I keep seeing these memes on social media and honestly, they are triggers for me. I found myself having a full-fledged nightmare two nights ago after reading it and thinking about my childhood.
Home was rarely safe for me.
Before I could speak, I would cry when my mother turned the car down our street to go home. She soon learned to drive around the neighborhood until I fell asleep.
I would rather be at church than home, at school than home, at a friend’s place than home, at grandma’s house than home, at the playground than home. Just about any place other than home.
Home is where I learned what a hard fist hitting soft flesh sounded like.
Home is where I cleaned up my mother’s blood on more occasions than I can count.
Home is where I became a professional runaway before I was seven years old. I had a navy blue suitcase that I would pack for the long walk to my grandma’s house. My safe place.
Home is where I was nearly killed for calling the police on my father. I learned not to call anymore.
Home is where I wondered, “Is tonight the night my father is going to kill my mother.”
Home was rarely safe for me.
Home is what I physically survived when my parents finally divorced before I completed elementary school.
Emotionally, however, I am still traumatized by home.
Because of that I can’t help but think about how this quarantine is hell for many. I keep thinking that there are women who said, “Come payday, I’m leaving,” but they are now STUCK at home. Quarantine started before payday came and now with layoffs, their payday might not ever come.
I keep thinking about the children STUCK at home experiencing horrors that will haunt them for a lifetime.
I keep thinking about the men STUCK at home being abused and stuck in silence because we assume men can’t be victimized too.
I keep thinking about all the many people who are stuck and home waiting for the lockdowns to end so that they might too survive home.
Everyone is not safe at home.
This is the meme that more accurately describes the home I grew up in and the home millions are living in right now.
After the first week of quarantine, France had a 30% increase in domestic violence reports. And those are just the cases reported. I know from personal experience, some will only report the nights when it gets close to death.
*This is not a diabetes post, but it is something that I’ve been thinking about everyday since the quarantine and needed to write about. But just in case you’re wondering, my blood sugar levels are fine, but they spiked two nights ago after waking up from that nightmare–a flashback to the home I grew up in triggered by these memes.
Please check on your friends, family, neighbors and ask, “Are you safe at home?”
The National Domestic Violence Hotline in the USA is 1-800-799-7233 or you can text LOVEIS to 22522
This post spoke to me. I didn’t grow up in an unsafe environment; however, as an educator, I think about the children who battle these feelings daily. I have been worried about them and their physical and mental wellbeing. At this time their teachersI can only make phone calls and send emails to check on them for fear that a visit will trigger the worst. I will continue pray for them.
Thank you for commenting. I am happy to hear that this isn’t anything you personally experienced yet you are sensitive to it. Keep the prayers rolling.
This is a perspective I had not considered. As an educator I have spoken to many of my students these past two and a half weeks as they began to adjust to attending school online due to the quarantine.
Many said they missed school, missed their teachers and friend and wanted to get back to life as they knew it but after reading your post I wonder how many of my students are subjected to a home life full of fear and uncertainty and that is the unspoken reason they desire to return to school.
Thanks for your comment. You may never know who is unsafe at home, I knew it wasn’t something I could tell any teacher I ever had.
I resonate a lot with this because home was not safe for me either. I remember looking forward to the day I was old enough to move out. Thankfully when I got of age, I never returned back. Thank you for thinking of us who experienced unsafe homes and those who are still in an unsafe home.
Thank you for commenting and sharing your story.
I understand this on so many levels. As an educator I’ve had to hold the child that wasn’t safe at home, feed them and tell them that they were loved despite the victimization they received at home. I could speak to their hurt because I was once the abused child, and later the abused wife who kept quite because I was told a good wife don’t tell what happens at home. I have friends and family members I’ve tried to convince to leave, so I know how unsafe home can be. I remembered the night I decided to break free and run, I had come too close to death to stay. Praying for those who are having to endure the unsafe space labeled home. Thank you for being a voice for our truth, your transparency lets someone know they are not alone and can leave.
Thank you for also sharing your truth and letting others know that they are not alone. Thankfully, we were not in a lockdown situation when broke free. I can only pray that others can do the same very soon.