It makes me very happy to speak with Tanya Selvaratnam on the topic of intimate violence today. Tanya is a writer and an Emmy-nominated and multiple Webby-winning producer in the areas of arts and social justice. Also, she has written 2 important books, one of which are talking about in this episode: It is called “Assume Nothing: A Story of Intimate Violence”, and in this book, Tanya shares her story of how her relationship with former New York State attorney general Eric Schneiderman initially felt like a perfect match but then devolved into abuse.
I was deeply impressed by Tanya’s courage to come forward with her experience of intimate abuse, since way too many women suffer from it in silence. Statistics say that 1 in 3 women experience emotional, physical and/or verbal abuse mostly by an intimate partner once in their lifetime. Sadly, since the outbreak of the pandemic, cases of domestic violence have increased. The United Nations Women calls it the Shadow Pandemic.
In that context, Tanya’s book becomes ever more relevant. And very helpful. In this episode, we will learn from her how we all can help others spot signs of intimate violence (which can be sometimes very hard for the person in the relationship) and how to stop and prevent it in their own lives. Tanya talks about how important it is to encourage bystanders to become upstanders. “It’s everyone’s responsibility to stand up for the dignity and safety of everyone else and not just watch”, she states.
Also, we are talking about what intimate abuse has to do with the love we received in our early childhood years. You will hear from her if she after all still believes in love and in romantic relationships and also, what she wants her legacy to be as a person, who deeply cares about social justice in our world.
We’re proud to have you as our guest on Before It’s Too Late today, Tanya Selvaratnam!