A childhood of abuse almost kept Marala Scott from a life happiness...until she discovered how to use her story to help others.
My memory of abuse began when I was 5, living in a tenement apartment in upstate New York. I have vivid recollections of my father coming home from college or work arguing, pushing and shoving my mom when they had heated arguments.

My father had a special combination of hatred and abuse for me. Throughout my childhood, my father embedded in me that because I was a woman I was no good for anything but making babies. I took 17 brutal years of his demoralizing verbal and violent physical abuse, hating myself more and more with every ridged word.

Although I left home for college at 17, I couldn't put my abusive history behind me until I had my son and then daughter. I didn't want my children to live in the cycle of abuse my older brothers, mother and even my father had.

I realized I had to forgive my father so that I could move on and begin a life that God intended for me and my children; not one my father created and controlled.

Through the process of forgiveness, I realized how many years I lost having allowed the abusive memories and flashbacks to run my life. I decided to write In Our House, Perception vs. Reality with my husband, Tre' Parker. I take the readers through my life story and the unimaginable, descriptive, abusive episodes where they could feel the beatings as if they were withstanding them. I wanted readers to understand the destruction of domestic violence and child abuse.

R&B singer Tyrese Gibson has supported my effort to share my story, and I now visit colleges regularly to help young men and women understand the signs an abuser and tell them how to get help before it's too late. Silence is deadly. We need to speak out. My mother stayed silent and didn't stand a chance at protecting herself or her children from my father's abuse. Perhaps by sharing her life story and mine we can now help save others.

— Marala Scott

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