. But I was stuck. This was my ‘destiny.’: Woman overcomes traumatic childhood, abusive relationship to find her ‘soulmate’

“My father took his own life when I was 5 years old. I remember sitting on our front porch, hugging my mom as the paramedics wheeled him out of the house. I remember living at my grandparents’ house for a while after ‘he left.’ My family decided to keep what happened a secret. I continued to believe what my mom would tell me.”

‘Here we go again!’ My son’s principal called me. He’d been written up.’: Adoptive mom ‘cried and cried’ after learning her ‘trauma-ravaged’ son was rewarded for being ‘courageous’

“‘Ms. Pollard, we’re having another bad day. Can you come?’ My boy is silent. Something seems different. I pull him in close, ask what’s going on. It’s mid-September and he’s asking if he can have a race car for Christmas. But it’s not about the gift to him. It’s about his need to feel safe. If I can reassure him he’ll get that race car for Christmas, he knows he’s safe until then. No one will come pick him up. At least for 3 more months.”

‘I was tossed like a rag doll off a deck by my hair. He tried to take my life in front of my kids.’: Domestic violence survivor escapes abuser, ‘takes her life back’ with the help of her ‘tribe’

“The girl he was cheating on me with began harassing me, too. She wanted money for an abortion, and wanted me to know they were seeing each other. Sadly, I made the mistake of confronting him about this. The officer who responded sat me down. ‘I want to help you and end your suffering.’ He did the most amazing thing that day. He had me sign one piece of paper. Just one signature. The right to go after him.”

‘I was a teen at a nightclub. I lied. I got scouted, but there was a catch. He needed $3,000 for the ‘lessons.’: Daughter reconciles with addict mom after being signed over to the government as a child, living in 11 foster homes

“I saw my mom inject heroin. When the social workers came, I would hide all her needles. I didn’t want to be labeled ‘the foster child’ at school. When I turned 12, only 2 couples came forward wanting to adopt me. I felt like I was betraying my mom. I no longer wanted to be here, and inhaled poisonous fumes. But now I know why I’ve had this life.”

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