I was put up for adoption at the age of three. My new mother abused me during my childhood so I was used to abuse and thought that was a normal way to live.

As I got older I would choose men that abused me verbally and also beat me up. I ended up with six different abusive men. The verbal abuse was almost worse than the physical because it really stayed with me and affected my self esteem and self worth. Because of the physical abuse, whenever I was with people and someone would lift or move their arm I would duck and flinch from fear of being hit. If anyone raised their voice or yelled I would immediately start crying and was basically a mess.

I stayed at a safe house to get away from the last abusive man for one month and then moved to an apartment for abused women for one year. I was able to get on my feet financially and gave up on abusive men.

I met my current husband through church and God has blessed our marriage. I still have a hard time trusting my husband because of all my previous abuse. Through support and my life skill classes I have gotten stronger and have faith in myself. I have learned what a good man who loves and respects you is all about and I don’t duck anymore.

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