Author: Susie (page 1 of 7)

Soup for the Souls

Please join us for our 12th annual Soup for the Souls fundraiser!

Helping Children Exposed to Batterers

Join us in our free 10 week class designed to help parents and caregivers understand the impact of violence on their children and themselves. It teaches parents to talk and listen to their children about their experiences of violence, encourage children’s resiliency and support parents in strengthening their relationships with their children.

Please call our office at (541)592-2515 to get signed up! It begins October 11th! We provide childcare, lunch and includes weekly gifts, with gas cards if needed.

Am I Experiencing Abuse?

Inside each toolkit provided by the Domestic Shelters organization are links to articles, recommended books, danger assessment tools, checklists, survivor survey results, support communities and more. Come back to each week to utilize these amazing tool-kits.

We hope you’ll agree the tool-kits neatly bring together most of what a survivor needs when it comes to finding the answers they’re looking for. There is so much information in the world on domestic violence … the tool-kits do the research for people and assemble it in one place.

Click the link bellow for more information.



A Window Between Worlds


The Illinois Valley Safe House Alliance staff and community partners will be receiving special training with A Windows Between Worlds. Window Between Worlds is dedicated to cultivating and supporting a network of trans formative arts programs that empower individuals and communities impacted by violence and trauma. A Window Between Worlds views art as a catalyst to release trauma, build resilience and ignite social change. When individuals create art in a safe community they can be heard and respected: replacing violence and shame with safety and hope. At the Alliance we will be incorporating these tools and resources into providing our survivors with healing in the form of arts.




“Somehow You Have to Find Peace in Yourself”

When I was between the ages of 5-12 I was sexually molested by my mother. I was also physically beaten and psychologically abused. She would put me down and say nobody would ever believe me and that if I told anyone that I would die for sure. My mother was a severe drug addict and a neglectful parent who put her addictions and her abusive boyfriends before her children. My siblings and I were in and out of foster care most of our lives. I held in my abuse and didn’t tell a soul until I turned 18. My grandfather and my cousin were the only people I could trust to tell. I knew they would believe me and support me.

It makes it extremely hard to allow others into my life. I feel like all people are a threat to me in some way. I have an even harder time with personal relationships. I do not show affection like most people do.  Because I was sexually abused, I became very sexual and hurt a lot of women through the years because I couldn’t commit to anyone out of fear. I have a really hard time trusting that someone really loves me and isn’t out to hurt me. Often times I look at it as I need to hurt them before they hurt me. I have PTSD not just from the sexual abuse but also from being physically and psychologically abused. I can’t cope with arguments or yelling or anyone that acts like my mother.

I am now in a long term relationship with a very loving and understanding woman who also suffered sexual assault and she is my rock. She stands by my side through everything I have done to push her away. We are parents and we both are very protective of our children especially in public settings. Everyone is a threat to me. But the absolute hardest thing for me is coping with the feeling that I can’t protect my family because I couldn’t even protect myself.

Growing up with that abuse was hard for me to cope with. When I was younger I would lash out on my siblings with aggression. To cope with everything now I take time to myself in a dark room, headphones in my ears, music as loud as I can get it. Somehow you have to find peace in yourself. Everyone needs their personal space; time to break away and fall apart. I can talk to my girl and a few family members about things that are currently on my mind. I also like to help people as much as I can. I have a hard time setting boundaries so my girl steps in when I go overboard. I like to offer advice on subjects I have lived and love to mentor younger people. I am often told that I should attend support groups but I don’t think I am honestly ready for that.

I still love my mother but I will never forgive her for the pain she has caused me. The pain she has caused my family. I don’t feel bad that I can’t forgive her that is the price she has to pay. Knowing what she did was wrong and that there is no excuse for her actions; knowing that I won’t forgive her and that everyone now knows how horrible she was. Despite all of that I will keep on loving her but I will never trust her.

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