Domestic Violence: Maria’s Story

Domestic Violence Impacts 1 in 3 Women.

Most incidents of domestic violence go unreported. Even fewer people seek help. Maria is the exception.

Almost 1/3 of Oregon women experience some kind of domestic violence.

After experiencing physical and verbal abuse by her fiance, Maria sought help through Impact NW. Working with social worker Erin, Maria, 41, rebuilt her connections with her sons, ages 9 and 11.

“Erin provided a loving, caring and open environment for us,” Maria said about her children. “They began to trust her, mostly because of how she carefully interacted with them. She gave them respect. And in turn, they respected her.”

Combating Domestic Violence Together

Maria’s story highlights the importance of seeking help not only during, but after experiencing domestic violence. This spring, Impact NW teamed up with Verizon to raise awareness of domestic violence and to encourage speaking out and seeking help.

Verizon supports Impact NW’s work to help families such as Maria’s. These efforts enable families to heal from the trauma of domestic violence, strengthen parent-child bonds and end the cycle of abuse.

Healing from Domestic Violence

“The boys and I are so happy and solid,” said Maria, who lives in Northeast Portland. “With our own work, and work with Erin, we were able to get here today.“

Impact NW helped Maria through its Parent Child Therapeutic Services. Erin met with the family regularly to talk about their experiences and feelings with the goal of healing the parent-child relationship following domestic violence.

“What is most worthwhile in our service is the amount of time we can take to get to know parents and provide information and support around traumatic experiences,” Erin said.