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Adolescence can be a confusing time for a boy. But for Felix, it was made worse when his mother married an abusive man.
It was the shock of Felix’s life. After months of helplessly watching his stepfather physically abuse his mother, and tolerating abuse himself, their landlord was asking the family to leave. The fighting had become constant and the landlord had had enough.
Felix expected the abuser to be removed from their life. The one who had caused so much havoc and was now the reason they were being evicted.
Instead, Felix and his little brother were left to fend for themselves.
His mother chose to stay with her abuser and divorce her children instead.
“I didn’t have a lot of direction growing up,” says Felix today of his childhood. “There were times I should have been dead. God was definitely watching over me.”
For two years, Felix worked full time to feed and shelter himself and his younger brother. Two months after receiving his diploma, his biological father died due to complications from high blood pressure. He was only 42.
“After that, everything went into a tailspin,” said Felix. “I started drinking. I was in so much pain, I wanted to go to sleep and not wake up.”
After years of homelessness, Felix ended up in the hospital with dangerously high blood pressure. In Felix’s words:
“The doctors said, if you don’t stop drinking, you’re going to die.”
Felix knew from losing his father that the situation was serious. So when a caring Christian man offered him a room until a bed at Raleigh Rescue Mission opened up, he gratefully accepted.
“God was watching over me and blessing me,” said Felix.
Because of support from friends like you, Felix took life and job-skills classes from the Mission, and found work during the night shift at a nursing home. He hopes one day to work with abused children.
“It’s different when someone can talk to you and really understand,” he said. “I would be able to relate.”
Last month, Felix celebrated one year sober.
“I couldn’t live in anger anymore,” said Felix. “I can’t blame everybody else for my problems. I had to forgive.”