Your Moments

Your support has made many remarkable moments possible in our work to heal, educate and empower. Your commitment, your resolve and your belief in change inspire us every day. We've launched this platform for you to share your own meaningful moments right here. Whether words, an image or a video, we invite you to contribute your moment of joy, gratitude, healing, change, hope, progress—anything significant to you. 

We also ask that you consider making a donation—any amount that is meaningful to you—to support Joyful Heart’s transformative work. 

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Miracles Do Happen

2014 was a very dark year for me - probably my darkest ever - but in the midst of that darkness, several very special and beautiful lights appeared in my life. These...

2014 was a very dark year for me - probably my darkest ever - but in the midst of that darkness, several very special and beautiful lights appeared in my life. These people helped me to keep on going despite the overwhelming despair that made me not want to. Their appearance in my life showed me that the most unexpected and miraculous things can be waiting for you just around the corner, so it made me realize that perhaps it's possible that one day I will heal and that my life will feel worth living again, even though it still feels impossible right now. But maybe things won't always be this painful. And maybe the future has some more good things in store, things that I can't even conceive of yet, but I'll only experience that goodness if I remain alive. My gratitude for these earth angels who have given me this hope is immeasurable.

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Getting my life back

I am grateful today to have my life and people in my life who have cared enough about me to make me see where my life was headed if I stayed with my soon to be ex...

I am grateful today to have my life and people in my life who have cared enough about me to make me see where my life was headed if I stayed with my soon to be ex husband who was emotionally and physically cruel to me.

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Being Set Free

Born into the foster system, but had a relationship with my biological mother until I was ten. Sexually abused by from when I was four until I was twelve. Physically...

Born into the foster system, but had a relationship with my biological mother until I was ten. Sexually abused by from when I was four until I was twelve. Physically abused from 2009 until 2011, sexually abused two days after my sixtenth birthday. I'm now twenty years old living with epilepsy,wanting to make a difference in this world. My first moment of healing happened in a vision I had of me being set free from the abuse, feeling ashamed of everything. From nobody believing me, being yelled at when I confessed to someone I thought would help. I gave up telling anyone anything ever again, and accepted it was my fault. My moment of healing began when I had this amazing dream, and I saw butterflies. Butterflies to me symbolize life going from being unseen and un thought of to being such beautiful and inspiring creatures. I remember Mariska Hargitay saying "even if noone else stand by you, know I'm fighting for you". It was long ago. It's 2015, and I'm healing more each day and am happy

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Let Us Move On

Let us move on. In the hopes that this may help another move forward, I'll give this too pay it forward as it was this kind of stuff that gave me the hope I...

Let us move on. In the hopes that this may help another move forward, I'll give this too pay it forward as it was this kind of stuff that gave me the hope I found from others I reached out to. My assumption is that I, if I try, can, will and do my life changes for the better! In my hopes any of you wanting to hear of my childhood and what my life story is to this point. Again... That is only an assumption on my part. The truth is that I would love to tell you..."The Whole Story", but writing it, I will save for a book, because it is far from over and I'm convinced the best part is yet to unfold. I am full of positive hope and faith, which has resulted from allot of work. I mean some years of self directed effort to achieve sobriety first and then proceed to seek out and find the help/education and heartfelt healers that I have needed most of my life to arrive at this blissful, happy place I feel I am now at. Yet may I say, I have come a long way from the hurt wounded child who was sexually abused and otherwise assaulted for years as a child that carried through my being a young teenager. That in it's self, I have held in secret since I was 12 years old until a few years ago. I am now 59 years old and my secrets where "killing me" and sabotaging my every effort I made to feel part of and not emotionally isolated. I made the best of life I could, and in fact have done (fairly) well as a good hearten man in terms of many things I value and love about life. So maybe my life is following the path I was destined to take and I must continue to do what unfolds in front of me in order to live life fully. In other words simply...follow my spirit. "The Journey" I have endeavored upon in order to heal those wounds I've held so deeply in my heart and my outlook in life has been amazing. Thus is where my "Joyful Heart" has begun to see clearly, a new meaning and purpose in life for me. That story is only beginning and I am full of excitement and want to be patient and thorough with my new thoughts of how to be of the best service and value to help others heal. I hope to bring something new to the conversation if I can. In order to have greater impact on education and prevention of all forms of domestic violence and sexual assault...that is my "Focus". I believe it goes to our level of tolerance as well as the indifference to the issues outside of one's immediate life and circumstances. That which is disguised and sold to us in such forms as fear ignorance, bigotry, racism. intolerance and entitlement for those who have over those who don't. As well as the degradation of nature and violence we seem to be willing to turn our cheek to as a necessary evil...of commerce and cultural advancement...need I go on! I by no means believe I can tackle all of these issues. It is a "Spiritual Axiom" for me that if good people rest on their laurels and become complacent in their lives and world about and not work for the better...Nothing will change in any meaningful way. Not taking a stand and making my voice heard feels like coward-es to me! I am and have been one of the lucky one's, "who has survived" and has the time and opportunity to do my best at accomplishing a small, maybe even a tiny part of that and I endeavor to do so. That is who I am today, yet a simple man who finally excepts himself, wishes to be more happy and in love with every aspect of what life has to offer! The possibilities are endless. That is what makes me Happy!

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Opened Doors

I finally was able to open up to a dear friend about my assault many years ago - and his support meant more than is possible to put into words. The last time I'd...

