Steer your horse with a bridle and your woman with a whip.
“My father said: If you’ve kidnapped the children I’ll help your husband to get them back.”
I thought I would have to queue up for food, and things like that. It was really hard at the beginning. I’ve always been independent, rebellious. I didn’t like the rules. But now that I’ve had therapy and taken courses, I’ve changed my mind. I can see that it’s good to have duties and routines, they are helping me now that I’ll be moving away from here soon, and even if I don’t get another job as a graphic designer, I’ve learned other things. I have more skills now; I can cut hair, I can cook and sew. Maybe I can work as a freelancer. If not, I’ll get a job filling enchiladas, or whatever.
I’ve learned other things. I have more skills now; I can cut hair, I can cook and sew.
I was married for seven years. I didn’t understand that it was violence at first, because it was just the odd blow. He started assaulting me three years ago, when I was going to start working after having the children. On one occasion, he stabbed me in the back with a knife. I called the police and just managed to give them the address before he knocked the mobile phone out of my hand. The police never came. I reported him to the police. The prosecutor was a woman, and she asked me if I was sure about what I was doing. She said: He could go to prison and when he comes out he’ll be really angry and do something even worse.
He was sentenced to undergo treatment, and he had three sessions with a psychologist. After that, things calmed down, and he didn’t hit me so hard. I got used to it and thought that at least it was better than it had been.
But then my mother died, and I think that unleashed something, that he thought: Now she’s alone.
I feel strong, optimistic and ready to face life.
We moved to another town. I didn’t feel well and started in therapy, where they made it clear to me that what I was living with wasn’t normal.
The first person I called when I left my husband was my father, who said: If you’ve kidnapped the children I’ll help your husband get them back.
The divorce hasn’t come through yet. If he refuses to cooperate, I have to prove that I have suffered in the marriage. The lawyer here at the women’s shelter is helping me. It will take time. But an aunt is helping me with somewhere to live, and I feel strong, optimistic and ready to face life.
Maternal deaths: 51 deaths per 100,000 births.
Number of children/woman: 2.3 (2010)
Abortion legislation: Varies greatly from state to state. In Mexico City, a woman has the right to abortion until the 12th week of pregnancy, while in the states of Guanajuato and Querétaro abortion is punishable by 30 years’ imprisonment. ****
Law against rape within marriage: Yes
Violence against women in close relationships: Every third woman in Mexico is, or has been, subjected to violence in a close relationship.