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Become Beautiful on a Painful Road

Being happy
Being happy
Estell Brewster

Children who live in homes where domestic violence exists also suffer abuse and/or neglect at very high rates (30% to 60%). According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, domestic violence is the third leading cause of homelessness among families. Most survivors of domestic violence face high rates of depression, sleep disturbances, anxiety, flashbacks, and other emotional distress. Without help, girls who witness domestic violence are more vulnerable to abuse as teens and adults, thus continuing this dangerous cycle destroying our families generation by generation.

Most abused or neglected with whom we have worked blame themselves for their own abuse. They typically feel that they must have done something to deserve it or that there is something inherently wrong with them that provokes the abuse.

When we put these children with animals who have been abused it raises the question, "What could the animal have done to deserve such abuse?" This plants the seed in the minds of the children that abuse is not the fault of the victim, but of the abuser. No matter what a horse or dog does it does not deserve to be abused. Children can readily see and understand this. We can then transfer this concept to the abuse which has been experienced by the children themselves.

“I made a pledge to myself, in sharing my testimony by writing this book, to do my best to bring inner peace to the heart of any woman hurting from abuse or violence who reads it, and do so in a fashion that creates in her a higher faith and self worth. I believe that nothing great was ever accomplished without enduring much, and if I can reach just one woman maybe I can help to break the chain of violence and abuse so many have suffered, and continue to suffer. If just one woman is aided and she chooses to share my story, and add hers to it, how many will it help? Let's give victims of domestic violence the support they deserve.