Wellspring - Ending relationship and sexual abuse in Saratoga County


News & Events

Stay Blessed

Between Labor Day and Columbus day there's a holiday that doesn't get enough recognition, World Gratitude Day. It's September 21st and it's been recognized worldwide since 1965. So take a minute today to give thanks for what you've got. Just last week my coworkers were all talking about gratitude. One of them starts each day counting all her blessings on her fingers before she even gets our of bed (and the two pups snuggled beside her in the bed are always in the count). What a great way to start the day. Another said that she started consciously practicing gratitude during a particularly difficult period in her life as she was caring for a loved one... gratitude helped her through her grief. Clearly, I work with some very wise folks. They don't reserve just one day a year for gratitude, but practice it every day.


If you need more inspiration, watch this experiment about how gratitude affects happiness. You'll see them laugh, cry, fidget and squirm...  and you'll find it's never too late to express gratitude.


And to all the regular readers of this blog, thanks for joining with me to think about what we can do to shine our lights a little brighter in this world.


THANK YOU!



It’s On Us… All of Us

Domestic violence and sexual assault have long been hidden epidemics. Not so much anymore. In recent months both issues have come out of the shadows, and are getting major attention on campuses, in boardrooms, and by our government. They're talked about around the dinner table, at the water cooler, and during the pregame commentary.


And all that talk is making a difference. Today the White House launched It's On Us, an awareness campaign to end campus sexual assaults. In Denver Vice President Biden also held a roundtable discussion about domestic violence.   "It’s on all of us to change the culture that asks the wrong questions, and our culture still asks the wrong questions." That's right, we've got to stop asking questions like , "Why do they stay?" and "What did she do to lead him on?" or "Why didn't  (s)he report it to the police?" Instead let's ask why they choose to abuse. But we can't stop with asking questions.


The It's On Us video states "It's on us to stand up, to step in to take responsibility...to stop sexual assault" and they provide tools to get you started.



It’s On Us… All of Us

Domestic violence and sexual assault have long been hidden epidemics. Not so much anymore. In recent months both issues have come out of the shadows, and are getting major attention on campuses, in boardrooms, and by our government. They're talked about around the dinner table, at the water cooler, and during the pregame commentary.


And all that talk is making a difference. Today the White House launched It's On Us, an awareness campaign to end campus sexual assaults. In Denver Vice President Biden also held a roundtable discussion about domestic violence.   "It’s on all of us to change the culture that asks the wrong questions, and our culture still asks the wrong questions." That's right, we've got to stop asking questions like , "Why do they stay?" and "What did she do to lead him on?" or "Why didn't  (s)he report it to the police?" Instead let's ask why they choose to abuse. But we can't stop with asking questions.


The It's On Us video states "It's on us to stand up, to step in to take responsibility...to stop sexual assault" and they provide tools to get you started.



Shatter the Silence

I'm always amazed by the power of one. One person speaking up. One person telling their story and making us think. One person choosing to do something. It can make such a difference.


I'll admit I'm not always the one. I've sometimes left a situation wishing I'd said something or had offered help. Why don't I? Sometimes I couldn't think quickly enough of what to say or do. Sometimes I questioned whether my actions would be helpful. And sometimes I just lacked the courage. And after I felt disappointed in myself and thought about what I could so better next time.


Taking action takes forethought and practice... and a really compelling reason that motivates us  to action. Ready to make the change? The Shatter the Silence PSA will  inspire you. And if you want the backstory on how this all got started, Sharon Love tells about how she turned tragedy into a vision to recognize domestic violence and stop it.






Shatter the Silence

I'm always amazed by the power of one. One person speaking up. One person telling their story and making us think. One person choosing to do something. It can make such a difference.


I'll admit I'm not always the one. I've sometimes left a situation wishing I'd said something or had offered help. Why don't I? Sometimes I couldn't think quickly enough of what to say or do. Sometimes I questioned whether my actions would be helpful. And sometimes I just lacked the courage. And after I felt disappointed in myself and thought about what I could so better next time.


Taking action takes forethought and practice... and a really compelling reason that motivates us  to action. Ready to make the change? The Shatter the Silence PSA will  inspire you. And if you want the backstory on how this all got started, Sharon Love tells about how she turned tragedy into a vision to recognize domestic violence and stop it.






