A Mother’s Tragic Story

Oprah is very active in preventing domestic abuse because when she was younger, she was abused. When I was looking for topic on domestic abuse, I thought her website would be a great place to find articles about domestic abuse, and I found a particular article that was not only true, but also very sad and tragic. Vernetta Cockerham was trapped in a very abusive relationship with her husband for many years. For the safety of her and her three children, she got out of the relationship so her family would no longer have to live in fear. Once her husband was arrested, she was so relieved. She was finally happy and felt safe within her own home. She started her day off like every other day on November 19, 2002. She took her youngest to the daycare, the middle child to school, and her oldest to library to make some copies of legal documents for the army recruiter that she had an appointment with later that day. Vernetta drove to a friend’s house to call social services because an anonymous report had been made against her for neglect against her children and knew that it came from her husband. She came back home to find her door open and her husband’s keys in the lock. As she ran into the house, she was attacked. After a long, brutal battle with her husband, Vernetta blacked out with her husband’s hands grasping her throat. She woke up panicked for her oldest daughter who arrived home before her. Vernetta ran to the police department, where policed rushed to her house to find her oldest daughter dead. The police did not arrest her husband, which led to these events. The article states that in a 2000 study published in Criminal Justice and Behavior from records in Massachusetts and studies in other states only 60 to 80 percent of restraining orders are not enforced. The article also stated that in a 2000 U.S. Department of Justice study found that officers made arrests in only 47 percent of cases in which the victim reported being raped, 37 percent where the victim reported assault and 29 percent of cases where the victim reported being stalked.

I have heard that the hardest thing for a mother is to lose one of her children. For Venetta, her husband was the reason she had to experience this. No mother should have to go through a situation like Venetta's.

To read this entire article click on the link below:

“Why Didn’t they Stop Him?”


Signs of Abusive Relationships

Many people are unaware of the signs and symptoms of a domestic abuse relationship. I found a website that thoroughly explains the signs and symptoms of a domestic abuse relationship. This website also explains in depth the cycles that abusers may go through and some of the tactics that they may use when they are trying to control their partner. This informative website first wants its readers to understand what domestic abuse and domestic violence is. According to the website domestic abuse, which is also known as spousal abuse, is when one person in an intimate relationship or marriage tries to dominate and control the other person. Domestic violence is also included in domestic abuse and is when a person is in an intimate relationship or marriage that uses physical violence against their partner. If one or both of those definitions sound like they may apply to your relationship or to a friend’s relationship, the website then includes a list of questions about how the abuser acts and makes you feel. If you think that those definitions apply to your relationship, I highly recommend you go to this website and read through these questions. The more of these questions you answer “yes” to, the more likely you are to be in an abusive relationship. The link to this website is at the bottom of the page.

There are many different aspects to an abusive relationship, and this graph helps explain that by dividing the circle into multiple different sections explaining how an abuser may treat their victim(s). If one or more of these sections of the graph relate to your relationship or a friend’s relationship, I again highly recommend going to the website to get more information on these portions of the graph. This site also explains how to approach a situation if you are suspicious of a friend or family member that is involved in an abusive relationship. It was also very interesting to learn about the thought cycle that many abusers go through when they are abusing their partner or loved one.

The link to this website is:

Signs of Abuse and Abusive Relationships

National Domestic Violence Hotline and Violence in Teen Relationships

I found the National Domestic Violence Hotline website that provides the number for anonymous and confidential help 24/7. This website also provides a quick escape button, just in case someone in an abusive relationship is getting information and their abusive partner comes in the room and they need a quick escape to another website, so they aren’t caught looking up information on how they can get help. The quick escape button takes you to Google’s homepage. This website also includes many articles that are associated with domestic violence and abusive relationships.

Click on the link below to go to this website:

The National Domestic Violence Hotline

One of the first articles that I watched and read about was an article that Katie Couric hosted on CBS News. The purpose of this article is to make people more aware of abusive relationships, but not only adult relationships, but also teenage relationships. “In a 2008, dating abuse survey, 29% of teens reported abuse.” It is more common than people think it is. Katie Couric interviews a couple of girls that were in an abusive relationship and thought the beatings were part of a “normal” relationship. One of the girls tells about how she met a cute boy in one of her high school classes and thought everything was normal at first, but soon noticed that he was controlling and that soon spiraled into the relationship to being abusive. After that he then started stalking her, this situation could happen to any teenage girl. Every girl wants to date the cute boy that sits two rows in front of her in her math class. Situations of teen abuse are just as common as abusive relationships that occur in adult relationships.

Click on the link below to go to this article:

Katie Couric Addresses Escalating Violence Seen in Teen Relationships

Help is Available

A lot of the time when women leave an abusive relationship, they are left with nothing. There is a local organization that helps women start to rebuild their lives once they have left their abusive relationship and has been left with nothing; this organization is Fresh Start of Indiana. Fresh Start wants to help women like Cynthia Washington, who was in an abusive relationship for eleven years and decided it was time to leave once her husband once he tried to kill her. When she left him, she had absolutely nothing and turned to Fresh Start for help. Fresh Start supplied her with everyday items that we may take for granted on a day to day basis like clothes, dishes, furniture, and a sofa.

