"We Are The Lions"

August 29, 2016

As ManUPstate works to engage men and boys in the issues of domestic violence here in South Carolina, so too does MEND, an initiative from the YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee, whose mission is to end the epidemic of violence against women and girls by empowering young men and boys to become the catalyst for cultural change.

“And even if we know it’s just a few harmless jokes between me and my dudes, it perpetuates the culture where it’s easy to confuse the link between the jokes and the bruise.”

YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee partnered with the award-winning Go West Creative to produce a spoken word video that boldly invites men to be part of the solution to ending gender violence.  Poet and actor Steve Connell delivers a powerful message for the YWCA’s violence prevention initiative, MEND, in the five minute We Are the Lions video.

 

I am a survivor of domestic violence.


“I didn’t know that I was being abused...

I am a survivor of domestic violence.


“I didn’t know that I was being abused because my definition of abuse looked different. My husband pushed me, but most of my suffering was verbal and psychological. I left my husband to protect our young daughter. Almost immediately I felt the weight of his oppression begin to lift. I could see a difference in my daughter as well. Then he broke into my home and assaulted me in-front of her.

I sought help and was led to Safe Harbor. My daughter and I are in counseling now. I am sorting out the mess that abuse has caused. I am finding my voice and seeking opportunities to grow and better my life as well as my daughter's. She will gauge her self-worth from my own self-worth. I must show her that she deserves the best, by expecting the best for myself.

Many years I suffered in silence. By telling my story and being honest with friends and family, I am taking control of my life again.”

- Beth

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