While experiencing a rare chance to go riding on a Sunday morning, I encountered a police blockade barring the entrance to Jay Blanchard Park. It looked serious, with several police cars and a police van, and lots of yellow police tape. I rode a different way, and when I got home, searched to learn what had happened just a couple miles from my home; Domestic Violence.
It turned out that a romantic relationship ended trajically when a young woman was fatally stabbed by her boyfriend of five years. She bled to death, but not before she identified that her boyfriend was the one who had stabbed her. Police had intervented in this relationship several times before, but she always recanted her story of abuse, according to the local paper. There was nothing anyonce could do to help her.
This is all too often what we see with Domestic Violence. Victims experience abuse, say they will leave, only to go right back to their abuser. Sadly, this is not the only recent tragedy involving domestic violence in the news lately. A quick scan of the local paper reveals four or five other highly publicized domestic violence cases, resulting in numerous muders in the span of a week.
What can you do if you are a Victim?
Please know there are many resources for you. If you feel your life or safety are in danger, leave. There are shelters that will take you, your children, and now even your pets. You do not need to tolderate physical abuse. There is help available.
What can you do if you are a concerned family member or friend:
Know that frequently victims of domestic violence return to their abuser. The victim has to make the choice to protect him or herself, and has to be the one to make the choice to leave the relationship. It is difficult watching this happento a loved one. Seek counseling for yourself. You may want to become familiar with domestic violence resources so that when your loved one does decide to leave, you may be able to assist and/or support.
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