I Am Not Ashamed – one survivor’s story

Miah has come a long way since she was brave enough to leave her abusive ex-partner. She’s now on a mission to help and support other domestic abuse victims and survivors. Among other things she has trained as an Independent Domestic Violence Advocate (IDVA) and has written a book.

Tell us about your life now?

I have come a long way from where I used to be. I am definitely in a better place. I am no longer in the abusive relationship, I have become a stronger woman, finding myself encouraging other women to gain back their power – just like I did. I am much happier now.

In 2020 I decided that it was time to speak up and tell my story, so I wrote a book which was published in December 2021. Since then, I have had women reach out to me for support and encouragement. I have also become a domestic abuse advocate, moderator and counsellor.

I will be getting baptized this year as well. I have been reaching out to domestic abuse organizations in order to collaborate with them so together we can have more women go from victims to survivors. In April 2022 I set up a Twitter account @feelingnhealing which has been doing really well, the feedback, comments and direct messages from survivors and victims of domestic abuse has been amazing. I also have an Instagram page feeling.n.healing which is also doing really well. You never actually realize how many women are suffering in silence but gain confidence to speak up when they see others opening up. 

Tell us about the organization you set up/the books you have written?

I have set up an account where women and men can book a free counselling session and I wrote my book ‘I Am Not Ashamed’.  I am currently working on my website, this will be where victims can get support, encouragement and advice via live webchat. They will also be able to book counselling sessions, join group sessions and much more. 

Can you tell us a bit about why you set this up?

I set this up because when I was a victim of abuse and I was not aware of the help and support that is out there from organizations. I genuinely felt like I was alone and assumed that I was the only one experiencing abuse. I relied on my abusive ex for comfort, mainly because he told me that no one would believe me if I told them that what was happening.

I did not realize that I was falling for his trap at the time, but eventually I built up the courage and told my family and friends. After that I reported my ex to the police and got support from organizations and charities, I knew straight away that I would want to – not only tell my story – but also help other victims and survivors of domestic abuse. I then decided to become a domestic abuse advocate. I have learned so much, and my aim is to help others gain back their powers, like I did. 

What’s the biggest thing that you have learned?

The biggest thing I have learned from my whole experience is that abuse is not just physical, there are many different types of abuse. These include mental abuse, financial abuse, religious abuse, verbal abuse, manipulation, emotional abuse, economic abuse, harassment and many more. 

 What would you say the most common misconception of domestic abuse is?

I would say the most common misconception of domestic abuse is whose fault it is and also the question people always seem to ask is “why don’t woman just walk away?”

Although those two misconceptions are the top two, I also would like to add that other misconceptions are that alcohol is the reason for abuse, and that it is the abuser’s upbringing that caused them to be abuse.

If you could pass one message to others living with domestic abuse, what would it be?

If I could pass on one message to others living with domestic abuse, it would be to speak to your family and friends, tell them what you are going through. Don’t block them out. Having a support system helps in so many ways. Even if you feel like you are scared to speak to family or friends, there are so many organizations out there who are there to support you, and help you get away from your abusive partner.  

What would your motto be?  

My motto is and always will that people only get away with what you allow them to get away with. Stand your ground, you are stronger than you think. 

What makes you laugh/happy?

My children, my family and friends make me happy. They are my happy place, and I don’t know where I would be without them. I have a wonderful support system; I have positive and encouraging people around me who not only makes me laugh but every day they give me a reason to smile. 

If you need help or advice on domestic abuse, you can get in touch with the Free 24/7 National Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0808 2000 247 – or contact any of the specialist domestic abuse organisations and helplines listed on our Resources page.