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Peace & Hope
If I could give my mother anything this Mother’s Day, I would give her peace; she’s been through so much. I remember my parents being happy, but then my dad changed and was getting angry all the time. He would threaten my mom and me constantly. And then, he started hitting my mom. I never saw it happen, but I didn’t have to because I saw the bruises. It made me so angry seeing my mom being treated this way. My mom tried to get legal help to protect us from my dad, but he threatened her again which made her even more confused and scared. Then, late one night, my mom grabbed me and we went to Women In Distress where we were given a safe place to stay. While there, my mom got the legal help she needed to keep our dad away. I met weekly with one of Women In Distress’ therapists and learned how to deal with my anger. Because of the help my mom and I got at Women In Distress we now live a life free of my dad’s abuse. Now all I want is for my mom to finally have the peace she deserves.
It pains me to read my son Daniel’s letter and remember life with my ex-husband. My 14-year old son wrote it when his teacher asked him “What would you like to give your mother this Mother’s Day?” Like me, Daniel* was deeply affected by his father’s abuse. We both were terrified of my now ex-husband’s temper. Eventually, I found the courage to leave.
When Daniel and I arrived at Women In Distress we only had the clothes on our backs and a locket with a picture of my deceased parents that I had managed to grab as we fled our home. I was afraid, but safe, and that’s what mattered. Women In Distress gave us shelter, clothing, basic necessities, and counseling to deal with the emotional turmoil… all at no-cost which was a blessing because I left my abuser with basically nothing. When I had a grueling experience trying to get a restraining order to protect us from my husband, Women In Distress’ Injunction for Protection program, came to my aid, helping me every step of the way. With their assistance, we rebuilt our lives away from my ex-husband. Daniel received counseling through Women In Distress’ therapy program and learned to cope with his anger towards his father. And, I’m happy to share that we are now safe and living a life free of violence.
-Daniel’s mom, Hailey*
* Names have been changed to protect the survivors’ identities.
This Mother’s Day, I’m asking you to join me in making a gift to Women In Distress as you remember those special, strong women in your life. Your gift has the power to change the lives of other women and mothers who now find themselves caught in the terrible cycle of domestic violence. They come to Women In Distress, many with children, seeking safety and the help to get a new path free of the violence and fear. All services are free and confidential, including emergency shelter and safety planning, counseling, therapy and other specialized help such as getting a legal injunction for protection.
It is because of supporters like you, they are able to get the help they need.
As a special way to say thank you, gifts of $250* or more will be recognized on the Hal Herman Children’s Fund celebration wall. It can be your name or in honor of a special person in your life. Through the Hal Herman Children’s Fund and the generosity of supporters like you, your gift is giving hope and providing services to mothers and children affected by domestic violence.
Thank you for joining with us to make Mother’s Day even more special by providing help to survivors of domestic violence each and every day of the year.
President & CEO of Women In Distress of Broward County
*All donors contributing $250 or more will be contacted for their Hal Herman Children’s Fund Celebration Wall information.
To make a donation to give safety to a mother like Hailey, click here.