It's Vital To Recognize The Signs Of Emotional And Physical Abuse Before It's Too Late

It's Vital To Recognize The Signs Of Emotional And Physical Abuse Before It's Too Late

I've seen so many of my friends fall in love and be the happiest they've ever been but I've also seen so many lose themselves and fall apart because of this vicious thing wearing a mask called "love" disguised under a face called "toxicity."


Love is incredible. Love is kind.

I've seen so many of my friends fall in love and be the happiest they've ever been but I've also seen so many lose themselves and fall apart because of this vicious thing wearing a mask called "love" disguised under a face called "toxicity."

This Valentine's season, I want people to be so in love they can't fall asleep at night, so in love that they catch themselves smiling in the middle of the day, so in love that their stomachs become the home to millions of tiny little butterflies that flutter at the thought of their loved one's name, so in love that they feel alive, and intrigued and excited to live every day and take on the world.

Love is positive, love is encouraging others, love is patience, and empathy, it's communication and understanding, it's pushing your partner to become the best they can be, and being open to their thoughts and opinions. It's sparking curiosity and knowledge within each other, it's adventure, it's compassion, it's passion, it's reciprocation, it's freedom. It's feeling safe in their arms.

Love should not be harsh or controlling or manipulative.

Love does not come in words of possessiveness and forcing restraint against your partner.

Love is not isolation and making your partner stay in instead of going out with their friends because you get jealous.

Love does not discriminate.

Love is not apologies with presents after each bruise or tear.

Love is not forced isolation or abuse.

Love is not danger in the presence of each other.

Love is not abusive whether it be emotional or physical.

Love can make you blind to what love is and that is its biggest threat.

It's important to recognize the signs of abuse despite the mask it wears. It's important to let your friends, your loved ones, your family members to get out of an abusive relationship as immediately as they can. Often times it is easy to fall into the vicious cycle of abuse and continue to say that you will leave the next time it happens.

Leaving is not easy. On average, it takes a victim seven times to leave before staying away for good. Statistics recognize that it is hard to leave. Abuse is a disgusting thing that nobody deserves to go through and something that I wish could be prevented before the very first time. It's also important to recognize and acknowledge the signs in their earliest nature.

"More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and more than 1 in 4 men (28.5%) in the U.S. report having experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime."

That is a truly terrifying statistic that is not spoken about nearly enough.

This Valentine's season, I want more people to be familiar with the signs of abuse and recognize how easily disguisable they are.

Love should not come in words of harm, or actions that invoke pain.

Everyone deserves love in it's purest form and I hope that one day everyone is able to experience it.

If you are a victim of abuse please do not be afraid to confide in someone you trust. It's never too late to get out and seek help and support.

"If you think you're in an abusive relationship, it's time to get out of it. Confide in someone, such as a parent, trusted adult, health provider, or friend. Let them support you and help you end the relationship and stay safe. If you have been physically harmed, get medical attention or call the police. Get help from a counselor or therapist if you feel confused or unsure of whether you're in an abusive relationship."

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Surviving Domestic Violence And Learning To Love Again

Never tell a survivor that it is "easy" to bounce back from their lowest point.


*I personally have NOT been through any of the events described here, nor am I a domestic violence survivor. I write this with the help of sources and personal stories/experiences.*

When you are a victim of domestic violence, you don't want to tell anyone. You fear that no one would believe you.

When you are a victim of domestic violence, your guard only gets higher and higher. You are afraid of letting anyone in.

You are afraid to speak up, even when you always could. You are terrified of fighting back.

What if it hurts more this time?

You don't think you will survive. You don't think you will make it.

You will.

Survivors and current victims still have difficulty trying to get back out again, to feel normal. Once something horrible happens to them the first time, they are hesitant and super sensitive for a really long time, possibly for the rest of their lives.

Domestic violence is defined as a type of harm, and this harm can be physical or mental. Did you know that it does not have to be from someone who is in a relationship with you? Domestic violence accounts for anyone who lives with you in the same home, whether it is your boyfriend, girlfriend, mother, father, or sibling.

That is a common misconception we tend to find with DV. Abusers do not have to be dating you. You just have to live under the same roof with this person in order for it to qualify as domestic violence.

Most often, females are typically the main targets. Males are typically the suspects. 85% of domestic violence victims are women, and women are most often victimized by someone they know.

BUT men can be victimized, too. More than 1 in 4 men have experienced some type of domestic violence by an intimate partner or someone they familiarize themselves with.

These numbers do not lie, and it is so very unfortunate and sad. It keeps happening and happening.

Warning signs for domestic violence include controlling behaviors (not allowed to hang out with friends or family; money handler); threatening to hurt you, your children, or your pets; showing extreme jealousy of everything you do; constantly putting you down; preventing you from making your own decisions, etc.

All of it is scary, but one of the scariest things to get back into is loving someone again. As a survivor, you tend to feel like you will never find a good relationship again or be able to build your life back up. You are unable to trust or let your guard down. You think every relationship will end up in the gutter.

This is not always true. There is always hope, and there is help for that.

You are able to love again, and there are guidance options if you have any questions or fears.

Break The Silence Against Domestic Violence is a non-profit organization that helps victims AND survivors with any problems, issues, or fears they may currently have. This group provides a nationwide network of resources and support for survivors and families affected by domestic violence.

If you need guidance, help, or just someone to talk to, contact them! You can find all of their information on their website or Facebook page.

If you or someone you know is a victim/survivor of domestic violence and is still currently struggling for help, please call these phone numbers or go to these websites.

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233

Break The Silence Against Domestic Violence: 1-855-287-1777 (The Hotline) (Break The Silence Against Domestic Violence)

Any kind of help matters and you are not alone, ever.

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To The Guy Who Told Me Not To Be Me, Nice Try

He will not silence me.


He told me to never cut my hair short because it would make me look too masculine.

So, I sent him pictures of three different pixie cuts and asked him which one I should get.

He told me not to wear red lipstick because it made me look like a slut.

So, I bought every shade from blush rose to maroon.

He told me not to buy heels taller than one and a half inches tall because it's unattractive for a girl to be taller then the guy she is with.

My favorite shop was having a sell on a beautiful pair of three-inch stilettos. I bought them.

He told me that I was putting on a few extra pounds and that I shouldn't order dessert on our next dinner date.

Did he honestly think I would say no to the red velvet cake that our waitress offered?

He flirted with the waitress, saying that I should "look more like her."

I wrote down his number on our receipt before we left the restaurant.

He told me not to leave my "feminine products" on the counter because it's embarrassing.

When his friends came over for guys night, I organized my tampons and pads nicely on the bathroom shelf.

He told me that I couldn't talk to my best friend of 12 years because he was a guy.

I invited him to watch a movie with us at the local cinema the following week.

He told me not to order wine at the bar with him and his work friends because he didn't want me to seem "trashy."

I ordered jack and coke instead.

He told me not to be a feminist because it meant that I thought I was better than him.

My new "GIRL PWR" shirt is my favorite.

He told me to be silent.

He told me that I think too much and that I speak what I think too often.

He told me nobody cares about what I have to say.

He told me that the things I say don't matter.

So, I wrote a poem about him.

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