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I’m a recovering abuse victim and life survivor, sharing my story to help others.

Reader, Writer, Marketer, Information Geek, Photographer, Mentor, and Farmer

Photo of Author, Doreen Barker

My Grandfather was the best story teller in my life. His vivid recounts of his time served in the Army during World War II, travelling the world, created a love of story telling. The way he could paint a visual picture with words inspired me to become a writer.

I remember being assigned my senior thesis and choosing a topic I knew he could give me personal feedback on. I picked the Pygmy Tribe of Africa. I researched and listened to his recalls of what they were like in person, something…


LIFE LESSONS

Oh, I f*cked up. Too many times to count.

Messed up Polaroid
Messed up Polaroid
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

I have too many stories from my life on how I f*cked up. It all started when I was young. My legs were too long and I danced around like a newborn colt on wobbly legs, falling often. Eventually, it got better. Not because my body balanced out (I have a 32–1/2" inseam and stand 5'8" tall, I’m mostly legs), but because I learned to adapt.

I still trip over myself or faceplant from time to time. I’ve learned to perfect the art of the tuck and roll. After being diagnosed with MS and losing some feeling in my legs…


In a recent conversation, I was criticized for sharing my story

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

Maybe if you’d focus more on what’s right in front of you instead of being so worried about telling the world to give you pity, maybe you wouldn’t be in this situation.

As anyone with a mental illness can tell you, there are just some people out there in the world that will never understand or accept who you are. I wish we lived in a utopian world where people could just have a little empathy and compassion toward things they don’t understand. For me, I see it continuously in my life when I’m trying to share my story.

Phrases…


How saying “I’m fine” impacts your interactions with others

Photo by Karl Fredrickson on Unsplash

I bet everyone can sit back and remember a time when someone asked if you were okay and your instant reaction was, “I’m fine.” Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s not helping you or anyone around you. Bear with me and I’ll explain why.

The battle of lies begins with those around us. Yes, I said it, lies. We’ve all faced the issue of trying to talk to someone about how we feel. We’ve all had someone important to us reject our mental health and/or our feelings in the process. There’s a term for it. …


We can all use a break from reality, but why is alone time so important?

Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

In recent weeks, I’ve been spending time removed away from everyone and everything. I had gotten to the point where I stopped hearing my own thoughts and all I kept hearing was everyone else’s expectations of what I should do.

After living most of my life under the dictator rule of narcissistic abuse, I started realizing that I was allowing myself to slip back into those old habits of showing myself off to the side. It had gotten to the point that I was neglecting my own physical and mental health to just “handle” what was expected of me.

“I…


A poem written about the end of relationship, a broken heart and being faced with the reality that it’s time to move on.

Photo by Kate Hliznitsova on Unsplash

Moment in Time

A small moment in time,
Your life touched mine.
Joyful days of laughter,
Are gone now after.

Feeling a boundless love,
Sent from heaven above.
Full of emotion intense,
Stubbornness made you dense.

A small moment in time,
Your life touched mine.
Now it’s darkness and bleak,
Sadly, it’s been but a week.

You stabbed my heart,
With the toss of a dart.
It’s just silence and quiet,
Cravings for sugar on a diet.

A small moment…


As I battled through complex-PTSD, why do some things trigger me into reactions I hate myself for?

Photo by Marcus Lenk on Unsplash

Over the years and over probably hundreds of counseling sessions, I was diagnosed with complex-PTSD. Many of you know what PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is. You’ve probably heard it often associated with Veterans who have seen combat.

PTSD is typically associated with a single traumatic event or a series of traumatic events over a short window of time. Well, complex-PTSD is the result of prolonged episodes lasting years and is more interpersonal in nature. It is caused by parental abuse, sexual abuse, and repeated psychological abuse during early childhood development. …


I knew my mental health had tanked past what I could handle alone

Photo by Big Dodzy on Unsplash

Content warning: suicide. If you or someone you know needs help, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800–273-TALK (8255).

I sat alone with a single thought on my mind. I just wanted it to all stop. The pain, the hurt, and the anguish to just be over. Many things have happened to make me feel this way lately. Some things out of my control, others spiraling from the burdens of daily struggles.

A loaded gun in hand. I sat in my favorite spot, alongside the animals that provided me with so much peace in my life. Tears streaming down…


Life is filled with ups and downs, but it isn’t meant to be a ride we take alone.

Photo by Marty Finney on Unsplash

No truer words have ever been said. Life truly is a roller coaster. There’s always something swinging you from one direction to another. Up, down, sideways, steep incline, and a sharp fall. All we can do is buckle up and enjoy the ride.

I know it’s difficult sometimes and all that we want to do is get off. We beg for the ride to stop. The urge to just take a break becomes very vivid and very real. …


Poem about being shattered after trust has been destroyed.

Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

Empty I am

A black hole where no light shines.
This empty cavern deep within,
Thick stone walls, made of granite.
That place where my heart used to be

The things you’ve done have broken me,
Like tiny fragments and bits of glass.
No glue will ever manage to make me whole,
Back to the person that I used to be

It’s better to die a peaceful death,
Than die a thousand deaths, day after day.
You took my heart, when you should have killed me. …

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