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Starting Over

Organized by: Terri Sutherland

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THE STORY:

My husband's sister has just gone through a year of hell. After finding the bravery to leave her abusive husband, she and her 2 little boys (ages 2 & 4) are now on their own and she is starting over from scratch. She has a very long and disturbing story. Let me preface this by saying that women (and men) do not knowingly & willingly get themselves into situations concerning domestic violence. Abuser's victims are lied to, manipulated and brain-washed. By the time they realize that the person they love is not who they thought they were, it's too late and they don't know what to do. If you're reading this and have suffered abuse (physical, emotional, mental, sexual) please SEEK HELP, GET OUT. It's not easy, it's scary, but there are people who love you and want to help. I'm going to change her name to protect her privacy. For those of you who already know her, you know most of the story. Emily moved to another state, thousands of miles away, when she was in her mid 20's. She met a guy, dated and was engaged within a year, they were then married in 2010. Things seemed perfect, and then when going through their taxes one day she realized something was off. She found out that their tax return was being withheld by the IRS, but why? It turns out that her husband had stolen $40,000 from a previous employer and he has been paying it back via tax returns. What??? Yes. He explained it and played it off like it was no big deal, it wasn't his fault, etc. etc. He "set her mind at ease" so to speak. That was just the tip of the iceberg, the very beginning of what would slowly unravel Emily's life as she knew it. If you want to know more details about her situation, here is her story of Domestic Violence, copied from a message she had sent to a friend. It discusses only a minor fraction of what had actually happened: “I have to be honest and quite frankly life is really putting me through the worst time right now. :( I have faith it will get better as I'm putting it all in God’s hands. I'm away from my abuser and have my boys, protecting them from him (all of us have restraining orders against him). I'm fighting him in court to relocate back home, so I can do what is best for my children and raise them around my family in a safe and loving environment. Right now, I do not feel safe living anywhere near him. :( If you can imagine worst case possible, I'm living it. I'm still here trying to survive, and waiting, as the process is certainly a process… something that is hard, but I would do anything to protect my sons. It's really tough having spent years with a sociopath, narcissistic, controlling abuser. It's very unfortunate but I was truly stuck, thousands of miles away from my family, pushed away from friends, kept from getting a job, made to feel completely worthless through continuous manipulation. It's been 8+months that I've been “set free” from his physical presence and it feels so good to not see him anymore. I still live in fear that he could potentially harm us somehow, but just being away from him feels better than what we had been experiencing. Moving away from this state is our next step toward escaping the insecurity I feel every day that I’m within driving distance of him. 1 out of 4 women are victims of domestic abuse and unfortunately my sons were too. I am married to a child abuser who plead guilty, was convicted of child endangerment, and had spent years in prison. This was years before I met him. I'm married to a thief, someone who stole money from a banking institution company and plead guilty of bank fraud, years before we met. I'm married to a man who was blessed with another son, a son that was taken from him when he went to prison, years before I met him. All 3 of these huge “details” he failed to mention while we dated. I only found out the actual *truth* when I read about them on criminal court documents, just months ago from my Private Investigator… I see a scar on my chin every single day. The scar from a cut made by my husband’s wedding ring. A cut made by him throwing his wedding ring so hard at my face, it sliced my chin open. This all happened in front of my two little boys. I'm sharing only a part of my story as I'm still healing. I'm not afraid to tell my story any more, people need to know that this happens. It happens to moms, Christians, understanding, vulnerable people, and it happened to me. My family is beyond supportive every single step of this. This doesn't define me. It empowers me. I'm a survivor, I’m no longer a victim. I pray always, and know when it's time, I will be safe up north getting my life back, with a fresh start. Life throws you curve balls, but God also takes care of you, so I'm in good hands.” Fast forward to now, she lost her trial in trying to move her and her boys back to her home state to be with her family. We were all very blindsided by the decision and don't know how they could fail these victims of domestic violence. She is being forced to find a new place to live, a job, daycare, pay the bills, gas, food, and any air travel she may need to continue seeing her family that live thousands of miles away. She can't afford this. Nobody can afford this. She has a 2 year associates degree in a field that she now can't re-enter because her skillset is too old, she'd need to go back to school. She really wants to work, she loves working, she was the hardest worker I knew when I first met her 18 years ago. This girl was the definition of "independent woman". But her husband persisted in having her be a stay-at-home mom, he slowly isolated her, and I could sense that happening, but I didn't know what to say. She and the boys were not able to fly to come see us, they had a couple relatives in the state that they were living, but that was it. Her husband kept her from making friendships, she was consonantly monitored by him, she was in fact a prisoner in her own home. But none of us knew what was really happening with her, as she was so far away and he was brainwashing her and trying to turn her against us. If you know of anything like this happening in someone's life, it's really hard to know what to do. If you confront your loved one, does it possibly push them further away? If you try to talk to them about it, will he find out somehow and get more angry and aggressive? You don't know. Hindsight is always 20/20. I'm glad she finally got away, but now she's struggling to get by. She just needs help getting through these first few months, until someone can hire her and she can start her life over again. Your donation would help her get her feet back on the ground and provide a roof over their heads. Like I've said, she's extremely responsible, she will find her way back to that independent woman, she's just very down on her luck right now and could use a hand. Her family is also doing their best to support her from afar and she is eternally grateful for everyone's support. Some day, she will pay it forward, because that's the type of person that she is. She's warm, kind-hearted and very loving. Her boys are the most important thing to her right now and she just wants to take care of them the best she can. Thank you for your support. <3

$300

 

6% Raised of $5,000 Goal

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  • Anonymous

     

  • Maria McDonald

    $25

  • Brandi Nithang

    $25

  • Sarah M.

     

  • Anonymous

    $40

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  • Rachel Borg

     

  • Anonymous

     

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Organized by

Terri Sutherland

This is a direct to organizer fundraiser.

Donor Comments

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

2 years ago

Rachel Borg

Rachel Borg

This could've been me. From one survivor to another, my heart breaks for you. 2 years ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

2 years ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

DONATION: $40

Stay Strong! 2 years ago

Sarah M.

Sarah M.

2 years ago

Brandi Nithang

Brandi Nithang

DONATION: $25

2 years ago

Maria McDonald

Maria McDonald

DONATION: $25

2 years ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

2 years ago

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