Domestic Violence awareness month is a time to recognized how problematic abuse is in our society. As domestic violence awareness month comes to an end, we should be enraged daily because this behavior is not going away. Three women are murdered each day due to domestic violence. While it is not gender driven, women are 85% more likely to be victims and 15% of men are victims in the U.S. We feel better if we hide it because there is nothing more shameful than being a wife beater, an abuser or having people ask you, “why did you stay, if it was so bad?” Domestic violence is not a singular incident, it’s a hideous behavior problem deeply rooted in our culture. Violence may grant temporary control, but it ultimately ruins people, families and society. Physical abuse, verbally abuse and everything in between. What happens in our house, stays in our house. Not any more! That’s the good news.
There have been many stories, reports and biopics about domestic violence. The one that sticks with me is the LifeTime Biopic, Surviving Compton, which, highlights R&B Singer and Ruthless Records recording artist, Michel’le Toussaint. The story is about her relationship with Dr. Dre and Suge Knight and how she survived abuse while making her mark as a promising recording star back in the early 1990’s. Her voice was credited for establishing Ruthless Records with a mainstream sound. My first reaction after watching the movie, was shock and gut wrenching intensity. What I saw was abuse on steroids. I will not give a blow by blow analysis, but will comment on a few things. Michel’le’s story evoked a disturbing reality. There was no adult responsibility or direction provided while young people during the 1990’s L.A. NWA environment made decisions about their day-to-day life, but there was structure and guidance with the making of the music and promotion of the new hip hop sound that emerged from this era. So, it was okay to live with a young man at the age of sixteen or have 5 baby momma’s at the age of 18 and fight with no purpose while living with no solid principles as long as you didn’t miss rehearsals or studio time.
The second comment I’d like to share is that the storm inside of us encouraged abused. Men will be men; if he beats you, just try to fix it and do so quickly. These were the comments Michel’le Toussaint heard from the ELDERS while growing up. When I was a teenager I remember my mom and aunt talking about how my aunt ended up in the hospital due to her boyfriends hands in unwanted places. I too, ended up experiencing an abusive relationship. The good news is that I removed myself from that situation and I have had conversations with my daughter about how under any circumstances, abuse is unacceptable! The big elephant in the room is this; Abused people and people who abuse deal with confusion. We must intervene by reporting abuse, being direct in our opinions against abuse and telling our story. God has blessed Michel’le, Dr. Dre and Suge Knight. All are alive and have an opportunity to help others see the repercussions and dysfunction domestic violence causes. Pay attention!!! No matter how difficult it is to raise your head up, you must do so and you must move forward. Click here.
This story is making a difference and is touching the hearts and lives of many! Living In The Black will lead you to make better choices and prevent the devastation of spiraling downward. Read more and be inspired!! This collaboration with Best Selling Author, Alyssa Curry @Seraph_books was a match made in book heaven. Let me know what you think! Thank you!
The choices we make can influence our professional and personal lives. My new book, Living in the Black is an analytical journey of the power or opportunity of choosing. Written in collaboration with Alyssa Curry, marketing director at Seraph Books, we hope to give you guidance on taking control of your life and not letting life control you. God decides when your journey is over. No matter what happens in life, as long as you are breathing, you can control your destiny. Please click here for your copy.
Male bashing is not my intent. A male should not put his hands on a female in an aggressive manner. If a male wants to control something, it should be his behavior. I understand that these incidents are not planned or anticipated. No one wakes up in the morning and says, “Today is a great day to commit domestic violence.” These things happen at the spur of the moment and those involved are usually in shock or disbelief when it occurs. The reason we don’t talk about is because it’s shameful to all those involved. Physical assault is also against the law when charges are pressed or when they are not. Hiding domestic violence might make sense at the time it occurs, but what you are in fact doing is allowing the cycle to continue.
1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship said a boyfriend threatened violence towards them. Gabrielle’s story is surprising but typical. She is a beautiful young aspiring model who was kicked out of a moving car after being beaten by her boyfriend. Click here to read about her story.
SUBMIT is a six letter word that paralyzes women because of lack of understanding. SUBMIT means being selfless and letting him lead. It took serious reflection before I understood this. Fit into your husbands plans. This doesn’t mean giving up your independence or becoming a robot. It doesn’t mean accepting abuse and being put in your place. SUBMIT means that you share and wait. Six letters have never been more important, during this time of faltering relationships. SUMBIT. It is critical to the trust and direction of your relationship.
40 years of friendship is priceless. We met in elementary school where we played together and expressed our curiosity together. We went to high school together where we watched our individual personalities mature and blossom. We became young adults as we experienced College together. Now we talk about what our kids are doing in College and how they are a reflection of us, but with a little extra drive, passion and competitiveness and courage! We don’t talk everyday, but we do have an unspoken camaraderie that results in support and unconditional love. Our friendship is not just something that has survived over time, but is described as that astonishing relationship that gives value to survival.
Think of your opportunities as though they are endless and completely raw possibilities. You are the first to mold them and to create a vision for them. A raw possibility is that original thought no one has tampered with. You know the ones I am referring to. Since you own it, don’t leave it cold and damp. Change it and develop it so that it becomes an awesome circumstance for you. Is the risk in you?
It takes an inordinate amount of strength to have integrity and patience to not fight hatred and dispare with hatred. When life comes at you, it’s with speed and conviction. Sometimes we make decisons that lead us to become a victim. Because of that decision, we end in a bad situation. Just because you are in a bad situation, doesn’t mean you deserve it, you just made a poor choice. Use the strength that God gave you to make a different choice; fight back with love. Know that you are loved by him and that you can make choices to remove yourself from that situation. Think, plan and believe, because God will love you forever.
I know where I’ve been and after some time to reflect, I understand the significant labors of my journey. I remember the days that were most challenging for me because they brought the greatest degree of pain. They were the lessons that were the hardest yet, they were my lessons in life. I’m certain I have more to learn and accept the gift of this challenge. As I have, I pray that throughout your journey, you will learn if you choose:
To overcome fear;
Fight with passion;
Not to return fighting with hatred;
To invest in yourself to break cycles of destruction that will impede, if not end your life and devastate others that love you;
Feel emotions that enrage you to know end but you will let them go so they don’t destroy you;
You will not remain a victim regardless of how much pain you’ve endured because;