Category: Understanding Abuse

What are You Willing to Give Up to Stay Safe?

I love my job. I make decent money and am slowly saving up to be able to afford an apartment on my own. I’m good at what I do and I feel a sense of accomplishment when I do it well. My coworkers are my friends and they have been so supportive of me through everything I’ve been through. There’s just one problem: my abusive ex-boyfriend…

Domestic Violence Counts: What the Numbers Tell Us

Last week, the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) published the results of their annual “Domestic Violence Counts” survey. This study, conducted every fall, provides a one-day snapshot of the demand for services from domestic violence programs across the country and in each state. Several things stood out from the data collected in Massachusetts.

It’s Time We Start Talking About Abusers

In the past few weeks, I have had the opportunity to talk to more Baltimore Ravens fans than I ever knew existed. Some of them were reaching out to offer support, others because they needed to talk. When someone we admire and care about, even from afar, commits an act of violence towards their partner it challenges us. It brings up a lot of uncomfortable feelings…

Domestic Violence and Parenting: The Importance of Attachment

Have you ever wondered how the experiences you had as a baby shaped your personality as an adult? Can the patterns we form in relationships with our family be traced back to our angst-filled teen years, or did they start even earlier than that? The latest research tells us that experiences that occur even at that young age can permanently alter the structure and chemistry of…

January is National Stalking Awareness Month

The following column was written by Middlesex County Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian and our Executive Director Laura Van Zandt: Fourteen years ago this month, an explosion rocked an Everett apartment killing a woman and changing forever the way we look at the issue of stalking in Massachusetts. In 2000, Sandra Berfield – a resident of Everett who worked as a waitress in Medford – was murdered…

The Challenges of Parenting as a DV Survivor

Let’s face it, parenting, especially in this day and age, is tough for anyone. But it can be especially tough for someone who is a survivor of domestic violence. Dealing with the effects of their own trauma and at the same time learning or re-learning parenting skills presents a unique set of challenges.In our Child and Adolescent Therapy Program, we not only work with children and…

A Day in the Life of a REACH Community Advocate

REACH’s Community Based Advocacy Program addresses the unmet needs of domestic violence survivors and their children by providing an alternative to shelter, giving them access to resources to overcome the physical and emotional trauma caused by abuse. This allows REACH to work with individuals at various stages on their journey and to assist a far greater number of survivors than can be helped through shelter alone….

The Scoop on Support Groups

If you’ve been a friend of REACH for awhile now, you may have heard us list Support Groups among the list of the many services we provide. If you’ve ever wondered what happens inside these mysterious groups, we’re here to give you a glimpse behind closed doors. What, exactly, IS a support group? A support group consists of 6-8 survivors of domestic violence that get together…

Facts About LGBTQ Domestic Violence

With Pride Week festivities in Boston in full swing, we wanted to take the opportunity to recognize the unique challenges faced by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Queer (LGBTQ) survivors of domestic violence. Research about LGBTQ partner abuse shows that domestic violence occurs at similar rates as it does in the general population. The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey released in January by the…

Survivor Voices: 7 Ways Domestic Violence Doesn’t Discriminate

The following piece was written by a member of our Survivor Speakers Bureau. Here, in her own words, is what she wants you to know about domestic violence. OK, Here goes…Are you ready? Let’s talk about something super important that not enough people realize…Domestic violence is NOT discriminatory. It’s shocking, I know – but it is true. I mean, have you ever heard someone say: …I…