My name is Melianne “Mel” Hernandez. I am 26 years old. My parents are from Dominican Republic, but I am American by birth. I speak English and Spanish and have endured a very challenging life since a very young age.

That’s the short and sweet compilation of my life.

Most that know me probably couldn’t tell you half of that first paragraph, honestly.

Most of us who have endured trauma don’t speak about it. Even less report it. Half of those survive it.

I created this blog to reach those who are still living with their abusers. I created it to reach those who are in the beginning stages of separation from their abusers. I created it to speak up and voice my struggles.

I used to be a police officer and domestic violence calls are one of the many calls for service we receive when working the night shift. I saw battered women too many times. I saw battered spouses, side chicks, girlfriends and family members too many times. We provided them with everything we could so they could all leave their household or abuser, but most stayed. I asked myself so many times, why?

I eventually learned that lesson first hand.

After all the terrible things I endured within the three year relationship with my ex but more prominently towards the end of 2018 and beginning of 2019, a lightbulb would flicker from time to time in regards to the idea of sharing to the world what I have endured. But I was ashamed, embarrassed, and disgusted with myself.

In August 2019, I finally allowed myself to be vulnerable and go to the domestic violence support group sponsored by the local court. That is where I learned that allowing yourself to be vulnerable meant strength and the beginning stages of moving forward. Moving onward.

On August 19, 2019, I officially created this blog to begin this journey of sharing my story. Why now? Support group helped me accept and finally open my mind to realize that I AM NOT ALONE. There are many others who have, are and will struggle with domestic violence, whether its physical, mental or both. 

But if you really want to know more about me and who I really am, you will need to read each post. 

I may be a human being of 26 years of age, but I have been on my own for over 10 years, now. I’ve dealt with poverty, depression, loneliness, loss, suicidal ideation, and the actual plan, which I chose not to commit. But I have also accomplished many things in my life like graduating High School, amidst other paths I could have taken. I became a Marine and served four honorable years of active duty. Then I became a police officer after leaving the corps.

I find myself to be a great resource for anyone involved with domestic violence, mental health and life, because I have had a role in both, as the victim of domestic violence and mental health, as well as the first responder in domestic cases and mental health. 

Although, I am no longer a law enforcement officer. The experience remains. I chose to move past it and continue with my journey of creating a new life for myself.

The journey of moving past it was difficult and I honestly didn’t think I would have ever made it to this point, especially alive. 

I am here today, however, living and breathing that YOU can move on with your life.

It will not be easy. There will be ups and downs, but I can guarantee you that it will be worth it.

Join me in this journey of survival.