Imagine a mother leaving her two year old daughter in the front yard frightened and lone, only to return years later. In the interim, the child’s Dad, notorious in his own right, becomes the responsible parent. This was the beginning of life for me, Sharon D. Johnson. Needless to say, I grew up fast. I dropped out of school and became a mother at age thirteen.
Fast forward ten years and I was a single mother with three beautiful little girls. But with limited resources and no place to live, I ended up at the home of mother that abandoned me. I was young, homeless with nowhere else to go. One day I went to work and left my girls with my mother, only to return home and find them sitting on the front porch in the cold because she had locked them out of the house. From there I found my way to the local Family Shelter.
Time spent at the shelter had a profound impact on my life. I learned how to survive on my own. I appreciated the safe haven the shelter provided women with children like me.
Fast forward again twenty years to the new mature, successful Sharon D. Johnson; published author, business owner and friend to women in transition. I am founder of YOU TOO, a support group for abused women living in shelters. We meet weekly and discuss topics such ending domestic abuse; moving forward after the breakup and living an independent life.
It wasn’t easy, but I moved on with my life but not without many mistakes and regrets. I know that I am not alone. Many women have outgrown partners or simply refused to take abuse anymore. We have proven that it can be done and we can live to tell the story. We can inspire others to do the same. That’s my story – I would love to hear yours.