I finally was able to open up to a dear friend about my assault many years ago - and his support meant more than is possible to put into words. The last time I'd told someone I was pushed aside & shamed for it. The two of us healed together - my willingness to talk about my experience led him to opening up about his as well. Our support for each other will help us grow immensely as people and as survivors.

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Friendship is (Forever) Magic

I took the time to remember a friend that I lost a friendship with and made an apology for not being a more committed friend and seeing past a disagreement that led to...

I took the time to remember a friend that I lost a friendship with and made an apology for not being a more committed friend and seeing past a disagreement that led to the discontinuation of our friendship. I very clearly let them know that they didn't do anything wrong and that I was sorry and regretful for not fighting harder to secure our friendship. The friend accepted the apology and said it meant a lot which eases any previous existing burden of grief, and for myself I can be free from failing to do the right thing that should have been done earlier. This allows two people to heal and start the new year with a fresh positive step forward!

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God Restored My Health and Healed My Heart

I went through a completely dark time, a time when I felt doomed and utterly hopeless. I was depressed and anxiety-ridden. I was defeated. Worst of all, I was faith-less...

I went through a completely dark time, a time when I felt doomed and utterly hopeless. I was depressed and anxiety-ridden. I was defeated. Worst of all, I was faith-less. I was riddled by (undue) shame and guilt and felt that I couldn't even live in my own skin. I wanted to die. I wanted to kill myself. I prayed constantly but saw no change. I felt no difference. I was praying for things that were unhealthy for me. One day, against all odds, I surrendered to God. Now, six months later, I am healthy and happy. I am immensely grateful to God. I am excited about the future. I have a thirst for life. I survived.

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Me

I learned to like myself once more. That I am still me. I let the assailant have such power over me by being afraid of the dark. I found myself and knew that I, me, was...

I learned to like myself once more. That I am still me. I let the assailant have such power over me by being afraid of the dark. I found myself and knew that I, me, was the same person I'd always been. so for me there's no more being afraid of the Dark for awhile. It never gets easier; only better at accepting who you are. That YOU are STILL YOU- that's Victory enough. As Bette Davis said "We have won a victory. A victory over the Dark.

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Courage

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I finally told

I was sexually assaulted on June 14th 2014. I was so ashamed and afraid to tell anyone but finally in October of 2014 I told my mother. She was so supportive. She also...

I was sexually assaulted on June 14th 2014. I was so ashamed and afraid to tell anyone but finally in October of 2014 I told my mother. She was so supportive. She also made sure to get me te counseling I needed. I'm no longer a victim. I am a survivor. I was able to begin my healing and I'm proud to say today I am much better. That evil man didn't win.

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Living day by day

When I was 14 my best friend of the time had an older brother, I didn't know better all I could think about was the fact an older guy liked me. He was 21 and I was...

When I was 14 my best friend of the time had an older brother, I didn't know better all I could think about was the fact an older guy liked me. He was 21 and I was 14. It happened a few times and then it stopped. It took me a year to finally realize it was wrong what had happened. Took me a year and half to tell my mom. I told friends they didn't believe me. I finally went to law enforcement. Told them my story, had a few different meetings and then everything stopped. I didn't hear back from anybody and I have up thinking I was given up on. My entire high school career I wasn't the person I wanted to be. I partied, I slept around and did drugs. But I soon learned it was who I was. When I graduated I went off to college broke up with my boyfriend who I'd been with my entire senior year. My first weekend coming home from college I receive a letter from the county law enforcement. It was a detective who wanted to open my case back up. I called and I spoke with the detective and decided this is what I wanted to do and I opened it up and said I wanted to do whatever it takes to feel justice. Now almost 5 1/2 years I'm finally meeting with the Proscuting Attorney and a warrant will be going out for his arrest it took five years for this to happen. I am terrified for the day that he gets arrested and when everybody finds out. But I am ready to feel closure to feel the justice that I deserve and to see what he deserves for doing what you did to me. I will not give up I will not let anybody tell me what I'm doing is wrong because what I am doing is right and what I am doing will allow me to let me live the life I want to live without fear or anger or feeling like what happened was something I did by a mistake because I was young. I know what was wrong and I know what is right now. Being 20 year olds and having this happen when I was 14 was the most detrimental thing to happen, but what happened to me has also taught me strength and hope and has made me the strong women I am today.

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Thank You

Made our first donation to the Joyful Heart Foundation today. I was a victim of sexual assault at 16. Now, at 48, I finally realize it wasn’t my fault. Thank you for...

Made our first donation to the Joyful Heart Foundation today. I was a victim of sexual assault at 16. Now, at 48, I finally realize it wasn’t my fault. Thank you for doing what you do and for giving so many a voice.

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I can FLY!

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Courage

The No More PSA's led me to check out the No More Website, which led me to check out the Joyful Heart Foundation. In reading about both the foundation and the No...

The No More PSA's led me to check out the No More Website, which led me to check out the Joyful Heart Foundation. In reading about both the foundation and the No More movement, I kept reading over and over again how we as a society needed to start talking about these issues. I never talked about what happened to me 16 years ago. At least not any further than "something happened. I'm over it." I realized it was time to start talking. Yesterday, I had my first therapy appointment. She was very straight with me, which I appreciate. This is not going to be easy and it's not going to be a short process, but it will be worth it. I'm finally ready to let the secret go and I have faith that in doing so, I will be able to be the joyful person my children deserve their mom to be.

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