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What to do after living a SAFE HOUSE?

I was not informed about this matter until a friend of mine told me her story.

One day the telephone rang. My friend was asked me to come and visit her at hospital. I was shocked. She was laying there with broken limbs. So many bruises were on her face that I hardly recognized her. Doctors had to perform nose surgery.
She was alone and crying in the silence of the room. She started to telling me the story of her life. The pattern was the same as in many other stories about abused women.

She was born in a small village, where all the inhabitants were like a family, she thought. She finished primary school. and had to go to work. Her husband was a good looking and nice “guy”. When they started dating she was so happy. After a year he proposed her. She was eighteen. She gave a birth to a baby-boy one year later. Then all started. Her husband spent less and less time at home. When he came home, in the early morning hours, he used to wake her up and demand breakfast. Whatever she cooked was not good enough for him. He would throw plates on her. He had so many reasons to beat her. She always found excuses for his behavior. Then she got a part-time job and had to give all her salary to him. She had no money to buy bread for the children. They were hungry. She told him she will leave him. He threatened to kill her if she does so. She asked her parents for help, intending to move to their house. They did not let her come. They told her that it was a shame, and wondered what the neighbors will say.
I told her she can go to the Safe House where her children will be protected. She agreed. But what after leaving the House? An abused woman can stay in the House for only a few months. She has no money, no home and no job. Finally, she goes back to her husband. She endures the violence, but at least the children are at home and get their meals. This is a never-ending story! Is there a solution?
This woman can live in one of the abandoned houses in a village. There she can work in the fields, produce organic vegetables and fruit for the demanding market. First, they must accept the fact that they are being injured and maltreated. They have to see the reality of their everyday life and only then they will have a possibility to heal. They have to pose and answer questions which will help them to overcome the status quo which always brings a new cycle of disappointment and pain. By doing so and connecting other women in trouble she can show the growing Pulse Wire Community that there is always a way out and that they are not alone.

Comments

Stella Paul's picture

Thanks

Dear Dubravka

There is a saying in my country: sote huye ko koi nahi jaga sakta/he/she who sleeps with eyes wide open, are impossible to wake up. Your story makes me remember this. A patient can be healed only when the patient herself acknowledges it as an injury. I thank you for sharing this story and wish you best in waking women from that wide eyed sleep

Stella Paul
Twitter: @stellasglobe

Duda's picture

Dear Stella,

Thank you for sharing this saying. I agree with that.
Best wishes,
Dubravka

MaDube's picture

Dependance

I think the problem lies in the mentality that I can not make it without him. It is in the dependency, financial and economic. I believe if you target your efforts towards empowering the women with psycho-social support for them to heal from their trauma and at the same time finding activities for them to engage in which you will give them economic independence so they do not have the need to go back for support then you will succeed in breaking the cycle. It is not easy but it can be done.

Duda's picture

Dear MaDube,

You are right. Everything is on woman’s shoulder.
Thank you.
Best wishes,
Dubravka

transformation's picture

courage for that woman she

courage for that woman she needs it !!!

Nosotros los más pequeños, debemos convertirnos en un nudo de resistencia en contra de la mentira y guardar la verdad, mantenerla y difundirla. (subcomandante Insurgente Marcos)

usha kc's picture

this represents the story of

this represents the story of many women world wide.
thank yo for sharing.

Adepeju's picture

Domestic violence is really a

Domestic violence is really a serious concern in Nigeria and i guess in major parts of the world too. Of late, series of evolving stories have brought focus to this gender sensitive area. From the husband who killed his wife in a fit of anger, ripping off her breast and intestine, to the women whose lawyer husband, in total disregard for the law beat black and blue and the woman cooling off her heels in federal prisons after killing her husband in self defence, grim stories I tell you! As far as I'm concerned, the society, family, religious organisations and even the law have failed victims of domestic violence which often arises from the thought of women as object. Civil organizarions can help bridge the gap, empower such women and encourage them to speak up. Keep up the good work

Duda's picture

Dear Adepeju,

it is said to hear that this is not the only case, but this is our reality. So, we have to talk, share and fight against this violence.
Best wishes,
Dubravka

fem4femmes's picture

Echoing questions...

Dear Dubravka-

You raise such an important issue in working to help women impacted by domestic violence!! There is too little on-going support from governments and NGO's have such limited resources! How can we expect women to leave their current situations when there is no option for sustained support and pemanent improvement? May your voice be heard clearly that more women will be brave enough to speak out... I think it is only through the collective courage and support of women that we will be able to offer realistic alternatives to our sisters living in violence!

