Tag Archive: Domestic Violence



Final Cover

Domestic Violence is a painful reality to too many people, both male and female alike. When constructing this book and gathering the very special women that stepped up, with no thought about, themselves or their personal gain; we tried to keep in mind that this is NOT just literature. Yes, unfortunately, in too many cases…this is reality. We must remember that we are all one. One part of creation; and we must find a way to live harmoniously. This book was not easy to write, there are so many ghosts hidden within the words. But we would be remiss, if we didn’t also recognize the love and kindness that is also written within each line.
We, of course, want to dedicate this book to our families; they have given us so many gifts…just in having had the pleasure of loving them. We hope that you all know how very much you mean to us. To our loved ones, who are watching down on us…we hope you are as pleased with this venture, as we all are.
To Her: We are sorry. We are sorry that you had to endure the pain, which most only read about. Know that every page written, has been about how very much we love you. And during those moments. When your mind takes you to that place of isolation…we hope you realize:
You
Are
Not
Alone

You Matter


You Matter

You matter

To the hundredth degree

You matter to you

And also to me

Your life in itself

Is an unrealized dream

You give life and love

To people not yet seen

You matter I tell you

Every breath that you take

Is encouragement to another

And the decisions they will make

You matter because simply

I have been there too

Lost, lonely, abandoned

Sometimes battered and bruised

You matter to me because

You will give someone else hope

Sometimes that’s all it takes

To remove a neck from the rope

You matter because today

Someone will here your tale

About how you didn’t give up

How you refused to fail

You matter always because

You survived sometimes brutal pain

If just to walk away and share how

One life is able to sustain

You matter to me my friend

I want to share you with the masses

Encouraging them to step up

Remove the rose colored glasses

Yes, you knew torment

I have felt the same

You are not a statistic

Tell the world your name

Walk ahead and prosper

You were meant for a brighter place

Show them your strength

It’s written all over your face

You matter my love

Because you survived and are here

Furthering my plea

Our Creator is always near

You matter my friend

And I’m so glad that you did

You walked to the head of the class

When others might have hid

You matter like family

I’m so glad that you escaped

And by doing so you helped

Others learn their way

You matter to the world

Because you would not hide away

You did nothing wrong

We’re so glad that you stayed

You matter to us all

So I hand the baton to you

So you can tell another

How much they matter too

~LM Young

My Rays of Light Radio

The Storm


The Storm

 

I have written and spoken many times about Domestic Violence. This is something that I, personally, survived. I know there are some people that may want me to be quiet about it and there are others that may NEED me to be quiet about it. But the problem with this is that I dream of a world where women don’t have to hide their faces in social media. I dream of a time and place where women don’t have to hide bruises or make excuses for a man that has no self-control.

Whether this is a world that you are unaware of or if it’s a life that you have and are trying to keep quiet…here is my message to you:

I survived a difficult cycle in my life…but there are others that are experiencing it and have no voice. I will continue to speak out on this, because whether it fits into our ideas about who a person “really” is or not…this behavior exists. Unless you have been through this, I don’t even think you could fathom what that life is like. And if any of us want this behavior swept under the rug or would prefer that it is not spoken on here or on our radio show…I am left to wonder why?

Everything in the darkness always comes to light…no doubt about that; even if that light is only there to show us who we really are.

Abuse comes in all sizes and shapes, all races, creeds and religions; we cannot think that because a woman doesn’t come forward when WE think she should…if she comes forward at all, that it isn’t true. There is nothing as tormenting as hiding behind bushes hoping that you won’t be seen. There is nothing quite like…fearing nighttime. There is nothing like being afraid everywhere you go…no one should have to live that way…yet there are those of us who will tell you…that struggle is very real.

I will not minimize it or make it seem “not THAT bad” to make another person more comfortable. What happened to me and so many other women should be screamed from the rooftops…only then will this learned behavior stop.

There is nothing like the damage that abuse does to you. It leaves scars and we carry those scars forever. We forever carry around the weight that those types of experiences taint our souls with. It is one thing to survive it…that in itself is miraculous…because too many of us aren’t lucky enough to escape and others of us are too afraid to try but it is quite another to have to break the cycle. The real struggle is when we find real love…that everlasting love and we are so busy watching for cues and clues of abuse that we destroy the innocent in our lives. Of course, that is the point of abuse, to destroy us for another person. I beg of you to not let that happen. I know it isn’t easy. Bruises are so much simpler to hide and heal than a soul that has been tortured.

