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. 

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A year of change

2015 is going to be MY year. A year of change and empowerment. I'm going to heal my heart through therapy and support of my family and friends. And I'm saying...

2015 is going to be MY year. A year of change and empowerment. I'm going to heal my heart through therapy and support of my family and friends. And I'm saying no more to the domestic violence I've experienced. I'm going to protect my children and help them to learn that physical and mental abuse is wrong so they don't continue the cycle. I don't want my son to be an abuser or my daughter to be a victim. Things need to change. And they can start with me. Happy NEW Year!!!

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

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Let Us Move On

Let us move on. In the hopes that this may help another move forward, I'll give this too pay it forward as it was this kind of stuff that gave me the hope I...

Let us move on. In the hopes that this may help another move forward, I'll give this too pay it forward as it was this kind of stuff that gave me the hope I found from others I reached out to. My assumption is that I, if I try, can, will and do my life changes for the better! In my hopes any of you wanting to hear of my childhood and what my life story is to this point. Again... That is only an assumption on my part. The truth is that I would love to tell you..."The Whole Story", but writing it, I will save for a book, because it is far from over and I'm convinced the best part is yet to unfold. I am full of positive hope and faith, which has resulted from allot of work. I mean some years of self directed effort to achieve sobriety first and then proceed to seek out and find the help/education and heartfelt healers that I have needed most of my life to arrive at this blissful, happy place I feel I am now at. Yet may I say, I have come a long way from the hurt wounded child who was sexually abused and otherwise assaulted for years as a child that carried through my being a young teenager. That in it's self, I have held in secret since I was 12 years old until a few years ago. I am now 59 years old and my secrets where "killing me" and sabotaging my every effort I made to feel part of and not emotionally isolated. I made the best of life I could, and in fact have done (fairly) well as a good hearten man in terms of many things I value and love about life. So maybe my life is following the path I was destined to take and I must continue to do what unfolds in front of me in order to live life fully. In other words simply...follow my spirit. "The Journey" I have endeavored upon in order to heal those wounds I've held so deeply in my heart and my outlook in life has been amazing. Thus is where my "Joyful Heart" has begun to see clearly, a new meaning and purpose in life for me. That story is only beginning and I am full of excitement and want to be patient and thorough with my new thoughts of how to be of the best service and value to help others heal. I hope to bring something new to the conversation if I can. In order to have greater impact on education and prevention of all forms of domestic violence and sexual assault...that is my "Focus". I believe it goes to our level of tolerance as well as the indifference to the issues outside of one's immediate life and circumstances. That which is disguised and sold to us in such forms as fear ignorance, bigotry, racism. intolerance and entitlement for those who have over those who don't. As well as the degradation of nature and violence we seem to be willing to turn our cheek to as a necessary evil...of commerce and cultural advancement...need I go on! I by no means believe I can tackle all of these issues. It is a "Spiritual Axiom" for me that if good people rest on their laurels and become complacent in their lives and world about and not work for the better...Nothing will change in any meaningful way. Not taking a stand and making my voice heard feels like coward-es to me! I am and have been one of the lucky one's, "who has survived" and has the time and opportunity to do my best at accomplishing a small, maybe even a tiny part of that and I endeavor to do so. That is who I am today, yet a simple man who finally excepts himself, wishes to be more happy and in love with every aspect of what life has to offer! The possibilities are endless. That is what makes me Happy!

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healing as a survivoru

I was raped by two men,was abused as a child,went through cancer.but with the help and support of this foundation I have become stronger and become a survivor it took me...

I was raped by two men,was abused as a child,went through cancer.but with the help and support of this foundation I have become stronger and become a survivor it took me 32 years to come out but I can not thank you all enough for what you have done you are my inspiration to keep going.

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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.

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im a survivor

hi my name is tia i live in Arizona and im adoppted by my beautiful family at age 4 when i was in the orphanage i was wape by a guy and girl and whould do horrible...

hi my name is tia i live in Arizona and im adoppted by my beautiful family at age 4 when i was in the orphanage i was wape by a guy and girl and whould do horrible things to me and at first i whouldt tell anybody about it because i flet ashame of what they did to me and when i was adopppted my parents where noitce some odd things about me i whould kick theam bite theam and whould not let theam touch me and act out in school then they took me to a doctor and that is when they dicovered that i had bipolar and attachment disoder and other things and they took me to a theapepist and that is whene they found out that i was sexrely abuse and i keep thinking it was my fault i had to talk about it a lot and sence i got older i relise that i didt do wrong they did i finley flet free to finley relize that it was not my fault it was there,s flet free to be out of that place and now have a great loveing parents and brother so that is why i support no more and to show victims that they are survivers

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Change

Hi, my name is Alexis S. I have an aunt that used to be in an abusive relationship, for years i couldn't figure out why? why would she stay? why would you defend...

