Bibi Aisha: A Survivor's Road to Recovery
The Face of Survival
A Fortunate Young Woman
Bibi Aisha's personal story of horrific abuse appeared in the international news in December of 2009. Promised to a Taliban fighter, she was forced to marry a man who constantly abused her in every possible way. She escaped her husband's abuse, but was captured by police and then returned to her shamed husband who retaliated, making her pay the ultimate price by cutting off her nose and ears, and leaving her to die. Luckily, Aisha was rescued by international aid workers and members of the US military.
Violence and Abuse Awareness
An International Symbol of Survival
Since then, I have followed Bibi's remarkable journey of survival and triumph over her victimization.
To me, Bibi symbolizes the international fight against abuse of women and children. She is a reminder of the dangers that women face within abusive relationships, and she resignates the strength, hope and beauty that all women seek.
On a very personal note, I understand Bibi Aisha.
I know what it's like to live in constant fear and hopelessness. As a target of a domestic crime, I am very lucky not to have been physically maimed, as in Bibi Aisha's case, and most of all, I'm still alive.
When I look a Bibi, I see myself.
Not a victim, but a survivor.
Break the Cycle
Do You Know Someone Who Has Been or is a Victim of Domestic Violence?
Words of Advice From a Survivor
The first step in the road to recovery is to break the chain that binds you.
I know it is hard, frightening, confusing, all of those emotions and more, but if you want to live, you must find a way to survive.
I remember the words of the judge who sentenced my perpetrator ... before he handed down a sentence, he looked my abuser into his eyes and said very firmly:
"I have no doubt in my mind that you were the one who controlled this woman for the past twelve years, and she has finally found a way to escape you."
The vidication that I felt was overwhelming. No one knew more than me just how powerful those healing words were to me.
Leave. Escape. Call the police ... whatever it takes.
Not so easy?
I guess you could say that, but then one day, while looking down at your grave, you might wish that you could take back such weak and defeated thoughts.
Believe me, in the end it is worth the fight.
Once everything is said and done, you will find a new person, much stronger and full of wisdom, a rekindling of beauty and spirituality, and above all, a more powerful essence. You will see the world with different eyes, that old vail of burdens lifted, and you will shine, forgetting that dark shadow you hid behind.
Power and Control Wheel
- Violence Against Women | Amnesty International USA
Amnesty International fights to stop violence against women and create a world where women and girls are afforded their basic human rights.
- Women, Trauma and PTSD - PTSD: National Center for PTSD
Learn about trauma and PTSD in women.
- PTSD & Women - Dryhootch.org
Women, Trauma and PTSD Dawne Vogt, PhD Trauma is common in women; five out of ten women experience a traumatic event. Women tend to experience different trau…
- National Child Abuse Statistics | Childhelp
Statistics on child abuse and neglect, consequences of child abuse and criminal behavior and substance abuse related to child abuse.
- Help for Abused Men: Escaping domestic violence by women or domestic partners
It does happen: men are abused by women or same sex partners. Learn how to identify the signs and get the help you need to escape an abusive relationship.
Clinicians estimate that at least 7-8 % of Americans may develop symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder within their lifetime.
Though we know that in Vietnam, and in more recent years, in Afghanistan and Iraq, soldiers have returned with a high rate of PTSD, but did you know there is a silent number not often mentioned, and the numbers even more staggering than our soldiers?
Unfortunately, the silent number in question is a tally amongst women and children, victims of domestic battery from emotional, mental, physical, and sexual abuse. While this section of the article focuses mainly on abused women and children who suffer from PTSD, it is not uncommon for men to report incidents of abuse, especially emotional and mental abuse by their partners, and may indeed develop signs of PTSD. As with Women and children, male victims should take the 'power of control' wheel seriously when focusing on a break the chain that binds the cycle solution.
If you or someone you might know is suffering from symptoms of PTSD, seek a professional therapist who specializes in exposure to domestic violence and/or sexual abuse.
Symptoms of PTSD in Abuse Victims
Terror or Panic Attacks
Self Persecution Guilt/Shame
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YOU Will Survive!
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