How Verizon helped me recognize a 12 year milestone #VZWBuzz

Let me start by saying I haven’t really decided if this is a good post or a bad post. It’s an honest post about how Verizon helped me recognize a 12 year milestone, and there’s a whole messy mix of feelings that goes along with that.


I’m part of the #VZWBuzz Lifestyle Blogger team, which means I’ve received a line of service from them, as well as some cool devices & accessories. It also means I get kept in the loop about company news, promotions, and announcements. You’ve probably seen me tweet about them.

When I heard that Jay Jaffin, VP of Marketing Communications for Verizon, was going to be on the Dr Phil show to announce a new partnership related to domestic violence awareness, I shut off my notifications for the first time this year.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s a great cause. It’s something I believe in. It just came across my feed at the wrong time.

Jay Jaffin was on Dr Phil on May 22nd to talk about Verizon’s partnership with domestic violence foundation When Georgia Smiled. This fall, they’ll be hosting a follow-up to Verizon’s 2013 Summit on domestic violence prevention.

This is all great stuff, right? Breaking the cycle is important. Keeping victims safe is important. Educating about early warning signs is important. And they’re all positive changes we need in this world.

So why didn’t I watch the episode when it aired?

The answer is simple: I reacted and let some demons surface that usually stay buried inside.

On May 18, 2002, I was sexually assaulted by an ex boyfriend. That experience has shaped me in ways I never expected. So that episode of Dr Phil with the Verizon announcement? It just happened to air exactly two years to the day from the first time I opened up about my experience as a victim here on the blog.

The funny thing is (or not so funny, I guess), is that I had been so busy with my family and work and life in general that I didn’t even realize what day it was until I heard the news that Jay was going to be on Dr Phil.

That’s huge for me. 

I still struggle with the memories, but the bouts of self-doubt and anxiety and depression are fewer and farther between. In past years, I’ve been painfully aware of the approaching “anniversary” of this defining moment from my past.

This year, I didn’t dwell on it. I didn’t rehash things in my brain for hours, I didn’t fault myself for all the “could haves” and “should haves.” I didn’t sob uncontrollably into a nightmare-ridden slumber. In fact, I didn’t even realize the date had passed until I heard about the Verizon thing. Those feelings came after, because hearing other women’s stories always remind me of my own.

Despite the f*cked up state it put me in, I think I owe the Verizon marketing team a thank you. This 12 year mark is a huge milestone for me. Having May 18th pass without it significantly impacting my mental state is something I never thought would happen. It means I’ve gotten stronger, I’ve continued to move on, and it proves I’m still growing as a survivor.

Photo credit: Joe Parks

VZWBUZZ Badge 2014


  1. It’s something that you never forget, but it’s definitely great to know that this year it didn’t interfere with the life you have now. Sending you big giant hugs.

  2. Why didn’t I know this about you, Jen?! I’m so sorry and I wish I could give you an enormous, squishy hug right now. I’m so glad that you are healing and what a great cause and partnership for Verizon to be part of.

  3. You never forget, Jen, you just don’t let it OWN you, because you DO get stronger and you DO get wiser and better. 12 years has passed, and I see a happy, smiling mom who didn’t let that incident come in between her and her dream of a husband and children and her happily ever after. Kudos to you and your bravery, sweetheart. You’re doing magnificently.

  4. I had no idea, Jen. I am heading to your other posts you linked to. I am sorry that happened to you. But, I am thankful that you are healing from the pain of the experience. I am also glad that Verizon is partnering with such a great organization. Thank you for being so honest in your blog. I appreciate it. I know it can’t always be easy.

  5. Thanks so much for your transparency in sharing your journey! Beautiful post and so inspirational!

  6. You’re so very strong to keep sharing this story with the world! Love ya girl!

  7. I don’t know how you feel, but I do know you are not alone. It really is neat that you are a part of a company that has a program like this, much more reason to support them.

  8. Way to go Verizon on supporting such an awesome cause. When companies do things like this, it definitely gives kudos in my eyes!

Speak Your Mind