[October 25, 2016] – On October 24, 2016, SOAR presented its final performance of Behind Closed Doors.

Writing and performing in this play was a very personal journey in healing and surviving through art. Writing from personal experience is a hard process. I went through the individual stages of my personal experience, and opening up about myself was definitely not an easy task. It was like reliving certain experiences that I wanted to forget, but the more I shared, the more it poured out.

When I heard about the opportunity of writing a play, I felt that it may be a good avenue to help educate others. I decided to join because I wanted to become more involved in ending domestic violence. I was afraid at first. I did not wish to talk about myself. I was also afraid of my own emotions. Even though it was hard to show my emotions when going over my words, the play changed my feelings about myself.

Writing with the purpose of educating others made it easier to tell my story. As I was doing it with 15 other survivors, I had support which I never really had before. I wish I knew all I do today about getting help and all I have learned from others through the play. Sharing has been healing and empowering. It was a long road from experience to writing and then actually performing, but on that road I found healing, peace, and friendship.

- Laura, SOAR Member

Other SOAR members reflect on Behind Closed Doors:

Writing my story was a form of therapy for me. In letting out my inner, deepest, darkest secrets, the biggest weight was lifted off of my shoulders. Every time I spoke my part, I became a stronger person. I want people to know that these stories are real, and that they come from the bottom of our hearts. The emotions and the memories don’t go away, but we can overcome those fears. It’s a long process, but if we stick together, we can overcome our fears and say “No More!" - Carmen
We have survived. Ours is a journey from victim to survivor to advocate. I feel empowered and powerful. - Kathy
Surviving is only one piece of the puzzle. Getting out alive is a huge accomplishment. But now you get to pick up the pieces and move on. The struggle is real but so worth it. Writing the stories was so powerful yet gut-wrenching. Performing brought back so many horrid memories. But in the end, getting out from behind the closed door was the prize for the cost. - Patricia
When I found out that I would be in Behind Closed Doors, I cried. I cried because I was honored, and proud. But mostly, I cried because I would be performing the very last performance of Behind Closed Doors a few days after my 50th birthday – a day that I had not imagined being alive for. When I took that bow, I raised my arms as high as I could. I wasn’t only proud; I felt a sense of freedom. I am free, and no one can ever take that feeling away from me again! - Zaida

Pictured: SOAR members rehearse in Trinity Repertory Company's Dowling Theater for the final performance of Behind Closed Doors. Said a SOAR member of the final bow, “It was a bittersweet moment." But the work does not end there. Stay tuned!