Domestic Violence-After the Abuse

Domestic Violence isn’t just bruises and blood. The broken doors, shattered pictures, or holes in the walls.

It’s the life after.


It’s the bad days.

It’s the fear.

It’s anger and feeling ashamed.

It’s always looking over your shoulder, checking the back seat of the car when you get in, triple checking every window and door to be sure it’s locked.

It’s your family. How they don’t understand what you went through, they may try but they will never understand.  They don’t understand the worthless feeling you have deep inside somedays. How no matter how hard you try to get ahead you always feel like you aren’t enough.

It’s guilt. You feel guilty for bringing your family along on this emotional roller coaster. Guilty for needing help. Guilty for not being strong enough to leave.

It’s trying to remember your identity before the abuse. Imagine looking at your reflection then someone shattering the mirror with a hammer, but instead of a hammer it’s a fist and the shards of glass are the pieces of who you were. You are frantically trying to put the pieces back together but everytime you get close the hammer slams down on the mirror again. And this cycle repeats over and over. Breaking the tiny pieces of glass down until there is nothing.

It’s the feeling of disappointment. You’re disappointed in yourself and you feel like you disappointed your family. You did not turn out to be their dream of what a daughter should be.

It’s the child in the morning begging you to stay home with them because you are always gone at work but you have to financially support him. Missing out on events a mother shouldn’t miss.

It’s the social anxiety. Your friends not understanding why you don’t want to go out to bars or feeling out of place around them.

It’s going to work and putting a fake smile on, coming home making dinner, putting your child to bed after spending a measly hour and a half with them.

It’s breaking down the minute the lights turn off, when you can finally let the tears you’ve been holding back for so long fall.

It’s feeling anxious or overwhelmed when someone raises their voice at you. Trying to avoid the flash backs it triggers.

It’s the mental war you have with yourself every time you look in the mirror. Trying to rebuild your self-esteem brick by brick after someone took a wrecking ball to it every single day. Trying to scrub off the disgusting words that were branded into your skin.

It’s the struggle of not letting other people’s words or feelings affect you when they bring up the past.

It’s making it through these bad days and overcoming them.

It’s the reality that you will NEVER be the same.

Because Domestic Violence is Hell, and Hell changes you.

It changes who you were.

It changes who you could’ve been.

But if you have clawed your way out of the depths of Hell….

You are not weak

You are not a victim.

You are a SURVIVOR.

Today You Realized





This morning while we were laying in bed watching cartoons you said “I don’t have a dad.”

“WHAT?” I replied.

I was caught completely off guard I didn’t know exactly what to say. My heart shattered into a million pieces. For the first time you actually realized that piece you are missing and I think for the first time I realized that this feeling you have of being different is something that I can not fix.

I have been so careful to shield you from this reality. I made sure that nobody ever talked about the situation in front of you. I would change names in books to mommy instead of daddy. But right now, whether I was ready to or not I have to try and explain to you that this is okay- its okay to not have a dad.

“I don’t have a daddy. I only have a mommy. My friends at school have dads. Why don’t I?”  You looked down completely heartbroken and confused.

“You’re right and it is okay to be sad. You don’t have a Dad, but you do have me and I love you to the moon and stars and back. You have a MiMi, Papi, KiKi, and a GiGi. They love you so much! Nobody at school has any of them, they are only yours.” I answered trying to make you feel better and special as you are.

I have tried my hardest to protect you from this hurt. I went through all the steps to make sure that he couldn’t ever come back to hurt you.

I wanted a normal life for you. I wanted the two parent home. I wanted the perfect picture of a family for you.

A house full of love, happiness, laughter, and memories. I like to believe I have given you that-you are loved beyond measure. The only thing you don’t have is a man to call your dad.

I have nerf wars with you. We build legos and play cops and robbers. You have an amazing family who loves you. Tons of friends who adore you.

You have a Papi who does all of the “boy” things with you. When I am at work you have MiMi, Kiki, and GiGi who always play with you.

