Women’s Center and Shelter

Bringing Awareness to Intimate Partner Violence

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Some Relationships Are Not As They Appear


That’s because domestic abuse is often hidden…




Many of you have heard Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh’s radio spot titled “Poem for the Woman I Love” playing on local radio stations recently. Or, perhaps you have seen our outdoor billboards with the large candy hearts as you drive through the city.

These commonly accepted symbols of love, such as the poem and candy hearts, take on an entirely new meaning when you listen to the words in the poem and see the text on the hearts.

“I will track where you are. I’ll decide whom you see. Remember sweetheart, you belong only to me.”

 The sinister tone of that line from the poem, demonstrates the symptoms of an abusive relationship early on – possessiveness and entitlement. This can turn into much more violent abuse later.

The candy hearts with phrases like “You’re worthless” and “You’re nothing” portray the opposite of love, as in an abusive relationship. At first glance, the candy hearts appear sweet but the words etched into them represent anything but love.

These messages, whether heard on the radio or seen on a billboard, are intended to make you stop and really think about what you’re hearing and seeing. They aren’t expected, but neither is domestic violence.

The change from a healthy relationship to an unhealthy relationship often happens over time and the signs and red flags may be challenging to identify.

With more than 1 in 3 women (stats) in the U.S. experiencing rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner, it’s critical that we educate ourselves and those we love about the signs and types of abuse as well as how and where to reach out for help.

Women’s Center & Shelter hopes that these messages will start open conversations about intimate partner violence and help to inform the community of the available resources such as our 24-Hour Hotline.

Listen, learn and share this post with those you know! Let us know what you think on our social media.

You can help to save a life.