My friend Trina from A Blessed Mommy of 6 was physically and mentally abused as a child and placed into foster care as a teen, as was her sister. Even though the abuse continued while she was in the system, Trina grew up to be a productive citizen and leads a pretty good life all things considered although there are times I wish she had a little more self-esteem. She's working hard on it, though, and getting so much better and stronger and developing feelings of worthiness.
Here sister was not so fortunate. She turned to drugs and guys and had 4 children of her own, who, unfortunately could not fill the void that is lacking in her and she in turn did what she knew which was abuse and allow others to abuse them. Long story short, to keep those children out of the system Trina and her husband fostered then adopted those children even though they have two children of their own, one of them who is severely physically and mentally handicapped.
Why would this family living on one (cops) income take on such a huge responsibility? To break the cycle. They could no more let their nephew and nieces continue to be abused or have them split up than they could give up one of their biological children. In Trina's own words, those kids did nothing to deserve this and they deserve a chance at a decent life. We are going to do what we can to help see that they grow up knowing that nothing that happened was their fault and that life isn't supposed to and doesn't have to be that way.
It is not easy, it is not without its drawbacks and setbacks, and financially it is majorly rough on them and the whole family has had to make sacrifices but every one of them feels, with that deep down in the gut knowledge, that it was the only thing they could do.
This is my small way to show Trina how much I admire and respect what she's doing and how much I appreciate the life she's giving those children, a life they most likely never would have known otherwise.
If you or someone you know is being abused, or you suspect it, please seek professional help.
You can find more information here:
Child Welfare Information Gateway http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/whatiscan.cfm
CDC Child Maltreatment Prevention http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/dvp/cmp/default.htm
Friends National Resource Center http://www.friendsnrc.org/
Childhelp http://www.childhelp.org/homePlease, get the word out if you can. You can give your own testimony, stats, numbers, cut and paste my post, anything at all so we break the cycle and let these kids know it is not their fault, and it does not have to be that way. Thank you so very much, I really appreciate it. And remember, you can get 10 extra entries just for linking to this post on your own blog and spreading the word, then add your link here. I made the Mr. Linky public so you are welcome to post it on your own site, we're trying to reach as many people as we can.