THE BLOG
04/07/2014 11:41 am ET Updated Jun 07, 2014

Perseverance in the Face of Violence

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Perseverance in the face of domestic violence is a wonder to behold. In some of the most horrifying situations, victims of violence find the courage and strength required to break the chains of degradation, humiliation and torment. As the abuser chips away at the victim's self-esteem, individuality, honor and identity, the victim must cling to the belief that they are worthy in their own right. It is the belief in their personal value that fosters the perseverance required to move forward in a meaningful and positive way. In my own personal work with victims of violence, I wanted to share some of the messages that have helped women find the confidence to break away from the cycle of abuse.

Perspective -- it is hard to imagine that what is happening to you ever happens to other women. According to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (2010), "Among victims of intimate partner violence, more than 1 in 3 women experienced multiple forms of rape, stalking, or physical violence." Many instances of domestic violence go unreported. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Energy -- facing the threat of violence in your daily life is energy-draining. Living in constant fear saps your emotional and physical reserves. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Rage becomes a factor in your life, his being expressed against you and you suppressing your own. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Safety becomes a crucial consideration -- and will have to become of paramount importance in order for you to move forward in your life. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Express your fears and concerns to professionals (shelters, counselors, police or trusted individuals), and let them know what you are dealing with and that you want to leave an abusive relationship. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Validate your self-worth, and understand that it is never your fault for someone else's abusive behavior. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Envision your life without the threat of violence looming over every facet of your life. It is possible to move forward. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Rescue yourself. Take whatever action is necessary to get the proper help and rebuild your life. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Acknowledge that the transition away from an abusive relationship will be difficult and even scary. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Never give up on yourself and the great possibilities the future can hold. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Choose to live your life the way you want away from fear, anger, threats and danger. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Embrace you. Celebrate you. Honor you. You deserve to live free from abuse.

Sometimes what you are most afraid of doing is the very thing that will set you free. Persevere and save yourself.

You deserve to live free from abuse.

Follow Avital Zeisler on Twitter: www.twitter.com/AvitalZeisler

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