Donita Sue Fry

Lesson 2 – The Wanderer

Wandering provides us the answers to our questions.

Goal: Learn about experiences that feed behavior of domestic violence.


Why?  Where did domestic violence come from?

Donita Fry shares about experiences in her childhood that helped her understand the messages of domestic violence. She addresses the myth that being a victim or perpetrator of domestic violence is a result of extreme violence.  Sometimes words such as hearing a story or witnessing events can create the trauma associated with domestic violence.  Review the experiences below and answer the questions at the end of this lesson.

  • • “There were times when we were with babysitters; there were foul words; there was drinking; there was suicide… in other ways it is the same as being hit.”
  • • “At one point my other was married to a man who beat my youngest brother.  He would whip out that belt and whip that young man for anything.”
  • • “My brothers beat on me.”
  • • “I have stabbed in the hand with their violence.”
  • • My mother was abused by my father when he was alive.  Even though he committed suicide when I was younger I heard those stories.”
  • • “Racism; the principal whipped out his board with holes.  I witnessed my brothers experience that.”
  • • You can’t sit there… the bus driver was being racist to us when we would get on the bus.”
  • • “…being hurt; it felt like there was nothing I could do but hurt someone back.”
  • • “… being isolated.”
  • • “Is this what you made for dinner?”
  • • “I needed to ask (my husband) for a check and needed to bring back a receipt on what was spent on.”
  • • Donita shared her Christmas story where she found the secret box of newspaper articles telling the story of her father beating her mom and stabbing her multiple times, ending with taking a rifle and shooting himself. She kept the secret.
  1. 1. Can you relate to any of these experiences?
  1. 2. Have you had experiences similar to these
  1. 3. Do you have someone that you can share your experiences?

Wandering leads us to learning about where we came from.  Wandering can bring us confusing stories and can often not make a lot of sense.  Donita shares that when we begin the healing journey, even hearing stories or carrying secrets can result in the pain and trauma which supports Domestic Violence.  If you identify experiences that create more questions, then continue the journey.  Listen to the story of Donita Fry again.  Find a friend to talk to.  Find a therapist who understands.  It is good to see hope as we witness the power of others whom take the steps of the healing journey.