Nina Paolicelli is a singer with a powerful story. Recently signed with SONY RED, Nina is using her voice to help raise awareness about domestic violence. Her song, “Look,” inspired by her childhood experience of watching the abuse her mother endured, aims to help the public understand how domestic violence impacts victims, as well as their families and loved ones. Here’s the story behind “Look,” as told to NO MORE.
How did you get involved with the issue of domestic violence?
I got involved with the issue of domestic violence through a song I wrote called “Look”. I am beginning to share my story through my music.
Can you tell us a little bit about how you came to make “Look”?
I wrote “Look” about a year ago and built up the courage to record it a few months ago. I felt that sharing my experience would set me free and help others in the process.
What led you to decide to write “Look” from a child’s perspective?
Since I was 5, I had felt a weight on my shoulders. I felt like there was a secret I was keeping. I didn’t quite know the source until I started to write. This song in particular, was extremely therapeutic for me.
Your song, in such a smart and real way, talks about a very common message survivors hear: that they should ignore abuse and instead focus on good things their partner provides (“Yeah, he hurt you, yeah, he pushed you down / But look at what he gave you, don’t be so ungrateful”) – Why do you think people believe this?
I think in today’s world, many people don’t want to believe that something as horrible as domestic violence can happen. Bystanders making excuses for the abuser and/or taking sides is extremely common. More people need to be educated on these topics, even if it makes them uncomfortable.
What do you wish others would have done as you were experiencing this in your home?
Personally, I didn’t tell anyone what was going on in my home until it wasn’t going on anymore. I thought everything that was happening was normal because that was all I knew. For my mother, I wish that her family would’ve supported her instead of supporting her abuser.
How can others make a difference for domestic violence survivors?
We can help make a difference in domestic violence by believing the victims/survivors which will in turn help them to speak their truth.