Domestic violence victims experience the darker side of Valentine's …

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12, 2016)– As many people celebrate love this weekend, there’s a dark side to Valentine’s Day for the people in abusive relationships. Flowers, cards and candy, a blissful time to celebrate the one you love. But for some people cupids arrow lead to a miserable tale.

“I was in an emotionally abusive situation and we moved 14 times in 13 years. My pet was harmed. There’s a whole lot of way people don’t recognize in the moment that are abusive,” said survivor, Sandy Ziebold. Sandy Ziebold was married to her abuser for more than a decade. And holiday’s like Valentine’s Day were anything but rosy.

“It can be really challenging.

Especially if they’re just unhappy and miserable and wanting their situations to be like other situations they know exist.”

Sandy now serves as the Executive Director and CEO of Beacon of Hope1 Center for Women. She got out and now wants to help others. The Julian Center2 says they see an increased number of abuse victims needing help around holidays.

“The victim may feel more obliged to be accommodating to the abuser. The abuser may feel the stress of the Discount Holidays © holiday and feel more pressure which may lead to more instances of the abuse,” said Executive Director and CEO, Catherine O’Connor. The Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports 45 people died at the hands of intimate partners from July 2013 through June 2014.

“It’s every gender. Every income level. Every race and ethnicity.

Professional people,” said O’Connor. But Sandy is the face of survival. She’s been in a new, healthy relationship for 10 years.

“The knot in your gut just isn’t there anymore and that’s wonderful, that’s wonderful.”

According to the Huffington Post3, in the United States last month at least 112 people were killed in suspected intimate partner homicides.


  1. ^ Beacon of Hope (www.beaconofhopeindy.org)
  2. ^ Julian Center (www.juliancenter.org)
  3. ^ Huffington Post (testkitchen.huffingtonpost.com)

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