Well, for the past few days here at 1Africa we’ve been tackling the issue of violence as one of the major issues affecting humanity and yes, it is happening all around the world and it is bad! It’s happening in our homes, on our streets and in our communities. It’s hard to explain why certain things happen to us or how we sometimes find ourselves in certain abusive relationships and stay in them. News reports and statistics show that violence in our world is escalating. It’s just heart-wrenching to think of the number of men, women and children suffering right now at the hands of abusive partners, parents, siblings etc and that the violent treatment inflicted on them is slowly cutting through the core of their being and has the potential to destroy their lives. Is there hope at all?

You may have heard it said that “those who have suffered abuse often go on to abuse others”, but do things really have to be this way? If you’re one who suffered abuse especially from someone you trusted, and find that you were left to deal with the aftermath of an experience you have never wished on yourself, despair and agony aren’t the only options. I believe there is in everyone some capacity to rise above the most painful experience and refuse to make it the negative reference point for every decision we make. The kind of abuse we are witnessing in our world today leaves us speechless. Why these things happen, we cannot tell. But in all of us – particularly those who have suffered abuse – lies the choice to perpetuate destruction through allowing pain to eat us up after an abusive experience or make moves towards living a healthy life again. So is there hope after abuse? Here’s what Michael J Fox says:

“One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but it can never be taken away unless it is surrendered.”

The video below deals with this very tough issue of choice. When someone or something has wounded us, do we choose to carry on the cycle of violence and destruction that has been started or do we draw in the line in the sand and make a new beginning? We all get to choose.

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