The Hurricane of Domestic Violence – 4 (2020)

the hurricane of domestic violenceRemember Me

How many of you remember the name of a hurricane that you or someone you know was in? That name is distasteful in your mouth for that name. If someone says the name Camille, Helena, Andrew to you, what do you think about? You remember those names?

If three women are killed daily in the United States due to domestic violence, will you remember these names? All these names are victims of domestic violence that were killed by the hurricane that was in their lives — the abuser.
Chandra May – age 29
Linda Pa Vue – age 29
Leticia Vela – age 25
Francisa Ramirez – age 38
Lisbet Mendez – age 24
Stacy Locknath – age 26
Stephanie Killeen – age 46
Gretchen Rust – age 64
Tracy Reedy – age 50
Theresa Watts – age 36

We do not want your name to be added to this list. Each of these ladies continued to think that it wouldn’t happen to them. That as a hurricane comes in waves that the storms of this time in their lives would pass again.

Have you told anyone about the hurricanes in your life with your abuser? May I plead with you to tell someone? Let someone know what is going on in your life.

Prepare for the hurricane of your life. Check back at the blogs from Reach Out Speak Out. Check back at the Facebook posts that give you a list of the things you need to do to prepare for the hurricane of domestic violence.
Now is hurricane season. Now is the time for you to prepare for your personal hurricane.

We do not want to add your name to the list above. We do not want you to think that this pattern is going to go away. Protect yourself and your children. You as the abused person have a responsibility to you and your children.
Reach Out Speak Out is here to help you navigate through this hurricane in your life.

We are a non-profit ministry and our focus is on those that are in our faith based community that are in a domestic violence relationship. 501(C)(3)47-1630804 Thank you in advance.

Remember, your time, talent and money can and will save someone’s life.

*To read additional information about the author of this blog, you may be interested in her book called, “It Started With A Hamburger”. It can be downloaded from Amazon.com All royalties go to Reach Out Speak Out.

In August, you will hear from a man who was a domestic violence victim as a child tells his story.

The Hurricane of Domestic Violence – 3 (2020)

the hurricane of domestic violenceA hurricane has hit your family and home. I pray that you prepared for the dangers and devastation that hit your family. I pray that no family member lost their life because of the hurricane.

When the hurricane is over we can finally get our lives back in order. The electric finally comes back on. We can then turn our air conditioning on and cool down from the sweltering heat that we had to endure while the hurricane was going on and deal with the aftereffects of the hurricane.

How does the information above and below represent a domestic violence relationship?
1. The hurricane/domestic violence hits your family/home
2. The abused starts to pray again and again that the family will be spared and that God will protect them again
3. Then the hurricane/domestic violence is over for this round and it is time to get back to business getting everything cleaned up. Whether the cleaning involves broken toys and chairs and dishes. Or a broken spirit from mental and emotional abuse. There is loss. Not just the loss of the abused but the children also had to endure the loss. If the children were not abused, they had to look on to see the destruction of the family.

DEATHS DURING A HURRICANE COMPARED TO DEATHS BECAUSE OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
Catastrophes

Hurricanes And Related Deaths In The United States, 1998-2017

Year Total
hurricanes (1)
Made landfall
as hurricane
in the U.S.
Deaths (2)
1998 10 3 23
1999 8 2 60
2000 8 0 4
2001 9 0 42
2002 4 1 5
2003 7 2 24
2004 9 6 (3) 59
2005 15 7 1,518
2006 5 0 0
2007 6 1 1
2008 8 4 (4) 41
2009 3 1 (5) 6
2010 12 0 11
2011 7 1 44
2012 10 1 (6) 83
2013 2 0 1
2014 6 1 2
2015 4 0 3
2016 7 3 36
2017 10 4 147

(1) Atlantic Basin.
(2) Includes fatalities from high winds of less than hurricane force from tropical storms.
(3) One hurricane (Alex) is considered a strike but not technically a landfall.
(4) Includes one hurricane (Hanna) which made landfall as a tropical storm.
(5) Hurricane Ida, which made landfall as a tropical storm.
(6) Excludes Hurricane Sandy which made landfall as a post-tropical storm.

