Monday, April 10, 2006


I grew up in a loving household in which education was prized. I attended Smith College, where women's minds are taken seriously, and got a fantastic education. I spent my junior year in Paris. I loved France, the French language, the people, everything. Upon graduation from Smith, I asked a distinguished French professor to be my mentor, and he accepted. I applied to, and was accepted at the Sorbonne.

Instead of going to France, I married a man I had been dating, who had started slapping me around early in our relationship. I lasted over 30 years before I got out. And I can't even give myself credit for leaving. My eleven-year-old son had to run away from home and get the police involved before I woke up and realized that my life was not normal.

So what's with that? How does a woman who's been told all her life that she's powerful, she's intelligent, she's capable, fall into such a trap? And not have a clue that she's even doing it?

And if a woman with all the obvious advantages can make such poor choices, what must it be like for the millions of women who didn't start out so lucky?

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