About Mil Mujeres
Central American Woman Wins U-visa Case
February 17, 2012
My name is Monica*. I am in my thirties and was born in Central America. I have been living in the United states since the 2000s. I am a survivor of domestic violence at the hands of Julio, my former intimate partner, who abused me physically and psychologically, almost killing me with a knife one day when I tried to leave him. He waited for me outside my new home and when I got out of my car, he stabbed me 13 times and left me on the street struggling for life. When the ambulance arrived I was almost dead, but thankfully I survived. With the help of Mil Mujeres I won my U-visa case and feel safe now with legal status, permission to work in the United States, and the opportunity for my children to have a better future.
Mexican Woman Wins U-visa Case
November 28, 2011
My name is Antonia*. I am 33 years old and was born in Mexico. I have been living in the United States since 2007. I have a two-year-old son who was born in the United States. I am a survivor of domestic violence. My ex partner, Johnathan*, physically and emotionally abused me. With the assistance of Mil Mujeres, this month I won my U-visa case and have legal immigration status and work authorization.
I came to the United States in 2007 looking for job opportunities. I met Johnathan because he was a friend of a friend of mine. We started dating and I fell in love with him. A couple months later we decided to live together, and after seven months I got pregnant. After I got pregnant his behavior completely changed. He was always telling me bad things and started insulting me all the time. He told me that I was not in love with me because I looked fat and disgusting.
We would argue over little things. When I was six months pregnant we had a bad argument, and he got very angry and violent, and said I was useless. Then he lost self-control and started beating me. Finally he pushed me hard against the wall. He left after the incident.
After we separated he never took care of our son. In 2010 our son had an accident, he burned his arm, so we went to the hospital and I called Johnathan to come and help me. After three days, he showed up at the hospital. When he arrived, I asked him to keep an eye on our son while I took a shower. Five minutes after I went to the shower he got angry. He was screaming, telling me that I had to get out of the bathroom because he was in hurry and wanted to leave. He knocked loudly on the door, so when I went out he insulted me and pushed me. Then he hit me in the stomach. I tried to run away but he hit me and twisted my arm. When security came to the room, they took him away and banned him from entering the hospital. After my son got better, I went to the police to report this crime. Then I got a protection order.
I finally decided to report Johnathan’s abuses and visited Mil Mujeres concerned about my immigration status. With their help I got a U Visa for me and my son. Now we are living in New York, I am taking English classes three days a week and my son is taking psychologica therapy and he is learning how to play and be a happy kid. I am extremely grateful now that I got the U visa because I will be able to get a job soon and to enroll my son in school. One of the most important things the U Visa has given us is to live in the United States without the fear of deportation or to be separated from my son. Thanks to Mil Mujeres I am free to live my life free from an abuser and look for a better future for my son.
Guatemalan Woman Wins U-visa Case
October 11, 2011
My name is Ana*. I am 37-years old and was born in Guatemala. I have been living in the United States since the late 90’s and have children aged 12, 16, and 17. I am a survivor of domestic violence at the hands of my husband, Jeremiah*, and with the assistance of Mil Mujeres, two of my children and I obtained U-visas in October 2011.
I began living with Jeremiah when I was 18. He was always violent and constantly abused me. He hit me when he got drunk, even when I was pregnant. One day we went to a party and he hit me and put a gun to my head just because I was dancing with a friend. I was too afraid to call the police because he always said if he was deported he would kill my mother back in Guatemala.
A few years ago, in the early morning, I was asleep at home when Jeremiah abruptly came home. He was very drunk and was looking for food. He got very angry because I did not wake up immediately, so he entered the bedroom yelling that I had to go to the kitchen to make some food for him and his brother. Then he started to hit me and pulled my hair. I was crying and screaming because it really hurt, and I wanted someone to hear and help me. He got so crazy that he put a beer bottle in my mouth, and he pushed it so strong that it got broke, so my lips and tongue got cut. When he realized that the police were outside of the building, he tried to hide the beer bottles. When they came in, my mouth was bleeding and I told them everything that had happened. As a result, Jeremiah was arrested and taken to jail. When he was released from jail he was very violent because he blamed me for his arrest.
