Abuse Recovery


Elena & Yury Hanajenko Respect Is Love

Respect is love. If someone doesn’t treat you with dignity and respect, walk away. Their behavior has absolutely nothing to do with your worth as a person. It has everything to do with the values instilled in them by their parents. They’re looking for love just like you are. They just haven’t learned yet what real love looks like because nobody taught them properly.


Most of the stories in this section are about celebrities and famous people who have survived tough times yet gone on to thrive and find joy.  This story is about Carole May, the proverbial girl next door.  We met at our apartment complex swimming pool.  She’s a teacher by profession who spent her career with the Brooklyn diocese in New York City.  Here in Washington State, she is the web goddess for David Lanz, a Grammy nominated pianist.  To see her award-winning photos, click here.
How does a pawn morph into a queen?  It’s all about attitude.

 Real power resides in love rather than fear.  This is the power of our inner queen.

We all have the potential inside ourselves to be queens and make a difference.  It takes a powerful dream, learning valuable skills, perseverance, patience, and practice.  Some of our opponents may not play fair.  But, we will win in the end if we play the game according to our own rules.

I think the essential difference between a pawn and a queen is that  a queen knows in her heart and soul that she deserve to create her own game of life.  She crafts a winning strategy which she artfully adjusts to stay one step ahead of her opponent.

We have to exercise our potential to experience our full power.  If we don’t, we will become expendable pawns.

Adversity forces us to become resourceful and to advocate for ourselves.  It forces us to discover our potential.  We all have it inside ourselves.


  • Respect a Person’s Right to Privacy
  • Relax and Reconnect
  • Move Forward
My SARK Books

My SARK Books

SARK is one of us.  She experienced physical and sexual abuse at the hands of her brother.  She adopted the name SARK which stands for Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy
Today’s post [May 1, 2009] is in a rainbow of colors because that’s how SARK writes her books.  They are a riot of colors in SARK’s scrawling handwriting.  She beautifully illustrates all her books in ways guaranteed to make you smile

J2J Day 11: Does Your Love Life Need a New GPS?
Does your love life make you want to don your tennis shoes and bolt?  Do you wish Elizabeth Gilbert had written a different sequel to Eat, Pray, Love ~ one that would give you the inside scoop on what she learned on her sojourn through Italy, India, and Indonesia?

If so, I highly recommend Geneen Roth’s Women, Food and God:  An Unexpected Path to Almost Anything.  Ms. Roth believes our tendency to bolt is rooted in experiences of abuse.  Read more. . .

 Book Review: Freeing Yourself from the NarcIssist in Your Life by Linda Martinez-Lewi

To survive and flourish, we all need healthy narcissism.
– Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Narcissists are actors on the stage of life.  Beneath their masks, narcissists are a fraud.

In Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life, Linda Martinez-Lewi rips off the mask to expose the ruthless tyrant hiding behind it.  In an age when narcissists are “treated like royalty,” we need solid information and advice on how to recognize and deal with the terminally self-absorbed.

 Book Review: The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists by Eleanor D. Payson

Eleanor D. Payson’s marketing strategy for The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists:  Coping with the One-Way Relationship in Work, Love, and Family was more solid than the content of her book.   I recommend it highly if you need to learn how to timely recognize a person with a malignant (deadly) narcissistic personality disorder (NPD).  After reading the book, I realized most abusive people have a malignant NPD.

The book, unfortunately, is light on coping skills.


 Book Review: It’s MY Life Now: Starting Over After an Abusive Relationship or Domestic Violence

The consistent message in the book is that we are not to blame for our present circumstances.  Our issues are a normal response to the abuse we experienced.  Yes, the toxic clean-up isn’t any fun, but we can do it.  We’re strong, courageous, and resilient.  We had to be to survive.



Journey to Joy Day 7:  Sir Francis Drake’s Voyage Launched in 1577
We sometimes forget that almost every leap forward in history was accomplished by ordinary people with the courage to do extraordinary things.  Some were accidental discoveries.  Some were the result of dogged persistence.  Some folks got all fired up by injustices or personal tragedies.  The common thread, however, is that they were ordinary folks who made history.