Source: Insurance Information Institute from data supplied by the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Hurricane Center.

iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-hurricanes

Deaths due to Domestic Violence
Three women are murdered every day, on average, by a current or former male partner in the United States. (Huffington Post)

365 x 3 = 1095

Are you going to be a statistic? There is a way to leave the hurricane of your life safely. You can read our previous blogs, look at our Facebook page, go to our website ReachOutSpeakOut.org. Or email us at ReachOutSpeakOutDV@gmail.com.

Reach Out Speak Out needs your help. Nothing is too small. Whether it is your time, talent or money, we can use it. When a hurricane of life/domestic violence hits someone in your community, the resources become used up very quickly. We don’t want to have to turn someone down. As an insurance policy may tell you that you did not have the right coverage to cover the loss from the hurricane. We at Reach Out Speak Out want to help be your insurance policy. We have helped many families in the seven years that we have been here to help the Tampa Bay area. We are a non-profit ministry and our focus is on those that are in our faith based community that are in a domestic violence relationship. 501(C)(3)47-1630804 Thank you in advance.

Remember, your time, talent and money can and will save someone’s life.

*To read additional information about the author of this blog, you may be interested in her book called, “It Started With A Hamburger”. It can be downloaded from Amazon.com All royalties go to Reach Out Speak Out.

 

The Hurricane of Domestic Violence – 2 (2020)

the hurricane of domestic violenceThe hurricane of domestic violence has a pattern.

Waves, wind, calmness, waves, winds, calmness, waves, wind, calmness, waves, wind, calmness, waves, wind, calmness, waves, wind, calmness!!!!!!

There is another similarity between a hurricane and domestic violence. We prepare our home to be comfortable, loving, and something we want to call our own. We want to protect our loved ones, memories and our personal property. We would be very sad if one of our loved ones was hurt.

A hurricane comes in waves. The rain comes, and then the winds begin to batter against the house and the palm trees move around looking as though they are going to snap. The pool water even has waves.

There is a calm…a calm before the next wave of a hurricane. Just when you finally feel settled and you are getting back to the calm and sun and play…boom. The whirling of the results of a hurricane comes around again.

If you have never been in the middle of a hurricane, you may not understand the effects or how to prepare for a hurricane. But if this isn’t your first experience, you will understand that a hurricane warning is not something to ignore. It is something that you need to prepare for and accept.

You may get a reprieve, but as soon as you start feeling safe from the winds and flooding…BOOM…it happens again.

Does this sound like a domestic violence relationship that you or someone you know is in?

I am not saying that couples do not have disagreements or have times when they just are not connecting. But, to what extent are you willing to put your life and the life of your children in jeopardy.

Do you know some of the warning signs of domestic violence? Are you continuing to overlook or to cover up what is going on with the hurricanes of your life inside of your home? What do your friends know? What does your church family know? Are you being honest?

Warning Signs of Domestic Violence

  • Calls you names, insults you or continually criticizes you
  • Does not trust your and acts jealous or possessive
  • Tries to isolate you from family or friends
  • Monitors where you go, who you call and who you spend time with
  • Doesn’t want you to work or volunteer or get involved with a group
  • Controls finances or refuses to share money
  • Punishes you by withholding affection
  • Expects you to ask permission
  • Threatens to hurt you, the children your family or your pets
  • Humiliates you
  • Tries to control your life
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Expects you to be available for them all the time
  • Are afraid to express your thoughts
  • Makes everyone else responsible for their feelings and all problems are yours
  • Push for a quick relationship
  • Sees everything as a personal attack
  • Blows things out of proportion
  • Threatens to reveal personal or damaging information to others
  • History of abuse in family
  • Breaks or strikes objects near you, damages property
  • Pushes, slaps, bites, kicks or chokes you
  • Uses weapon to threaten or hurt you or loved ones
  • Prevents you from calling police or seeking medical attention
  • Physical force.

