Allow me to tell you a story about a woman I know.
A few years ago this woman had left an abusive partner. Over time the relationship had become more toxic and abuse escalated from verbal and emotional to physical. She lied to her partner, telling him that she felt if they separated for a while, they would have the space to view things differently. She knew when she left she was never going back but she also knew if she told her partner this, he would not have allowed her to leave. Not healthy at least. Maybe not alive.
She found a crappy sixth-floor apartment in a building with a controlled entrance. It was the best she could afford; it was clean and safe for her son. Immediately upon leaving, the man she left, her ex-partner, began stalking and harassing her as abusers typically do when they lose their control over the person they are abusing. He called her constantly, threatening her, threatening to harm her mother, threatening to show up at her job site and get her fired, threatened to take their son and disappear. He would show up at her apartment door yelling through that she couldn’t keep him out… How stupid was she to think that she could keep him out? She was afraid.
She contacted a lawyer and asked for advice; he told her to report every harassment. Every single incident. Just in case. Just in case one day, he acted on his threats. But for now, there was nothing else she could do.
So the next time he called and told her, “six stories is a long way to fall, don’t you think?”, she called the police.
When the officer arrived, she told him the whole story. She let him know they already have photos from the time she went to the station to report the abuse and they photographed her for “evidence” in case “something bad” ever happened. The officer listened and when she was finished with her story, he said to her, smiling, “you know… he’s probably just having a bad day. Don’t you ever have bad days?”
The woman was me.
The year was 1985. Enough.
The fact that now, in 2021, thirty-six YEARS later, another cop in another city gave the same pathetic, irresponsible, despicable response to a horrific act of violence, that the perpetrator was just having a “bad day”, makes my blood boil. And it should for every other person who heard it.
Enough! I am so SICK of men, especially men in power who either stand silent or make excuses for other men who rape, abuse, harass, kill others. Kill women. Kill children. Kill members of the LGBTQ+ community. Kill Blacks. Kill Asians. Kill. Kill. Kill.
If you need help…
If you are unsafe, here are some numbers & websites to reach out to for assistance:
Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 or kidshelpphone.ca
ShelterSafe.ca to find a listing of shelters across Canada
DomesticShelters.org to find a list of shelters across the US
England.shelter.org.uk to find resources for women escaping violence in the UK