DSC00046It is a sad fact that many of the women
in domestic violence shelters,
at any point in time,
will go back to their abusers.
(yes, it is true)

In fact, a large percentage will go back.
and many will go back more than once.
that means, of course,
that they leave and go back and then
find it necessary to leave again
and go back again
and leave again

because the devil she knows
is not as terrifying as the devil she doesn’t know

starting over from nothing is tough work.

learning to care for yourself again,
and then, look for and actually find a job,
or get training so that you can find a job,
buy clothes to wear to the job,
buy a car to get to the job,
buy insurance so that you can drive the car
find a safe place to live
buy, or borrow, everything you need to live in the place,
and do it all before you run out of time
at the shelter, is hard.
and truly,
it is even harder than we can imagine.

so instead of embracing the devil she doesn’t know,
after leaving the devil she knew
she decides, after much consternation,
that she has probably taught the abuser a lesson,
and that it might be safe to go back. . .

she imagines that he will be so happy
to have her home again
and he will be kind, and loving,
and he will realize that he treated her badly,
and it will be all fairy tale endings and sweetness and love,
and that true love will prevail.


the devil you know
will get even


the devil you know
will hurt you again


the devil you know
is still the devil.