t e s t i m o n i a l s
Passion - Drive - Engaging
When I met MJ, I very quickly learned about the passion she has for helping women that are looking for a new start after leaving an abusive relationship. Unfortunately, she speaks from personal experience. One would think it would be easy for her to just be happy she's no longer in that relationship and move on, but she's not that kind of person! She's driven by a calling to help; on her own personal mission from god, and that's what she's doing. After hearing her story, I had to ask one question: why didn't you leave sooner? Her answers were certainly eye opening, so I encourage you to listen, learn, and help. What she's doing can change lives, and may even save a few, too, figuratively and literally.
- Colin Hocking, SC
VLH - a place for healing
I came across VLH while seeking support three years after leaving my abusive relationship. There are adults right now living out childhood trauma so it's odd some think that once you're out of that environment everything should be just fine. Healing isn't a straight line and it doesn't have a timeline. My first conversation with MJ was over the phone and she took time sharing her story and listening to mine as well. I truly admire all that she has been able to accomplish on her own with VLH in such a short time. I can only imagine how many lives will be transformed by this organization with the support of her community. It's important that we all empower victims transitioning out of abuse and survivors on their road to recovery. VLH is a place where we can stand strong in our personal power and advocate for ourselves and others.
- ShaeStrat, Charlotte, NC
Thank you MJ for everything you are!!!
I absolutely appreciate your Healing Hearts posts on LinkedIn. They hit home for me. I believe that if men take a second to read them, it would maybe help them reevaluate themselves. I can tell you that I’m a lot stronger than what I was, and my abuser taught me a lot about my Inner Strength...which I appreciate 😊 What draws me to your posts is the raw emotion that you're willing to share with everyone without fear of judgment.
- JC, Charlotte, NC
"Thank you my dear friend. Association with you has brought me great connections with myself and with others. I'm feeling focused and on a mission again!" - Merna Gill, OK
Don’t say anything that would hurt another person. Instead, speak only what is good so that you can give help wherever it is needed. That way, what you say will help those who hear you. Ephesians 4:29
"I like how you shared how broken you were without realizing it, and it is that kind of insight and vulnerability that will help so many more people." Amy S. - NC
A friendship for life!
I have worked in the healthcare industry for most of my life. Found my passion for helping others very rewarding. I have been blessed to work with some top notch physicians.
What happens when your path crosses with a medical doctor whom you work closely with says and does some shocking things that makes you say " who does things like this"?
For three years I was exposed to a covert narcissist. A lot of mental games and unethical behavior led me to be bitter, scared, and afraid of saying anything that would upset him. Ultimately I had a mental burnout and deep depression which ended my employment.
It was during those dark times when I met MJ Vess on LinkedIn. Her personality, compassion, love for God and non-judging character created a new hope in my life. We shared common interests! I was on a mission to help others less fortunate than I by working with the homeless. That for me was a healing experience and humbled me. MJ is on a mission to help battered women and graciously took me 'under her wings'.
She invited me to be a speaker at one of her Sunday support groups. She invited other professionals to speak one-on-one with me in a professional manner with good intentions and without saying a thing to me. She has been, and is still, an active part of my healing.
I feel so blessed to have MJ in my life and someone I can trust. A friendship for life.
Thank you MJ Vess for all you do to help others.
- Donna R, Claremont, NC
What I've learned from MJ: victims are often in denial about the abuse for different reasons; that COVID adds to the problem by "trapping" women in their situation; that fear and trauma is such that it can make you fearful of seeking help; that survivors need the support of their communities to get back on their feet, but are often unaware of the assistance available; that DV comes in different forms and sometimes not recognized for what it is; and that MJ is a brave, bold and blessed woman who aims to help other survivors regain their power and sense of self-worth!
Elizabeth Cedano - NC
"It was interesting to realize that different behaviors that seem trivial in the beginning of a relationship, could be signals of a toxic personality. Great to watch out for while dating." Jen B. - NC
Your courage and dedication in coming forward to tell your story, and therefore be an encouragment to so many similarly imprisoned women will do wonders to their finding courage to cast off their respective shackles and break free. You are a wonderful example and inspiration, full of courage and dignity, style and grace. Honored to know you. My best to you! Judge David (retired) - North Carolina
What was powerful (or most meaningful) about your initial audio interview were a number of points:
The concept of your always having "hope" that he would change...it explains why I often wondered why women stay in these relationships for so long tolerating the intimidation, anxiety, fear, lack of support, disrespect, and ongoing mental abuse. This one point is probably the most mind boggling and least understood by people looking from the outside in.
Just the fact that you were willing to make your story so public so others could hear it to realize they are not alone. And knowing they are not alone is in itself a big step toward solution and recovery...you are a brave person Margie Jo.
The concern you had for "being caught", "being found" and how that affected your thinking. Another point most people would not understand.
The fear of saying the wrong thing that may bring on a negative behavior reaction on the part of your spouse. That would be a tremendous pressure clouding your actions....sort of an unknown and thus an inhibitor.
The difficult position you were in in terms of your commitment to leave the relationship...I cannot imagine your doing this mostly alone given the scarcity of basic living needs such as transportation, housing, finances, etc. Thank God for your daughter. I cannot imagine getting myself through that starting over with virtually nothing.
The fact that you made it through in one piece and have been able to pick yourself up, start over and survive. Your attitude and faith are amazing.
The fact that you are using a very negative experience in your life to create an environment that will aid other woman who are experiencing the same thing you did and just don't know where to turn in their lives...you become a solution, a path to recovery, to an issue that doesn't get a lot of attention in society. And you do this because you know the reality of having lived what they are living. And just maybe your experience was all by design to form the positive outcome that resulted.
Because you are the only person I know that went through what you went through...or, more appropriately said, the only one I know who found the confidence to tell your story.
PM - Charlotte, NC