An abuser is like the hurricane that the weather stations report on. First they start by preparing you for the hurricane, and then they give you information that will help you get ready and tell you how many named hurricanes are expected this year. When the first warning or forecast is shown that your area and home may be in danger, they become more intense with the warnings. Then the TV stations give more air time to the weather reports and even cut in to your favorite TV show because there is danger ahead. They have warned you, they have pleaded with you to prepare.

What is stopping you from leaving your hurricane/domestic violence relationship? How many warnings do you need to hear?

Please, take heed. Do you see yourself or someone you know in the warning signs above? Don’t wait until it is too late. Please do not be a casualty.

*To read additional information about the author of this blog, you may be interested in her book called, “It Started With A Hamburger”. It can be downloaded from Amazon.com All royalties go to Reach Out Speak Out.

The Hurricane of Domestic Violence – Part 1 (2020)

the hurricane of domestic violenceAs hurricane season gets fully under way, it seems an appropriate time to visit the hurricane emergency checklists. These checklists are also an excellent tool in preparing to leave a domestic violence situation.

The meteorologists give names to hurricanes. If you live in an area that gets hurricanes, you know there are specific things that must be done to prepare yourself, your family and your belongings.

There are warnings from all media outlets, grocery stores prepare to have the things you need to survive. Home improvement stores keep the stores stocked with things to keep you safe.

Have you ever been in the middle of a hurricane? Some of you have received many many warnings to prepare and to leave your home so that you can be safe.

It takes time to prepare to leave. If you wait till the last moment, or are in a hurry, there
will be situations and things that will be lost. Hopefully this doesn’t include life.

How many of you would consider staying in your home when you have been warned that
you need to leave to be safe? How many of you would know and understand that there are
serious dangers but you just stay in your home and take a chance that somehow, someway
you will be spared from danger or even loss of life?

Wouldn’t you prepare? How about the hurricanes that is in your life? Specifically, the
hurricanes that are happening “inside” your home? The hurricane I am talking about is called
domestic violence.

How does your logic measure up to staying vs. your logic to stay even though you will be in
the path of a hurricane?

Do you see the similarity? Did you know you can prepare to leave safely from a domestic
violence relationship in the same way? You can use the guidelines. What if the authorities
came to your home and drove down your street with a loud siren and microphone warning
you to leave. How long would it take you to leave? Why? Are you waiting to leave your
domestic violence relationship?

Let’s get ready for the hurricane of domestic violence in your home. One in three women
is in a domestic violence relationship. If not you — it is your neighbor, friend, relative, co-
worker or that person in your church at the end of your row.

List of things to get together when you prepare to leave safely because of a hurricane/domestic violence:

1.   Birth Certificates for all family members
2.   Social Security cards/numbers
3.   Prescriptions (make sure they are full)
4.   Doctors contact information
5.   Oil Change for vehicles
6.   Tires in good condition
7.   Full tank of gas in your car
8.   Extra gas can
9.   Brakes/belts/hoses
10. Car phone charger
11. All bank account numbers and information
12. Line of Credit /loan information
13. Mortgage/rental agreements
14. CASH (if electric is out a credit card cannot be used)
15. Credit card/debit information
16. Any contracts/agreement papers
17. Write down all email addresses
18. Write down all contact information
19. Write down all sign in and passwords
20. Write down your electronic address book
(Internet may not be available to you. You need a hard copy.)
21. Remember vitamins/supplements
22. Passport/Visa/Green Card
23. Write it down!!!Emergency phone/contact numbers
24. Electronic devices powered up just in case you can use them
25. Insurance policies
26. Make an extra set of keys to EVERYTHING
27. REMEMBER ALL EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION
28. List of utility companies with your account # & contact info
29. List of contacts from your work related people
30. Download everything to a thumb drive or other devise for
safe keeping and to have an extra copy
31. Have your children pick out a few of their favorite things
and make sure you take them with you
32. Batteries for all those gaming devices
33. Your favorite clothing/shoes
34. Photo albums (Now is the time to download them to an
auxiliary device.)
35. Our pets are a member of our family. They should get the
same care and preparedness as your two legged children.
36. Shot Records
37. Vet contact information
38. A place that you can be with them at a shelter or home
39. Food / treats
40. Medications
41. Cage or carrying case
42. Flashlight
43. Whistle
44. First Aid Kit
45. Crank Radio (NOAA Weather Radio)
46. Maps
47. Your daily health and beauty items
48. Water
49. Gatorade or hydration drinks
50. Canned foods
51. Hand held can opener
52. Matches
53. A book/puzzles
*To read additional information about the author of this blog, you may be interested in her book called, “It
Started With A Hamburger”. It can be downloaded from Amazon.com All royalties go to Reach Out Speak
Out.

