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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Stephanie Wells

In honor of my mom

As far back as I can remember, I noticed all the scars on my Mom’s body. Curiously, I would ask, “What is that from?” She would respond, “Grown up stuff. An accident.”

As I aged, they were just part of her body, and I stopped asking. We had photos of me visiting her in the hospital as a child. “It must have have been a really bad accident.” I thought. In my teen years, I found out the truth. Right after my first birthday, my Mom was fed up with the physical abuse she was enduring from my father. She bought a gun, thinking it would keep her safe. It didn’t. He grabbed the shotgun from her and shot her multiple times. She nearly died, and I went to live with my Grandma.

Finding out the truth formed my views on guns. They do not keep you safe. And bringing one into the home puts women at a higher risk. Her scars are my scars.

Reacting shows support for gun violence survivors.