He eventually moved out, and I began to meet with a mental health therapist at a local community services to help me with my deep depression. Jeremiah has tried to come back home, but I told him that if he returned I would call the police. My youngest daughter is going to school. Now that I have my U-visa, I’m going to apply for my social security card and look forward to being able to work in the United States.
Argentinian Woman Wins VAWA Case
July 28, 2011
My name is Maria*. I am 34 years old and have been living in United States since 2003 with my with my 13-year-old daughter. I met my husband, Marvin, in 2004. We started a relationship, and it was beautiful. In 2007 he told me he wanted to have a family with me and take care of my daughter. He gave me a ring and we got engaged.
We got married in 2008 and not longer after we began to encounter financial problems. Marvin had trouble finding a job, and I worked as a baby sitter. When I asked him about his efforts to find a job, he got mad at me. He would scream and insult me. He would also scream at my daughter, and she would get very sad and depressed.
One time I was cooking and we started to have an argument about an ingredient he didn’t want me to use. He pushed and kicked me, so I called the police and they arrested him and he spent four days in jail. After that, we lived together again because I loved him and thought he would change. However, he did not change. One time he got so angry that he pushed me on the bed and started choking me. He pressed really hard against my neck and face and started to make me bleed. I was very scared and the next day I went to a women's shelter for help. I spoke with a counselor who told me to take care of myself and leave Marvin forever because he would never change. The counselor offered me to stay in the shelter with my daughter for a few days, at least until I felt better and could make a decision about what to do. I decided to call the police and reported this incident. After that my brothers-in-law and my mother-in-law begged me to return to live with Marvin. He promised me never to insult me anymore, so I decided to give him one more chance.
Even though I did everything that was possible to keep the peace at home, Marvin continued to be emotionally and physically abusive with me. To keep me from leaving him or calling the police, he would threaten me that If did he would report me to immigration and have me deported. Despite my fear, I called the police and got a protection order. While I was at the court, I also happened to check his record and found out that he had three more protection orders against him for abusing three other women.
He did not want to leave the apartment, so I had to call the police and they took him out of the apartment. Now I live with my daughter and I would never allow someone to hurt me or her again. I want to provide my daughter with a good education.
In July 2011, with the help of Mil Mujeres, I obtained a VAWA visa, and have legal immigration status and have work authorization in the United States.
El Salvadorian Woman Wins U-visa Case
July 6, 2011
My name is Eduvina*. I am a 30 year old woman from El Salvador. I have three children, ages 2, 8 and 9. I am a survivor of domestic violence. Ronald*, who is my husband, was physically and emotionally abusive towards me. With the help of Mil Mujeres, two of my children and I successfully obtained U-visas in July 2011.
Ronald and I got married in El Salvador when I was 18 years old. We had two children in El Salvador, and in 2003 I came to the United States looking for job opportunities in order to support my two children. He was always possessive of me and would get jealous, but in 2006, when he started to drink alcohol things got much worse. He would get drunk and became aggressive and jealous. He did not allow others to call me on the phone and he always wanted me to be at home. When he got angry he started to hit me. I never had the courage to call the police until 2010. I went out to work and some coworkers took me to my house. When we arrived he was waiting for me outside of the house with a knife in his hand. I immediately called the police but when they arrived he had left.
He did not return to the house for two weeks, so I started to look for another place to live with my daughter because I was afr/aid that he would come back and hit me again or try to kill me. I finally moved to another house but he continued to stalk me and threatened to kill me and harm our children in El Salvador. I was scared too because he constantly told me he was going to kill me or call immigration.
I got a protection order, but he did not obey it. After just a few weeks, he tried to get into my house through the window of my room that was on the second floor of the house. The dogs were barking, so when I looked out the window, I saw him on a ladder trying to enter and ran to the bathroom to hide and called the police. When the police arrived he had fled.
Not long after that, he came to my house and poured gasoline on two cars owned by people living in my house. The car alarms went off, alerting my housemates and neighbors who ran after him and held him until the police arrived and arrested him for violation of the protective order. During the criminal case against him, I testified twice about everything that had happened, and he was sentenced to six months in jail. I have been trying to overcome my trauma by attending a support group for victims of domestic violence. In July 2011 my U-visa application was approved and I am currently in the process of trying to bring my children from El Salvador to the United States with the assistance of Mil Mujeres.