Abuse . . .

I don't know what it is like to be abused. I have never been hurt - verbally, physically, mentally, sexually - or otherwise - by anyone much less someone I care about and who claims to care about me. I hope and pray that I'll never know the feeling, that my daughter will never know the feeling, that anyone I know and care about will never know the feeling.

Yet I have so many people in life that have endured at least one form of abuse at the hands of at least one abuser. The statistics are heartbreaking, the stories harrowing, the impact profound, the ignorance stunning. I know so many abused and I know so many who chose to ignore or pretend it doesn't happen (ignorance is bliss - as I hope and pray it never happens).

Please, dear people, be aware of and angry about abuse on any level and at the impact of anyone - regardless of age, gender, class, or life position. Be kind and caring. Be open to seeing and hearing the signs. Be ready to help when and where you can. If you are being abused - trust someone. Ask for help. Say or do something. Get out of there. Know that someone will help. You are not alone.