What’s Worse than a Black Eye

The whole country is talking about it: football fans and feminists, sportscasters and sponsors, politicians and parents. It's domestic violence. A 3½ minute video has brought domestic violence out of the shadows and made it a topic of conversation for weeks.

Not since another famous athlete, OJ Simpson, was linked to a tragic domestic violence incident has the issue received so much attention. Those conversations are increasing awareness and are the catalyst for much needed social change. Citizens from all walks of life are denouncing abuse, calling for more responsive laws and practices, raising questions and searching for answers. National hotlines are reporting more calls from people who need help.

What we saw in that video has changed us, made us notice, made us care, and in some ways helped us to understand. But there’s one thing that really troubles me. We took notice because he punched her in the face; we were shocked at the brutality of the physical assault. That video reinforces the belief that domestic violence involves physical abuse. Sometimes it does, but not always. We’ve seen that physical abuse can be brutal. But when we speak with survivors of domestic violence they often tell us that the most damaging abuse wasn’t physical, it was the psychological control, the isolation, the threats and intimidation. It was continually feeling like they were walking on eggshells. That's abuse too... but much harder to see. 

It’s not uncommon for someone to call our hotline and apologetically say, “I’m not sure if I should be calling you; I’ve never been hit.” And then they describe why they called and clearly they are experiencing abuse. It may be emotional or psychological abuse, or financial/economic control. Their partner may be isolating them from friends or family. Or sexually violating them.

But in the absence of physical abuse, they question if it’s domestic violence…. and they’re not sure if it’s OK to call for help. That’s a concern. While we’re having those conversations about domestic violence, let’s also talk about abusive behaviors above and beyond physical violence. The message is coming through loud and clear that physically assaulting a partner is unacceptable. Let’s not stop the discussion there. Let’s talk about other forms of power and control too.  

If you or someone you know may be experiencing abuse,
call our 24 hour hotline at 518-584-8188.
We can help.

All services are free and confidential.

What’s Worse than a Black Eye

The whole country is talking about it: football fans and feminists, sportscasters and sponsors, politicians and parents. It's domestic violence. A 3½ minute video has brought domestic violence out of the shadows and made it a topic of conversation for weeks.

Not since another famous athlete, OJ Simpson, was linked to a tragic domestic violence incident has the issue received so much attention. Those conversations are increasing awareness and are the catalyst for much needed social change. Citizens from all walks of life are denouncing abuse, calling for more responsive laws and practices, raising questions and searching for answers. National hotlines are reporting more calls from people who need help.

What we saw in that video has changed us, made us notice, made us care, and in some ways helped us to understand. But there’s one thing that really troubles me. We took notice because he punched her in the face; we were shocked at the brutality of the physical assault. That video reinforces the belief that domestic violence involves physical abuse. Sometimes it does, but not always. We’ve seen that physical abuse can be brutal. But when we speak with survivors of domestic violence they often tell us that the most damaging abuse wasn’t physical, it was the psychological control, the isolation, the threats and intimidation. It was continually feeling like they were walking on eggshells. That's abuse too... but much harder to see. 

It’s not uncommon for someone to call our hotline and apologetically say, “I’m not sure if I should be calling you; I’ve never been hit.” And then they describe why they called and clearly they are experiencing abuse. It may be emotional or psychological abuse, or financial/economic control. Their partner may be isolating them from friends or family. Or sexually violating them.

But in the absence of physical abuse, they question if it’s domestic violence…. and they’re not sure if it’s OK to call for help. That’s a concern. While we’re having those conversations about domestic violence, let’s also talk about abusive behaviors above and beyond physical violence. The message is coming through loud and clear that physically assaulting a partner is unacceptable. Let’s not stop the discussion there. Let’s talk about other forms of power and control too.  

If you or someone you know may be experiencing abuse,
call our 24 hour hotline at 518-584-8188.
We can help.

All services are free and confidential.

