October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Read and share stories to honor survivors whose lives have been changed by domestic violence.

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Patricia Martins

In honor of my parents

I always look at people around me with skepticism. I like to believe I can trust others, even loved ones, but I feel I cannot trust anyone completely. When anyone is angry near me I feel anxious, even sick to my stomach. Because I lost my parents at the age of seven, I suffer panic attacks whenever any of my family members are sick or injured, for fear that I’ll lose them too. There are everyday things that will upset me. The smell of blood, car backfire, my mother’s perfume, seeing a mother and daughter together in any situation, or watching violence on the news or in a movie. I have a difficult time thinking about it, seeing pictures and talking to others of my experience. But I always share in hopes of helping others deal with their suffering.

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