My daughter was brave enough to post about domestic violence yesterday. I was happy to just leave it in the past. In case you didn’t pay attention, yesterday was Domestic Violence Awareness Day. I’m not even sure I have the title exactly right. That’s where my mind was…avoiding.
I don’t like to talk or think a lot about the two years I spent with my abusive first husband. Decades ago and really just a “moment” when compared to the joy of the rest of my life. And I have to say in his defense that he really was raised in a horrible environment. I had the advantage of seeing the warning signs in his parent’s relationship, yet I ignored them. My own family had problems I wanted to escape and I remember thinking that the love of my teenage years was “different” from his family, just as I was “different” from mine. There is no point in reliving those years. Let’s just say that when I realized nearly two years later that my baby was in danger I left.
The point I want to make to you this morning and the comment I made to Katrina is that we have to teach our young girls to avoid these men. And I think the way to do that is to teach them to be strong and independent and capable of living a good life without a man. I am not, NOT anti-marriage. I love being married. But I do not need to be married in order to be good person. I do not need Gary to take care of me or compensate for something I’m lacking. I am married, and specifically married to Gary, because together we are a great friends and a great team and we enjoy each other. Somehow we have to convey that concept to young girls and help them to grow into women before they start believing the lies told by young guys. I know, I know…a seemingly impossible task. But we can try.
Domestic violence is simply a form of control used by a very weak man. These guys are troubled and we could spend all day talking about how to solve their problems. However, “ladies first” makes sense to me. Let’s talk to our girls about avoiding them. Let’s talk to our girls about getting out of abusive situations. Let’s talk to our girls about becoming women before they become wives.