I never thought I would be a victim of domestic violence. My abuser was the mother of my child. Every time I took her back, she’d swear off drinking, and for a while, things would be good until they weren’t. I felt sorry for her because clearly, she was struggling. I wanted to believe if I just loved her enough, she’d change. Alcohol made her emotionally abusive and physically violent. It was isolating because men don’t talk about experiencing abuse in relationships. When she became pregnant with our baby girl, I thought that would stop the abuse. It didn’t. She would attack me even when I was holding our daughter in my arms. For me, this was it. I talked to a friend who’d seen her verbal outbursts, and through them, I learned that Live Violence Free could help me to protect my daughter by seeking full custody.
While attending court, Live Violence Free simultaneously provided me with counseling, peer support, and additional resources to get back on my feet. I can now focus on the future, not just on surviving. I am no longer ashamed to talk about my experience and I am working to mentor other male victims of domestic violence.