top of page

In our last blog post, we discussed the question of why a woman might not leave an abusive relationship. Now, it’s also essential to look at what happens when a domestic abuse victim decides to leave. What’s next? Here is one woman’s point of view:

I didn’t grieve when I left my abusive partner. There was no time to cry. I had a baby to take care of. No job, and I moved back in with my parents, who wanted me to work on my relationship and not have my child raised in a “broken home.” My tough exterior hid how broken I already felt inside.

I lived with them for a year while I interviewed for jobs, searched for a babysitter, and found a new place of our own. I am in the lesser statistic: I was able to take my child and leave an abusive relationship with financial and physical support from my family. Not every woman in the same situation has that kind of support.

- Anonymous

The fact is survivors return to their abusive partners an average of seven times before they leave for good. It’s mainly due to the reasons behind not leaving right away – lack of resources, fear, shared children, or love.

So, when a woman finally leaves, there are many things she will face and feel, all while trying to get back on steady ground. This includes finding a place to live, a job, a support network, childcare, and even finding time for herself. They must figure out how to co-parent with the abuser.

It’s important to understand that abuse victims need support without judgment. They often will not open up and talk about their feelings due to shame. During this crucial time, women need as much help as possible. If you know someone who has left an abusive relationship, one of the best things you can do is build awareness – for yourself and those around the victim.

Find help for her through churches, women’s centers, and advocacy groups. If you work together, suggest training for your organization to educate you and your team on some of the critical aspects of domestic abuse.

The Women’s Advocacy Center offers training modules for those who want to understand how abuse happens and the dynamic that makes it difficult for victims to leave harmful relationships. Learn more and schedule a consultation here.

13 views0 comments

We've all been touched by it. A woman we work with. Someone from church. A relative. A story in the news. Regardless of how we know, the outcome is the same: A woman, the victim of domestic abuse, is killed by an intimate partner, husband, or boyfriend.

For as long as domestic abuse has occurred, the question has been asked, "why didn't she leave him?" It's almost as if the answer was self-explanatory. But in many cases, the cost of leaving abusive relationships outweighs the price of staying, even if it is at the expense of a woman's life.

Many times, the victim will put her children's well-being and their financial security above her own. Leaving takes more than strength. There are many things a domestic abuse victim must consider.

The price of freedom comes with a cost

When considering leaving an abusive environment, a woman must consider all the expenses she will now bear the burden of alone. Managing childcare, food, a new place to live, transportation, and everything else can be overwhelming. Working outside of the home may not be an option for some who cannot afford childcare.

Many women lack financial means or have had finances controlled by their abusive partner. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, up to 99% of domestic violence victims experience economic abuse throughout an abusive relationship. Finances are often cited as the most significant barrier to leaving an abusive relationship.

When leaving doesn’t guarantee safety

Leaving an abusive relationship, especially when children are involved, includes remaining in contact with someone presumably adamant about destroying or hurting the leaving party.

The legal ramifications alone are enough. In most states, courts favor both parents being involved in a child’s life if it is in their best interest. Because most domestic abuse cases aren’t reported, it is difficult to prove in court that a father has been abusive to the mother and/or children. This means a mother will likely have custody of her children subject to visitation from the father. The fear and sickness in the pit of her stomach brew, knowing her children will be alone with the abuser.

What about parenting time exchanges? Doctor’s appointments? School or extra-curricular events? Just because a woman has left does not mean the threat of violence or abuse has.

Abuse is emotional too

Traditionally, women are accused of “overexaggerating” or being “too sensitive” due to their tendency to be more emotional than men. Women have to face the feelings most feel when ending a relationship: failure, guilt, and grief, yet often without family and friends' support.

The victim might be ashamed to tell her support network about being involved in an abusive relationship. There is a lot of stigma around domestic abuse and single mothers. A woman or man may not be inclined to tell family or friends that a spouse cheated. Imagine the embarrassment when sharing that she or her children have been abused by a man who promised to love and protect them.

And like any end of a relationship, grieving the loss is a real thing. Whether the abuse is present or not, losing a partner or loved one is difficult. One must be mentally, emotionally, financially, and physically ready to face what lies ahead.

What can you do to help? First, remember domestic violence is not a private family issue. It is a community problem, and the victim should never be blamed. No one deserves the abuse; no one should go through it alone. The first step is asking them if they need someone to talk to and reminding them they are not alone.

Support organizations like The Women's Advocacy Center. Our mission is to empower and support survivors of domestic abuse. We educate them on ways to gain economic independence and form healthy relationships while stabilizing their families and strengthening their faith.

Learn more here.

If you or someone you know is involved in a relationship that is abusive. Reach out to us. We can help women in the East Shelby County, Tennessee communities of Arlington, Bartlett, Collierville, Cordova, Germantown, Lakeland, Millington, or Rossville,

If you are outside our service area, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline now at:


38 views0 comments

Updated: Dec 14, 2021

TWAC Founder, R. Romona Jackson, shares insight with Re-New-All Ministries

The Revealing Realities of Domestic Violence...

  • Insight #1 - Leaving is not easy. It's complex and traumatizing to leave everything you know and love to move to a place where everything is uncertain. Women face obstacles related to childcare, employment, food security, financial resources, housing stability, and transportation. Many times, they face these challenges when they are depressed, sleep deprived, suffering emotional, physical or mental pain, or are just plain tired. After trying to manage life on their own, often a decision is made to return home. It's unsafe, but it's familiar and it prevents a woman and her children from being homeless.

  • Insight #2 - We need to change the way we talk about domestic abuse. This is not just about women and children. All members of a community and family are affected by abuse in the home. As a community, we have to make resources available to address this issue rather than offer pat answers to families who need help. Moreover, we can't simply focus on physical abuse. Other forms of abuse, such as emotional, financial, mental, and spiritual abuse can be just as harmful. To recognize what's happening in a family, even when no one is admitting it, we need increased awareness and training in businesses, churches, and civic organizations.

  • Insight #3 - Creating a new way to live occurs one step at a time. Breaking harmful cycles of abuse does not happen over night. It doesn't happen in a week. Sometimes, it doesn't happen in a year. It's a process and it takes time - a lot of time. There is grief, loss, and eventually acceptance, healing and recovery. The time it takes to get to a healthier place following the trauma of abuse depends on each individual's ability and willingness to do the hard work of taking steps forward. Knowing someone is there to walk with you as you do, can help.

To read the entire blog post from Re-New-All, click here.

If you or someone you know is involved in a relationship that is abusive. Reach out to us. We can help women in the East Shelby County, Tennessee communities of Arlington, Bartlett, Collierville, Cordova, Germantown, Lakeland, Millington, or Rossville,

If you are outside our service area, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline now at:


7 views0 comments
bottom of page