Survivor Voices. "But you seem so strong"

Survivor Voices: “Lana”

*Lana is a pseudonym to protect the identity of the survivor.

Looking out the window, it’s raining again. It feels like weeks since we’ve seen the sun, but maybe it’s just a few days. Lana has only a few minutes to chat. Life is busy.

She’s calm, but there’s a hint of pain in her voice. Or is it anger? “You know what I found so hard?” she says. “My family and friends, so many said, ‘but you seem so strong, I didn’t think this would happen to you.’” 

Lana pauses and I wait, knowing she needs a moment. “Those words hurt me,” she shares.
“I felt shame and failure. It confirmed what I thought of myself, that I’m weak.” 

But now, I look back and see a different story. I woke up every day, got dressed, walked my dog and went to work. At night, I dealt with insults, threats to my life, and violence…for years…in my home, the place meant to be the safest.

Lana is quiet and when she speaks again, her voice changes. It’s not anger I hear, it’s pain. “I didn’t tell anyone, no one knew what I was going through.”

“Eventually, I left and I never felt as scared as I did on that day, but I did it. Life isn’t perfect, but I’m free.”

Is Lana strong? Oh yes, she’s one of the strongest. She’s a survivor. 

Your support helps survivors flee abuse, but your impact goes much deeper. 

You change their story.

There are so many women like Lana who need our support. Your generosity creates a new path, one leading to a life free of violence. Please donate today.

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