The National Domestic Violence Hotline shared that: On average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States — more than 12 million women and men over the course of a year. On October 13, 2001, I was one of those 24 people. It is hard to believe that so much can happen around the world in 60 seconds. When you see your life flash before your eyes, 60 seconds can seem like an eternity.Read More
Have you ever wondered, why doesn't she just leave? I am Chantelle Branch, a survivor of domestic violence, and I know the bitter taste of love. It has been eleven years since I fled my old life and left my abuser behind. I couldn't bare another day of abuse because this burden was so heavy that it weighed my soul down. I was wishing for death with his next blow and I believed, at that time, that I deserved itRead More
The #MeToo movement started by Tarana Burke was created for us (black women), yet as with so many other things, black women were being erased from the narrative. Her movement serves as a reminder to me that our voices and our stories are needed now more than ever. For this reason, the Survivor Series will remain a permanent part of my website. I will continue accepting submissions from women who are willing to share their stories with me throughout the year.Read More
My superfluous obligations birthed his righteous entitlement to my sympathy and I signed over the deed to my sanity, my happiness, and almost my life. There were many times when I wanted to walk away. Just turn my back and keep it moving. Leaving no trace that I ever existed but I couldn't give up. I wasn't a quitter. I constantly told myself that I would find the problem and fix it; not realizing the only fix was to give up and walk away. Ladies it's OK to GIVE UP! That is not a sign of weakness...at least not YOUR weakness. That's the strongest you'll ever be. That's your Teflon Don moment of truth.Read More
My prayer is that you will see your real worth and realize that a man cannot complete you. God is the only, real true gentlemen I know that will love you unconditionally and keep every promise!
What do you do when things don’t go according to plan? What do you do when your world falls apart? When everything you’ve ever known and been taught is in question? What if those things happened simultaneously? How do you make sense of it all? Do you ever? These are all the answers that I’ve searched for over the years. Some are more clear than others. This is my story.Read More
On March 22, 2016, Yolanda suffered a tragic and near fateful domestic violence incident at the hands of her partner. Her partner assaulted her with a hammer. One of her son’s saved her life. As a result of this event, she lost her left eye and has endured 7 surgeries. She has a steel plate placed in her skull and now awaits facial reconstruction surgery to repair the damage from her attack. Although the event was traumatic it brought her closer to God, her family and more importantly her willingness to share her story with others.
This is her story…Read More
On September 30, 2016, Nicole was diagnosed with Stage 2 Mediastinal Diffuse Large B-Cell Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. At that time, Nicole didn’t know much about the disease or anyone who had it. Following her diagnosis, Nicole endured months of aggressive inpatient chemotherapy and radiation treatments at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, IL. While receiving treatment, Nicole was inspired to give back after receiving a care package from volunteers. God placed a calling on Nicole’s life to use her diagnosis to help others and bring awareness to Lymphoma. It was on Nicole’s hospital bed that the Nicole Cares Foundation was born.Read More
The survivor series was birthed out of my personal belief that we are united by shared experiences. I wanted women to come together, to share their stories in a space free of judgement and critique and my prayer was that their stories would help free someone else. It wasn’t just about writing about the bad things that happened to us but about how we survived them, how we thrived in spite of the obstacles and how resilient we are. I just knew this series would be powerful and inspiring.Read More
When I was growing up, there was always family in the house. The only thing i saw was love, affection, singing and dancing. I remember it was just fun and so much love until i turned 13. My life became hell after that. Abuse from my mother’s ex and two years of abuse from an ex-boyfriend. I never understood why men felt the need to put their hands on a woman. The world became a very different place, full of evil and hate, madness and hurt, depression and death. I started journaling a few months ago because i was finally ready to face my demons. I have more than one story of domestic violence, but this one sticks out more than the others because I grew up with him. He was my childhood sweetheart; my first Love, my first kiss and my first date. It had been 14 years since we dated when we decided to try the relationship again; this time as adults. Prior to our reconnection, he was dating someone I knew. I heard it was violent but I foolishly thought, this was me. I was the love of his life. He would change for me…wouldn’t he?Read More
When we think of what a survivor looks like, we often think about a person with physical scars, evidence that proves they have been through hell and back. However, survival is often skin deep and nearly invincible. I am that survivor. The survivor that displays no physical scars of being through hell and back.Read More
It’s the story of lost innocence and black girls whose childhoods were robbed of them, their words filled with pain and trauma fall on deaf ears in our own community. Picked apart and judged by those who are supposed to protect us. Abusers find refuge in our silence because they know they won’t be held accountable for their actions. Victims violated repeatedly by their abusers and by a community that doesn’t value or protect them. Young black girls and Black Women are forced then to become their own alchemists, searching for healing and understanding but lacking the tools to heal from an unimaginable trauma. And you wonder why our smiles begin to fade and our exteriors harden…It’s our new armor because our world becomes different. We’re trying to shield ourselves because we were left…unprotected. -D. Sanders (From the Blog Post, "She Said....She Said")
Today, I bring you, Survivor, Tierra Clark, who bravely and courageously chose to share her story.Read More
Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow out of control. These cells usually form a tumor that can often be seen on an x-ray or felt as a lump. The tumor is malignant (cancer) if the cells can grow into (invade) surrounding tissues or spread (metastasize) to distant areas of the body. Breast cancer occurs almost entirely in women and is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among black women. Today, Guest Blogger, Alene Adams shares her story of survival.Read More
I was reminded of a handful of people who are, in one way or another, a part of the same club as I am. Kanye West; Kathy Bates; Aron Ralston; Chris Gardner; Antwan Fisher; the passengers of La Amistad; the passengers of the Andes Mountain crash; Solomon Northup. These individuals have survived something significant at some point in their lives. They are among an elite group of individuals who, by their very own lives, prove that will and ethereal grace will bring anyone out of anything. I, Kawana Nicole Williams, like those names before mine, am a survivor. But I didn’t just survive my diagnosis: I survived the aftermath of it.Read More
"Survival of the Weakest." What an oxymoron, right? I mean, we have all been conditioned to believe that only the strong survive. That survival is of the "fittest." And in a lot of cases, that thinking is correct. But today, today I want to challenge your thinking and invite you to take a journey with me into this notion of the weakest survive.Read More
The Survivor series is a collection of stories written by women just like you and I. Stories filled with pain and trauma, transformation, strength, and healing. In each of these stories, you will see women who found their inner strength and who chose to not only survive but thrive.
It is my honor to present these stories to you this month. As you read them, I hope you are inspired to push through whatever is seeking to break you or keep you from achieving your God Given purpose and destinyRead More