You may not have a “normal” family, but you definitely have a loving one

As a single parent you try to be everything for your child. You have to be the mom and dad.  You are there for every bump and bruise, every success, and every nightmare. You want to save the day and make all their hurt go away.

You ARE everything to them.





To The Man Who Will Love Me Next


Before we dive into this, I really need you to know and understand me.

My past has been a rocky one, but it has shaped me into the woman I am standing here in front of you today. The woman that you hopefully will love and appreciate. This past has created fears, heartbreak, and made me learn some serious life lessons early on. It gave me a beautiful son, who I hope you will love as your own if it ever got serious. In the past I have been used, abused, and taken completely for granted, because of that I am not settling for anything less than the whole package. The boys before you were just that, boys. They didn’t know what they had until I was gone, then would continue to try and come back into my life. I fell for their games a few times, but I refuse to ever do that again. They didn’t understand me, so before you really decide you want to do this, I need you to understand these few things.

I am my own person. 

I am independent. I am strong. I am okay being by myself. If I ask you to come to a family get together by all means come, but don’t get upset when I pick time with them over time with you. I don’t need to talk to you all day everyday. If I am going to have a girls night, let me. I will let you know when I am home. I was controlled and smothered. They call in “love bombing” for so long that if I feel any sense of control or insecurity on your part I will break things off immediately. I can pay for my own tab, I can open my own doors, and I sure as hell can order my own food. You can be a gentleman, in fact I will love that about you, but please respect my independence.

I am a mother first. 

I can not stress this enough. My child will always come first. If he is sick I am sorry I am canceling on you. If he is in a mood where he just needs his mom, I am canceling. If you don’t understand and respect that, then I will cancel us completely. See I am a mom and a dad to my child. While finding someone to fill that spot would be amazing, its not a necessity. This makes who you are as a person even more important to me. I am a mother 24 hours a day 7 days a week 365 days a year. I will always strive to be the best mother to my child, you are free to hop on board with that or get off the ride.

My Past.

My past is a more than just a windy road. It has huge pot holes, twists, turns, and giant cracks. But I am so thankful for it. If you love me, then you must love my past. It has strengthened me, made me grow, and made me a hell of a great person. I have more compassion than anyone you know. I have a lot of baggage and, to be honest, most of it you won’t understand. You won’t understand why I have to sleep with the windows shut or check the door and window locks 10 times before I go to bed at night, but let me. My past will cause fear in our relationship, and I am extremely sorry for that. I refuse to ever go back to a toxic relationship. I will not let another man ever have control and ownership over me again. I refuse to go back to that dark hurtful place I was once in. I relive my past every single day. Looking over my shoulder, checking the back seat in the car, always looking at my surroundings. Somedays are worse than others, it will cause me to have huge walls up and act tough, but I promise I am trying.

I may be strong but I have a huge heart. 

If you ask anyone about me they will tell you stories of strength, triumph, and happiness. I am laughing most of the time, whether that be at myself or with others. There are still places of my heart that I will never fully you allow you into. There are times where someone is calling me for help and I am going to get up and take the phone call. Whether that be my best friend going through a hard break up or a girl who found me and is wanting to know the safe steps to leave her abuser. I am a firm believer in being the person now, who you needed back then. My friends were there for me at times where I didn’t want to live anymore, I will always be there for them. The girls who call me are asking for guidance, they look up to me, I owe it to them to be there to help however they need me to. This huge heart applies to you as well. I will give you the shirt off my back, I will bend over backwards to make you feel special, but please don’t take advantage of this. I can give you the world, but I will take it away as quick as it was given and once its gone, I’m done.

I am hard to love.

There are times where I am extremely emotional and times where I am extremely cold. Sometimes I want all your attention and sometimes I want space. Everyday is different for me, somedays are happy and somedays I will be triggered and have a bad day. I am difficult. I will be the first to admit that. I need to be able to communicate how I am feeling to you free of judgement. I will listen to you always, but I need the same respect back. You will either be willing to deal with that and find a way to love me, or you will walk out like all the others have.

I am terrified. 

