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Sunday, October 28, 2007

If you are afraid, hiding your abuse, and have anyone that loves you...

"I became an orphan.
My whole life was gone"

There is so much domestic violence, so many murders in the news everyday - that I have to make sure to keep this blog on topic - limiting it to incidents involving law enforcement officers, firefighters, and public officials. But today is the exception.

If you are afraid, hiding your abuse, and have anyone that loves you, or are not ready to die - this is for you, from Angela.

Excerpt from the news on October 30th 2006
..."That's my mother! She's the only one I've got!" Angela Skellas screamed...

Excerpts from today's news:

For years before her father killed her mother, Angela Skellas promised her mother she wouldn't tell anyone about the abuse in their family. But a year after Ioannis Skellas killed his wife and himself with a sawed-off shotgun, Angela, 24, now believes the time has come to tell the frightening story to prevent such unspeakable things from happening to others. "I listened to my mother when she said I would bring shame by speaking out on what was happening," said Skellas. "But I don't feel I'm betraying her now. If I can help somebody else, her death won't be in vain." On the anniversary of Karen Skellas' death tomorrow, there will be a memorial service at Lutheran Medical Center in Sunset Park, where Karen worked... Shocked by Karen Skellas' death, hospital friends have organized. Through the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, they've gotten additional training to recognize signs of trouble and provide interventions... employees are collecting cell phones for women who need to reach the police in an emergency. They plan to show videos on hospital monitors so visitors can be made more aware. "We don't want to lose anyone else," said Skellas' friend, Altagracia De La Rosa. Since her mother's murder, Angela Skellas' life has been unimaginable. "I became an orphan. My whole life was gone," said Skellas, who said her mother, who was 44 when she was killed, was her best friend. "I didn't have many friends because she was all I needed," she said. "I had put all my eggs in one basket - my mother's... He abused my mother verbally and emotionally. He abused my brother and me physically... He would take us out and spoil us. Then the next day, he would rant for hours and hours... He threatened to kill us. My mother kept asking, 'What did I do? What did I do?'" When Angela Skellas called the police, her mother would beg her to send them away. "She didn't want anyone to know anything... She felt it was very embarrassing"... Skellas, who was visiting friends, believes that had she been home, she'd be dead, too. She became hysterical when she returned to the apartment and saw her mother's body covered with a sheet. But when a police officer told her that her father killed himself too, Skellas was overwhelmed with a sense of calm. "I said. 'It's all over.' The officer didn't understand, but I knew my father couldn't hurt us any more...



  1. I understand as I too have lived with an abuser for 38 years, afraid to leave and always hoping that he'd change. I've had a gun to my head, slapped screamed at belittled and too afraid to seek help. At least my children are now grown and have safe homes of their own. My abuser is now retired but just as dangerous or more so than before as now he has more time to worry about who I talk to or e-mail. He threatens to kill me about once a month, who knows when it will happen....

  2. That's why I made the exception for this article. We get caught like a deer in the headlights and freeze up... so wound up with trying to get through the moments and days, that we begin to resolve that we will be killed. The hope is that people like you will read this and decide to flee. Not leave, but flee.

    Run for your life.
    Remember what it's worth to you.
    Recall your dreams.

  3. Important about "fleeing" - you have to go to a shelter in your state, they will move you further away in the state to another shelter, or beg them to move you out of the state - to another shelter. BUT if you flee the state on your OWN, without the shelter's assistance, and try to get help in the new state - the systems there will classify you as a homeless person instead of as a domestic violence victim and you will not be eligible for dv services and protections.

    Contact a shelter.
    He's going to pull the trigger.

  4. I lived with an abuser 22 years. He threatened to kill himself to manipulate me to stay. Thank God a woman pastor at my church told me to file divorce, because I was too afraid to know what to do. Now, I want to sound the alarm for any woman being abused to flee! Like many others, I didn't know his silent violence was abuse and I blamed myself. When I sought help at a domestic violence organization I learned the truth. I nearly died from the exhaustion of emotional abuse.

  5. My name is Angela Skellas and as you may have realized I'm the one who you just read about.
    You may have read bits and pieces of my past and a moment in my present that will haunt me forever BUT what you dont know is; My mother and I made many silly mistakes that lead to her death and me missing my mother. We moved only a few miles away from him, we knew he had a weapon and chose to "hope for the best" and we also never told anyone (along with other things)!! The reason why I'm telling you all this is because I dont want any woman or man to feel - if I leave then I’ll end up dead so I might as well just stay!
    There is hope but you need to be smart and know that your not dealing with a healthy individual and to protect yourself at all cost.

    Please be strong, be wise and never be ashamed.

  6. Angela thank you so much.

    God be with you

    both for the grief and pain of your losses,

    and for what you are doing for others -

    giving hope and life to others.

    I reposted your words here:


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