Breaking the Cycle of Abuse

This is an extreme case that demonstrates one of the main reasons women don’t leave abusive relationships even once we realize we are in them. It also shows that there is hope to escape from them, no matter how bad they are, and to reclaim your life.

Note: Clicking the “more” button will take you to an external site. Click on the post title above to view the post separately and be able to comment on it here on this site, if you wish to do so.


By David Kelly, Special to The Times

Reporting from Cleveland— Inside a stuffy Cleveland classroom, Tim Boehnlein explained the mechanics of domestic violence and then posed a question.

“So why do women stay?” he asked his class of would-be counselors.

Ignorance, low self-esteem, lack of education, they speculated. No one really knew.

Except maybe the silent woman in back — the one fidgeting and looking at the floor.

“I thought if I said something, it might frighten other people,” she explained later. “You don’t just blurt out, ‘was held hostage in a garage’ on the first day of class.”

It’s taken more than a decade for Laura Cowan to come up with an answer to the seemingly simple question of why women stay: “They are just trying to survive.”

Cowan, now 53, survived one of the most notorious abuse cases in recent California history. Her encounter with the twisted logic…

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2 Responses to Breaking the Cycle of Abuse

  1. dvsurvivor01 says:

    WOW! Thank you KinkyLittleGirl for posting my story on your blog. That is awesome. And I do appreciate the comment you made on the LA Times site. I too believe. That’s why I tell my story over and over again to show others out there still living in that horror that; “there *is* hope to escape from abusive relationships, and reclaim your life” This is why I became an advocate for domestic violence and now a community activist in Cleveland, helping others is my main priority.
    Thank you again my friend. I’m on facebook too. Please connect with me.

    Laura Cowan

    • Well, thank *you*, Laura, I’m delighted you found this, and thank you for your post and kind words – and linking to one of my posts!

      I am right there with you that telling my story over and over is one of the main take-aways I have with which I can best help others avoid the same traps.

      I wish I could *really* fully tell my story, but the ex has repeatedly threatened to sue me and continues to bitch behind the scenes to my friends when he doesn’t like what I post, which is most of the time. I wish I could really publicly say everything that actually happened without fear.

      My hat is seriously off to you for what you survived, and how you came out of it. No way have my experiences been on a par with yours, but it’s remarkable how little it often really takes for an abuser to totally break his victims down. Every story shared is hope for a lot of other people, some of whom will see themselves in one or another of the stories.


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