30713028-L - Mom and 3 kids (SMALL)

A Journey of Hope: Alison’s Story

Alison had a secret…she and her four children were living each day with verbal, sexual, and
physical violence. Alison didn’t have anyone to share her secret with – her secret
that her soulmate was hurting her.

Alison’s story began as many fairy tales do. She met the man of her dreams, who was charming, had an energetic personality, and shared all her interests. They fell in love almost immediately. His two children moved in with them, and she had an instant family. Something she felt was missing all along.  She had the perfect marriage and family – and when her partner didn’t want her to go out with her friends – she thought that was endearing.

She never saw the red flags.

Then he hit her. And he forgave her for making him so angry that he hit her. She kept that secret to herself, and life continued as if it never happened. Six months later, it happened again – only this time she was pregnant. The violent cycle continued. Alison just accepted this was the life she had chosen, and it would never change. She was so embarrassed and ashamed that she couldn’t tell anyone. And if she could somehow move past those feelings, who could she tell as she was completely isolated.

 I didn’t have anyone to call if I was just a little lonely or wanted to discuss the results of a recent sports game – so I certainly didn’t have anyone to confide in that my house was a terror zone.” – Alison

Then the turning point occurred, Alison was preparing a meal for an Easter celebration with family. Her partner’s seemingly pleasant mood shifted rapidly to anger, and he attacked her. He grabbed her by the neck and choked her, then held her face inches from a pot of boiling water. Before storming out of the house, he broke her nose and left her to clean up the blood, host Easter, and make excuses as to why he wasn’t there. When he came home later, everything was back to ‘normal’ – but Alison wasn’t. It was an incident she couldn’t get past.

Alison realized she needed a safe place to tell her secret…but had nowhere to turn. Then she found Alexandra House. Alison began attending Alexandra House’s support group for victims/survivors of domestic abuse to gain the strength and support she desperately needed.

“Despite my intense guilt over deceiving my partner, the group became an oasis from the terror in my life. I attended the Alexandra House support group for nearly three years.” – Alison

As Alison became more and more determined to leave her partner, her situation became increasingly dangerous.

“It was clear to me that eventually he would kill me.” – Alison

She worked with an Alexandra House advocate to create a safety plan for her and her children and to obtain an Order for Protection. When she found the strength to leave her abusive partner, she was able to keep her family safe.

“Alexandra House saved my life…and attending the support group kept me strong and resolute in my decision to not return to my abuser.”- Alison