Your Moments

Your support has made many remarkable moments possible in our work to heal, educate and empower. Your commitment, your resolve and your belief in change inspire us every day. We've launched this platform for you to share your own meaningful moments right here. Whether words, an image or a video, we invite you to contribute your moment of joy, gratitude, healing, change, hope, progress—anything significant to you. 

We also ask that you consider making a donation—any amount that is meaningful to you—to support Joyful Heart’s transformative work. 

Add Your Moment Donate
x

Forgiving myself

The moment I was able to forgive myself, love myself, and offer myself kindness, I was able to share my story and heal.

The moment I was able to forgive myself, love myself, and offer myself kindness, I was able to share my story and heal.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

NO MORE shame

Today, February 18th, marks the two year anniversary of when I found the courage to leave my ex-husband. This day also marks the anniversary of when I could no longer...

Today, February 18th, marks the two year anniversary of when I found the courage to leave my ex-husband. This day also marks the anniversary of when I could no longer lie to myself anymore, and had to reach out for help. The past two years haven't been easy but I've made it quite a ways on my path through recovery. I am just starting to find the courage to share my story of domestic violence and hopefully making an impact. I am a professional, and even so, I wore long sleeves in the summer while pregnant to cover the bruises on my body and told NO ONE about the abuse until the day I left. At the time I felt so ashamed and thought I was the problem, that if I could just be or do better that I wouldn't get hurt. I have learned so much through my experience... about the importance of bystander intervention (I had none), about reaching out to a friend you suspect might be in an abusive relationship (mine only said after they had suspected something), and how badly victims just want to be heard, not told to "get over it" or questioned about why they stayed. Time to stop questioning the victims and put the responsibility where it belongs, ON THE ABUSERS. #NOMORE

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Why Me

From the age of 9 until i turned 14 years old I was constantly rapped by my older cousin. We are 5 years apart in age. My parents would let him come over and babysit me...

From the age of 9 until i turned 14 years old I was constantly rapped by my older cousin. We are 5 years apart in age. My parents would let him come over and babysit me and my younger bother. I would try to think of every reason for them not to go out. I would act out tell them lies about what him hitting my younger brother. A lot of people will ask " why didnt you just tell?" I didn't tell because I had a friend who was going through the same situation and her mama never believed her. So i kind of felt my mom would act the same. I also didn't want to mess my family up. But one night my mom walked in on him during the act. Yes, he called the police had him put away. My whole reason for this story is just to say, Dont wait get help. If not from parents go tell someone else. It took years before I became myself. I had to think about it as I wont let him mess up my life. I dont dwell on the past anymore. I have to do whats right for me and only me. I have forgave him but I will NEVER FORGET.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Courage

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Learning to Thrive more that Survive

As a woman who has my entire life described as strong it has taken 43 years to allow myself not to be. Being a "survivor" of child sexual abuse from the time...

As a woman who has my entire life described as strong it has taken 43 years to allow myself not to be. Being a "survivor" of child sexual abuse from the time I was 5 years old I truly have no other life experience to compare it to expect for the ones I imagined all the normal girls had. When you loose your virginty before you ever knew what it is you truly have no way of remembering a time before. I have survived these past 38 years and now I want more. I want to thrive in my life. What I finally have realized that if I allow myself to continue to see myself as an object to be used how could I ever expect anyone to see me any differently. If I can't love and cherish the little girl and woman in me I reallu will never know how I expect others to cherish or love me. I would not change my past for anything I tell my 3 boys that my past gave me super powers. I can see someone else's pain through a smile and I love how it allows me to connect to people. From this year foward I am focused on loving me through my pain and hope to Thrive!

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

This is my moment of change. Thanks JHF for helping me change into a bold and fearless survivor.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Miracles Do Happen

2014 was a very dark year for me - probably my darkest ever - but in the midst of that darkness, several very special and beautiful lights appeared in my life. These...

2014 was a very dark year for me - probably my darkest ever - but in the midst of that darkness, several very special and beautiful lights appeared in my life. These people helped me to keep on going despite the overwhelming despair that made me not want to. Their appearance in my life showed me that the most unexpected and miraculous things can be waiting for you just around the corner, so it made me realize that perhaps it's possible that one day I will heal and that my life will feel worth living again, even though it still feels impossible right now. But maybe things won't always be this painful. And maybe the future has some more good things in store, things that I can't even conceive of yet, but I'll only experience that goodness if I remain alive. My gratitude for these earth angels who have given me this hope is immeasurable.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Justice is coming

Arizona is finally changing their ways. Its long over due. Holding test kits because a victim was not able to get her abuser to admit what he did on a recorded phone...

Arizona is finally changing their ways. Its long over due. Holding test kits because a victim was not able to get her abuser to admit what he did on a recorded phone line is UNACCEPTABLE. It is no surprise that so many victims do not come forward after being assaulted. Its another assault to ask someone to "pretend to have liked" what happened just to get a verbal confirmation from an assailant. http://azcops.org/arizona-law-enforcement-revising-stance-on-rape-kits/ Hopefully the 4000+ test kits to be "reopened" bring justice to the victims in Arizona.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Recovering my lost soul

I can only begin this writing by being grateful that I lived. At two years old, parents left their four children for three weeks at home in Hawaii while they journeyed...