I will forever speak out against this horrific life cycle. I may make people uncomfortable, but if that is the case…maybe we should ask ourselves …why? Why do you, I or anyone need this swept under the rug? Are we sick of hearing about it or are we hiding who we really are? Are we speaking out of line with the people in our lives? Calling one another names…belittling one another. Is this the best that we can do? Would silencing me make things easier?

Unfortunately silencing me will not change anything…and too many of my sisters are being battered and broken, by people that claim to love them. The time for awakening is now. We don’t have time to sit around and try to figure out why he hits, pushes, slaps, punches, or verbally assaults her. We have no more time to try to find an understanding about why he holds her captive monetarily. While I hope these individuals get the help that they need…it is not the victims place to try and FIX him…because you didn’t break him. Sometimes we have to love people from afar.

As for myself, I will continue to speak out against anyone…male or female that abuses another human being. No one should have to live this way and hiding from it …changes nothing. If you are a man or woman in this situation…speak out…you have a voice. You are not alone…reach out.

For all others that have requested that I silence my thunder…the storm is just beginning…buckle up.

I wish you all light and love.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/mrol

 

~LM Young


Recently, My Rays of Light Radio did a show about Domestic Violence.

The show was not just about Domestic Violence, in general terms…but I shared my own person struggle with this terrifying crime.

Violence on any level is inexcusable, but when the people that we love and trust, not only turn their backs…but their souls from us…it can feel devastating.

It was brought to my attention that perhaps I was just using my bout with abuse, to try and collect sympathy. I found this thought…deeply disturbing and I was hurt and angered by words from a stranger.

But please allow me to squash that ill placed thought.

I, nor anyone else, need sympathy. I do ask, however, that we all try to develop some sense of understanding and compassion for the women, children and men that are forced to live like this.
Is there a way out? Usually. But the victim…is often too afraid of the idea, if they were able to get away….what would happen if he found her? Can you imagine the anger and rage that would find an abuser, if his/her only form of entertainment has escaped? Can you imagine being afraid to breathe, for fear of getting caught. What kind of violence would be laid on him/her then? What if they have kids? Who can keep the children safe if the victim cannot keep herself safe and sound?

This is true fear.

Talking about violence, when you are the victim…is necessary. If we keep quiet about this condition, too many people live with, it will continue. I pray that was not the intention of the person who felt the need to extend his/her thoughts my way. Domestic Violence touches one in three women…every day. Women are struck, slapped, punched, kicked, choked, raped, mentally manipulated, financially held prisoner and spiritually depleted. They are yelled at demeaned, demoralized, cursed at, and belittled. This is not a ploy for sympathy…it is simply the truth. This happens every day, to women, children, and men alike.

My Rays of Light Radio Network…will constantly shine light on issues…that thrive in the darkness.
Do I need sympathy, NO. Do I ask for your sympathy? NO.
But I caution you…we wary of your thoughts…for you always get from the universe…all that you put into it.

