When I was in college, I dated a guy who was extremely manipulative. For some reason, I just couldn’t leave him. I suspect it has a lot to do with my relationship with my biological father, but it became imperative that he stick around. Later he told me that he hoped to marry someone “passive” like me and I was stunned and infuriated. I don’t consider myself to be a passive person, and I suspect that anyone who knows me and reads this is chuckling at the very idea of that. The bottom line is that this experience helped me understand how complex relationships are, and why someone may choose to stay in an abusive situation. There’s love, a need to be loved, fear, confusion, and a variety of other emotions that come into play. In her recent interview with Diane Sawyer, Jaycee Dugard explained why she never left her captors, even when she had ample opportunity, by saying that the fear of the unknown was far worse than the fear of what she knew.
Casa Myrna Vazquez aims to eliminate those fears by providing victims of domestic violence a place to stay, education, and support. Launched in the 1970’s, they now provide a toll–free hotline supporting callers in five languages, and counseling and advocacy programs. They have a limited amount of emergency, transitional, and teen parent housing for women and children. Casa Myrna Vazquez also reaches out to the community with programs of awareness and prevention for both teens and adults.
There is a wonderful success story on their site which I strongly suggest you read. Teen-age mom Gabby came from a violent home situation and finally chose to leave when she realized the effects it was having on her son. Casa Myrna Vazquez provided a safe place and helped her learn about parenting, how to take care of herself, and even encouraged her to get her GED. The story is in Gabby’s own words, and it’s a moving one.
Casa Myrna Vazquez has a few ways you can get involved, including donating new household items and food, hosting a fundraising/awareness party, or making a financial donation. They also encourage you to raise awareness about domestic violence and to start speaking up.
Connect with Casa Myrna Vazquez: