SafeHaven Board Chair Tracy Rector Shares Her Story of Freedom

Domestic violence is ugly and complicated and more than anything else – it’s WRONG!

Perhaps you’ve already heard the statistic that 1 in 3 women in Tarrant County women experience intimate partner violence in their lifetime. I begin serving as Board Chair for SafeHaven this month after being on the board for the past four years. As unlikely as it may seem, I am a one in that statistic.

It took me years to realize I was in an abusive marriage. I never had bruises. Never had a reason to go to the ER. But it destroyed my self worth and nearly broke my spirit. Some people close to me asked the dreaded question: “Why did you stay so long?” Honestly, I thought domestic violence was… violent. I didn’t know it was about power and control.

If you knew me, you may not think I am a victim of abuse, but intimate partner violence has no preferred ethnic or socioeconomic group. There’s only one thing that identifies the vast majority of victims of intimate partner violence.

Being a woman.

I was fortunate enough to not need the emergency shelter at SafeHaven, but I could have benefitted greatly from our prevention education when I was younger. I would have been better informed to recognize the signs of abuse in our dating relationship. I look at where I am now, and I don’t even know the person I was before. The abuse made me a different person.

Thanks to your support, SafeHaven is better able to help more survivors of abuse. We can hire staff to teach our prevention program in schools throughout Tarrant County and work to reform more abusers to stop the cycle of abuse. Together, we can help end domestic violence in Tarrant County.

Let’s do this!
Tracy Rector