Jana Kramer – Break the Silence
In an emotional and stirring speech, country music sensation Jana Kramer recounts the details of her harrowing journey, and how finding shelter from her struggles has helped her become a voice for the voiceless.
I have a really important story that I want to tell.
I met my abuser when I was 19 years old. He was charming and it all started, it all started amazing and then one thing led to another. Started with little comments here and there. So it started with more verbal abuse and then it started with a push or a shove or… And then it became a choke and I was like, alright if you really choked me, I’m thinking in my head, “If you choked me then I’m gonna leave.” But then if every time I tried to leave it kept getting worse and I didn’t know how to get out. And, I thought that it was my fault Because he truly blamed me for everything.
And so, I lost all my friends, I got dropped by every agent and manager in the business ’cause I was doing terrible at auditions and I truly felt like I was stuck.
‘Cause I truly, I did not know how to get out and I didn’t know there was a place that could help me. But, also, because I didn’t know if anyone would believe me. I didn’t know, so I just hid and I hid and I hid and that’s when I finally was like, I don’t wanna live my life like this anymore.
So, I prayed to my grandpa and I said, “Please just take me away “because I don’t wanna be this person.” ’cause I was a girl with full of light and full of energy and charm and this man just broke me down to absolute nothing.
So on that next day is when he choked me, said he was gonna kill me and ended up strangling me until I lost my breath, but I saw, I saw my whole life flash before my eyes. I saw my birth to my funeral and I just remember seeing my mom, and it’s like why couldn’t I reach out to my family.
And, that’s what I love about Safe Horizon was because there is a place where you can reach out and you can talk about it. And, once my abuser was in jail and I was finally able to be set free from him, my family became my Safe Horizon. I was able to go, today, to see the shelter and it was beautiful to see.
I have a 14 month old baby girl and I would do anything in the world to protect her and to go in there and see these beautiful children being protected means the world to me, as a mother and then I, also, know those mothers there, too, are so grateful. Because it inspired me to know that not only can we know speak about it but we can also have shelter and we can get help.
Another huge fear of mine was my story because I thought that if I shared my story then people would view me as broken and it’s been 14 years, I held it in for 14 years. But now, knowing the platform that I have, I wanna be able to be a voice for you guys. I will be the loudest voice.