Kate O’Sullivan is a writer and photographer. She has a popular blog A Playful Day and is brilliant at Twitter.
Kate recently published a story about her experiences of healing from complex post-traumatic stress after leaving an abusive and controlling relationship. The reaction to Kate’s article, including my own bravo! led us to this conversation.
Many women who leave abusive relationships are still recovering years and often decades later. Many haven’t accessed specialist help because they simply didn’t know what was happening. And we know that there will be women listening who not yet safe, or having to maintain painful contact arrangements due to children. We also know that young women, especially a teenager in the first heady rush of love, may not recognise that they are experiencing coercive control.
Kate has grown a career and community as the direct result of the safe space she created online. We want to have this conversation in the hope that folks listening would feel less alone and that we can challenge the stigma and stereotyping around abuse and mental health that prevents successful survival.