Press + Media


In January 2018, The Founders of The MEND Project, Annette Oltmans and Johanna Tropiano were invited to New York City to educate community leaders about Double Abuse® and Covert Emotional Abuse. At an evening reception at the Metropolitan Club on January 23rd, over 70 leaders from varying media, legal, NGO and ministry communities were in attendance. This is Annette and Johanna’s presentation.
In The News

The Layered Effect of Covert Emotional Abuse and Double Abuse®
December 28, 2017

Sexual harassment, domestic violence, school bullying and child molestation share two notably powerful ingredients: the layered effect of Covert Emotional Abuse and Double Abuse®.

Covert Emotional Abuse has many layers. It is confusing and easy to deny. Those who employ it, unconsciously or knowingly take steps to avoid being caught. Rewriting history is one way they step out of the story. Practicing oneupsmanship, causing others to feel inferior and reversing blame, shifting guilt onto the innocent, allows them to feel little or no guilt themselves.   READ MORE

2 Orange County women reaching church leaders and others on how to help when abusive treatment
December 26, 2017

Annette Oltmans wanted the people in her faith community to listen and take seriously the emotional abuse that had come to define her marriage.

But when she turned to the leaders of a couples’ Bible study group she and her husband attended, Oltmans felt dismissed.

Worse, it seemed like she was being blamed for her husband’s behavior.   READ MORE

How to Seek Help If You’re in an Abusive Relationship
October 11, 2017

“You’re not alone.”
If you’ve experienced any form of abuse, it’s common to feel lonely and uneasy around people you’re close to. On top of dealing with the physical effects of domestic violence, abuse victims often feel embarrassed, hopeless, anxious, and unable to trust. While it’s hard to do, telling someone about the abuse can help you get out of the dangerous environment and start recovering.   READ MORE

The Most Important Thing to Do If Someone Confides in You About Abuse
July 7, 2017

“Don’t speak to me unless it’s about reconciliation.”
“Don’t speak to me unless it’s about reconciliation.”
“Do NOT speak to me unless it’s about reconciliation.”

I’ll never forget those words repeated to me by my former pastor and friend during the summer of 2011; the summer that changed my life forever.   READ MORE

On The Blog

Could You Be In An Abusive Relationship and Not Know It?

When most women think about “intimate partner abuse” typically bruises or broken bones come to mind, but abuse is not always that black and white. In fact, the gray area of abuse can go undetected for months, sometimes even years or decades. It’s called “covert emotional abuse.” 

How to Respond When Your Friend Tells You She is in an
Abusive Relationship

Domestic abuse is an epidemic in the United States with nearly 1 in 3 women experiencing Primary Abuse (physical, sexual, emotional or financial abuse) at some point in their lifetime. What can exacerbate Primary Abuse, leave a person feeling hopeless and isolated. . . READ MORE

The MEND Project Spring Fundraiser

This spring The MEND Project held its launch fundraising event at the home of Douglas Hodge and Kylie Schuyler. With over 50 people in attendance, Principal Founder, Annette Oltmans and co-founder, Johanna Tropiano presented the groundbreaking new work of their non-profit . . . READ MORE


Life and Faith Indiana – Interview with Johanna Tropiano

Bible News Radio – Interview with Annette Oltmans

Latest Press Release

Nonprofit, The MEND Project Seeks to End “Double Abuse®

Often far more harmful than actual physical or emotional abuse, “Double Abuse®” can be prevented by listening, empathizing, and never blaming

Orange, Calif. (July 5, 2017)The MEND Project, a nonprofit organization focused on ending “Double Abuse®,” announced today the launch of its website and curriculum designed to create awareness of and end a secondary form of domestic abuse. This abuse, which The MEND Project has coined “Double Abuse®,” occurs when a person who is physically, emotionally or sexually abused, called “Primary Abuse,” reaches out for help. Instead of being received with compassion, empathy and acceptance by her support system, she is ostracized from her family and/or community, or subjected to judgment, ultimatums, or incorrect therapeutic treatment. This often leads the victim to feeling hopeless and alone and can contribute to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder  (PSTD) and Complex PSTD.

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Media Contact

Joanne Forster
(310) 498-7585