I am absolutely terrified to love someone completely again. I have been burned, bruised, and beaten to the ground. I want to believe you are different, and I really hope you are. I want things to work out but every relationship has ended the same way. I am scared to let down my walls, put my whole heart and soul into someone just to be left again. I am not going to be someone out of convenience for you. I am not a toy you can pick up and put down as you see fit. If you want to be with me, you will understand that it is going to take time to break through my walls.

So, If you are the MAN– not boy- who will love me next your work is 100% cut out for you. If you are willing to do it, then I am willing to try. I am not like other girls. I am my own woman and need to be treated as such. Please don’t bother with me if you aren’t really wanting to be the forever person to me. I don’t have the time or energy to play any more games. I wish you luck, and Hey, I believe in you. 

Rebuilding Yourself


Just because a man took your power away and completely destroyed you at one time, does not mean you cant rebuild yourself now. You don’t have to give up on yourself.

He took you for granted. He didn’t notice when you bought a new dress just for him. You wasted money. He didn’t tell you how great your new hair cut looked. He liked it longer and curled. When you put a little extra effort into getting ready for date night to look good for him. You were trying to get attention from other guys. 

He was never wrong. All the times he cheated. All the nights he stayed out drinking. Those were all your fault. The minute you stand up to him, he hits you. He lets you know and shows you that you are below him. You are nothing.

Every time he hits you, you know he is wrong, yet you can’t do anything about it.  Your phone is so close, you can reach it. Call the police. Call for help. But you can’t move. You sit there and take it. You take every blow waiting until the screaming stops.

You get in the shower to wash off the blood, the shame, the fear. But it never leaves. No amount of scrubbing can take care of the filth you feel. You look at yourself and you don’t even know who you are anymore.

You stay awake all night running through everything that happened in your head. Every single detail. How could you have made it different? Why didn’t you fight back? Why didn’t you just walk out? Why did you let someone take away your strength? 

You don’t ever want to be that girl. The girl who people look at and pity. The girl who will always question a piece of herself. You loved the man that destroyed you, what does that tell you about your taste in men? I never wanted to be her, but I was.

We all look at therapy as a weakness. Only crazy people go to therapy. You are weak if you go. That couldn’t be further from the truth. You are forced to face who you are fully and completely. Rebuild your strengths and crush your fears. You find out more than ever who you truly are. Choosing to go to therapy isn’t something weak people do, it takes strength to stand up and say you need help.

You are a gift. A gift to your family, a gift to your friends, and a treasure to whoever you end up with. It took me completely losing who I was to figure out who I needed to be.

You can hear how important you are, how beautiful you are, and how special you are from a million different people. But until you actually look yourself in the mirror and see all those things, you will never feel important, beautiful, or special. You will never know how strong you are until you fix the weak parts of you. Sometimes you need to absolutely hit rock bottom to climb your way back to the top.

It is their fault. Every single time they hit you, screamed at you, took the steps to destroy you. It was all them. You are strong. You are beautiful. You are worth it.

There will always be mountains you have to climb. Curve balls. Bumps in the road. But you will be okay, I promise. You will learn so much about yourself.  It is never too late to see the potential and passions that you possess.


It is never too late to love yourself. It is never too late to rebuild yourself.



Why I Am Waiting For Something Real…

1F94EA0D-2589-4E75-B9EE-44FEF4AB7041 We live in a time where dating has a million different meanings and stages. There is dating, talking, being exclusive, seeing other people, basically we are all terrified to get attached.

We all fall for the illusion of what we think love is instead of waiting for something real.

We settle for failed relationships that give us what we want instead of what we need.

But every time we find out that this illusion, this “situationship” as I like to call it, will never cut it. We all deserve an incredible, whole hearted, respectful, and meaningful love. I for one, am done selling myself short. I am going to wait for something real.

This cat and mouse game we call dating is out of control. We are always afraid to be the ones who get attached first in fear of heartbreak. What we forget to realize is with every failed “situationship” there is a lesson to be learned.

We learn that we deserve someone who will love us even in our darkest times. This person will embrace your scars and broken pieces. They will love you for your broken pieces and insecurities.

