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New Beginnings

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Written by: Jennifer Cochern, Clinical Services Manager

IMG_6197It’s traditional to plan for the New Year in January.  We talk about New Year’s resolutions, letting go of unhealthy habits and adopting new, healthier behaviors.  Here at the Women’s & Children’s Alliance, our clients plan for new lives throughout the year.  Part of ending an abusive relationship is deciding that the abuse can no longer be tolerated.  This often means that a new life must be created with a focus on healthy relationships in all areas of one’s life.

The following concepts come from the Equality Wheel that is shared at each of the WCA’s If These Walls Could Talk tours. How might you create a new beginning related to healthy relationships?   Let’s start with respect.  Showing respect for yourself with non-judgmental thoughts, encouragement, compassion, self-forgiveness and openness to your own emotions are all healthy behaviors.  When you can show yourself respect, you will more likely request respect from others and behave respectfully towards those you care about.

Next, let’s explore honesty and accountability.  Being honest means having enough self-awareness to know what is true for you.  Once you know your truth, you can communicate it with the people in your life.  Being accountable is recognizing and showing others what is yours to take care of.  It’s not uncommon to assume that someone else will take care of a job or chore.   It can take courage to admit when you’ve made a mistake and unintentionally hurt someone else by not owning what is yours to own.  This is a big part of personal accountability.  Owning up to your mistake is what can build the bridge to reconciliation, re-connection and ultimately, healthier relationships.

And finally, learning to negotiate and resolve conflict through safe communication.  Negotiation takes place when each person puts their “cards” or issues on the table.  Each card is identified and discussed respectfully.  When all the issues have been shared and understood, then and only then can a healthy decision be made with each person’s perspective considered.   Safe communication suggests that all ideas are heard and listened to thoughtfully.  Even when there is disagreement, respect is still shown through patience and a desire for understanding.  Conflict is managed in a much healthier way when emotional safety is a priority.

Building a life of healthy relationships can be a monumental task when you haven’t experienced concepts like self-respect, accountability, negotiation, or safe communication.  The WCA continuously encourages and trains its staff to model healthy relationships through the agency values of empowerment, respect and integrity.  These behaviors can then trickle down to every community member that we serve.  Here’s to new beginnings!

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EVENTS

Apr 24

2024

Denim Day

April 24, 2024 is Denim Day Order your Denim Day Outreach Kit! Denim Day is a day-long awareness campaign that allows us to honor survivors of sexual assault and start conversations about the dangers of victim-blaming. Why denim? In 1992 an 18-year-old Italian girl was sexually assaulted by her driving instructor. While he was initially […]

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Apr 25

2024

WCA Virtual Mission Tour

Join us for a 35 minute virtual tour to learn about our mission of safety, healing and freedom through the stories of clients and the impact of our services. The WCA Mission Tour aims to inspire and educate about the complexities and realities of domestic abuse and sexual assault, both here in the Treasure Valley […]

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May 07

2024

WCA Virtual Mission Tour

Join us for a 35 minute virtual tour to learn about our mission of safety, healing and freedom through the stories of clients and the impact of our services. The WCA Mission Tour aims to inspire and educate about the complexities and realities of domestic abuse and sexual assault, both here in the Treasure Valley […]

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May 12

2024

Closets for Cause & Mother’s Day Dinner with Chandlers

Visit Chandlers on Mother’s Day, May 12th, to support the WCA through their Closets For A Cause event! This clothing pop-up is open to all from noon to 4 p.m. and we know you will find something you love. Additionally, visit https://www.chandlersboise.com/ to reserve your spot for their Mother’s Day Prix Fixe dinner, with proceeds […]

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May 23

2024

WCA Virtual Mission Tour

Join us for a 35 minute virtual tour to learn about our mission of safety, healing and freedom through the stories of clients and the impact of our services. The WCA Mission Tour aims to inspire and educate about the complexities and realities of domestic abuse and sexual assault, both here in the Treasure Valley […]

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Sep 03

2024

2024 Joyce Stein Award Celebration

HONORING THOSE WHO MAKE A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE GROWTH AND ADVANCEMENT OF WOMEN The Joyce Stein Memorial Award is given in memory of Boisean Joyce Ann Stein, a long-time supporter of the WCA (YWCA). Each year an individual who has made a positive impact on the growth and advancement of women is honored. After […]

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