Today, we are introducing you to "Dominga Cooper."
Share info about you, where you are from originally and where you are now, and what you do?
I’m Dominga Maria Cooper. A wife and mother of four beautiful children, two young adults and two teenagers. I’m also a Bonus Mom to a beautiful teenager. I’m originally from Atlantic City, NJ, but currently resides in Saint Peters, MO. I am the Founder & Executive Director of I Have Free Rein, a nonprofit organization that provides prevention education to equip young people with critical awareness and resources that keep them from being exploited into human sex trafficking. www.ihavefreerein.org
What have you overcome? Share a little about your topic.
I have overcome domestic violence. Going through the emotional, mental, and physical abuse from a previous marriage had me in a fog that I was not aware I was in until I sought counseling. The damage it has cause on my mental was not something I could realize until I went to therapy, and it helped me realized what I was doing or couldn’t remember was all normal for a victim of domestic violence. The hardest part for me was the aftermath. Being in the toxic relationship was extremely difficult and damaging yet putting pieces to yourself back together was the most challenging obstacle I had to ensure and proud to say I overcame it and now a SURVIVOR!
How did you know you needed to change?
I knew I had to get out of the situation once I got a concussion, but even still it took me a few years to safely leave. There was more abuse during the time, but my intentions were to get out, so I worked remotely while he was at work to get enough money to leave and eventually, I was able to. I was able to find the courage to leave. I was to a point that I do not want to die and leave my children. I thought I was able to hide the abuse from my children. They never saw any physical abuse, but they were aware that something was happening. As a mother we think we can shield them from it, but the energy, your movements as a mother will be different and they will surely notice it. I had to remove myself and my children out of a toxic relationship.
What steps did you take to implement change?
I worked remotely and eventually was able to leave. I was able to restore myself by seeking therapy at the suggestion of a domestic violence advocate who saw my confusion in court when I was mixing up different abusive events that took place. She approached me after court and said she thinks I would benefit from domestic violence counseling, and they have group counseling with other victims too. I was opposed to group counseling but agreed to individual counseling. It the best choice I may in regaining my peace and getting back to the me before being victimized.
What encouraging words can you leave for the readers?
Remember, your peace is a high priority. Do not allow others to infringe upon your peace and close your world to those who try to rob you of it.
What is your favorite quote?
“We cannot think of being acceptable to others until we have first proven acceptable to ourselves.” – Malcom X
Provide the best ways to contact you.
Dominga Cooper is an enthusiastic communicator whose mission is to equip young people with the armor needed to protect themselves from Human Sex Trafficking.
Dominga studied under Ambassadors United, Anti-Human Trafficking Advocate Program and trained under Office for Victims of Crime Training and Technical Assistance Center.
Dominga is the Founder & Executive Director at I Have Free Rein and has delivered presentations to girls, young women, and their mothers. Her educational interactive approach captures the audience attention. Dominga speaks to middle school, high school and college assemblies, youth organizations, nonprofit organizations, conferences and more.
When not speaking, Dominga enjoys museums, art galleries, spoken-word poetry, Caribbean & Latin restaurants, watching crime shows, and spending time with her husband and children.
Victorious Living Culture hopes you enjoyed learning about our guest Dominga. If you would like to nominate someone to be a special guest, contact www.NoreenNHenry.com