I can only begin this writing by being grateful that I lived. At two years old, parents left their four children for three weeks at home in Hawaii while they journeyed to California. Though I blocked the memory for many years, the physical issues that plagued me spoke of a violent molest at the hands of my uncle. The story of the "accident" I had on my tricycle came down through the family for years. He had covered his crime through a further injury. Metal poisoning and scar tissue told the tale years later. By that time, I was physically dying. In realizing what had happened, I had to fight my way back; I had to regain my soul. For years after remembering, I thought he had taken everything. I then realized that my true purity had never been compromised, my soul was intact. He could not take from me what I was unless I continued to believe that I was damaged forever. I had to choose what I would believe, over and over again. I chose; I choose every day. In gratitude, Kalani

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Looking forward to life

It has been 13 months since I've seen my soon-to-be ex-husband. My husband and I were married for 12 years and have a 10-year-old daughter. I had moved to where he...

It has been 13 months since I've seen my soon-to-be ex-husband. My husband and I were married for 12 years and have a 10-year-old daughter. I had moved to where he lived, leaving behind my home, friends, family, and a good job. His abuse began after we were married: the isolation, mean words, subtle putdowns, pushing. I felt so alone. Where was the man I thought I was marrying? Then came the holes in the walls and yelling. It was like living with a wrecking ball. There was no moderation. I was either a saint or that bitch he married. He was either high on happiness or high on anger, and look out when the ball would swing. He broke things that belonged to me or my daughter. He threatened to hurt the dog. He would tell me to "go home". Everything was my fault. He rarely took responsibility for anything. Nothing was ever enough for him. Then he hit me. He threw me into the wall. Smashed things. Told our daughter he was going to kill himself and that she was to blame. I covered up, fixed holes, cleaned up, and wiped tears. I cried all the time. Every time I heard him drive into the driveway, I cringed. I thought: "If I just love him more, show him more respect, tell him what a good job he's doing, it will be better." I tried doctors, therapists, psychiatrists, and priests. He was fired from his job because he didn't go to work. He started to walk around naked in front of our daughter. My daughter would ask, "Is it my fault?" I am an educated, confident, resourceful woman. He started a new job but very quickly he felt the work was beneath him. One night, he put his arm around my throat, cut off my air, and almost broke my neck. I had no more to give. My daughter witnessed this. I got an order of protection and am getting a divorce. I don't miss him. I don't wonder how he is. My daughter asked: "How do you love someone you don't trust?" Good question. I have flash backs. Last week, a truck just like his passed me on the road. I jumped. I couldn't breathe. I was shaking. My eyes filled with tears. Yesterday, my daughter looked at me, started to cry, and said, "I'm having a hard time. I'm afraid he'll come back." And I said to her, "We are moving forward. We're looking for a new house. You start at a new school in the fall. Don't ever forget the past. Focus on the future, because that's where we're going, and he's not in it."

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

My Journey of Recovery

In 2000, I met a man who seemed nice and we began dating. In 2003, we were married. Everything changed when we moved into our first home. He became very jealous and...

In 2000, I met a man who seemed nice and we began dating. In 2003, we were married. Everything changed when we moved into our first home. He became very jealous and possessive. He also started to psychologically and verbally abuse me. The abuse continued until 2007 when I finally left the relationship because I was afraid that the abuse would become physical. After I left the relationship I filed for divorce. I also enrolled in a community college and received a diploma in Medical Coding in 2009. My faith in God and the support of my family have kept my strong in my healing journey. I am also trying to start a ministry at church to help others who have been in abusive relationships.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

Victim, Survivor, Empowerer

The title I chose for this entry will probably explain my life better than I ever could. I was sexually assaulted during my first year as a social work student at a...

The title I chose for this entry will probably explain my life better than I ever could. I was sexually assaulted during my first year as a social work student at a university. Looking back now, I would not change any of the choices I made in the year leading up to my assault. Although I struggled tremendously to regain a sense of self and safety after the incident; I would not be the woman I am today without those terribly difficult times. Not only did my experience impact my decision to pursue a career in counseling survivors of sexual abuse and assault but it also allowed me to realize that I could truly overcome anything. I would like to thank the Joyful Heart Foundation for spreading light and love in the face of such darkness. I would also like to reach out to those who may be struggling with their own experiences and say that YOU can do this. Reach out to someone, talk to a counselor and take care of YOU. You too can go from a victim, to a survivor, to an empowerer.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

JOY IN HEALING

I was married to a man when things were good life was to but when there was a problem he became very controlling and abusive both verbally and physically to me and our...

I was married to a man when things were good life was to but when there was a problem he became very controlling and abusive both verbally and physically to me and our oldest son when I got out I put all the hurt away to raise my kids but they are all grown grandkids are grown so had time to remember things that happened was very depressed didn't enjoy much then God should me JHF started reading and watching everything about Mariska and what she was doing work up yesterday happy and wanted to help support JHF work thank you for giving me a reason to keep going.God BLESS MARISKA her family and ALL THE PEOPLE OF JHF.

Report Content

Reason for Report

x

As a survivor of child and sexual abuse, I used my own healing as a platform to work on justice issues and women's rights. This evolved into helping women weavers in Guatemala -all survivors of war and violence - earn a living. There products are for sale at www.corazonscarves.com.

Report Content

Reason for Report

Pages