Amanda’s Story

Woman with dog- survivor storyI am writing this letter in hopes of helping others like me have the resources available to them that I had.

When I was a child, I felt I lived on a different plane than other children. My hazy existence was brought on by my abusive father, who regularly forced his ideals of what a “special” father-daughter relationship should be. I was sexually, physically, and emotionally abused as well as degraded, berated and forced to suffer through his treacherous fantasies. He used drugs and alcohol to help attain what he wanted from me as I got older and started to resist. He used lies and threats to keep me compliant, making me believe that this is just how life is for every girl.

I survived. I made it through the abuse and aftermath, thanks to my animals and my ability to daydream of happiness and security. I felt that I was doing just fine, living in denial for many years.

In 2008, memories started to resurface. I felt I was reliving my childhood every time I attempted to sleep. Anxiety crept into my life and insomnia ruled my nights.I was scared, angry and needed help. When self-medicating lost its glory, I reached out to the Victim Service Center, where I met my Therapist Holly and the  amazing staff.

My healing was a raw emotional battle with myself, guided by Holly in our private sessions and groups. The subject of sexual abuse has long been clouded with shame, which I carried with me daily. The hardest part of my journey was learning how to open myself up to let the negativity out and make room for positivity.

My private sessions with Holly prepared me for the group experiences. The groups were life changing, mind altering, and to date, the best thing I have ever done for myself. Sharing my story with a group of like-minded, anguished souls helped me feel normal, and for the first time I felt safe and understood. I learned how strong I am, and how beautiful my life can be. I am forever grateful to all the inspirational people I met at VSC. I no longer carry shame and anger, but hope and love. Knowing that I’ll survive a bad night, as simple as it sounds, has set me on a path to greatness.

I am now a happy and healthy thirty year old woman with goals and aspirations. No outside forces can stop me from smiling.



A Former VSC Client