We learn that we should wait for consistence. Someone who will always be there incase of an emergency. If my world starts crashing in I need to be able to count on you. Someone who will put in continuous effort-even after they have you.

We learn to wait for the one with drive. Someone who wants to be somewhere in life and has goals they want to meet.

We learn to wait for someone with integrity. Someone that not only loves your body but your heart.

Wait for the one who will never make you wonder. You won’t have to wonder “what are we?” You will feel like a priority in their lives. You will never feel like a second choice.


Wait for the right person. They will be your best friend, your partner, and biggest fan. You could meet them tomorrow, next month, or next year. What a shame it would be to be stuck in a “situationship” and miss out on love.


You Can’t Fix a TOXIC Relationship

I think we can all say that at some point in our life our significant other has raised their voices, lost their temper, or needed some space to clear their heads. You can see how upset they are in their eyes. Disappointed in their actions. Sad that a fight came down to yelling and screaming. But what if that yelling and screaming turned into pushing and shoving? Those upset eyes were filled with rage instead of tears. That rage and darkness overcomes your light and before you know it you are dancing with the devil. That is when a relationship becomes toxic, and believe me when I tell you theres no coming back from that.

He was prince charming. Handsome, full of compliments and gifts. He makes you feel like you are the most important thing in his life. You feel like you are the only one who will ever matter and no other woman ever compared to you.

Little did you know that so much bad will come along with the good. You can’t escape from something you didn’t even see coming and before you know it you are sucked into this cycle.

The kind words and compliments quickly turn into screaming matches. You feel guilty- “This is my fault. I shouldn’t have argued. I should have let him have that next drink. I should’t be so controlling. I shouldn’t feel so insecure.” You tried to understand and make it better, but the closer you got to him the further he went away from you.

Suddenly you realize that you are a puppet and he holds the strings. Every time you fell, he kicked you while you were down.

A cycle appears- You fight, punches thrown, things broken, he left. He reappears with the most sincere of apologies and every abusers favorite line –“I love you, it will never happen again.”  

We believe them and we forgive them. We forgive them because we feel bad for being angry in the first place. Remember, this was our fault. We don’t know that our forgiveness makes us look weak to them. It sends the message that he can continue to do exactly what he is doing without consequences.

When we are stuck in this cycle with someone so complicated you don’t realize the negative affect it has on us. We internalize, push away family and friends. You slowly want to just stay at home, after all how many times can you come up with cover stories when someone asks why you have bruises all over your arms.

What happened to the prince at the beginning of this “love” story? The man who was so sweet and caring? His kind and loving words have turned into terrible, degrading, insult filled rants followed by hollow apologies and empty promises.

Maybe you’ve been stuck in this cycle for so long that you feel a connection to him. That when things are calm it feels anything but normal. If he isn’t apologizing for all the fighting and professing his love for me then he doesn’t care right? You have become addicted to the cycle.

He knows everything about you. Your deepest secrets, Your biggest fears. He uses them to cripple you. Maybe thats why you stay. He has every tool to destroy you, and he will use them.

You don’t realize this but he isn’t going to destroy you in one shot, he will chip away at you little by little. He will break you slowly, bit by bit, over time.

You see, toxic people need others to validate their own self worth. They get high off of our pain. They can’t control their own miserable lives so they destroy ours.

I know how hard it is to leave a toxic relationship. I barley made it out. I know how it feels to have self doubt. I know the internal conflicts. You know he loves you deep down, you know that under all that evil the prince is still in there somewhere. I know that part of you doesn’t believe that you can make it without them because they have become the most important person in your life.

But I am here to tell you: You Can. 

You are strong. You are brave. You are brave enough to walk away and strong enough to ignore the phone calls and texts that will follow. You deserve better than the repeated build ups and break downs. That knot in the middle of your stomach will go away. The pain in your chest that feels like your heart is physically breaking will stop. By putting your foot down and saying enough is enough you are taking back control of your life. You are taking the first steps to getting YOU back.

