Appeared perfect. I was born in Brooklyn, NY, raised by a middle class family, attended Gettysburg College and earned a Master’s degree in English Education at Long Island University: C.W. Post Campus. I lived in NYC and taught middle and high school English at an elite private school for over a decade. I fulfilled my life-long dream of publishing my memoir, Unschooled, on August 31, 2018. And I have been blessed with loyal friends and a loving family.
What Happened? My Survival Story
On August 8, 2017, I was strangled, choked and suffocated nearly to death in my NYC apartment by a man that I dated for three months. I remember thinking, “When is he going to stop?” “Am I being murdered?” “Is this what it looks like in real life?” “This can’t be happening to me.” “This is happening to me."
On August 16, 2017, I filed a police report at 2:00 AM.
After the police report was filed, I refused to work with the District Attorney’s office, I didn’t know what to do, and I only told two friends about what had happened to me. The court date was set, and because I didn’t show up, the charges were dropped from a felony to two misdemeanors: Criminal Obstruction of Breath/Applied Pressure, Strangulation 2nd Degree and Menacing 2nd - Weapon.
Although I was the victim, I felt guilty and wanted to protect my attacker. I didn’t want him to go to jail for what he did to me. I knew where he was staying and I didn’t tell the Domestic Violence Detective, the NYPD or the District Attorney’s office. In fact, I even met up with my attacker five times after he tried to murder me because I felt badly for him. In retrospect, he was trying to manipulate me to help him so he would not be punished for his crime.
Between August - September 2017, my attacker hid from authorities, he stalked me and pleaded for my attention by making false suicide attempts. I begged for him to leave me alone. He didn’t. He was never going to stop. I was - literally - scared for my life.
In desperation of not knowing what else to do, I called a Domestic Violence Hotline. They told me about the Manhattan Family Justice Center & Safe Horizons, a free Domestic Violence service offered by NYC. I went to their offices two days later and I met with a case manager and a lawyer. From that moment on, I began to cooperate with the Domestic Violence Detective, the NYPD and the District Attorney’s office.
In September 2017, my attacker plead guilty to all charges and served fourteen months in jails and federal prisons. I was granted a five year Order of Protection.
I received over fifty phone calls from jail from my attacker and other inmates. He mailed several letters to my home. As a result, I filed three additional police reports, my attacker pleaded guilty to each charge and he served more jail time. I changed my phone number and my address.
I spent seven months in Domestic Violence counseling, twice a week for four months, cried more than I could fathom was humanly possible and finally began to heal. I fought for my life throughout this entire nightmare. Today, I can honestly say, that I feel safe.
I am forever grateful to the Domestic Violence Detective, the NYPD and the District Attorney’s office and the Family Justice Center & Safe Horizons - they saved my life. THANK YOU!
No one will take my life away from me. Ever.
I am a resilient, strong, powerful, real, genuine and relatable woman. And I care. A LOT.
I want to help at least one, if not thousands, of young adults to avoid the horror that I had to go through.
By having the courage to share my truth, I will undoubtedly inspire others who suffer from relationship abuse and help to save lives.