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We Only Get One Chance

Ending an abusive relationship is one of the most dangerous times for a domestic abuse victim. It took me nine months to plan and carry out my escape. Others only have enough time to get out with the clothes on their back. The reality is that 75% of domestic violence related homicides occur upon separation and there is a 75% increase of violence upon separation for at least two years.

Stories like the one about Atsede Niguse are why I wrote How to Get the F#@% Out, A Step-by-Step Guide to Leaving an Abusive Relationship. Atsede, a biology student in Ethiopia at the time gathered u enough strength and courage to leave her abusive husband of six years after a particularly vicious attack left her unconscious and with her two front teeth on the floor next to her. While she healed as she moved on to reclaim her life, her ex-husband was feeding his grudge. That need for revenge boiled over 1.5 years later when on July 19, 2017, he hid in the bushes and doused Atsede with acid as she approached her mother’s front door.

Left blind and in unmeasurable pain, Atsede refuses to let the horror of that July day be the end of her story. “I’d like to have all tragedy stop with me, I want to be the last one,” Niguse said.

I, like Atsede won’t let that traumatic past write my future. As a Certified Domestic Violence Advocate, I use my second chance at life to advocate for and rescue abuse victims who feel muted by their fear.

If you or anyone you love is being abused, please speak out. There is help!

Photo by: Brandon Ruffin

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