Donate By Shopping With Scrip!

piggy bank stay calm and save money

Would you like to donate to Reach Out Speak Out, but you just can’t seem to find it in your budget?

Here’s a great way to help us and it doesn’t cost you anything.

It’s called ShopWithScrip.com. ShopWithScrip is a gift card-buying program. You can purchase gift cards from over 750 brands! There are also e-gift cards available in case you’re short on time for a forgotten birthday or holiday.

When you ShopWithScrip, you buy gift cards for things you might normally buy anyway, but Reach Out Speak Out gets a percentage of what you spend and it costs you absolutely nothing! Scrip can even be worked into your monthly budget. If you know you’re going to shop at Publix, for example, go ahead and buy Scrip in the amount of your budget and then just use the gift cards as you need them. Everyone wins!

How To Use Scrip

It’s really easy! Just go to ShopWithScrip.com and use our enrollment code: 32CEDEL242629 when prompted. Do your shopping and benefit a worthy cause at the same time!

Image by Gino Crescoli from Pixabay

To Leave Or Not To Leave… Part One

Woman with suitcase

To Leave Or Not To Leave is a series of blog posts submitted under the condition of anonymity for obvious reasons. It is, therefore, published under the Admin’s authorship.

Stay and Pray – Not To Leave

I have been married for several years. At least once during each of those years, I have gone through a prolonged period of wondering whether it would be best to leave or not to leave my marriage. The first time was the weekend we got married. Something had changed and I felt sick to the pit of my stomach.

Every instinct was screaming that I had made a mistake. The understanding I have from my Bible and many of my Christian friends told me that I had married him and that the right thing to do was to “stay and pray.” After all, he didn’t beat me or starve me or actually abuse me. If there are no marks, there’s no abuse, right? All the stuff you hear about mental or emotional abuse is really just women being hypersensitive and overreacting, you know. Especially if you are of a certain age.

So I stayed. And I prayed. Oh, how I prayed. At first, I prayed for him to change. And I realized that’s not really how God works so much. So I prayed for God to change me. To make me a better wife, a better person, a better Christian.

Nothing changed. Well, at least, not in the way I had hoped.

Waking Up Sad

I guess it’s not really true that nothing changed. Some of my relationships did. Fundamental parts of me did. I had mostly always felt kind of warrior-strong. I didn’t anymore. I doubted myself. I felt weak and unable to make decisions. I had always awakened happy. More and more, I started waking up sad. I wanted to stay in bed and not deal with the day. I did a poor job of staying in touch with my friends and family. To be fair, I can’t say that he isolated me so much as, because of how I felt, I isolated myself.

I was always afraid to have him around my friends, never being sure of how he would act or what he would say. Mostly, though, I had lost faith that I had any value. Under the weight of constant criticism and neglect, I was afraid that I was stupid and irresponsible and not at all worthy of  love.

I had so much to learn.

… more next week …

 

Photo Credit: Resi Kling

Love Shouldn’t Hurt / Dating Violence #4

angry man pointing finger in blame

Love Shouldn’t Hurt

Do you or do you know someone that is dating and you just don’t feel comfortable with the relationship? Whether it is your own relationship or a friend that you see changing, take a moment to read some of the warning signs of dating violence below. You could save someone’s life from a relationship that is harder and harder to get out of due to the control of the abuser. Remember, an abuser wants to always be in control. If they feel they are losing the control of you or your friend, they will push a lot harder to keep it going. They do not want to lose.

