Thursday, June 17, 2010

Thursday's Truth - What do we really know about...

...the epidemic of domestic violence?

...the epidemic of child abuse?

...the epidemic of sexual violence?

Here are some shocking statistics courtesy of The Joyful Hearts Foundation:

  • Every two minutes someone in the United States is sexually assaulted.
  • 1 in 6 women are survivors of sexual assault.
  • 90% of sexual assaults are committed by someone the survivor knows
  • .Every year, up to 10 million children are exposed to domestic violence.
  • Every year, there are up to 3 million reports of child abuse or neglect made.
  • Every day, in the United States, 4 children die from Child abuse and neglect.

The painting displayed on this page is one that JHF founder, Mariska Hartigay uses as a daily inspiration: "Its serenity, its powerful stillness, reminds me that I am continuously being invited on a journey-what the artist, Zoe Hersey, calls the "pilgrimage into one's self"."

Let's begin our own pilgrimage by being truthful.

We all see situations that have all the makings of domestic violence- but go unreported.

We have seen "discipline" being applied to a child, when really, it is abuse - physical, or verbal.

And many of you have had "consensual intercourse" with a partner when, in fact, it is Date Rape.

Truth hurts. But the scars these acts leave behind, hurt much more.

As many of you know, I serve on the board Jane Doe No More, Inc. which is dedicated to shortening the time from crime to healing for victims of sexual assault. While there are many places women can go for support, very few take advantage of them. Many are embarrassed, shamed, or scared to report these acts - and get the help they need. Many find themselves abused by the process, adding insult to injury.

JDNM and JHF share similar missions. Both were founded by women who are authentic, and passionate about their mission. I encourage you to take a moment and view the stories of both Donna and Mariska.

But more importantly, stop living a lie, and begin with the truth. The life you save may be your own!

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