Archive for September, 2012

What does a healthy relationship look like?

Well…it looks like this video…but so much more. Read on…for more.


Signs of a healthy relationship!!!!

Supports your relationship with your and their friends and family.

ž  Maintains their own friends, and wants you to hang out with your friends too.

ž  Asks and values your opinion

ž  You can express your opinions, ideas, and dreams and do not feel threatened.

ž  Talks and listens to you

ž  Accepts responsibility for their behavior, feelings, and thoughts

ž  Apologizes when they’re wrong, and accepts your apology when you’re wrong.

ž  Considers the relationship a partnership.

ž  Shares in the decision making and wants you to share.

ž  Expects each person to deal with their own money, and doesn’t use money to get their way.

ž  Treats other people and animals with respect. (Especially their parents, elders, and servers)

ž  Is not upset about your relationship with someone of the opposite or same sex.

ž  Trusts you and expects to be trusted.

ž  Encourages you in your goals and dreams.

ž  Points out the positive in your appearance, your actions, and your ideas.

ž  You feel safe with.

ž  Resolves conflict without resorting to violence or put downs.

ž  Tries to understand how you feel.

ž  Accepts all aspects of who you are.

ž  Understands that people need some time alone to be with themselves, their family, or friends.

ž  Text you only when you respond or it is appropriate to text. Does not ask for nude pics.

ž  Understands NO, and variation of the word,  still means No!!


Check out the new “Things anyone can do to end Domestic Violence section of the blog!!!!!!

“I know domestic violence is bad, and that the way this world treats women is bad…but what can I do about it?”

What can I do…the most often phrased comment in this movement, in this cause, in this world…on so many things.

What can you do?  Well as the great 6th century poet said…start with you.

1. Self check…How do you feel about this cause?  Do you question “Why she/he won’t leave?”Do you question why the victim makes the other person mad?  Do you think this is an anger issue?  Do you think that men just get a bad rap? Do you not see how gender inequality pushes this abuse forward and further?  If ANY of this applies to you…you need to educate yourself and everyone around you about the real issue. Multiple pieces have been written on this blog about power and control and all of the other questions above.

2. What do you have the ability to do? This is big!  Can you do something at your job?  Do you have free time at home?  Are your kids into helping people?  Are you really wanting to do something?  What talents do you have that can help?

3. Check out this blog. At the top fo this blog you will notice another page…it says Things anyone can do to END Domestic Violence. Click there and you’ll be given A LOT of ideas and thoughts that you can do. Or you can just click the link above.


Verizon Grant Funds Dating Violence Awareness NIE (Newspapers in Education) Program for Middle School


150,000 students in the Tampa Bay area will receive a newspaper specifically created to teach them about what Teen Dating Violence is, the signs that they need to look for, and most importantly….how to prevent it all around.

Not only is this a huge win for the Tampa Bay area, it’s also a huge win for every student in the area!

What’s even cooler is this is not a bunch of newspaper reporters getting together to decide what should be in this special edition of the newspaper regarding teen dating violence. On the contrary, Sue Bedry(in picture on the right in the article) went around to the entire Tampa Bay area and sought out the experts in the field. The outreach centers that deal with Teen Dating violence prevention everyday is where the information has been taken from.

One question that was very important was: What can a middle school person do to prevent it altogether?

This is the greatest question, because when we can change the way that the young people see things, we have the ability to change the future.

Not only that, this newspaper will show them not only what they can do…but also that they are not alone with dealing with this situation.

So many students watch relationship violence happen in their home. Then they get texts about it happening to their friends. Then they walk into school and watch it happen in the halls. They realize it’s wrong, but nobody is doing anything to stop it…so it must be OK right?

That’s what is so cool about this newspaper, it will educate them and show them that…NO, it’s not OK. Then they will have information and ideas of what to tell their friend to help them in their relationships. What they can look for if they are in a relationship themselves. Then they can also get ideas that they can do RIGHT NOW to prevent it from happening in their world altogether.

And…if it’s bigger than them…there are places they can call..A LOT of places!

All of this in one newspaper that is handed out to everyone!  This si the way prevention works. This is the exposure that this cause needs.

Now, we just have to do it in all communities. That’s where YOU, the reader, come in. Contact your newspaper, write press releases and articles and try to get them published. This can happen in your community.

Now imagine…what if…

What if this did happen in all communities?  That would be amazing.

One step closer to the elimination of abuse!

None of this writing is ours….it’s posted from the SPARCC blog. You have to read this. You have to watch the video!

