Survivor Story • Cheryl

“​My name is Cheryl. I am 57 years old and I was molested when I was young and raped a few years ago. I have gone to different counselors and they really didn’t help me. Here at COMPASS I have had Counseling with Michelle and Kris. They have helped me realize that I am a good beautiful person and that what happened to me was not my fault. I have grown so much by being here.

​I see Tanya my Case Manager and she has given so much help with different resources. I am also in group where I have made many friends. I know that if I need someone to talk to they are here or if I need someplace that I feel safe I am welcome here! Everybody has helped me realize I am a survivor. I thank them for all the help.”

Survivor Story • Sue

“I am so very grateful to COMPASS for helping me with a 6 year problem. The knowledge of the courts and support given when going to court got us through it all.  The understanding, compassion, and caring my daughter and I were given through a very difficult situation is something I will never forget.THANK YOU!!”  – Sue

Survivor Story • Leda

My Name is Leda…

I was too embarrassed to call anyone I knew.  I desperately needed to talk with someone.  I needed help.  I remembered a friend mentioned the rape crisis center and how it helped more than rape victims, but also those whom have been sexually abused whether it was years ago, or just happened.  It welcomed all people from all walks of life and abuse of any kind.

I called.  I asked to be able to be seen in confidence, because I didn’t want anyone to know what happened to me.  My amazing counselor, Michelle, understood and made every effort to make me feel safe and secure in my confidentiality when I met with her.

I was molested as a child, date raped and endured a 30 year marriage of verbal abuse, emotional neglect, negativity and threatened with violence.  I thought it all was my fault: “Why didn’t I fight back? I shouldn’t have made him mad”…is what I thought…I froze in fear while the abuse happened.  I learned through counseling at the rape crisis center that it is what our minds do to protect us from feeling the abuse.  I “surrendered” to protect myself from worse happening.

The quest for peace silenced my true spirit as various forms of abuse became a part of my almost daily life.  No one ever valued me, so I never learned how to value myself.  I was a body to be used by men’s sick addictions.  It was my sacrifice to not endure the terrifying anger that made me shake and give me physical problems as I froze in fear to endure.

Through my counseling with Michelle, I was able to shed light on my lifetime of abuse by men and learn that anger was their control.  Michelle skillfully led me through the process of understanding why men abuse/rape and why we, as women, endure while staying in the vicious cycle.  I was able to purge the shame and pain and allowed the light of knowledge to come into my soul.  With my counselor’s help, I learned to begin to value myself.  What I had lived wasn’t normal or healthy.

I have learned to protect my peace, guard my heart and discover healing.  Now, for the first time, I have the strength to make the right choices, to live without fear or anger. I no longer use another person’s treatment of myself as a barometer for my happiness.  I didn’t want to live the life that I watched my mother live.  I grew up watching her being abused by my father verbally and physically.  No woman should feel the energy of violence fill the air knowing she is going to be hit or worse.

Life is a gift and you are a gift for this life.  Don’t be afraid to have the nurturing direction you need for healing and restoration, to set a healthy course for your life to live it to the fullest.

True help is only a phone call away with the upmost confidence and safety.  It is the best phone call I ever made.  I pray that it is yours.

History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but, if faced with courage, need not be lived again.” Maya Angelou

Courage and hope is yours at COMPASS.  I know, I found it here.  When we learn to say “no more”, that is when our restoration begins.

Mine began at COMPASS and so will yours…

Love, Leda

Safety Alert

Need Help Now?
24-Hour Crisis Lines
330-339-1427 (Tuscarawas & Carroll County)
330-452-1111 (Stark County)

National Sexual Assault Hotline 1-800-656-4673

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