“It’s not your fault” — a message to family and friends who witnessed acts of domestic violence.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

Something often not discussed is the guilt of family members who witnessed domestic violence/abuse,  but did not prevent the violence/abuse.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

It is important to develop the mantra, and repeat it.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

As a witness of domestic violence, it is easy to have guilt and shame put upon you. “Why didn’t you say something?!” “Why didn’t you do something?!” “Why didn’t you call someone?!”

As a witness of domestic violence, you most likely didn’t do or say or call because you were terrified.  You witnessed the violence and abuse upon your loved one, whether it was a human family member, or a furry family member, or a favorite doll.  Whether it was an uncontrolled rage, or a super controlled rage… it was uncomfortable, and most likely frightening to you. “I don’t want that rage on me.” “They deserved it.  They were bad.” “…we repeat the lies and excuses that the abuser espouses.

We laugh when we see videos of people smashing inanimate objects.  We excuse the behavior.  To a certain extent, events like pumpkin smashes are healthy.  Those opportunities release the adrenaline that is surging through the body.  We are taught that running releases endorphines.  We are told to go DO something.

What if that behavior is only appropriate in certain situations (as often behaviors are)?

What if what we really need to do is strengthen our minds, and prepare for the attacks of the abuser/violent offender?

We know that physical pain and deformities are reminders of the violence and abuse that was endured.  However, it is our mind that causes us to become hopeless and either lash out, or contemplate suicide.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

Breathe.

Listen to your gut.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

  • Set boundaries.
  • Tell the perpetrator, “No, thank you.  Leave me alone.  Leave us alone.”
  • Call for help.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.

Realize there was nothing you could do at the time to prevent the abuse and violence.  Forgive yourself.  Then, resolve to educate yourself on what causes domestic violence, and what causes vulnerable people.  Then act on it.

Remember:  We can neither control nor change others.  However,  we can find ways to help make things better, by speaking up when we see the cycle, or when we suspect the cycle.

That process may entail the victim lashing out at us, or shutting us out.  If there is that emotional roller coaster, something is amiss.  Listen.  Believe.  Be kind.

  • Listen to what the victim tells you, and listen for what isn’t said, but what actions show.
  • Believe your gut.
  • Be kind in your words to your loved one, and be kind to yourself.   Don’t blame.  Don’t shame.  Remind yourselves you did the best that you could.  Find an outside independent party, like a therapist who understands what domestic violence looks like.  Learn about the cycle of domestic violence:  The honeymoon period, the normal days, the build up, the explosion, the honeymoon…  Learn about coercive control and manipulation.

Remember: Talking to someone about suicide won’t cause them to commit suicide.  Talking to someone about being something does not make them that thing.  Talking allows the opportunity to bring forth the truth.

If you are concerned about a friend or family member, or you are experiencing feelings of shame or guilt, or something just doesn’t feel right, you can call Emerge! Center Against Domestic Abuse toll free, 24/7 at 1.888.428.0101, or call/text the Domestic Violence Support Services  for resources and referrals at 1.520.909.3888.

You are not alone.  It is not your fault.

“It’s not your fault.”  Hear it. Believe it.  It is truth.


Screenshot_20190909-082131_Facebook


Learn more about the cycle and lies of domestic violence and abuse, and what you can do to help end the cycle.  Visit us at http://www.feliciachew.com/enddv  We believe you.  It is time for you to believe you.  If you need permission to believe, you have it.


“We are each a piece of the puzzle of life.  Without each of us, our picture is incomplete. “

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s