Over 1.3 million women in America experience domestic violence every year, with blacks disproportionately affected the most, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
In light of such a startling statistic and in conjunction with Domestic Abuse Awareness Month, Queen Afi, creator of B2B (Brokenness to Boldness) Monologues, recently hosted a theatrical performance that relayed survivor stories from victims and abusers of their pain and experiences.
The performance, held on Oct. 27 at the Thurgood Marshall Center for Service and Heritage, consisted of three individual stories that exposed at six forms of domestic abuse, including spiritual, verbal, financial, physical, emotional and sexual.
“My motivation to create these monologues was divine, a higher power,” Afi said. “No one else in the area is doing domestic abuse monologues.
“When people see these monologues, I want them to see themselves there with us, I want them to feel what we feel and felt and unmask our pain and free themselves from theirs,” Afi said. “When we present our Drama Therapy, we are going to our most scary place for people to identify with, because the purpose of Drama Therapy is to not only hit something with you, but also hit something within us.”
Though both racism and sexism are two of the biggest obstacles faced by black women, issues on racism and the need of women to preserve the black community oftentimes leaves the reports of domestic abuse untold and pushed aside.
Across the county, black women are three times more likely than white women to experience death as a result of domestic violence or intimate partner violence, with black women accounting for 22 percent of such homicides despite only making up 8 percent of the population, making it one of the leading causes of death for black women ages 15 to 35.
Sabrina Mattocks, an attendee at the B2B Monologues, said the event resonated with her due to her own past experiences.
“I enjoyed seeing the victims and abusers and I also learned something about myself as well, being a victim of a different kind of abuse,” Mattocks said. “Everyone should see this.”
At the event’s conclusion, Queen Afi called for parents to be more honest with their children about their own personal backgrounds, so that the youth might be better equipped to handle all forms of domestic abuse.
“A lot of people think that only women get abused, but speaking as someone who was once the abuser, I know that is not true,” she said. “And I say that to say, that parents need to stop lying to their children or one day, you’re going to meet me, because these are the things that abusers like myself look for, those who don’t know any better and are vulnerable.”