Information from: www.ncdsv.org

What Are the Early Warning Signs of Teen Dating Violence?

Researchers who study teen dating violence have identified several early warning signs that a dating relationship might be likely to turn violent. These warning signs do not mean a relationship will definitely turn violent. However, if you notice several of them in your relationship or partner, you may need to re- evaluate your dating relationship. These warning signs include:

  • Excessive jealousy
  • Constant checking in with you or making you check in with him or her
  • Attempts to isolate you from friends and family
  • Insulting or putting down people that you care about
  • Is too serious about the relationship too quickly
  • Has had a lot of bad prior relationships – and blames all of the problems on the previous partners
  • Is very controlling
  • This may include giving you orders, telling you what to wear, and trying to make all of the decisions for you
  • Blames you when he or she treats you badly by telling you all of the ways you provoked him or her
  • Does not take responsibility for own actions
  • Has an explosive temper (“blows up” a lot)
  • Pressures you into sexual activity with which you are not comfortable
  • Has a history of fighting, hurting animals, or brags about mistreating other people
  • Believes strongly in stereotypical gender roles for males and females
  • You worry about how your partner will react to the things you say or you are afraid of provoking your partner
  • Owns or uses weapons
  • Refuses to let you end the relationship

What can you do if you notice these signs in your relationship?

Trust your intuition! If you believe there may be a problem in your relationship, you are probably right. Do not ignore the warning signs. Research has found that those who have a tendency to engage in relationship violence escalate their abuse over time. In other words, it gets worse over time, not better.

  • Spend time with people you care about other than your partner
  • Stay in touch with your friends
  • Keep up with activities that you enjoy and that make you feel good about yourself
  • You might consider looking into what help or resources might be available in your school or area
  • You might also want to consider calling a domestic violence hotline or shelter for more information before you experience a crisis

 

Reach Out Speak Out

www.ReachOutSpeakOutDV@gmail.com

Facebook: @ReachOutSpeakOut

A faith based ministry helping victims of domestic violence within our faith community.

501(3)(C)47-1630804

 

photo credit: Image by ashish choudhary from Pixabay

Love Shouldn’t Hurt / Dating Violence Part 3

couple at a restaurant; he is kissing her hand

Before going out on a date with someone, think about these verses. If your date does not demonstrate and treat you like the Bible says they should, there shouldn’t be a second date.

1 Corinthians 15:33  (NIV)

33 Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”[a]

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 English Standard Version (ESV)

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;[a] it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Stage 1: Have you heard anyone say…He’s/she’s great isn’t he/she? Do you mean they meet the standards above? Sweet, charming, cute, funny and so loving and I’m really in to them.

Stage2: Does your date say things like… “I’m just saying this because I am jealous of you and I really like you a lot. I’m becoming obsessed with you. Don’t get angry but I am not sure I can let go of you.

(Time to take a look at the motive behind their words and actions.)

Proverbs 4:23 NIV

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

Knowing the warning signs may help you identify a friend or loved one victimized by dating abuse:

  • Intense mood swings
  • Loss of interests in things they used to do with you as a group and things they were interested in before starting to date this person
  • Withdrawal from friends and family and no longer has the time to go out with the group of people they used to hang out with
  • Signs of physical harm or wants to change their appearance or what they do and how they act with words and actions
  • Drug use, alcohol, eating changes
  • Unexplainable fear and withdraws from talking with you and socializing
  • Sabotage or discontinued use of birth control
  • Sexual activity
  • Won’t return your phone calls, texts, social media but is constantly in contact with the new dating partner

Galatians 5:22-24 English Standard Version (ESV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

 

Reach Out Speak Out

www.ReachOutSpeakOutDV@gmail.com

Facebook: @ReachOutSpeakOut

A faith based ministry helping victims of domestic violence within our faith community.

501(3)(C)47-1630804

photo credit: Relevante design

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