Then check out the blog here.

In recent months you may have seen several parodies of the hit pop song, “Call Me, Maybe” floating around (such as the 2012 USA Olympic swimming team and the Harvard baseball team).  The education department at Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) thought this would be a wonderful opportunity to garner the attention of young people and start a conversation about the problematic issues related to dating and traditional stereotypes in our culture’s understanding of girls and how they relate to guys.  A few weeks ago, a large group of girls filmed SPARCC’s own parody in downtown Sarasota.  We owe a huge thanks to these girls as well as to several local Sarasota businesses for allowing us to film on their property.  Educator Jacqui Kulaga choreographed and edited the video and did a fantastic job.

Our version of the song includes altered lyrics that are more empowering than the original and is accompanied by a blog entry that dissects the lyrics and why we chose to change them.

I’m asked all the time on this blog…what can we do to get the message oyut to people, to teens, etc.

Here’s a great idea!!!!!

Don’t call a woman a “Bitch”

I can’t believe this is still an issue.

Ask any middle schooler, there’s even some elementary schoolers, that will tell you that a “bitch” is a female dog.  That means every time we utter this word, this phrase…we are associating a woman with an animal. How degrading.

Women are not animals….they are human beings. (Yes, I know we can argue the fact that human beings are animals…but let’s not please.)

A person who has the ability to create life….is considered lower than human? Really?

NO!  This must stop.  We need to stop using it in a casual tone. We need stop using it as a normal reality. We need to stop using it as an adjective for women. We need to stop using it period!

If we see women as below human, we see them as objects, property, and things. When this happens, we will see an increase in violence toward women, a display of women as merely body parts to be used, and a disregard for women as equal to men. WAIT!  It’s already here. Even more reason to stop using the word. This word just goes on to reinforce this idea.

This reinforcement…creates violence. This reinforcement creates…abuse. We must end this!

I remember as a child I was watching a TV show…and a woman walked into a room and said: “You bitch.” my mouth, my mother’s mouth, and my step dad’s mouth dropped! That word had never been uttered on TV. That show now is seen as a landmark/gateway to an acceptance of this word as a normal name for women. Now, you can hear it everywhere…even women who identify it as themselves with pride. That is scary!  That is seeing yourself as below human….wow, no wonder there are so many young women with such low self esteem. With the acceptance of this word and women’s magazines telling you you’re constantly fat and need improvement…I’m surprised that women are even lifting their head high enough to think they can accomplish anything.

Now, there are cultures in our country that have adopted it as part of their natural vernacular. Uggh!  What has this done?  It has legitimized the word, and legitimized the degradation of woemn that the word promotes. Not only that, these cultures haven’t even set up a pure and true definition for the word. so, depending on how it’s used, when its used, etc…it can be seen as all sorts of things. Also, when the adults use this word, the kids (who don’t understand the correct usage either) think it’s fine….and where do we end up then?

This song illustrates this perfectly (lyrics are below the video…if you want to follow along), to quote the chorus:

Bitch is bad.

Woman is good .

Lady is better. They are misunderstood.

Lyrics: Lupe Fiasco
I say bitch bad, woman good, lady better
Hey, hey, hey, hey

[Verse 1]
Now imagine there’s a shawty, maybe five maybe four
Ridin’ ’round with his mama listening to the radio
And a song comes on and a not far off from being born
Doesn’t know the difference between right and wrong
Now I ain’t trying to make it too complex
But let’s just say shawty has an undeveloped context
About the perception of women these days
His mama sings along and this what she says
“Niggas I’m a bad bitch, and I’m bad bitch
far above average”
And maybe other rhyming words like cabbage and savage
And baby carriage and other things that match it
Couple of things that are happenin’ here
First he’s relatin’ the word “bitch” with his mama, comma
And because she’s relatin’ to herself, his most important source of help,
And mental health, he may skew respect for dishonor

Bitch bad, woman good
Lady better, they misunderstood
(I’m killin’ these bitches)
Uh, tell ’em
Bitch bad, woman good
Lady better, they misunderstood
They misunderstood
(I’m killin’ these bitches)

