Discrimination hurts. Not being allowed to enter places because I'm wearing my traditional dress, speaking my native language, or simply because I am poor – it hurts.
Our government is racist and exclusive. They do not take into account the opinions of indigenous women. They don't look after the rural areas and the extreme poverty we live in.
I suffered sexual harassment from a young age.
From the age of seven, my brother would sexually abuse me. I always believed this was what brothers did, until I told my mother. After that, she never left me alone with him. But when I was 15 she died, and a year later I married my husband.
At the time, I did not know what it meant to have sexual relations or a child.
When I'm with my husband today, I often think, I never really fell in love, I never enjoyed my youth.
But, I've found new people. This women's association is my house. We laugh, we cry, many times we sleep here too. We share our stories and advise each other.
Here I feel calm, because we are allowed to heal. We speak our inner thoughts. We speak from the Mayan perspective, and we feel confident.
We fight for our rights, but we also fight against the macho society we live in. We understand that we have a right to be respected.
A woman's struggle is my struggle, and their struggle is everyone's struggle.
When she was four years old, my daughter was a victim of sexual abuse. It was a single incident, but it was extremely difficult to take. I had to think about what to do, and how to react.
As it was a member of our extended family, her cousin, who committed the crime, there was a question of whether or not to report it to the police.
But my daughter was at stake, so I had to do it. You know how difficult it is to have a kid? And somebody comes and hurts her. It's not fair.
So I went to the police and opened a case. The psychological consequences were hard, and being part of the organisation helped me through it.
Through the talks and lessons on women's rights, counselling, by listening to other experiences, I managed to handle what happened. They helped me to get through the shock.
My daughter's cousin was taken to court; he was only 16.
I decided not to put him in jail. My husband didn't even want us to pursue the case, but I knew I had to do it, and I knew I would do it with or without his support. But I decided not to put my daughter's cousin in jail. He was only 16; jail would have destroyed any chance of him becoming a better person.
My daughter didn't get any kind of help, but I'm here for her. I have dealt with my own shock by listening to other people, by understanding more about my own rights.
I learned about this organisation by talking to my friends, so I decided to approach them and try.
Before, I was timid, but through the organisation, I have learned not to be scared. Talking to people, by learning from other's experiences, by attending lessons, I lost this fear of being judged, and I'm not afraid to speak up and express what I feel.
We do not have to remain silent. How could other people understand, if we don't talk?
I do not fear being alone. I do not fear my husband leaving me. A woman does not need a man to be able to survive in life.
However, my biggest fear today is that this might happen again to my daughter and that the same story will be repeated.
My dream is to be a lawyer so that I can represent other women. I'm currently studying and, hopefully, one day I'll achieve this.
I have the right to everything, to be free, to choose.
I've been a victim of psychological abuse. My husband does not always trust me. Sometimes he thinks that I go out to flirt with men or do other things.
He believes in gossip and rumours. He is rude and disrespectful in the way he talks to me.
This is the kind of violence that you cannot see, but you feel. It drains you, it hurts you, you cry, and it damages everything you believe in.
I've also faced discrimination and racism when I wear my Mayan attire. People do not accept it. It's not the same for a mestizo [a woman of mixed race], they enjoy more respect than indigenous women do.
Discrimination and racism go hand in hand. In our communities, there is also a lot of illiteracy, and many spaces where we are not welcome, we are not accepted because of our attire or lack of education. Schools can discriminate against us too.
But through the association, I have learned to feel proud of being a Mayan Kaqchikel [one of the indigenous Maya peoples of the midwestern highlands of Guatemala] woman. I know my worth, and I have learned to value my dignity.
I understand it is possible to be different, and it is possible to be respected. It is not an option; it is my right.
I attended many lectures; they explained to me the importance of education, the rights and the respect I should be receiving from people.
Today, I'm studying my native language, Kaqchikel, at university. Knowing this language enables me to help many more women in my community who do not speak Spanish.
The aim is to be able to voice other women's concerns to the authorities so that they will not need to go alone to court, and they won't be in situations where they can't represent themselves because they do not speak Spanish. I want to be there to help them through such situations.
Machismo is another big challenge we face as women. My husband has been taught not to help at home; that touching a broom or cleaning a plate is a woman's job, and that his opinion is the only one that matters.
I know I won't be able to change him, but with my sons and daughters, I'm hoping to make a difference and help them understand more about their identity. I talk to them every day about who they really are. Because they must have values, and my daughters need to be respected and valued as the women they are. Women are a fundamental pillar of society. My sons must understand that marrying does not mean hiring a maid, they should collaborate at home, and respect their partners.
I only fear one thing, to be alone. I am afraid of not being loved; it is a constant concern in my mind. I know how to fight for my rights - but I fear that because of this, one day, I won't be loved anymore. I am afraid of being rejected by those I cared about.
Before I never used to leave my house - my husband didn't allow me, it was forbidden.
My life was sad; my only responsibilities were to take care of my kids and husband. I did not know anything other than taking care of my house.
I came to the association because they invited me twice. The second time, I decided to join. They explained to me that there was a group of women who sat and talked about human rights, violence, discrimination, racism and all of that.
Through the workshops and lessons, I've opened my eyes. Before, for example, I was really afraid of speaking in public, the first time I did it, I was shaking, but today, when I have the opportunity to speak, it's not the same. I'm not afraid anymore.
Through the talks they have given us we have learned that we as women have rights, and obligations too. And that women should defend those rights.
When you are ignorant, you suffer a lot, and you just do what you are told to do. But once you are aware, things change, they are not the same anymore.
By sharing our experiences, we learn.
With my change, my husband has changed too. He now understands more. When I tell him I have a workshop or lesson, I just let him know, but I don't need his permission anymore.
The knowledge allows you to defend yourself.
But while you do what you can, sometimes economic difficulties can block you. Without money, there are not many options.
My biggest hope is to help more women and girls develop.
As a group, we fight for the women that are here.
We are learning, maybe little things, but we are learning. I've learned not to fear.
We are willing to go out and make our voice be heard. We work for our women.
This association has helped me a lot. I have learned by listening to the stories of others and by sharing my own.
By being here and listening to other women's experiences, my perspective has changed.
It's not like before when I felt my worth was nothing in front of a man. Sometimes, I might be able to understand just four or five words, but step by step I'm learning, and I'm here.
I'm a woman, and I have the right to take care of myself.
My husband passed away, and that's better. I'm better off alone, surrounded by my family, nephews, children. I'm not worried and stressed anymore.
I don't have the stress of having to go home, worried about my duties, about washing clothes. I'm not distressed.
My biggest dream is to be happy.
Sometimes, being with a partner takes a lot, and sometimes it ends in constant sadness. When you want to eat but you can't, because you are immersed in your own problems. Instead, when I'm alone, with my family at the association, they do not scold me. They defend me.
My fear is to be mistreated again.