Hi, my name is Alexis S. I have an aunt that used to be in an abusive relationship, for years i couldn't figure out why? why would she stay? why would you defend the person who gave you bruises and mad you feel so bad about yourself. I always told her god didn't put Eve on this earth to be beaten and abused, he made her so that she can be strong and be all that she can be as a woman. One day my aunt and her boyfriend drove to NYC and he got so mad he put her out in the side of the highway and drove off, later that night he beat her so bad, she had a broken arm and ribs, her one eye was so swollen she could barely see out of it. I was brought up in an environment that if a guy lays his hands on you, it was time to beat his ass but now i understand that some women and men are fragile they cant fight for themselves but that's why you have loved ones so cares and tries to help out. My aunt later on got fed up and kicked him out and had a restraining order on him, she was a changed woman, she was so depressed and cruel that literally everyday she fought for her life. I thank god for people like you Mariska & staff, this is changing the lives of people who so are afraid to get help and think their voices cant be heard but it can with your help. Thank you

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I'm grateful I'm able to see such an amazing level of awareness being spread in my lifetime. Seeing this kind of change from ignorance, by-standing & blind excuses to support, understanding & love is what a powerful movement is made of. I want to support survivors and change for many years to come.

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no more secrets

We need to learn its okay to say "no more." As abuse is safer to talk about we will have more healing. And ultimately more perpetrators facing justice &...

We need to learn its okay to say "no more." As abuse is safer to talk about we will have more healing. And ultimately more perpetrators facing justice & hopefully not able to hurt others. I was abused as a child. It feels liberating to say those words without shame.

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Survivor for 5 years

After much therapy, realization and education Im beginning to get used to the fact I didnt deserve it. I was in a same-sex relationship for 5 years, but I didnt hear...

After much therapy, realization and education Im beginning to get used to the fact I didnt deserve it. I was in a same-sex relationship for 5 years, but I didnt hear much about that type of violence. I was so emotionally blind and felt it was my duty to take care of her and make her feel better after she beat the shit out of me, I comforted her. I still keep the ring that cut up my face and affected my eyesight, although Im fine now physically, emotionally I still dont let myself believe it. I want the glbtq community to know that again, violence is violence, its wrong, get out.

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Four years

I wrote this poem last year and I felt like it helped and can life up to it I was a happy 19 year old girl / I thought everything was going great for me / I...

I wrote this poem last year and I felt like it helped and can life up to it I was a happy 19 year old girl / I thought everything was going great for me / I didn't know that I would be hurt / I trusted in everyone that I meet / Four years ago I was sexually assaulted // I lost trust in people / I had a lot of pain / I didn't know how to deal with it / I at least had my family and friends / Four years ago I didn't know if I would heal // I still dealt with anxiety / I still dealt with that day / I was still learning to trust / I was trying to heal / Four years has been an uphill battle // I can finally open my heart / I am the happiest in my life / I take it day by day / I am finally healing / Four years I am breaking my silence

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Fifteen Years Later

The first time I was sexually assaulted I was five, then again at fourteen, again by my best friend and her boyfriend and his friend at the age of twenty after they...

The first time I was sexually assaulted I was five, then again at fourteen, again by my best friend and her boyfriend and his friend at the age of twenty after they drugged me. Lastly, around the same time as the last starting at the age of 19. For two and a half years I was not only sexually assaulted, but I was mentally and physically abused by my boyfriend. My church youth leader that I told when I was fourteen, comforted me then comforted my abuser even more because "he must be going through a lot to have done something like that." I finally saw a therapist that specialized in sexual abuse. She was sexually abused as well and projected her abuse and issues on to me as well as other patients and lost her license after my parents as well as others turned her in. I never got help after that. Needless to say, I've been emotionally stuck in my early twenties for a long time. I'm thirty-five now. Last year, I finally told my mother about the abuse at the hands of my best friend and my boyfriend after finding the courage to write Mariska an email and tell her first. Mariska was the first person I'd ever told. In this past year, I've healed so much all because I was finally able to voice my abuse. Not only emotionally, but physically as well. I've had horrible health problems for the past ten years and since I voiced my abuse! my health has improved greatly.

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Breaking the Silence

We need to change things in our country, and we don’t need more doctors or counselor telling the media on what is happening to kids that are being sexual abused; it...

We need to change things in our country, and we don’t need more doctors or counselor telling the media on what is happening to kids that are being sexual abused; it needs to come from us the survivors. We need to tell our stories so we can break the social silence that keeps us quiet of our past.

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