Dating violence poetry

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Sam was three months pregnant when her girlfriend Lynn raped her. Sensing that Lynn wanted sex, Sam decided to tell her that she did not. It is only in the last few months she has felt able to talk about the events of her early twenties. She pinned me against a doorway and said, ‘I’ll have what I fucking like if I fucking want it.’ She assaulted me.”Sam is in her early thirties.As the accounts of violence, rape, bullying, coercion, and control surfaced, sometimes for the first time, two questions began to form: What prevents LGBT people in particular from speaking out?And, what external forces are stopping them from finding safety?Following a successful Christmas campaign, Refuge has published a reversible poem to emphasise the severity and pervasiveness of domestic violence on Valentine’s Day, and draw attention to the various forms it can take.

Read one way, the poem tells the story of a whirlwind romance, but when read in reverse it depicts the terrifying reality of living with a perpetrator of domestic violence.Two women a week are killed at the hands of a partner or ex-partner in England and Wales.And on average, another three women a week commit suicide as a way of escape.Harvey Barringer revealed something else: If the charity doesn’t find £20,000 in the next few weeks, it could close. Sam recalls another incident, this time from near the end of her time with Lynn, when she tried to seek help.“I went on the Women’s Refuge website and it’s all about, ‘If he does…

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