[Verse 2]
Yeah, now imagine a group of little girls nine through twelve
On the internet watchin’ videos listenin’ to songs by themselves
It doesn’t really matter if they have parental clearance
They understand the internet better than their parents
Now being the interent, the content’s probably uncensored
They’re young, so they’re maleable and probably unmentored
A complicated combination, maybe with no relevance
Until that intelligence meets their favorite singer’s preference
“Bad bitches, bad bitches, bad bitches
That’s all I want and all I like in life is bad bitches, bad bitches”
Now let’s say that they less concerned with him
And more with the video girl acquiescent to his whims
Ah, the plot thickens
High heels, long hair, fat booty, slim
Reality check, I’m not trippin’
They don’t see a paid actress, just what makes a bad bitch


[Verse 3]
Disclaimer: This rhymer, Lupe’s not usin’ bitch as a lesson
But as a psychological weapon
To set in your mind and really mess with your conceptions
Discretions, reflections, it’s clever misdirection
Cause, while I was rappin’ they was growin’ up fast
Nobody stepped in to ever slow ’em up, gasp
Sure enough, in this little world
The little boy meets one of those little girls
And he thinks she a bad bitch and she thinks she a bad bitch
He thinks disrespectfully, she thinks of that sexually
She got the wrong idea, he don’t wanna fuck her
He thinks she’s bad at being a bitch like his mother
Momma never dress like that, come out the house, hot mess like that
Ass, titties, dress like that
All out to impress like that
Just like that, you see the fruit of the confusion
He caught in a reality, she caught in an illusion
Bad mean good to her, she really nice and smart
But bad mean bad to him, bitch don’t play your part
But bitch still bad to her if you say it the wrong way
But she think she a bitch, what a double entendre


Bitch bad, woman good
Lady better, they misunderstood
You’re misunderstood
Bitch bad, woman good
Lady better, greatest motherhood

Wow!  Wow! Wow!

We’ve won a second award!  The first was the “Most Motivational Blog Award” . Now this!

I can only say that our goal is to end abuse, end violence, and promote healthy relationships across the board. Our mission is to create and display and write about enough things going on in the world to truly change the status quo so that the shelters are vacant, the domestic violence outreach centers are not needed, and the idea of realtionship violence is unheard of.  Thank You so much One Woman

The rules of the One Lovely Blog Award are that you:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you.  Thanks again One Woman!!
  2. Add the One Lovely Blog Award to your post.
  3. Share 7 things about yourself.  That is below….
  4. Pass the award on to 15 nominees.
  5. Include this set of rules.
  6. Inform your nominees by posting a comment on their blogs

7 things about us…..

1. We believe that the end of violence is possible.

2. We believe that the end of domestic abuse and sexual abuse is in the very near future.

3. We are a group of people who strive everyday to eradicate and prevent domestic violence everyday in every job that we do.

4. We believe that if we delete the risk factors that promote DV, we will end it.

5. We believe that if we promote the protective factors, we will increase the positive.

6. We believe that there is never a victim that is to blame for the abuse he/she has experienced!

7. All people should be allowed to live a violence free life!


Change the he to she if applicable.

If we followed Bob’s advice…..there would be a lot less abuse.

If we followed bob’s advice…there would be a lot less broken homes.

If we followed bob’s advice….there would be a lot more happiness.

Opt 4 following this advice.

Opt 4 spreading this advice to as many people as you can.

Opt 4 changing the way we see relationships.

Opt 4 ending abuse once and for all!


Slut Shaming.

What is this?  This is the newest and oldest thing going around.

This has been happening forever. It the same double standard that has always existed: Guy who have a lot of sexual partners are called studs. Girls who have a lot of sexual partners are called sluts.

This conversation has been spoken about in DVD’s such as the Purity myth, and have been debated all over the world. This theory has created websites that men post pictures of women they have slept with on the first date (mind you the men also slept with the women on the first date…making them no better) and a whole assortment of blogs, youtube videos, etc talking about a slut. Even Rush Limbaugh got on the band wagon a few months ago when a woman stated her birth control pills should be covered by her health insurance. This theory has created things such as Female Gential Mutilation, as well as witch burning in the 1600’s, 1700’s, and 1800’s here in America.

In response, there have been numerous speak outs during the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and even into the modern era with the “Slut Walks” that have grown popularity in the recent years. These “Slut Walks” are women wearing whatever they want, especially items of clothing that have been decided to be “slutty”. the point of these walks is that…Rape is not caused by the way women are dressed, rape is caused because of Rapists!

Women and men can wear whatever they want, and it ‘s ok and they shouldn’t be shamed or assaulted because of it.

In conjunction with this, a person should be able to have as many sexual partners as they feel like, and none should judge anyone for this. As long as there is no abuse, violence, or disrespect….the number of sexual partners is null and void.

