Saturday, October 15, 2011

Fight the Fear: Domestic Violence and the Pagan Community

As many of you know, October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. While I was surfing around today, I found this graphic and I absolutely had to share it. It has always struck me how many people in the Pagan community. women and men both, have been victims of some form of domestic violence, and although I believe this graphic was intended more to mean "fight the fear" of Pagans, I think, more than that, it is a great symbol--a magnificent rallying cry for all of those in the Pagan Community who are suffering with and/or have survived domestic violence.

My sisters and brothers, fight the fear, both while you suffer and during the long healing that must come after. Know that you are strong. Know that you are worthy. Know that you are loved. Know that the Lady and Lord are with you and will provide for you not only an out from your situation, but the means to recover from it and not merely survive, but thrive.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline number is: 1−800−799−SAFE(7233). If you need it, please call.

With All My Heart,
-M. Ashley


  1. Thanks for posting about this, M! i think it's so important that we pay attention to this issue in non-mainstream communities where less attention is being paid by advocacy organizations. It's vital, too, i think, that the community recognize that intimate partner violence is more than just punching and hitting. i hope that the following information is helpful to someone out there reading this!

    Intimate partner violence is physical, sexual, or psychological harm caused by any intentional act or omission, or series of acts or omissions, by a current or former intimate partner of the victim.

    Intimate partner violence includes the intentional use of physical force with the potential for causing death, disability, injury, or physical harm. (Victims don't have to be injured to have suffered physical intimate partner abuse.)

    Intimate partner violence includes the use of physical force to compel the victim to engage in a sexual act unwillingly, whether or not the act is completed; an attempted or completed sexual act involving a victim who is unable to understand the act or to give or withhold consent. This inability to consent might be because the victim is ill, disabled, sleeping, or intoxicated, or it might be because the victim is being intimidated or pressured.

    Intimate partner violence includes threats of the kinds of physical or sexual violence as described above.

    Intimate partner violence includes psychological/emotional trauma caused by acts, threats of acts, or coercive tactics (humiliation, control, withholding information, isolation, denying access to money or other basic resources).

    If you are in a relationship that has any of these features, please call the NDVH number in M's post above.

  2. This is my story....

    Several years ago, I belonged to a small coven. Because I was considered more "advanced" than their usual dedicants, I was assigned an "Elder" to work closely with on a one-on-one basis. Over time, a deep friendship developed, and we began exploring a romantic relationship. One night, he was over at my house for a social night. There was drinking involved and we were both pretty tipsy.

    We were having a discussion that turned to magickal things. I don't even remember what the discussion was about at this point, but I remember vehemently disagreeing with what he said. Without warning, he struck me across the face - HARD. So hard that my glasses flew off my face and across the room. I literally saw stars and sat there stunned for a moment.

    Of course, he apologized. Don't all abusers? I tried to put it behind me. A few weeks later, I mentioned the incident to one of my mentors who went ballistic about it. He confronted the coven about it and all sorts of drama ensued. In the end, the tables got turned and I was labeled the bad guy, because unbeknownst to me this "Elder" was sleeping with the HPS. She took the role of defending her illicit boyfriend over her HPS duties. I was ordered to publicly apologize to him at the next Full Moon.

    I refused and never sat foot on the mountain again. A few months later, the affair was discovered by everyone and the coven imploded. The HPS was ousted, as was the Elder. The remaining members and new HPS apologized to me and begged me to return, but at that point I had such a bad taste in my mouth from the whole thing that I wanted nothing to do with any of them.

    I will NEVER be a victim again.