C4 Coastal Coercive Control Coalition

My sister’s headstone. Eleven years and two days of living dependent on our mother for her care. The man we used to call Daddy used financial abuse as a means to control our mother when she finally became physically sick at the sight of him and started divorce proceedings. He escalated this financial abuse to the point that my sister and mother were homeless. His own brain damaged daughter became collateral damage in his determination to subjugate, humiliate, control our mother for leaving him; although it was his repeated affairs that sickened her to the point that she felt repulsed in his presence. This was her unforgivable crime. My sister died a victim of his neglect and financial abuse. My mother is still damaged by his coercive control through financial abuse.

This is the poem on my sister’s grave:

A Prayer for the Helpless

Let me be a voice

For the speechless

Those who are small and weak

Let me speak

For all helpless creatures

Who have no power to speak

I have lifted my heart

To Heaven

On behalf of the least of these

The frightened

The homeless

The hungry

I am voicing their pleas

If I can help any creature

Respond to a desperate call

I will know that

My prayers have been answered

By the God who created

Them all