I admit it. I like to be saucy, sexy and funny. I like to flit about and flirt about. It’s fun. A friend of mine called me a saucy minx the other day and I took it as a high compliment. But here’s the bottom line.  At my core, at my very foundation is someone who has hard won lessons to her credit and who really wants to encourage people to heal, change, grow and get out of circumstances that do not serve or help you heal, grow and be the truly amazing person that you are.

Currently being promoted as an erotic paranormal romance writer and nominated for Best Erotic Romance, you might think that all I write about is sex. Not the truth. I write about characters who have been dealt difficult hands and who learn to deal with them – they learn to face themselves, look themselves in the eyes and heal. Sex provides the fuel for their transformation, as it does mine. Want to grow really fast? Start channeling your sexy and watch what happens! Use that fuel to face yourself and let yourself heal from old wounds. That’s what I have done and continue to do.

The hand that I was dealt was not the easiest, despite best intentions and all. Let’s skip the childhood part for now and fast forward to adulthood. As an adult,  I was date-raped – I knew the guy, was a guest at his home in a distant land and he walked in and took me by force, me screaming “Stop, Get off of me, get away!”. He was strong. Plus, I was in two abusive relationships, one physical and one emotional. Additionally, one of my kids had what I called an “evil step mom” who took out all her rage on him. The other had to live with me and abusive relationship #2 and endure watching his mom be continually bullied. The abuse was thus “paid forward” leaving wounds and scars in my kids, the people I wanted to protect and keep safe the most.

But wait! There’s more! At times I hated myself. I thought my gifts were curses. There were moments when I just did not want to exist anymore. I had zero self-confidence and no matter how good I was at anything, I was certain that I sucked at everything. I thought I was ugly, unlovable and unworthy of anything good. It took a few thousand dollars worth of therapy, a lot of self-searching and a real  brush with death to get me to start to turn around all this negative thinking.

Here’s a few sobering facts, posted from Domestic Violence Statistics :

  • Every 9 seconds in the US a woman is assaulted or beaten.
  • Around the world, at least one in every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime. Most often, the abuser is a member of her own family.
  • Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women—more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.
  • Studies suggest that up to 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.
  • Nearly 1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship said a boyfriend threatened violence or self-harm if presented with a breakup.
  • Everyday in the US, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends.
  • Ninety-two percent of women surveyed listed reducing domestic violence and sexual assault as their top concern.
  • Domestic violence victims lose nearly 8 million days of paid work per year in the US alone—the equivalent of 32,000 full-time jobs.
  • Based on reports from 10 countries, between 55 percent and 95 percent of women who had been physically abused by their partners had never contacted non-governmental organizations, shelters, or the police for help.
  • The costs of intimate partner violence in the US alone exceed $5.8 billion per year: $4.1 billion are for direct medical and health care services, while productivity losses account for nearly $1.8 billion.
  • Men who as children witnessed their parents’ domestic violence were twice as likely to abuse their own wives than sons of nonviolent parents.

Domestic abuse is real and it happens every hour of every day!

I’m an intelligent, bright woman. Anyone can be smart, savvy, amazing, talented, short, tall, , beautiful, homely, shy, assertive, outgoing and still let themselves be subject to domestic abuse and sexual violence. It happens. What doesn’t always happen is the victims talking about it and dealing with it until they no longer wear the stamp of victim attached to their foreheads. You can do it!

My kids and I have good relationships now, thanks to dealing with all the stuff that happened. Issues still rear their ugly head but we deal. I have a fantastic, committed relationship with a great guy, over 8 years strong. It gets better every day – no kidding! I know that I am talented, smart, pretty, sensitive, soulful, kind and a really, really good person. I look back on the things I thought I sucked at and realize that I was pretty good at everything.

Now I exude confidence. But I am really no big deal in the scheme of things – if I can do it – if I can make these huge changes, anyone can do it. Know that you are stronger than you think, braver than you can imagine and you’ve got what it takes to have an amazing life. I have  every faith in you and your abilities.

 

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