A 13 year old professional youtuber (she’s been doing it for 2 years, that’s longer than many people in their 20’s can hold a job) has decided something must be said about this Slut Shaming.

My question…if she gets it, why can’t everyone else?


We have talked abut this video before…but with the resurgence of Chris brown’s Tatoo…we must look at it again in more detail.

We must see the song and the video for what it is: A way love is not suppose to be!

Now I know we said things, did things that we didn’t mean And we fall back into the same patterns, same routine But your temper’s just as bad as mine is, you’re the same as me But when it comes to love, you’re just as blinded
Baby, please come back, it wasn’t you, baby, it was me Maybe our relationship isn’t as crazy as it seems Maybe that’s what happens when a tornado meets a volcano All I know is I love you too much to walk away though
Come inside, pick up your bags off the sidewalk Don’t you hear sincerity in my voice when I talk?Told you this is my fault, look me in the eyeball Next time I’m pissed, I’ll aim my fist at the drywall
Next time? There won’t be no next time I apologize, even though I know it’s lies I’m tired of the games, I just want her back, I know I’m a liar If she ever tries to f****’ leave again, I’ma tie her to the bed And set this house on fire.

You know what the hardest part of the video is to me? It’s in the middle when he hands her the teddy bear holding the rose. She is sitting up against the wall, battered and crying. He hands her the teddy bear and she takes it. I can tell you what she is thinking. She was thinking, “That was the last fight I will ever have with you. That was the last straw. Tomorrow I’m leaving.” When he hands her the bear her brain tells her, “Please don’t apologize. Please don’t be nice. Stop messing with me.” She has to take the bear. She has to, because if she doesn’t, he turns around and says, “Oh. So you are too good to accept my apology! You know I didn’t mean it!! This was just as much your fault. If you hadn’t have done (fill in the blank)…,” and then it starts all over again. So she’s trapped. Nothing she does will be right. It’s easier to stay silent and accept the bear and say, “I understand. I’m sorry, too.” She says it without making eye contact and with her voice very low.

This video has so much wrong with it, but so much right. At times I think it’s brilliant and then at times I think it’s typical Eminem and typical Hollywood. I understand its purpose, in terms of exposing some of the games of domestic violence, but a fight like that doesn’t lead to the passionate sex that is displayed throughout the video. That is what happens in Hollywood. The video makes the violence seem o.k. I love you, I hate you, I love you, hurt me, love me, hit me, love me, destroy me, love me. This video was incredibly popular and if I could I would scream from the highest mountain, “This isn’t love!” “Next time I’m pissed I’m gonna put my fist through the dry wall.”

Let’s describe that sentence. An abuser loves to trap their victim. They love walls. They will manipulate the situation to where the victim finds herself in a defenseless position with her back against a wall and him towering over her. He doesn’t have to say anything at that point. He has already won. Her heart is racing and she is praying to God to make this go fast, as he does anything he wants to. He can grab her face if she tries to look away. He can touch ever so softly and proceed to rape her if he wants. He can unbutton her blouse. If she starts to cry he can get up right against her and tell her to stop crying. He can take his fist and hit the wall right next to her. The punch takes what seems 10 minutes to get to the wall. All the while she is thinking, “Is this going to be the time he’s going to hit me?” He doesn’t hit her, though. By hitting the wall, he holds more power over her than actual physically touching her. By hitting the wall he is telling her, “This time I show restraint, but you better watch out next time.”

This video should be required watching of every teenager, college student, every woman and every man in America, but it should come with a very real and very honest dialog. This video is the epitome of power and control, but also how the media glorifies violence in this country. “It’s o.k. you hit me honey. I’ll love you anyway. So go ahead and we’ll have great sex afterwards.”

Yeah, whatever. Ask any victim and ask how her sex was after the fight. She won’t tell the same story.
I have said this many times before, but we have to stop the violence and we can only do that by honest and real conversation. We can’t sugarcoat this anymore. Those days must end.

This is late notice…but I hope everyone who reads this can watch tomorrow.
That’s right…I said tomorrow Sept 20, 2012.

Katie Couric has her own show and she is having the mother and sister of college student Yeardley Love. You’ll remember, Ms. Love was brutally killed by her savage ex-boyfriend because she broke up with him.

They are speaking out about how they feel, what this has done to their lives, and what they want us all to do to end this horrible epidemic!

Not only that, they will be digging deeper into the epidemic of dating violence.

This will be an educational show for everyone to watch.



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