Most of us who have experienced prolonged abuse ~ particularly if extreme emotional abuse was involved ~ sometimes feel like we have scrambled eggs for brains. Yet, at the same time, we are literally making life and death decisions.During those dark days, my journal was my greatest tool and, in many respects, my best friend.

2009 Angelique TulipPracticing What I Preach

What is PTSD?  Post-traumatic stress disorder was called “shell shocked” after World War I and “battle fatigue” after World War II.  After the Vietnam War, it was further sanitized to “post traumatic stress disorder.”  Complex PTSD  (C-PTSD) is diagnosed after a person has experienced multiple life-threatening traumas.

Approximately 160 million people have PTSD.

Elizabeth Gilbert: Eat, Pray, Love

Elizabeth Gilbert is the quintessenial role model for leveraging a person’s talents to learn how to survive, thrive, and find joy.  When life handed her the lemons of a bitter divorce, she squeezed those lemons into the stratosphere of best-selling books.  Eat, Pray, Love:  One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India, and Indonesia was on the best seller lists for over a year.  She’s been on Oprah, and Julia Roberts will star in the movie.

In true Pretty Woman tradition, she rescued herself before she met the charming Brazilian “prince” Felipe.


 J2J Day 14: Gospel for Teens in Harlem

Gospel for Teens’ theme song is “How Could Anyone” by Libby Roderick from Alaska.  The lyrics are amazingly powerful:

How could anyone ever tell you
You were anything less than beautiful?
How could anyone ever tell you
You were less than whole?
How could anyone fail to notice
That your loving is a miracle?
How deeply you’re connected to my soul?

Throughout history, oppressed people ~ people who were compelled to survive horrific tyranny ~ found freedom in creative outlets and faith.  Read more. . .

Dr. Andrew Jacono

Face to Face: Reconstructive Surgery for Domestic Violence Survivors

Dr. Andrew Jacono is a “Good Guy.”  He has an award to prove it.

He does plastic surgery for the rich and famous in Manhattan.  He also works his magic to restore the beauty of people who have experienced domestic violence pro bono (free).


Susan Boyle

Metamorphosis of Susan Boyle: Butterfly Emerges and Takes Flight

I believe women experiencing domestic violence would benefit more from a day at a spa than a month at a shelter.  We all emerged feeling like queens with a fresh perspective.




Father’s Day: Pleasure or Pain?

respect-braceletMy concern is for my readers for whom Father’s Day is painful.  Sadly, too many of us had fathers who were absent or abusive or molestors.  How do we celebrate them?  Should we?  To read more, click here.

2 responses to “Abuse Recovery

  1. I can vouch for the “Artists Way” journal, I was using it when I was in the abusive relationship, but not regularly. And unfortunately, it got left behind when we left. We were only able to leave with a few backpacks because I was worried he would come back and find me leaving; there were guns in the house he had threatened me with in front of our son. So I got out as quick as I could. Blogs really help, and I have started my own. I look to others for similar experiences that are helpful. I want to heal and go on with my life, but the legal stuff isn’t finished yet. I hate the wait. I had joined a domestic violence blog one time, but when they asked me to edit my comments about how the system fails us, because they felt it was only my experience and not the norm, well, then I decided not to continue there.

  2. What alternate universe are those folks living in??? If the system is so inordinately successful, why do so many people visit RightsForMothers.com each day??? Gimme a break.

    I hear you about the waiting. It seems like glaciers move faster than the system.

    I’ll be revamping my site soon so I hope it will be easier for people to navigate. BTW, I’ve added your blog to my survivor blog roll.

    I’m wondering if you’d be interested in reading a book about people who have crossed the bridge from domestic violence to thrive and find joy??? I’ve been collecting the stories of celebrities and famous people who have survived abuse. . .because I want to know what they know that I don’t.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s