My Rays of Light Radio Network

Surviving The Shadows


Surviving The Shadows
October is Domestic Violence Awareness month…so it seems only fitting that we would bring this conversation to My Rays of Light Radio.
But I would be remiss in talking about Domestic Violence and the violence that brings…without being completely honest about why this subject strikes a chord within me.
I can remember the very first time he hit me. I remember the cologne he was wearing…the way his cold calloused hand felt across my soft…smooth  cheek. I can vividly remember the shock and how my mind was trying to wrap around the fact that he had hit me. What could I have done to deserve such a response?
What I would soon learn is that I would have not needed to do anything. Maybe he was just having a bad day…or possibly the clothes I was wearing may have been unsuitable for his mood. All I knew was that…never in my life had I ever experienced anything as physical and psychologically traumatic…as what was coming.
The abuse seemed to go on forever…I started making journal entries in red ink…every time he abused me. It wound up being right around 80 times…in a few months. He had slapped, punched, kicked and choked me. He had forced me to have sex with him…he tortured me physically and mentally. The worst part was the sick laughter that would surely follow…once he realized that he had basically won the round. To this day…laughter makes me feel a little queezy.
I will never forget the day he grabbed my neck and just choked me…until I passed out. He was in control and he knew it…but just in case he had also managed to get a gun.
He would break into my house and into my bedroom….where he would watch me sleep…until he was ready to rape or beat me.
I was constantly praying that God would allow me to fall asleep forever…but every day I woke up…in this HELL…in this pure evil existence.
No one could seem to help me…and those who may have been willing to help…would have been putting themselves in danger too…and I didn’t want to be responsible for their safety. I figured that if I couldn’t keep myself safe…how could I help anyone else?
The police wouldn’t do much…and I had him arrested almost every week…and after 24 hours….he would be released…just to beat down my door again. I had an order or protection…but the chief of police told me…it’s really just paper…and there was very little that they could do. I was then advised to keep having him arrested…and the judge would get sick of seeing him after 30 or so arrests. I couldn’t believe my ears…my heart felt broken…me whole life felt like it was shattered and no one seemed worried.
I couldn’t really blame my family or friends…since I hid so much from them…out of shame and humiliation. Still, I saw no light at the end of this tunnel. And it was definitely the longest and darkest tunnel I had ever encountered in my life. He was constantly blaming me for the abuse…if I hadn’t said this or that, if I hadn’t spoken so sharply, if I had dressed differently, …if only I could stop playing and become exactly who he needed me to be…the beatings would stop. But by this time…I knew it was a lie…nothing I did would change who he was resigned to be.
He held my life prisoner. I couldn’t determine which was more frightening…to be battered and abused…or the fear that I would run far away and have him catch me. What I realized was that…I was also imprisoning myself…out of fear of the unknown.
I don’t know what caused it or how my mind had developed the clear thought that I had to leave…I just know that once I had decided that I needed to go…there was nothing that was going to change my mind about it.
I realized it was him or me…
Convinced that he would not be happy until he stole my last breath…I had to survive this.
All these years later, it still turns my stomach to think about him and who I was back then. I remember the fear, apprehension, the bitterness and the sadness I lived with every day. While I am forever thankful for the life I have now…life will not allow me to forget the torture that plagued my body, mind and soul…back then.
Why is it important to rehash all of these past memories? Because there is someone out there listening tonight…who much like me…can’t grasp the ideas or thoughts that there is something brighter lying ahead for them. I choose to share this story here, tonight, with each one of you…because certain fears condition us…
There are no social media selfies…no videos of family festivities…my life is lived cautiously. I would wish this on no one.
For those of you listening who may be in a similar situation…or you suspect someone is living like this…please reach out to someone. Let them know that they are not alone…rise up and embrace them. She is afraid…she knows fear like most people only see in movies…be her happy ending.
Let’s be her light at the end of the tunnel…


How Would You Want To Be Remembered

 

I have been waiting to write about the Ray Rice video. I didn’t want to allow my previous experience to cloud what I needed to say about this situation. Often we can carry our own baggage into other people’s situations and that is unfair. I took the time to give both of them the benefit of the doubt, and decided to focus on what should really matter. So today, I feel confident and comfortable with my thoughts and ideas.

There are dynamics that none of us may understand about Ray Rice and his, now-wife. We don’t know how loving they are now. We do not know if the violence has subsided or if it has escalated. We can only hope that it is something they have addressed and have worked to get past. It is none of my business and I sincerely wish the two of them well.

I think, as parents, we give our children the wrong ideas about violence. We will solidly teach our sons not to hit girls. Some will even tell their sons that they should not hit girls…no matter what! And our daughters will sit by idly and listen. While we may think that we are teaching our sons to be better men…what are we teaching our daughters? Often the biggest lessons we give our children….are those that go unspoken. If we teach our sons that it is not acceptable to hit girls…but teach them that we expect them to defend themselves against other boys…what are we teaching our daughters? Are we creating a war between the sexes? Wouldn’t we be better parents if we armed all of our children with love and the truth…rather than thoughts of retaliation or rage?

As a woman who has endured domestic violence, please know that I am not excusing any abuse at all. The abuse I endured was inexcusable; and I have to admit that after a while…it became a matter of wanting to get him before he got me. I knew that every day my life could have been ended…by the efforts of someone that held no value in life, in general. But we must take a different look at an old problem, we should be teaching ALL of our children that it is not okay to hit ANYONE. Simply because, it isn’t.

It isn’t okay to strike someone, simply because we cannot find effective means of communication; or because the person we are debating or arguing with cannot “get” where we are coming from. If the discussion gets so heated that we “need” to physically offend the other person…it’s time to take that long walk. Give yourself the gift of a break. Allow your soul time to heal your thoughts…because it will. Learn to let go of anything that you cannot control. Instead, worship nature and the beauty that surrounds you. Concentrate on minimizing your breathing process. Allow your heart rate to become normal. Think about the birds singing or the crickets chirping. Listen for the children’s laughter. Feel the rustling of leaves in your heart….remember that you can create the change.

