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Susan’s story: fleeing abuse for a safe haven

Susan had been with her husband for more than 15 years. The abuse started with yelling, name calling, and controlling all their finances. For the sake of their children, she hoped she could mend the relationship. But the abuse only got worse.

She tried leaving seven times, but always ended up going back – she couldn’t afford life on her own with three youngsters, she felt guilty, felt there was no hope. She felt all alone.

Then she reached out to Second Stage Safe Haven, a United-Way supported charitable organization in Saint John that provides safe, affordable housing, support, counselling and programs for abused women and children.

“I couldn’t be happier. I received so much support and help. I completed counselling, educational programs, made healthy friendships and set goals for myself,” Susan says today.

“I feel better about myself and my future. I now have a full-time job and am planning on going back to school. Most importantly, my kids are happier, they are doing well at school and feel safe in our new home.”