By Whitney Akers, See the Triumph Guest Blogger
In discussions about domestic violence, the focus typically lies on the act of leaving an abusive relationship, but what happens after a survivor exits this cycle? Some survivors’ journey toward empowerment entails speaking out about their experience.
“I no longer see being labeled as a bad thing. I own my label of survivor with pride and tell my story to help others either in their own journey of recovery or in knowing they aren't alone and can get out of their abusive situation.”-Domestic violence survivor
One woman, still on the courageous journey of healing, has decided to speak out to help other women escape to safety. Read more on her story here: http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2013-09-19/news/os-salon-shooting-domestic-violence-20130919_1_salon-shooting-survivor-marcia-santiago-noelia-gonzalez
Take our pledge to tell survivors: "It's not your fault." https://www.causes.com/v2actions/1762723-pledge-to-tell-survivors-its-not-your-fault
By Christine Murray, See the Triumph Co-Founder
Unfortunately, survivors of intimate partner violence are so often are judged and stigmatized in our society. We invite you to take our pledge on Causes to share a message of strength and support to those who have been a victim of any form of intimate partner violence.
This pledge is for every victim and survivor of an abusive relationship who has been told that she or he is to blame for that abuse. Who tells victims and survivors that it’s their fault? Sadly, the blame can come from every possible direction, as we have learned through our research on the stigma surrounding intimate partner violence. I’ll share some of our participants’ quotes in the bullet points below as examples of the many ways that survivors can be blamed for their own victimization.
First, perpetrators often blame their victims for their abusive behaviors.
Second, often when survivors reach out for help from family and friends, they face blame and judgment from others in their social networks.
Fourth, this blame can become internalized, meaning that survivors come to believe that they themselves are to blame and deserve to be treated in abusive ways.
This pledge is one way to start to send that message. Our goal is to collect thousands of pledges, with the hopes that those numbers will show victims and survivors that they have the support of a caring community of people who do not blame them for being abused.
Imagine the impact that this pledge could have for a survivor who has been told daily that it’s all their fault...if only they would _____(fill in the blank)_____, they wouldn’t be treated this way. Imagine what it would mean to that survivor to know that there are thousands of people standing behind them, saying, “It’s not your fault.”
We will continue to work to spread this message through the See the Triumph Campaign, as well as work together to do so with our partners, the Stop Abuse Campaign. Please join us by adding your support for this petition and sending the message that “It’s not your fault” to survivors of intimate partner violence. Click on the link below to take the pledge.
Thank you for all you are doing to triumph over the stigma surrounding intimate partner violence!