I promise you, you will meet someone who is twice the man that he is. You will smile again and genuinely be happy. He WILL be the prince that every little girl dreams about. I can not wait for the day that I find mine.

“I remember the day I prayed for the things I have now.” I have peace and happiness. I have my strength back and I am brave. Most of all, I have the strength and courage to refuse any behaviors that don’t fall in line with what I want in a man.

You can too.


A Letter To My Best Friend…



When I first met you I don’t think either of us knew the bond we would have today. That may be because I wanted to fight you, but either way I am so thankful for the friendship we have.

I love how we can go for weeks without seeing each other but the minute we are together it is like no time has passed. You literally know everything that happens in my life. What guy I’m thinking about pursuing to what stupid thing I did that day. You give the best pep talks when I am nervous before a date and encouragement when I am questioning my self worth.

You have been there for me through the good, bad, and ugly. You have seen me sobbing in tears on the floor to laughing so hard I almost pee my pants and have never judged me for it. We have the best memories and I can not wait to make more.

While we haven’t always supposed each others choices we are still there for each other no matter what.

When things fall apart we always help each other put everything back together.

You have stayed by my side through a very abusive relationship and almost losing my life. Even though I never told you the details until after I felt so safe knowing that even if I couldn’t tell you, you were still there no matter what. Judgement free.You helped me piece back together the pieces of my life and reminded me of how good of a woman I am. I know it was a huge shock and you felt almost betrayed that I didn’t tell you, but it was never about our friendship. It was about me being ashamed of what was going on. I am sorry I couldn’t tell you when I was going through it, but knowing that what I went through saved you pain and suffering completely made it worth it.

I hope that you know the beautiful and amazing person you are.

You are so smart, strong willed, and driven.

You deserve a man who supports and encourages you through everything in your life. While this year has been rough for you I can not wait until you meet the right man who deserves you. I can’t wait for you to introduce me to the actual man of your dreams, and I hope he loves you as much as I do. I hope he appreciates how much you love Mac Dre and how stubborn you are. You need a man who will dance and be wild with you, not control that part of you. That man, who I can’t wait to meet, will respect and cherish you.

You shouldn’t ever settle. You are one of the best people in this world.

I am so blessed to have you as my right hand. Thank you for always supporting me and being an amazing support system for Beau. I love you so much!


A Letter To My Sisters…


Sam and Gillian,

Being your big sister is one of the greatest blessings I have in my life. There is no one I would have rather grown up with, taught things to, or made memories with.

My love for you guys is unconditional and I hope you both know that no matter what happens in this life, you guys will always have me.

As your big sister it is my job to set the example of who to be and who not to be. I hope you guys learn from my mistakes and never settle. Never let a man put you below him or make you feel anything less than the most precious gift in his world. He should always respect you and encourage you.

You guys witnessed the scariest thing someone can go through. Watching me almost die couldn’t have been easy, but I hope you guys learned from that. I am so thankful for that at the same time. It has strengthened our bond and our family. You know now to never let a man take your strength away. Never give someone the power to take who YOU are away.

I hope you guys stay true to what you believe in and always strive to be the best you can be.

Don’t ever give up on your dreams, no matter how big. If you want to become a designer I will be the number one buyer. If you want to become a business owner I will be your number one customer. I will ALWAYS be your biggest fan.

I wish that you will always smile and know how beautiful you are. During the hardest time in my life you both were there to pick up the pieces. Literally picking me up, taking care of my child, helping me do the simplest things like wash my hair. You both were my strength when I didn’t have any left. You helped me find who I was again.

I wish you both realize the power you possess. You have the power to change the world, use it. You two are some of the most ambitious and inspiring people I know. Your drive and strength will take you as far as you wish to go in this life.

You have been the biggest help to me with my child. Stepping in so I can still have a social life. Watching him when I go to work so that I can provide a life for him. Being silly with him, but also stern when I need back up. He may not have a dad, but he does have the two best aunts any kid could have and that I am so thankful for.

I love you both more than you will ever know.

I am so proud to be your big sister.


