Does anyone watch Bravo TV's the Housewives of Beverly Hills show?? I know we all have our opinions of reality tv but personally I can't get enough! This season of the BH housewives though has hit home with me because of Taylor Armstrong. As you may or may not know it comes out in this season that she is involved in an abusive relationship. It's tough to watch her unravel on the show but it's interesting to see what living with in that situation can do to a person. Trying to keep up appearances when deep down you're second guessing every thing you do and say to make sure you didn't trigger something that you'll be paying for later. It's upsetting to watch it on the show but I hope her struggles reaches at least one person living in an abusive situation and convinces that person to get help.
If you aren't familiar with the show, it came out before this season aired that Taylor's husband committed suicide. All the articles I read said that Russell was afraid of how he was portrayed on the show. But I don't think that's it. Taylor finally got the courage to leave him and had filed for divorce exactly one month, (to the day) earlier. I can't help but think that even in his death he was an abuser. Abuser's need to have control - over everything. We know that they manipulate situations and play mind games with their victims to maintain that power over them. Russell killing himself, leaves that lasting memory with his wife - that even in his death he was in control - and the guilt she must be feeling especially for her child will stay with her for a long time.
After the show they do a live recap show called, "Watch What Happens Live" and the guest star of last nights recap show was Taylor. It's been about 5 months since Russell's death and I thought Taylor was doing fabulously. She talked about getting help and going to therapy and she's even written a book about her situation called, Hiding from Reality: My Story of Love, Loss and Finding the Courage Within. Taylor talked about hoping that even if her story, struggle, and eventual freedom only helped one person it would have been worth putting out there.
Whenever you hear a survivor's story the common denominator always is - they weren't alone. They got help and got out! Keeping your situation inside and trying to deal with it by yourself is not healthy and eventually the proverbial poop will hit the fan! Perhaps Taylor expressed it better last night when she said she felt like she had been holding the lid on a pot of boiling water, just waiting for the water to boil over. I think we can all agree that's no way to live. Please if you or someone you know is living with abuse - GET HELP! No matter where you are there is an anti domestic violence organization that can talk you through what your options are. If you're having trouble locating someone go to the police station. You don't need to file a report or even give them your name and they can give you a list of resources in your area. You can always reach out to me and the Woodbridge, NJ domestic violence response team. We will help point you towards someone in your area that can help!
Just remember ... you're strong, your beautiful, and you're not alone!!