From Survivor to Thriver

From the Floor to the Door with Michelle

January 16, 2024 Erik DaRosa & Marc Fernandes Episode 144
From Survivor to Thriver
From the Floor to the Door with Michelle
Show Notes

Domestic abuse can look many different ways, and it's crucial to recognize the different ways it manifests. It goes beyond just physical violence and can include emotional, verbal, sexual, and even financial abuse.

In this episode of From Survivor to Thriver, we sat down with Michelle, who went through many types of domestic abuse with her husband of 20 years. She’s sharing her experience and when she finally realized what was happening and was brave enough to take her kids and get out. 

Michelle’s story is one of courage and determination. She took her experience and is using it to help other women in her situation find the help they need to get out of abusive relationships and get a fresh start. 

Michelle was married for many years and was a stay-at-home Mom for 2 children. In 2015, Michelle realized that her husband was addicted to drugs. During this time, she experienced financial, emotional and sexual abuse from him, which turned into his sex trafficking her. 

She spent many nights crying on the floor, until one night, with fear running through her body and hope in her heart, she ran for the door and got out.  Since then, she has been healing herself with therapy and other techniques. She has become a strong Mom for her children, in addition to being an advocate and mentor for other women and teens who have suffered any form of trauma and abuse. 

Her story is compelling, heartbreaking, and yet full of hope and reconciliation. She survived for a reason and has now dedicated her life to those needing help in finding their smile again.  

In today’s episode, we cover: 

  • The warning signs for Michelle at what her husband truly was
  • The differences between grooming and brainwashing
  • The backdoor of a life that her husband hid from her for years
  • How Michelle was exploited and traffic by people she trusted
  • The moment Michelle realized she was being trafficked and it was time to leave
  • The organization that helped her get out
  • Different types of abuse and why they are all about control
  • How Michelle plans to help other women in her position
  • How Michelle found the strength to move on after leaving her husband
  • Why we shouldn’t ignore our instincts
  • The stigma around abuse in our society

We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Michelle! If you want to learn more from her, make sure to visit

Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 


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“I knew that I needed to get a roof over my head so that I could create a safe space for my children.” -Michelle 

“We are all at some point just surviving. And at some point, we have to take charge.” Erik 

“Your boundaries will adjust for certain people in your life. If a person has never had your best interests at heart, your boundaries should never move for that kind of person.” -Marc