Dating In A “Hook Up” World…


We live in a society of revolving doors. Guys picking a new girl every time they change their underwear. What happened to courting someone? Going out on a few dates before hopping into bed with someone?  The worst part is that its not just men doing it to us, ladies we are doing it to ourselves.

We have lowered our standards immensely from the time that our parents dated.

We have gotten to a point where its okay to waste each others time. We date, get close with a person, then drop them as if they never existed.

We should want so much more than what we are settling for.

I want to get to talk and get to know you. Date nights and the awkward meeting of the families. I want to laugh with you and to earn trust. Most of all I want respect.

I want you to respect me enough to tell me what is going on. Be verbal with how you are feeling than actions to follow that. How are we supposed to know when a relationship is over when it never really started?

I know that I want an old fashioned kind of love. Where doors are opened, trust is earned, respect is given, and time is valued.

But now we have millions of people at our disposal every single day. Look at all the dating apps- if someone doesn’t look the way we like we just swipe left and then a millisecond later a new face appears on our phones. We judge everyone by their looks and not who they actually are.

We guard ourselves so much because of the fact that everyone views the other person as disposable. We never let our walls down. We don’t have real, deep, or meaningful conversations. I want to talk about your feelings, I want to know about your deepest darkest secrets and fears in life, your goals and where you see yourself in 10 years.

Instead we “talk” for a little while, a few months go by and then its the classic line of “I really like you a lot but I am not really interested in a relationship right now, but we can still hangout.” We refuse to put labels on our relationships. We hangout all the time, talk to each other every day, you can become intimate but no we are not boyfriend and girlfriend. God forbid anyone knows that either of us are off the market. We have to keep our options open incase someone better comes along. We might have to actually put someone else’s needs before our own? What a shocking concept.

What happened to opening doors, pulling out chairs, going on multiple dates, meeting families? Taking the actual steps of a relationship? Instead, we will go out to dinner, send these pictures of ourselves, hook up, and accept not being boyfriend and girlfriend. When did this lack of respect and fear of commitment become our new normal?


You Owe It To Yourself To Never Settle


Everyone is settling. Thinking that because we hit a certain age we need to settle down and have children. We put this undeniable pressure on ourselves to do so. Settling down doesn’t have to mean settling for a bad man. We owe it to ourselves to wait for real, respectful, caring, genuine, and happy love.

We deserve someone who will make us see the world a little brighter than what it is. Someone who makes us feel safe and comforted. They can assure us without having to say it with words that they will always be there.

No matter what, you are always allowed to leave. If you ever find yourself in a relationship that starts to make you question your self worth-leave. It is okay to leave people who are holding you back, discouraging you from accomplishing your goals, or bringing you down. The person you are with should make you smile, not cry.

Dating in our generation is nothing more than a silly game. I don’t know how we went from our parents generation to ours. We hear of stories of our mothers being wined and dined, flowers bought, chairs being pulled out, flowers given. It sounds like a foreign land to us. How we went from that to a cheap dinner and “send me nudes” is beyond me. Or how about the late night text -“You up? Come over?”  Because that is exactly what I am going to do at 12am. Who is going to text who first? How many days should we wait in between phone calls? We don’t want to seem too needy, but still seem interested. What happened to respect? Not wasting each others time? Getting to know someone before getting in bed with them?

Don’t fall for someones charm and sweet words.

Don’t fall for someone just because they are giving you attention at the moment.

Don’t stay with someone just because you think you won’t be able to find someone better.

Don’t settle.

Fall for someone’s heart.

Fall for someone who motivates you and celebrates your achievements.

Fall for actions, not words.

Fall for someone who is going to stay.

It’s okay to forgive yourself for being human. We all have made mistakes and chose the wrong partner a few times, but that doesn’t mean you should settle for anything. Be kind to yourself. Don’t apologize for waking up and loving who you are. Look in that mirror and find yourself beautiful. A man that doesn’t respect you, doesn’t help you grow, or bring joy to your life isn’t the right one.

You owe it to yourself to never settle.