What do you do when the ones who you look to protect you are the ones who need protecting?
This is the question that thousands of children ask themselves each and every day.
My name is Tiffani… and I am a survivor of childhood domestic violence. I know firsthand the trauma that occurs when children witness verbal and physical abuse of a parent. I remember the many days and nights when I did not know if that would be the day that my father killed my mother. I remember feeling ashamed as if I needed to carry this deep dark secret to protect my parents. I remember feeling anxious whenever my father came home, unsure of what version of him we would encounter that day. This is not the way a child should feel and this is not a burden that a child should carry. But unfortunately, there are more children who experience this than we want to admit.
As an adult, I find myself questioning why no one EVER asked “are the kids ok?” There is this unwritten assumption that once the direct victim of domestic violence is separated from the abuser that the children will by default be ok. Newsflash! Children are not always as resilient as we may think. Each and every person who I’ve spoken to that has had the unfortunate circumstance of being a child of domestic violence has expressed to me several things that have manifested from their untreated childhood trauma (which are):
• Becoming a victim of domestic violence
• Becoming a perpetrator of domestic violence
• Becoming abusive to their children
• Denying themselves opportunities to love and/or be loved
The Voiceless provides a space for the silent screams of children of domestic violence to be heard, acknowledged and healed. This forum allows for survivors and those who have a heart to become involved in the healing process to meet and network in order to save a child’s life.