Panic_Button Hamilton 24hr Crisis Lines:
• Inasmuch House 905-529-8600 • Fem-aide 1-877-336-2433
• Good Shepherd 905-523-6277
• SACHA 905-525-4162
• Native Women's Centre 1-888-308-6559
• COAST (mental health) 905-972-8338
• Hamilton Interval House 905-387-8881

I’m here when you need me

"Many strong women have had to walk this path, I'm here when you need me".  These were the words I just texted to a friend .  Sometimes this is all we can do despite everything in me that wants to rush over, pick her and her children up and take charge of the chaos of their unraveling lives.

I know that my experience as a woman who has been where my friend currently is counts a lot in her eyes.  She trusts my input because I come from a place of knowing.

I know the confusion (should I leave? Am I making the wrong decision? What if I'm wrong?)

I know the fear (what if leaving damages my children, my daughter is already clingy...? )

I know the weight of having to make these massive decisions on my own because when it comes down to it, all the support from family and friends is great but in the end it is a really lonely road to walk.

Sometimes all I can do is be the link that connects her with others who can help her make these enormous decisions.  My role is not finished because I'm here in the background, cheering like mad that she has the boldness and courage to stand up to abuse. I'm also here in the front-lines, offering phone numbers to Interval House and Good Shepherd and Inasmuch House and The Native Women's Shelter...I'm here in spirit as her peer, one who stands with her and can vouch for the services that I have suggested she contact.

Actually, in all honesty, now that I think of it I am actually in person doing what 1inFour is doing as an organization:  supporting, providing information and validating that you are one courageous, unstoppable woman who is walking a path that many other strong women have had to walk.  Please, please be encouraged that you are not alone .

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About cjw

A mother of three and a survivor of domestic violence, I am passionate about helping women who feel isolated and alone, women who may have children that are profoundly impacted by the trauma of domestic violence and women who need to understand where they can go to get help for themselves and their families. I am a registered nurse who has worked for the last 16 years in a critical care area only to have to flee to a women’s shelter and have my whole life changed. I know fear, I know pain and I now know food banks…I’m in good company.

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