A survivor’s story

John’s Story

John’s Story

John* received services through CAWC’s Domestic Violence Services at Haymarket Center. John endured physical, emotional, verbal, and psychological abuse from his partner of 1 year. 

After reaching out to his assigned clinician at the Haymarket Center, John was referred to CAWC for domestic violence services. John worked with the Counselor/Advocate while residing at Haymarket, and after 28-days, he moved into a half-house, but he continued to receive weekly counseling from CAWC. 

While John was at Haymarket Center, his partner was arrested several times for his abusive behavior, but eventually released each time. After being released from jail, John’s partner continued to stalk, harass, and terrorize him – both at work and at the half-way house where John lived. As a result of his abusive partner’s actions against him, John eventually lost his job, his savings and his living arrangements.

In addition, the relationship took a toll on John emotionally, physically, and psychologically, which in turn led to his relapse in his sobriety. Due to John’s religious upbringing, his relationship with his partner wasn’t accepted and therefore he lacked support from friends and family.

To address the severe violence that John experienced, CAWC’s Counselor/Advocate based at the Haymarket Center provided John with safety planning, emotional support, employment assistance, and assistance in meeting his basic needs through life skills support and advocacy. 

As the abuse continued, John updated his safety plan and requested additional support from CAWC’s Legal Advocacy program. John received support from a CAWC Legal Advocate and was also connected to a pro-bono attorney who assisted him with criminal charges pending against his partner.

John was granted a Preliminary and then an Interim (two-year) Order of Protection. In addition, John was able to secure shelter for 120 days and apply for several housing opportunities. Lastly, John’s previous employer agreed to re-hire him, after he was encouraged by CAWC’s Counselor/Advocate to contact the employer and discuss coming back to work.  

As a result of the collaborative work done by CAWC’s Counselor/Advocate, additional CAWC staff, and Haymarket’s team of substance abuse professionals, John has received the support and resources he required to live a life free from violence.

After John achieved both safety and sobriety, the CAWC Counselor/Advocate provided him with lengthier sessions focusing on areas of domestic violence that were not addressed during the initial crisis. Through these sessions, John learned more about domestic violence, learned how to identify a healthy relationship, and he also learned more about his rights under the law, including the Illinois Domestic Violence Act.

During a closing session, John reported that he finally felt safe from the abuse he’d endured for over a year. 

*Name changed to protect confidentiality.


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Hours of comprehensive domestic violence services provided in 2018

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Domestic violence hotline calls answered in 2018

Survivors received legal advocacy in 2018

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