Someone Like You

 
Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better.  It's not.
 ~Dr. Seuss
  On Wednesday night I attended a meeting with business leaders from all over Saratoga County. Because I was flanked by two of Saratoga’s the most energetic, articulate and caring women Mayor Yepsen and Gayle LaSalle, the conversation  bounced from heart wrenching issues to daily challenges (opportunities) to uproariously humorous  stories about our daily lives. When Mayor Yepsen mentioned the 9/11 memorial scheduled for the following morning, we all were brought back to that morning and told our stories of 9/11. Two people had been just blocks away and immediately began volunteering; they selflessly put their own emotions on the shelf so they could help others. One woman recounted how she was at a hospital helping right afterwards and it wasn't until she was safely home and collapsed shaking in her husband's arms that she allowed herself to grieve. We all remarked on how whenever tragedy or evil strike, people rally to help.

That conversation quickly led to a discussion of Code Blue. After the tragic death last December of a 52 year old homeless woman who froze to death on a loading dock one night, the people of our community rallied together to find a solution to help our most vulnerable citizens in one of the coldest winters on record. Mayor Yepsen, community agencies, faith groups and concerned Saratogians created Code Blue.  With unplanned echoes of an equally symbolic winter’s night the doors to Code Blue opened on Christmas Eve so homeless men and women could escape the cold, share a meal and sleep safely in peace. With a week’s planning, no funding, no paid staff, people who cared launched Code Blue providing 928 restful slumbers in a safe bed rather than a frigid sidewalk.

And that brings me to where every conversation I have lately seems to go… the Ray Rice incident. Father Paul from St. Clements Church is a passionate Ravens fan. I’ve heard there are sermons interwoven with commentary about yesterday’s game. He’s not in the pulpit today, but his most recent facebook post teaches us so much about Christian values, human values and how we all can show we care.

As a diehard Ravens fan I will not be watching or following in any way tonight’s Steelers/Ravens game, but will be making a donation to Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Services of Saratoga County. There is no room in our world for violence in any way, shape or form.
Father Paul
Thank you Father Paul for reminding us how to transcend. And blessings to all the people who see what’s wrong in the world and take action to help others.

Someone Like You

 
Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better.  It's not.
 ~Dr. Seuss
  On Wednesday night I attended a meeting with business leaders from all over Saratoga County. Because I was flanked by two of Saratoga’s the most energetic, articulate and caring women Mayor Yepsen and Gayle LaSalle, the conversation  bounced from heart wrenching issues to daily challenges (opportunities) to uproariously humorous  stories about our daily lives. When Mayor Yepsen mentioned the 9/11 memorial scheduled for the following morning, we all were brought back to that morning and told our stories of 9/11. Two people had been just blocks away and immediately began volunteering; they selflessly put their own emotions on the shelf so they could help others. One woman recounted how she was at a hospital helping right afterwards and it wasn't until she was safely home and collapsed shaking in her husband's arms that she allowed herself to grieve. We all remarked on how whenever tragedy or evil strike, people rally to help.

That conversation quickly led to a discussion of Code Blue. After the tragic death last December of a 52 year old homeless woman who froze to death on a loading dock one night, the people of our community rallied together to find a solution to help our most vulnerable citizens in one of the coldest winters on record. Mayor Yepsen, community agencies, faith groups and concerned Saratogians created Code Blue.  With unplanned echoes of an equally symbolic winter’s night the doors to Code Blue opened on Christmas Eve so homeless men and women could escape the cold, share a meal and sleep safely in peace. With a week’s planning, no funding, no paid staff, people who cared launched Code Blue providing 928 restful slumbers in a safe bed rather than a frigid sidewalk.

And that brings me to where every conversation I have lately seems to go… the Ray Rice incident. Father Paul from St. Clements Church is a passionate Ravens fan. I’ve heard there are sermons interwoven with commentary about yesterday’s game. He’s not in the pulpit today, but his most recent facebook post teaches us so much about Christian values, human values and how we all can show we care.

As a diehard Ravens fan I will not be watching or following in any way tonight’s Steelers/Ravens game, but will be making a donation to Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Services of Saratoga County. There is no room in our world for violence in any way, shape or form.
Father Paul
Thank you Father Paul for reminding us how to transcend. And blessings to all the people who see what’s wrong in the world and take action to help others.


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