I think this organization is simply amazing. They are the people who support the women who just leave an abusive relationship and are left with absolutely nothing. They are there to assure the women that they are there for them and not worry about trying to find daily necessities. The organization would prefer the women worry about bigger situations that they are dealing with instead of the little things. I think this organization is doing great things and is lifting a burden off of many women’s shoulders.

If you want to visit the website where I found this news article, click on the link below.

Agency gives domestic violence victims a Fresh Start

Find the Answer to Your Questions

Many men and women wonder if they are in an abusive relationship, and a good website that can help answer that question and many other questions are: www.thesafespace.org. This website has many different quizzes that someone can take to help determine if they are in an abusive relationship or even to see if you are being abusive to your partner. There are also places where a person can speak out about domestic abuse and another place for a person to ask questions. These questions can be about a personal experience, how to help a friend who is in an abusive relationship, any questions on advice, how to get out of an abusive relationship, and where to get help if you are in an abusive relationship.

I think that this website is very helpful for people that are in abusive relationships and could be a very good source for people who have questions about their relationship. This website even gives people who are interested in helping others information on how they can help in multiple different settings.

Victims Speak Out


I came across this video clip, and it really hit me strong on an emotional level. These people spoke out about their abuse, and their abusers. A wife, a husband, and a daughter tell their stories about how they were abused and how it has affected them. The wife explains how her abuser, her husband, would give her gift after gift to show how sorry he is for hitting her. She was excited to see what she would receive next from him, and loved getting gifts. I don’t think that diamond earrings or cruise or kind of materialistic object could make the physical and emotional effects of abuse go away. This may be a reason why women try to convince themselves that the abuse is fine; they tell themselves that “He loves me. He wouldn’t be so apologetic, and he wouldn’t buy me these nice things if he didn’t love me.” Those gifts are just another way to reel them back in.


A husband tells his story about how he was abused by his wife. It isn’t as common to hear about the male in the relationship being abused. He mentions how his wife hit him in the head with a curling iron causing a big hematoma on his forehead, and she laughed about it. The person that he loved, the woman he has children with, his best friend would abuse him emotionally causing anxiety disorder and other physical symptoms.


The daughter explains how her mother was abused by her father for quite a while, until they finally called the police after her father had beaten her mother to the point where her face was blue and black. After getting out of jail, he never laid a hand on her again, but it went on long enough that the daughter promised herself that she would never want to be involved in a relationship with a man like her father.

If you would like to check out this video clip, click on the hyperlink below.

 Victims of domestic abuse speak out

Rihanna’s Experience with Domestic Abuse

Hey, my name is Megan, and I am interested in domestic abuse and all of the aspects that lead up to domestic abuse, signs of domestic abuse, and how to get out of a relationship where a woman is being abused. My mother is a teacher and has seen many signs of domestic abuse multiple times in her pre-school classroom. This topic is very important and is occurring more often than people think.

One of the most common cases of domestic abuse that has recently been all over the news and is well-known in pop culture is the case of Chris Brown hitting his girlfriend, Rihanna. In a news clip on 20/20, she describes her relationship with Chris, what happened the night of February 7, 2009, how she feels now about that night and how she feels about him, and her family life. The night of February 7, 2009, they went to a party for the Grammys and on the way home she confronted him about a text message she found on his phone from an ex-girlfriend. She asked him about it, and lied to her and she wouldn’t let it go. The verbal fight eventually changed into the fight becoming physical. He shoved her head into the window, bit her finger and ear, punched her in the face, and even put her into a head lock to the point where she had trouble breathing. The entire time they were both sober, and he knew exactly what he was doing. Chris was her first true love and her best friend. She doesn’t like the looking at the pictures from that night, and she doesn’t like thinking about that night because it is painful to think about and was a horrible experience that she never wants to remember. She promised herself that she would never put herself in the same situation that her mother had to go through. Her mother was abused by her father multiple times, and many of the times it happened in front of Rihanna. In an interview that follows up this interview she states that a woman will not leave her husband or boyfriend until after about eight or nine times of being abused. She loves him still and hopes for him to learn from his mistakes for in the future, but she still loves him. That is the reason why she went back to him after he had beaten him up, but she does not want to be the reason why so many girls go back to their abusive boyfriends or husbands. She does not want any girl to go through what she did. Rihanna is a strong woman and it can happen to her too, even though she has money and fame. Domestic abuse happens every day, to women all over the world; it just isn’t exposed like Rihanna’s case of domestic abuse.


If you would like to watch the interview that Diane Sawyer had with Rihanna, click on the link below.


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