Much light and strength to you today!

marissa

"I am the flicker, flame, butterfly ablaze who wants to fly in search of mythical rainbows beyond the rain." ~ Ana Castillo

Duda's picture

Dear Marissa,

you have right. Collective support and practical ,good solutions in law, justice, health care, employment.... could help women.
Best wishes,
Dubravka

Ruth Beedle's picture

Your story is HUGE and

Your story is HUGE and compelling and important to tell. And at the same time, we need your idea of possibilities and solutions and hope. What is your prayer for these women? How can they help themselves? How can the community become more compassionate and aware? What is wrong with the men that they think this is okay? Is there anything that can be done for the men? And the parents?

this is a forum for you to express the deepest and dearest wishes of your soul. What are they? And what would you like to do if anything were possible?

With the possibility of a world of women reading what you are saying.... what would you like to say and pray and ask of us????

R

Ruth Beedle's picture

Your story is HUGE and

Your story is HUGE and compelling and important to tell. And at the same time, we need your idea of possibilities and solutions and hope. What is your prayer for these women? How can they help themselves? How can the community become more compassionate and aware? What is wrong with the men that they think this is okay? Is there anything that can be done for the men? And the parents?

this is a forum for you to express the deepest and dearest wishes of your soul. What are they? And what would you like to do if anything were possible?

With the possibility of a world of women reading what you are saying.... what would you like to say and pray and ask of us????

R

Duda's picture

Dear Ruth,

I have been thinking about the abused women. How can I help them? What to do to improve their possibility to escape from that kind of life?

At first, law has to be changed. More severe verdicts and longer period of imprisonment are necessary.
The economic independence is crucial for such women. Those women can live in some of the abandoned houses in villages, because there are a lot of them in Serbia. There they can work in the fields, produce organic vegetables and fruit for the demanding market.
I have to pinpoint the education. Educating the population about this issue is essential for the understanding of the problem. How to recognize the first signs, whom to report the cases of abuse. The most important thing is to be sure that someone will react and help. Organizing forums and societies of abused women could help also. Psychological help is very important for those women.

I would ask of you to help in the issues of mentoring, educating and instructing. I am the person who can do a lot and wishes to help, but I need your support.
Best wishes,
Dubravka

Ruth Beedle's picture

I love your thoughts and

I love your thoughts and ideas and know that only you and like-minded women who know the story and the culture can make the changes that need to be made to change the life for so many women in your friend's position.

And of course, you will have the support of all of us out here praying for you and the change you will be working for. Find the first thing that you can do, then work towards doing it. Sometimes it is the smallest thing that can get done that gives the largest encouragement - to both the one who is making the change as well as for those the change is being made for - because it will be proof that someone cares and is courageous enough to attempt change.

Just let us know what you need in the way of support and encouragement and prayers.

dbunton's picture

Dubravka, I agree with the

Dubravka,

I agree with the sentiment of the group, the mentality and acceptance of violence must change within the person. Your story is very informative, not just for women preparing to leave a safe house, or getting out of an abusive relationship, but also for men and women who want to know what bad relationship look like, and what they "must" do. Every man should have to read stories like yours, as it touched me, and reminded me of the importance of such sharing. Thanks Dubravka, and keep sharing your insight.

Darren Bunton

Duda's picture

Dear Mr. Bunton,

it is nice to hear this words from the man. Only united, women and men, could make a changes.
Thank you,
Dubravka

WILDKat's picture

Hurt and empowered

Dubravka,

You are brave to write about this most universal of tragedies for women in 2011. In the US there is a celebrity singer named Rihanna, originally from Hait, who has survived beatings from her then boyfriend Chris Brown, who is also a rising musical star. I share this to illustrate that rage misdirected isa danger for all economic levels. Domestic violence can be ignited by financial pressures, though. The worthy goal for women to be financially independent can give a margin of protection and freedom. Linking women with work and especially meaningful work could be a transformative service worthy of your words. What are the current ways women do find work in Serbia? Does Facebook help with this or are there other more popular social networks assisting women to lin job and worker?

Naturally grateful,
Kat Haber

"Know thyself." ~ Plato

Duda's picture

Dear Kat, Women use modern

Dear Kat,
Women use modern media, but not enough. There are a few job fairs in Serbia, but they are not productive enough.
The most popular social networks that help finding jobs in Serbia are:
-www.lakodoposla.com
-www.poslovi.infostud.com

Best wishes,
Dubravka

WILDKat's picture

Searching

As you find meaning and method, so too, will you become a lightbearer for women in your community and country. Good fortune and clarity in asking for what you need as you declare how you can serve and be fairly compensated.

Naturally grateful,
Kat Haber

"Know thyself." ~ Plato

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