A New Start

In an unhealthy relationship for many years, Natasha describes her marriage as a place
filled with darkness. “As a religious person, I took my marriage seriously. And leaving it
was hard.”

“His drinking and behaviour kept getting worse. One night as I was cooking dinner he started
yelling at me. It was rare for it to happen in front of our two kids.”

Natasha describes the look on her daughter’s face as the reason she made the decision to
leave that night.

“I looked at my daughter (8) and I just saw the pure look of fear on her face.

“That was the tipping point for me. I picked up my son (2) and asked my daughter to follow me. I told my husband I was just going for a drive.”

“I didn’t know if he was following us but I got away in the car.”

“As we started driving my kids were crying and I was crying and I didn’t know what I was going to do. My family all live out of state.”

“I knew if I went back to the house I would have to leave again, and I was scared that I would go back on my decision.

“I told the kids we would camp in the car. I tried to make it exciting for them.”

“One of my friends was a youth worker with Samaritans, so I called her to see if she knew
who could help. She called her supervisor and Samaritans put us in a hotel for the night.”

When Natasha woke the next morning she said she felt torn. On one hand, she was relieved that she had finally left, but on the other, she was doubting her decision.

“That day I met Zara from Samaritans. She was so supportive and gave me all of the practical
advice I needed.”

“They helped me with finding a home. They connected me to a support group full of amazing
women in similar situations. They also provided counselling for my daughter.”

“What I like about Samaritans is that it’s a team. I don’t have to tell my story ten times. They all
know our story and they work together. It makes a huge difference.”

Thanks to the Samaritans support network, Natasha now has a stable home with her two
children and is studying nursing at TAFE.