A very good friend from way back asked that we meet last week. I offered to have dinner with her on the evening of the same day she texted but she replied that she can't; she was meeting her lawyer. Oh wow, was my only reply. Secretly, I was making a happy dance inside my head.
For almost a year, she has been enduring the physical, verbal, emotional, psychological, economic abuse inflicted on her by her husband. But she just wouldn't budge. She wouldn't leave their home, she just can't seem to let go of him. In spite of everything. She was still hoping he'd come back to her, to the way things were previously.
Her friends and family tried almost every tactic in the book- from calmly reasoning with her to giving her the cold treatment to wooing her to threatening to cease being friends with her. To no avail.
"But I love him" was the argument she always put up against all the wise counsel she received.
Until she woke up one morning, black and blue, her body and soul was. She just told her mom- "I'm tired. I don't want this anymore." As moms are wont to do, she and her mom made the rounds of all relevant government institutions and within about a week, her husband received the notice that he was being sued for violating the law related to Republic Act 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004.
Her case is still being heard right now. God-willing, she'll be freed from the shackles of this dangerous relationship. Please pray with us- that she remain strong and unwavering in her conviction to seek the justice due her, in the face of her husband and his family that remains to be a threat to her physical, emotional, psychological safety.
One day, may she be able to recite what is written below, with ease, confidence, joy.
The Survivor's Psalm
I have been victimized.
I was in a fight that was not a fair fight.
l did not ask for the fight.
There is no shame in losing such fight
Only in winning.
I have reached the stage of survivor
And am no longer a slave of victim status.
I look back with sadness rather than hate.
I look forward with hope rather than despair.
I may never forget
But I need not constantly remember.
I was a victim.
I am a survivor.
To be slapped or kicked once by your spouse or husband is to be hurt one time too many. Call the Philippine National Police hotline 117 or visit their police precincts' Women's Desk for immediate help.