We should teach our children better coping skills. We should teach the value of the time out….not as a punishment, but as a means of realigning ourselves with our souls. Often we allow our ego to override the thoughts our souls have set up for us. Keeping in mind that our souls are here to elevate us and anything less just weighs us down.

Do I think that Ray Rice should have hit, punched or spat on his, then fiancé? NO. I find great offense in the fact that, at least one time in his life, he felt that behavior was okay. I appreciated the televised conference where he took responsibility for his error in judgment. But, unfortunately, often the apology can come too late. An “I’m sorry”, will not matter when there is a funeral being planned. And while this was not the case with Ray Rice…1 in 3 women are battered to the point of death. And 835,000 men are assaulted by their spouses or girlfriends, every year.

It is my hope that we do not take either statistic lightly. It is not funny when men are the victims of domestic violence. There are, most likely, so many unreported cases of men being abused by women. There are many reasons for this. Perhaps he doesn’t want to feel like less than a man. He may not want to be ridiculed by the authorities. I have to think this is a possibility, because I have felt the same way when I reported my abuse. The police and even the police chief sort of brushed it off. I cannot imagine how difficult that would be for a man…and my heart aches for all victims of abuse. It is not and should not be acceptable for men or women to be verbally, emotionally or physically abused…it MUST stop.

We are accountable for our own actions and words. Why would we treat people in a way that we would go to war about…if it were our children we were talking about?

Well, I have great news, because we are talking about our children. Our children are assaulting one another and we have the power to make changes. We should treat everyone in such a way that we would want to be treated.

Encourage our children to speak verbally…and that does not mean to verbally assault one another. It means to learn to communicate, in a loving and thoughtful way. Will this always work? Probably not, but isn’t it at least worth the consideration? Our children are killing one another. They are maiming one another’s souls…with their vile verbiage.

Lastly, allow me to say this: we are in a unique position to change things. We can begin to heal the damage that was done…but it cannot be done by carrying around the weight of thoughtless and careless people. We must step up and continue being the blueprint that others can follow. Be mindful of our thoughts and decisions. And before hitting another person…for whatever reason….be sure that we are prepared for the reaction and response to that decision.

Let us learn from the video of Ray Rice, if the actions of our lives were played out on video for the entire world to criticize and ridicule…would we be proud of our actions and reactions?

Live each day as if it is your last…how would you want to be remembered?

 

Join My Rays of Light Radio Tuesday Night at 10pm EST as we talk about this important issue

 

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/mrol/2014/09/17/why-does-he-stay

What About Me


What About Me

I hate you she cries

Vile names he blurts out

Mommy and Daddy

What’s wrong now

This marriage was a mistake

A huge waste of my time

What about me?

Says innocent eyes

You are worthless

Cheater not a real man

But what about me?

Wrings her little hands

Hit me I dare you

I will have you locked up

Mommy what about me

Cries a voice not so tough

Throw out my clothes

I can start a life with her

As inaudible sobs

Careful not to stir

Mommy and Daddy

If this was a big mistake

What does that make me

Just another promise to break?

Start another life

Throw my daddy in prison

Do you hear her heart breaking

Are you even listening?

She loves you both

Use caution in your debates

Or you…Mommy and Daddy

Will be her first heart ache

So when waging this war

Use caution and care

For a little…what about me

May be standing there

                            ~ LM Young

Why Didn’t She Leave


Why Didn’t She Leave

Why didn’t she leave

The topic of conversation

Did you REALLY want to go

Verbal annihilation

Why didn’t she run

Why didn’t she call out

Why didn’t she tell

Unheard screams and shouts

Could it really be that bad

Was she really getting beat

What happens when the assault

Becomes her only retreat

What did she do to him

He seems not THAT type at all

Maybe her bumps and bruises

Were from an accident or fall

Maybe she is making too much

I mean all couples squabble

We don’t want to get involved

And make HIM feel awful

Wait…someone shouted

What are you saying

Her soul is the debt

Her body is re-paying

Why didn’t she leave

A negative connotation

What is happening to us

Our friends…cities…nations

Why didn’t she leave

Maybe because she knows

Her fear…it is real

And every day it grows

So maybe today instead

Of pointing fingers and blame

We can spare her the judgment

Casting unnecessary shame

How can I help you

Is there someone I can call

Making “Why didn’t you leave”

Something we don’t say at all

                          ~LM Young

 My Rays of Light Radio


My Rays of Light Radio with LM Young.

