THE RELIGION CORNER: Observing National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Lyndia Grant | 10/16/2013, 3 p.m.
This week, I once again return to a subject that very few people like to discuss, “Domestic Violence – the Big Secret.” We pray victims currently living with this madness are reading this column or have read previous columns; I sincerely hope that someone who loves you will rescue you – it could be your mom, or father, a co-worker or a neighbor – but always remember – you’ve got to want to change your circumstances.
We shared the story of Lynn Strange, who married a man she knew to be an abuser, yet she signed on nonetheless; and her abuse only intensified; and in one of the worst scenarios, we shared the story of Mildred Muhammad, a mother of three, and the wife of the late John Allen Muhammad, the D.C. sniper. Mildred Muhammad lived in constant fear of being shot and killed.
This week, it’s my turn again. My ex-husband walked out and left me with three young children, ages 6, 12 and 15 in the middle of the night. He decided to move back to California.
He would go off and stay for days and even weeks at a time. So when he left, it didn’t feel strange to us, however, as time passed, I knew instinctively that he was gone for good. And like Mildred Muhammad’s former husband, my ex-husband’s disposition changed after serving in the Vietnam War.
When I was pregnant with my oldest son, who I’m proud to say is a graduate of Morehouse College and the University of Maryland, I withstood horrific abuse at the hand of my husband. Fortunately, we both survived. Today, my son holds a master’s degree in Finance, and was recently promoted to vice president at a local bank in Bethesda, but I firmly believe he was affected by my experiences.
My husband and I had been out that day shopping for groceries and taking care of other family matters. For whatever reason, he started to become combative. His attitude changed and he took on an abusive spirit. He became hostile, and by the time we arrived home, I was crying, and as we continued to argue, he forced me onto the bed, and laid me flat on my back. He tied my arms and legs to the bedposts. Then, he placed a pillow over my face. There was nothing I could do except pray. I was about eight months pregnant at the time. Eventually, he removed the pillow from my face. I’m convinced prayer caused him to stop suffocating me. He left me tied up until I cried myself to sleep that night.
What an awful experience to remember! And my son, although he’s extremely bright, is extremely stubborn. Besides, the fact that he’s a Morehouse Man, I believe it’s what I went through while carrying him that changed his temperament.
Research has proven that while mothers are carrying their children, everything matters; such as the food they eat, whether they read to their children, or sing songs to them. The mother’s frame of mind also plays a significant role. It all impacts our children.
But after all of that, I thank and praise God that today, I’m happy, I enjoy my radio show on Radio One; most importantly, I enjoy hearing from readers who have provided positive feedback regarding these columns.
A word of advice: Don’t stay in an abusive relationship. Look at what it did to me. If you’re in an abusive relationship, keep praying! Tell somebody! Get help; call 911.
It’s not what the Lord intends for any of us. Next week, I will share more about Darlene Greene and the members of her family, either killed by someone due to domestic violence or severely injured – physically or emotionally.
Lyndia Grant is an author, inspirational and motivational speaker, radio talk show host and columnist. If you would like Lyndia to serve as facilitator for your retreat or special event, call 202-518-3192. Tune in Fridays at 6 p.m. to the radio talk show on WYCB1340 AM, a Radio One Station.