Ten lives have been claimed by intimate partner violence in Connecticut in 2014 according to The Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence. That statistic is too high for Casey Morley, a survivor who is speaking out to raise domestic violence awareness.
Morley, a Southington resident, is the author of newly published ‘Crawling Out: One Woman’s Journey to an Empowered Life after Breaking a Cycle of Abuse No One Should Endure,’ a personal account of childhood abuse she experienced and her subsequent journey to overcome its effects. The book launch and first signing was held at North Ridge Golf Club in Southington September 16th.
Domestic violence isn’t a popular subject, hence the shock reaction when we learn about it after the fact. Similar to mental illness, where the majority of society doesn’t want to openly address these issues, domestic violence needs to be brought into the conversation more frequently than its namesake ‘awareness’ month of October. When individuals become familiar with how domestic violence manifests, the better prepared they are to protect themselves and those they love when warning signs occur.
Morley spent decades sorting out emotions associated with abuse. Shutting the pain down was an initial reaction that ultimately didn’t work, “If as a child bad things happen to you, the meaning of right and wrong becomes overwhelming confusing.” Early strategies gave way to confronting her pain as she grew into a young woman and behaviors in relationships mirrored negativity.
‘Crawling Out’ offers the reader an insider look at what happens when a victim grows up in a dysfunctional environment and attempts to live with the secret of abuse and its cousin, shame. Morley emphasizes that living in denial allows a bad experience to keep its victim in a state of pain. Denial can rob a person of mental health as well as of physical health. Part of Morley’s recovery was recognizing ailments such as anxiety, digestion issues and what was soon to be diagnosed as Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Internalizing pain caused Morley’s body to literally cry out for help. Through seeking medical services Morley’s life began to turn around.
Morley’s story is but one example of the testament to her strength. As a single mother to 21-year old son and business owner of Casey’s Image Consultants, Morley commits her time to helping others realize their best selves. These roles, that of a protective mother, hair stylist and whole body coach, contribute to a Morley ‘s healthier world view. It is her own catharsis that motivates Morley’s determination to raise awareness for domestic violence so that change in others can begin. Morley is her own best motivator as she campaigns for ending dysfunctional cycles with each conversation she encounters through her business and now through her authorship. ‘Crawling Out’ offers readers resources, but then contacting Morley is also welcome.
Morley actively fundraises in her salon and donates proceeds to Salons Against Domestic Abuse, a program sponsored by the Professional Beauty Association.
Morley is teaming up with Prudence Crandall Center, an organization that helps individuals achieve lives free of domestic violence by providing care, education, advocacy, and support throughout nine towns in Connecticut. Other like-minded organizations Morley aligns with are Bikers Against Child Abuse, and Safe Haven of Greater Waterbury.
Additionally, Morley is in the planning stages of organizing a ‘Walk A Mile In Her Shoes’, (WAMIHS) event in Southington to raise money for victims. Her steadfast determination will be the driving force behind getting the event on the town calendar, after an initial bumpy start. “It takes a lot of energy to get traction even with good ideas,” Morley said after realizing coordination to coincide WAMIHS with the upcoming Apple Festival required more time.
Being vocal about abuse is necessary to getting the topic into mainstream conversation before talk turns to regrets. It is to that effort Morley attributes the publication of ‘Crawling Out,’ and her continued efforts to be involved in publicizing abuse issues so healing can begin. To know more contact http://caseymorley.com/
Post by, Margaret Waage, freelance photographer and journalist. MargaretWaagePhotography.com