Life Won’t Let Us Forget


Life Won’t Let Us Forget

Life can throw us curves; we have all experienced instances or situations that we feel we aren’t prepared for. If we re-examine our lives we can see more clearly why these things happened.

My heart was broken as a teenager, for what seemed to be no reason at all. I sought answers that would never come. We have all been through that; the tears that seem to never end…until one day, unexpectedly, they do.

I remember when my very good friend stopped being that. It was, as if my world began crumbling beneath my feet. I tried to find logic in the situation, where there was none. I was certain that I would never trust like that again…until one day I did.

I remember the first time that a child hurt my daughter’s feelings; and her tears seemed to be weighted with cement, her heartbreak became mine. I have never been so angry or sad in my life. Something happens to us when our children are targeted. In that moment of sadness for my daughter…it felt like the weight of her world crashed on top of my head, I felt helpless.

I recall the very first time I was hit by someone that said they cared about me. I had never been struck by another individual, it felt unreal…yet too real. This was my first bout with physical abuse and I felt completely vulnerable. It seemed to be a long road for me; it took many weeks and maybe months before I could sleep without a light on. The nightmares can still wake me up; although now I wake knowing that he can’t hurt me any longer.

I remember the first time I was told that I would forever live, with this disease called Lupus. I had heard of Lupus, but wasn’t really sure how it would affect me. What I learned is that Lupus affects everyone differently; I had good and not-so-good- days. I could go into a “flare” and stay there for extended periods of time. It was like having a severe case of flu…that just never seemed to stop.

These are all lessons that we aren’t permitted to forget.

I learned that not everyone would love me as I loved them, but that was okay. We are all individuals and how we express and we exhibit love will be as unique as we are. We may feel that a breakup is the end of happiness as we know it; and quite possibly that is true. But it is only true because that was just first level happiness; there will always be bigger and better things ahead for us. Remember to forgive that first love that broke your heart…later in life, you will grow to understand that it was only supposed to be temporary. Looking at the life I have now, I am thankful for every broken heart I endured…because it led me to this wonderful place in my life.

Maybe all of our very best girlfriends won’t betray our trust; but life does have a way of re-aligning us with our Source. We may not see the logic or reasoning, behind why we are feeling the pain; but when it is time…it will be made clear.

Children are a sore spot for anyone that loves them. There are so many things that we go through as adults; that we would never in a million years wish on our children. When our children are hurt or in any kind of pain, be it physical, spiritual or emotional, it is difficult to watch. But we should try to understand that our children also have a path and that pain may be part of their growth, as well.

Domestic violence is a burden that far too many people have to bear; a cross carried by men, women and children alike. The scars that it causes are far reaching, even past the initial success of getting out of the situation. Always have a plan, do not allow yourself to become anyone’s sacrificial lamb…more importantly do not take the anger and fury that your experience created in you…to poison the life of another. Look for the signs of someone who may grow to be abusive. Listen for the emotional sands of the hour glass to spill out. Does he/she raise a hand…even in jest? Does he/she make demeaning and humiliating jokes about you? This is something that we cannot afford to be blindsided about. If you are in trouble, tell someone…tell everyone.

Lupus is a vile disease. It destroys your immune system. It can take your life far too soon. I have had many medical issues, due to this silent enemy. Learn all that you can about it, because even if you do not have this illness…chances are you know someone who does.

Life does not allow us to forget these lessons, we shouldn’t want to forget them. There are something’s that you may only experience one time in your life…what did you learn from it? What knowledge did you carry away with you? If any of these experience or life lessons caused you to become bitter…look at them more closely.

There are other life lessons that we are also gifted; to take away one would mean that you are also defaulting on the great ones too.

The first time you hear a newborn baby cry. The first time you lost a tooth. The first time that he/she said “I love you”; and you can’t wait until it is said again. The first flower blooming in the spring. The leaves changing colors in the fall. The first time you smelled pumpkin pie. The time you heard a baby laugh…from deep within their soul and you have to laugh too. The day you were told…you are in remission. A walk at night when you are just gazing at the stars.

Nothing that you experience is a waste of time. You cannot turn off the bad without also turning off the good. Embrace all that life has to offer you; it’s an abundant supply of LOVE.

Remember that there are also life lessons…you wouldn’t ever want to forget!!

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