Cynthia had been married for seven years before the abuse got physical. She recalled:
“He had always been verbally abusive, very controlling and vicious. It seemed that everything was always my fault and I could never do anything right.”
The last five years of their marriage was filled with many explosive violent experiences that will stay with her forever.
Cynthia left her husband for good, but her missing and damaged teeth due to the violence, remained. Cynthia stated:
“I am public speaker. I try to use my experience to help other people. I understand the importance of how we present ourselves. It is hard to take a person seriously when they have bad diction; due to a gap toothed smile that distracts from the important matter at hand. I missed my smile. I did not feel like myself anymore. People treated me differently. My self-esteem was at an all-time low. It is amazing how a smile or lack of smile can change your life so dramatically.”
Several years later, she applied for the Give Back a Smile program. GBAS volunteer dentist Dr. Hubert Parker and team, restored her smile and so much more!
“Now, as I wake each morning, I greet the day with a renewed sense of hope and joy, strength and purpose, then…a smile spreads across my face that is so bright, I feel like it could light up the whole world.”
Cynthia is also enrolled in college seeking a degree in social work. The AACDCF is honored to have supported her educational goals by awarding her with a scholarship this year. Her goal is to eventually obtain a Master’s Degree and continue to help others who have experienced domestic violence.