I recently met up with a friend whose partner (in secret), had racked up substantial debts, which they were repaying at $550 per week. If you asked her partner what he’d bought, I don’t believe he would be able to tell you, such was the lack of value placed on the items. It has added up to a huge chunk out of their wages. Financial abuse is insidious, tied in with emotional and mental abuse, and at it’s heart, control. Ultimately, living with someone whose goals aren’t aligned with yours, is unworkable. Being lied to, having money taken out of your account and being forced to withdraw what you have saved in order to live, is more common than most people think. It consists of regularly making up excuses when you can’t afford to go out, whilst trying to keep the household running and school supplies bought. It is incredibly stressful.
I have seen and heard it all in my time. I have seen people I love left with nothing after sacrificing everything, in order to pay off debts that aren’t even theirs. I have seen people trapped by ill health and other issues, rendering it harder to leave. I have seen people promised money over the Christmas period, or a partner swearing that they would pay their share, and then not do so. I have seen it all, and wept with those on the receiving end.
I have written an ebook about financial, emotional and mental abuse, available on iBooks and Amazon Kindle. It is such an important subject, and my main goal was to help people feel less alone. The fact that you are still here and fighting for yourself and any children you may have is extraordinary! It takes such a massive effort (and toll), when you are locked out of your own life; financial matters and fines, debts and betrayal hidden from you. If this is you, keep going, please. I have seen lives rebuilt after suffering these particular traumas. I have seen a woman five years down the road- and now financially secure-cradling the hands of another, promising that they too shall get through it. I believe her.
I am honoured to be featured in Anastasia Amour’s Blogger Spotlight for February. If you haven’t checked out her blog as yet, you are missing something special. This young woman is highlighting what it means to have self-esteem, and encourages her readers to stop listening to the negative voices in their heads. She has become a dear friend, and I love her dearly.
Lived to Tell is now available as an ebook. How it came to be is extraordinary, as is the story behind it. I sought refuge in writing, from the time I was a child. When I was eleven, I wrote a story about being thrown through the air, a bad man behind the plunge. I would […]
Thankyou for believing in me and for the unbelievable support I received during this year. Having my book launched in 2013 was both thrilling and terrifying. The messages and love made me buoyant. If I could give you one further message as this year winds up, it is this. You can survive, you can endure and you can overcome. I have a situation at the moment, which has rocked me to my core. That is how these things happen isn’t it? Unplanned and swift, without any notice. Here we are, minding our own business, ambling along, when thud! I was stunned by the visage of my tree of life falling. I started shaking, and then I cried. I talked my truth, and held my child. Shocks have a habit of seeping into the festive season, have you noticed? Everything is so concentrated. The need for more time, more energy. Day five, I am feeling stronger. I will make it. A tree fell, and I am crestfallen. If I put it in a pot, decorate it with bells and lights, it will be pleasing throughout Christmas. In 2014, I shall plant a new tree. It will be small, but with dedicated care, it shall grow. I shall grow. Remember throughout this season, to gather your thoughts, make time for a cup of tea, and breathe. Just breathe.
After a concentrated, delightful weekend, I faced a weird day. One of those days when you feel out of sorts. I got home from pickup, the most pressing feature being getting feeling back through the right side of my body. A hot bath then voltage via my Tens machine! Yes! A missed call from my beautiful publicist, saying that Radio National wanted to interview me for White Ribbon Day. Oh my goodness! I called her back and she said I was to be interviewed live at 5.15pm! I felt a weight of responsibility on my shoulders. My little girl was excited and declared she would hold my hand throughout the interview. What a price to pay. It is a daily price. The pain never fades, in any respect. I am not doing any of this for me. I could have written children’s books from the start! I am whimsical and it is what I relish. I am ill-prepared for my story. It is ill-prepared for me.
My daughter is on her headphones, listening to Katy Perry, and singing her lungs out. We are cool! I feel the weight of responsibility on my shoulders. I am so sorry, so very sorry, for all those that didn’t survive. I am hoping to lead the way for all those that did and wonders what happens next. I am so glad I am here. I understand those that couldn’t hang on. At the end, there is nothing but love. It is hard to rebuild a life. I am still constructing, but after the violence ends, there is nothing but joy throughout the whole process. I am thinking of all who have been told they were nothing, have been abused in any manner possible this White Ribbon Day. Believe me, you are everything. xxx
http://www.jojopublishing.com/html/s01_home/home.asp I received a text from an old friend, telling me my book was listed on a site. She sent me a link. I found it confronting. The girl in the picture is me. This is my story, condensed into a book. I don’t know how I feel tonight, as I am so tired. Confronted, scared, proud. Not ready. Over-prepared. Why do we have big experiences? Simply to endure them, and hopefully survive? Should we put them in a box, sit on the box, bind it tightly with packing tape and shove it into the recesses of our mind? There are many people who are seared into my heart. They are the ones who shared their stories with me. The teacher who was tutoring the kids in the children’s ward when I was sixteen and having more surgery on my beat-up body. She had been told that I had been raped and thrown off a building. What it must have taken to sit with a traumatized teen, to tell me of her own rape… I looked at the beautiful, functional woman in her thirties, heard her describe her family, and her life. It gave me hope that I could do that too, and have what she had. I saw a survivor, not a victim. Yes, we must tell our stories. They die inside us if we don’t. Before they perish, they rot our souls and our minds, and destroy anything worth having. I took my packing box, opened the bastard and let the light in. I am now in my thirties, and I have a family too. Thank you for sharing your story, teacher-lady, whose name has been lost in the mists of time. I remember your face, your spirit and more than these, I remember your story.