BROOKLYN - October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and two survivors have agreed to share their experiences with News 12 Brooklyn in hopes of helping other victims seek counseling.

Experts say many women choose to stay in abusive relationships due to low self-esteem, out of fear for their children?s safety or out of fear for their own safety. However, there are victims out there who are brave enough to leave their abusive partners and seek help.

?It just started as verbal abuse, just the screaming and calling of names ...that was my first experience, after that it became physical,? says Crystal, whose name was changed to protect her identity.

Theresa, also not her real name, says that she was a victim of abuse at the hands of her husband.

?He took me by the neck and picked me up, gave me a lot of fear,? she says.

Both women came to the Center Against Domestic Violence for help and guidance. The organization provides counseling, helps women find housing and assists with locating day care services.

Statistics show that one in four women will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime. Crystal and Theresa say women don?t have to become a statistic. They urge victims to seek help, if not for themselves, then for their children.

CenterAgainst Domestic ViolenceNews12 Brooklyn: DiVA Talk