overcome

‘In the middle of Target, I had a stabbing thought, ‘You didn’t turn the oven off.’ I’d never felt panic before. This was panic.’: Mom insists ‘anxiety will not win’ after suffering panic attack

“I hear a faint call, ‘Mom…Mom…. MOM!’. On the third ‘mom’ I was snapped back into reality. ‘MOOOOOM!’ A louder fourth one came out 2 inches from my face. I couldn’t stop crying. I couldn’t hide it. I sat on the floor in the middle of an aisle in Target and started bawling.”

‘Who are you hiding from?’ I was forbidden from closing the door while I showered or used the restroom. I wasn’t daddy’s little girl anymore.’: Woman overcomes childhood abuse, ‘You will survive. Your life is worth saving and fighting for’

“My dad was a dangerous man. After I was born, he endeared himself to me. ‘I’ve seen 100 girls like you,’ he said. He found my diary. He read it. Humiliated me. They tracked my periods. They would time how long it took me to walk from the bus stop to the apartment. I hid who I really was. I got smarter. I knew how long it took to go from the bedroom window to the front door, which I’d deadbolt when he left. I hid notes in menstrual pad packaging. I tell myself, ‘You tried to break me. You told me to kill myself. But YOU WON’T WIN.’”

‘I involved myself in a forbidden relationship. It was the savory, alluring fruit hanging from the only tree I was prohibited to touch. Yet, we gravitated to each other.’: Woman divorces husband then loses mom to cancer

“‘It doesn’t look good. I’m sorry.’ Her words echoed through my head, but I dared not let them sink in. Instead I collapsed against the waiting room wall. She had been healthy my entire life. She never smoked a cigarette. She didn’t drink alcohol. When the surgeon exited those double doors, removed her mask and looked at me, I could see it all over her face. My mother didn’t make it through.”

‘It hurts,’ she’d cry telling me. I noticed a significant change in my daughter’s posture. My mother’s intuition told me to seek a 2nd opinion.’: 12-year-old girl endures 8-hour surgery for scoliosis, ‘This girl’s strength amazes me’

“We were hit with the bomb. ‘She definitely needs surgery,’ the doctors said. I was sick to my stomach. My baby girl has never even been to the ER. She’s always been a very active girl that cheered, danced, competed. How was this going to affect her? ‘This will be the roughest 8 hours of your life while she is in the OR.’ He would end up being right. I was numb the whole time.”

‘My husband came home from work. ‘I think we should separate.’ He’d been discussing our marriage with his mother. I jumped out of bed, livid.’: Woman ‘grateful’ for her cheating ex and his mistress, ‘They set free the woman I was’

“‘How could you discuss our marriage with your MOTHER?’ I demanded to know. I yanked my rings off. ‘Isn’t this what you want?’ He asked. ‘Don’t you hate me?’ It felt like a weight had been lifted. We planned our divorce. Everything was going great until the paperwork was signed. I suggested we go out to dinner to celebrate. He shook his head. ‘Just go, Tara.’ I didn’t understand. And then a tall, thin woman with wavy hair walked in the door. He locked eyes with her. I was struck with another revelation. It wasn’t his mother with whom he’d been consulting about our marriage, it was his girlfriend.”

‘Here, I’ll get rid of it for you,’ he put his fist up to me and my baby belly, filled with rage. I knew this baby would save me.’: Woman breaks cycle of abuse, leaves cheating husband to gain full custody of kids, ‘Let yourself be what you are, a Queen, a warrior’

“He’d been living a double life. I was his girlfriend at church functions, family gatherings and his house. That was strictly it. He brought her camping, to parties. Then, he began bringing her into the house. The first night he brought her back was our anniversary. His phone accidentally ‘pocket dialed’ me while he was in bed with her. I went into panic mode. I couldn’t breathe. But it didn’t stop there. I found out I was pregnant with our daughter.”

‘I made a mistake. My ex found out. ‘I should’ve known better,’ he said. I thought I deserved it. I wasn’t faithful.’: Woman overcomes abusive relationship to find the man of her dreams, ‘I feel like a damn warrior!’

“He burnt my grandma’s table in a bonfire and emailed me pictures. At 2 a.m., he was yelling outside my house, banging on all the doors and windows. I was hidden behind the couch dialing 911. He keyed my car. I woke up with 100+ missed calls. My family finally convinced me the police needed to be involved. I brought so much proof, I thought they’d have to arrest him, but nope. Their ‘hands were tied’ and ‘boys will be boys.’”

‘This guy is capable of killing you. I’ve never told someone they need a gun, but you do.’ I had to file bankruptcy. I was so naïve.’: Young woman gets sober to save her life from ‘sociopath’ ex, ‘I dodged an ATOMIC BOMB’

“Girls started sending me screenshots. He’d been taking them on dates behind my back. His ex of 10 years came forward with times he showed up at her house claiming to be suicidal and begging for her back. So I did what any normal girl would do – I left him. But I allowed his charm to get the best of me. I was fully addicted to him. My mistake. ‘Would you be open to checking out the sex club down the street?,’ he asked one night. Soon our lifestyle of gambling and drinking wasn’t enough. I was a part of this secret underground community. I’d be lying if I said it was wasn’t a little liberating.”

‘You and I will never speak again,’ I told my mother. She’d sleep nude next to me, crowning me the ‘man of the house.’: Man overcomes child abuse, trauma, ‘The person in that mirror was not the real me, and I knew it’

“On my birthday, I put a gun in my mouth as my girlfriend pounded on the bathroom door begging me not to kill myself. I will never forget the taste of the cold metal against my tongue. I pulled the trigger, but the pin didn’t strike the bullet casing—a failure to fire. I had guns in my life since I was a child and I will never understand why that round malfunctioned. I had to accept I’d survived some of the most toxic environments imaginable. I needed to stop making excuses and take my life back.”

‘Go home. You’re cured.’ The same day there was an urgent message on my phone. I didn’t want to spoil Christmas.’: Woman diagnosed with Stage 4 breast, lung, liver cancer, ‘I decided to take back control’

“I genuinely thought it would all be fine. I ate a healthy diet, was fit and healthy. I just couldn’t believe it. I was in a trance. Numb. There was yet another tumor, in a third place. I rang the cancer helpline. I tried to speak, but just cried. The poor person on the end just listened to me sob for 15 minutes without a break. I needed to get it all out of my system.”

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