BRADES, Montserrat – The church community on Montserrat must become more vocal and stand up against the increasing levels of violence against women, says author and entrepreneur Nerissa Golden.
Golden was speaking on the eve of International Women’s Day and days after a woman was violently killed by her partner on Montserrat.
Having your own money is a key part of being able to walk away from violent relationships, says Nerissa Golden.
The second time I was in the shelter, I was divorced and alone. I literally had run for my life and had no choice but to leave the kids behind.
Three weeks prior, my parents had asked me to leave their home with my children, knowing fully well I had no resources or place to take them. During this period, I had also been waiting on the Lord to manifest some promises that He had shown me to come to pass, so I was not too afraid about leaving. Often, when God wants us out, He will allow our very family and friends to be the pressure that drives us out to the place where only He can sustain us. I knew this was a such a time and so to many who could not see the rationale, I saw it as totally normal and God ordained.
I have been in a domestic violence shelter on three different occasions. The first time, I was there for five months as an employee. Newly married and a baby still smelling brand new, I thought myself in the perfect location to do what I love to best, encourage women to love themselves enough to live without pain.
During that period, I read everything I could about abuse, knew the ten signs by heart that your relationship is an abusive one but I quickly brushed over the more subtle signs with the one big one that I had never been hit. A threat is not a hit, intimidation is not a punch, taking you away from the people and things that mattered to you is not abuse. It couldn’t be.
He said it in the same voice he used to say he going on a lime. Like it was a given, an expectation and there was nothing I could do about it.
“How did that happen?” I answered looking straight at him.
“What kind of stupid question is that?” he raged before realising he was the one in the hot seat.
For Immediate Release
VIRTUAL WORLD – Tomorrow’s Promise: A New Beginning was released this week with the simple click of the mouse. Seventeen writers from across the US and the Caribbean contributed to the story which looks into the lives of women coming in and leaving Hope House, a domestic violence shelter.
The idea began simply as a forum exercise by Kyt Williams-Gardner (Treasure Hunter), business owner and grandparent from Tacoma, WA. She was encouraging others to write a story with her, everyone contributing only about three or four lines at a time. Within two months, the story developed into a full blown discussion about relationships, the roles of men and women, how women should fight back and encouragement to reclaim their lives and love again.
The story can be read at http://tomorrowspromise.wordpress.com and can also be downloaded there in its entirety as a PDF.