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“People should never feel the way I did. LSS was there to help me and my son.”

Amber Felt Safe and Accepted

Amber fled an abusive marriage and used the LSS sliding fee scale to receive counseling services for herself and her son. “You helped us to get the counseling that we needed. To give my son a fighting chance to be a good man. So, thank you!”

Amber married in her early 20s. She didn’t realize the pain she was going to endure for the next three years of marriage until it was too late. One month into the marriage, the abuse started—emotionally, physically and sexually. “He beat and sexually assaulted me. The abuse was so intense that I miscarried our first child because of it.” He isolated her from family and friends to gain more control of her life. She soon became pregnant again and had a son.

He convinced her she was a horrible person, wife and mother. Amber felt alone. “I was in this big black hole. A pit of despair. No one could reach me to help me. I was thinking about suicide because the abuse was that bad.”

“Even though my family was worried about my health and well-being, I felt like I was alone. And I couldn’t pull myself out.”

“Literally my son was the only thing keeping me alive at that point in time.” Her son’s safety was her first priority. “I figured if I could absorb all of the abuse and as long as it doesn’t trickle down to my son then I’m doing my part as a mother. As a wife.”

Once the emotional abuse was directed toward her son at just a year old, Amber found the strength she needed to seek safety, file for divorce, and get the help she and her son needed.

Amber found help through LSS Behavioral Health Services. “Not only help for myself but my son too. Someone who could do youth counseling and therapy. They could help save us both.”

“Through therapy he is able to be a happy young boy again.” After ten years, it is still difficult for Amber to tell her story. “It’s hard to relive all of that. He ripped all of my self-worth out of my soul.”

“We think we are alone. It’s not true.” Amber remembers, “I was comforted. It felt like LSS made me feel like I was at home. It was a completely judge-free zone. They made me feel like I was a person—that I could be seen. I wasn’t this scared, timid, outcast of a mother.”

“Thank you. Thank you for letting me cry and letting me feel again. Thank you for pulling me out of a black hole, out of the pit of despair. Thank you for making me feel like a good mom.”

LSS made Amber feel safe and accepted. “People should never feel the way I did. LSS was there to help me and my son. They have amazing people. They can help.”

Last year, 85% of clients qualified for the sliding fee scale through LSS Behavioral Health Services—services that would have otherwise been out of their financial reach. The sliding fee scale allows people with lower incomes to pay reduced counseling fees. Individual donations make services like these possible for those who need help.

Amber's story wouldn’t be possible without your support. Join us for our Day of Giving festivities now through April 27 with a donation to support the work that makes these stories a reality.