empowering

‘Remember how I was last night? Tonight is going to be worse.’ His eyes were pure evil. My husband held me prisoner in our own bedroom.’: 16-year-old bride survives abusive marriage, is no longer a ‘victim’ living in ‘shame’ of her traumatic past

“There was a chill in his voice. ‘Nobody will even miss you. No one cares about you. No one loves you.’ The torture went on all night into daylight. I ran out the front door looking for help. The only person that would help me was a young mom.”

‘I never thought I’d be calling my husband to inform him ‘it’s cancer.’ I sat on the phone in utter shock.’: 28-year-old woman diagnosed with breast cancer after noticing ‘blood stains in bra’

“I was too young to get cancer. There was no way. I was fit and healthy, currently in the best shape of my life training for a trip to Everest basecamp. I prepared my chemo bag. I was ready for this. But when I walked into the hospital and saw all the elderly ladies around me wearing head scarves, I instantly felt a fear I could not describe.”

‘My mom told me my dad was ‘gone.’ I fell to my knees. A nurse asked me to be ‘quiet.’: Daughter sells everything, lives nomadic life in search of ‘peace’ after father’s death to terminal cancer

“I woke up to a call from my brother. ‘Dad is really sick. He has cancer.’ Time stood still. ‘What am I supposed to do?’ In less than 2 months, he passed. My lifestyle has brought concern to others. ‘What do you mean you’re selling everything?’ ‘How are you going to live?’ ‘What about your careers?’ I was in the midst of a breakdown.”

‘At 15, I became pregnant with my daughter. I had to raise a child while still growing up myself. I received hate and rumors spread.’ Teen mom beats the odds to graduate college and ‘reach success’

“Everyone recognized me by pregnant belly, rather than by my face. I dealt with dirty looks and whispers in the hallways. In college, I got pregnant with my son. It wasn’t easy. I have been in abusive relationships, been days away from planning a wedding, only to find out I was ‘only an option.’ I wanted to give up, on everything. But I was strong for my children.”

‘I knew from the moment I saw you, that I wanted you.’ I got scared, and rightly so. Then came the pressure for sex. I was a virgin.’: Woman’s survives narcissistic relationship with her ‘best friend’ despite him ‘tormenting’ her

“‘You don’t love me if you don’t do everything I want in bed,’ he claimed. He stormed out, pushing me away in the process. I came after him, as always. I had been conditioned. He was drinking in my parking lot. We argued, agreed to put it behind us, and went to bed. ‘Don’t tell anyone what happened, even your family,’ he told me.”

‘I want to live!,’ I was screaming. The cops were on their way. I was trying to get out of the bathroom, trying to get my boyfriend off me, trying to hide in the tub.’: Single mom’s empowering story of surviving domestic abuse with infant daughter

“I had 3 months to figure out my escape. I stopped fighting back with my daughter’s father and kept calm. He was losing control, and it drove him crazy. ‘You’re not gonna take her from me,’ he’d say. I’d wake up to him pacing the kitchen talking to himself. I stayed quiet and texted a friend who said, ‘Wait 10 minutes, and then you call the cops. He could be lying.’”

‘MOM YOU DID IT!’ I had gone from a married stay-at-home, homeschooling mother, to a single mom of 4 and nursing school graduate. And then it finally happened. I cried.’: Single mom’s empowering journey navigating ‘messy divorce’

“When my marriage imploded, I didn’t shed a tear. Up until the split, I had been a stay-at-home oilfield wife. I home-schooled the children. It started to hit me. Great big tears poured from my eyes as I walked across the stage. I turned to my kids in the crowd. We did it, together.”

‘I told her, ‘I’m looking for a ‘suit.’ He’s an ex-felon, an addict, covered in ink, going through a divorce, currently unemployed. Yeah, No!’ We married just 3 months later.’

“I clicked into his profile. ‘Hi.’ His response was, ‘Who is this?’ He would disappear for long periods of time – sometimes years – and no one knew if he was alive or dead. Just 6 days after meeting him, I was on pins and needles. I finally called. When he answered, I could hear the difference in his voice. I’m telling you, he was magic.”

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