Group active since Tue, Jan 03, 2012
20 year overview and interaction with victim, criminal and legal system following my daughter's murder. Became a National Victim's advocate,published a book and have a website at milliebianco.com. I've been to Washington twice this year and named "Mother of Victim Notification" I vowed that I would let others know the whys of the system and this scourge of society. It's what America doesn't know that makes up the American public. Let's learn and understand. Please join me.
Jun 8, 2012
My first husband was abusive. He tackled me on my front porch when I was eight months pregnant; he choked me; he shoved me with an infant in my arms, and yet every time it happened, I felt guilty. I survived, but I almost went back to him. I had gone to my parents' home near Houston with my 7 1/2- month-old son. It was 1983. Hurricane Alicia came through, and my son and I weathered the storm on a mattress in the hallway while the roof blew off of the upstairs of the quadraplex we were in. (The relevance of this storm will soon be apparent.)
Later, my husband got me on the phone and convinced me to come home. He would come on a Saturday to get me and my things. That Saturday morning, my father came into my bedroom and said that there was a red pick up in the drive and that my ex was waiting. Then he asked me if I love my son. I said, "Of course." He said, "Will you love him any less in twenty-one years than you do now?" I said, "Of course not." I didn't understand what he was saying. My dad wasn't a man who said, "I love you." That was his way of saying it, and at the time, it failed me, but God communicated what my dad couldn't.
I went to the pick up. I was out there with my son. (My ex had run away with my son once before after choking me, and on that day, he contemplated running off the road with my son in the car, so that must have been in the back of my mind at all times.) My ex had said how much he missed me and how he slept with my pictures taped to the ceiling. He began talking about my friends and how we wouldn't associate with them. (One of my friends had helped me leave.) It still hadn't registered that he was planning on isolating me even further from friends once I returned. A person just doesn't think clearly in this circumstance, but I had a moment of clarity that could have only come from God above. I was talking about how horrible the storm was. He asked, "Was it really bad?" I said, "Yes." He asked, "So, did it make you want to come back to me?" I stopped and took my son inside and told my parents to watch him and not let him out of their sight, and then I returned outside, and said, "No, as bad as that hurricane was, it did not make me want to return to you and the storm that brews in that house daily. I would rather survive a hurricane than to go through that. I am really sorry that you made a 6 1/2 hour trip, but until you asked me about the storm just now, it never occurred to me what a mistake it would be to go back."
I sincerely believe that had there been no Hurricane Alicia in Houston in 1983, I would have gone back to my ex-husband. I have read that most women leave or try to leave 5 or 6 times before they are successful (if they ever are). I am so thankful for that storm because it changed my life. It was exactly what I needed at that time to make me see that I was living through a hurricane every day and that my son and I wouldn't survive if I continued to live like that. (I sometimes wonder why God can't provide a similar stimulus in other women's lives.)
It took three years to divorce my ex. I terminated his rights because my attorney said that if I asked for that, we might get supervised visits, but my ex didn't contest it in the end, and the judge sided with the termination. My son saw his natural father for the first time (since he was 8 months old)when he was nineteen. A year and a half later, he saw his father again. That time, my ex was abusive to my adult son, and I had to find a way to fly him home early under the guise of my being ill. (I was ill and having tests, but it wasn't critical.) My son had to sleep with his license in his underwear that night because he feared my ex would hide his ID to prevent his leaving. (I had never shared my ordeal with my son, but I had endured similar situations where my ex had hidden my keys in his pillowcase or had let the air out of my tires.) My son cut ties with natural father at that point, but he has had to endure phone harrassement from him. He still fears phone calls from certain area codes. My son is now a 29-year-old young man. How can he help but be affected by his ordeal? He says I was absolutely right and courageous for taking on his father and terminating his rights. I am happy because I had so feared he would resent me for it especially since I never slammed his father, and he didn't know the story. I had always maintained that if I did my job as mother, my son could decide for himself. He did!
Jan 5, 2012
Jan 5, 2012
I'm a survivor.
Millie, I did go to your site and read your story and I am so sorry for all the turmoil you've gone through.
My horror is in my past, I figured I would join just to give perspective to others who might be going through this crap.
Jan 4, 2012
It's great to see a guy as the first member to join. We need more guys like you and your perspective. Your recipes are great, too. Especially the bacon wrapped shrimp, one of my greatest weaknesses is bacon "anything". What is your perspective on the legal system and how it helped or hindered you? Or was it involved?