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Why do you think so few charges are filed in incidents of domestic violence?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on August 24, 2006

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Photo of Jonathan Ratliff

“I think a lot of times the person who called the police changes their mind later on. It’s too bad, but a lot of people are trapped in that pattern where they are afraid for their safety or their children’s safety.”

Photo of Lauren Ozburn

“Because normally they have to go back home, and if they file charges or tell anyone they think it will get worse.”

Photo of Gerald Shields

“Because the spouse usually drops the charges. I think they are used to the abuse they receive and don’t want it to get worse. They’re afraid to change.”

Photo of Rachel Lary

“I think they are scared of their spouse or the other person apologizes and they stay because they love them. They’re afraid to be alone or they’re afraid that their spouse will get into trouble.”


thunderbuns 11 years, 8 months ago



southerngirl 11 years, 8 months ago

Fear. The victim is afraid that their attacker will attack them again, afraid that they wont have a place to live, afraid that they wont ever be loved by anyone else... As a friend of mine once said, the devil that you know is easier than the devil that you don't know. I don't believe that it is true, but that is the mindset.

Bone777 11 years, 8 months ago

Investment trumps intelligence. Abusers don't usually abuse in the first of the relationship. They wait until both parties are comfortable with each other and have invested in the relationship. "I'm sorry" and "I love you" goes along way post-abuse. Just watch a few episodes of COPS.

Linda Aikins 11 years, 8 months ago

S_S and R_I, are you going to behave today? (I hope not!!! )

geekin_topekan 11 years, 8 months ago

Because a law man's righteous indignation is mote in these cases...

I always wanted to say that!

paladin 11 years, 8 months ago

I used to be married to a Redhead, and I do understand. She used to go into Phase III episodes for no apparent reason. She knocked me out three different times. She would come up behind me and hit me over the head with various hard, heavy things. It hurt. But, hey, she was, you know, my wife and the mother of our skinny little kids.

bmwjhawk 11 years, 8 months ago

The correct answer is, as mentioned twice already, fear.

Well, fear and ALSO the chance of losing the greatest man you've ever met.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

I have no freaking idea! One slip up and hubby (as much as I dearly love the man) would have the wrath of sue down upon him before he could say "boo." He'd be sleeping on the curb and eating cold beans from a can. I had an Aunt that always went back to her abusing hubby and I decided as a child that that would NEVER be me!

Bone777 11 years, 8 months ago

Sunflower_Sue If you were my wife I would hug you and kiss you and smack you around. Then I would say I love you and then I would hug you and kiss you...........

jonas 11 years, 8 months ago

Because too many women think that their only option is the police, and too few of them call the A-Team.


juscin3 11 years, 8 months ago

I will just repost what I put in the other article...

I know that when I worked with the the domestic violence attorney, she would not drop the charges on the person if the victim wanted the charges dropped. It's up to the attorney if they have enough evidence then they can file a charge. Even if it is not considered a domestic battery, they can charge them with disorderly conduct. With her, it didn't matter, as long as she found something to charge them with because she knows that the person is guilty of their crime, that's what she would do.

Some of the cases ended up where the person was being charged with intimidating a witness. Some of the victims there in LV would not cooperate with the attorney therefore the attorney would have to dismiss the case.

They also have an advocate come to the home and talk with the victim and give them information as well where they can stay at and so forth. They even passed a grant where they got cell phones that you can just dial 911 on it and nothing else when they needed help.

I know that LV is a smaller county then DG is, and I don't know what kind of help they do have here in town. I know that it is aggravating that the person being charged gets a diversion for their crime. BUT, at the same time, if they screw up ONE time, it can be revoked. Most of the time on the diversion, when they mess up again, they will be given a second chance. After that, then they revoked it. That is what LV would do. Guess it depends on the situation on why the diversion was being revoked in the first place. It is sad to see or hear that a person got hit by their significant other, but if they are still with them and it keeps happening, they can only blame themselves for sticking around.

acg 11 years, 8 months ago

I also don't know what makes them stay and not press charges. I wouldn't stand for that sort of thing for one minute. Not one f**king minute!!!

justthefacts 11 years, 8 months ago

Embarassment, habit, fear and investment stop people from making a lot of changes that would, eventually, be for their own good. And I like to think I'd walk away without looking back if someone ever hit me out of anger.

BUT - how many people put up with other kinds of abuse (mental, verbal, etc.) for years and years and years....and get damaged (inside) forever? Sometimes, that kind of abuse does even more damage - but people stay put and wonder if they are crazy...and no one knows.... you can't point to the big bruise, blood, or broken bones.

It's real easy to say what you think you would/should do in any given situation. But unless/until you have actually been in a particular situation, you really don't know how you'd react. You can't say what you would do until you have actually done it.

reginafliangie 11 years, 8 months ago

MMmmmmm, I beg to differ. I can say that. Cause I know who I am, and I respect myself better than that. It is something I will never understand. I have talked to people who have been abused on these posts and they have tried to explain to me how I can't say what I would or would not do because I have never been there. The reason? I would never allow to be put in that situation. Happens once? I'm outta there or he is, either way, it's over. No, I am not better than anyone else. I just made up my mind a long time ago that I would never be in that situation. And I haven't, I've been very happily married to the same man for many, many years. People need to learn that they don't have to "settle" for whoever, find the person who will treat you right, they exist. And don't be afraid to be alone.

badger 11 years, 8 months ago

It's not just fear.

It's also hope. Hope that this was just a slip. Hope that your spouse was just upset/drunk/stressed about work, and just lost control of his or her emotions, didn't really mean to slap or punch you. Hope that when one of you gets a better job and the money troubles are eased, your spouse won't be so angry, worried about money all the time. Hope that this time, when your spouse says, "I quit drinking for good," it's true. Hope that now that you've quit your job, you can devote the time to 'keeping the house nice' so your partner doesn't have to be upset to come home to a filthy hovel and no dinner ready. Hope that this really was the last time and it can go back to the good you remember it being.

There's guilt, because you remember standing in the church and agreeing to 'the good times and the bad, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, so long as you both shall live' and it doesn't matter to you if your partner is breaking that promise, it doesn't mean you have to. What is alcoholism and mental illness and bad anger management if not a perfect example of the things you think you're supposed to commit to being there for your spouse during?

There's also resignation. "This is my lot in life because I don't deserve any better." The abuser didn't start by walking up to you one day and popping you in the head. That would be easy to recognize and walk away from. The abuser chose you because you're honest, loyal, compassionate, and conscientious. Those traits can be twisted to convince you that you're being unreasonable or a bad partner if you aren't tolerant and understanding of the other person's weaknesses.

I've often wished there were some way to mandate not only that the charges get filed and the abuser goes to court, but also that the abused partner have to attend a certain amount of therapy designed to improve self-esteem, coping skills, and communication. Just something to reinforce, "This is not the life you deserve. You shouldn't stay with someone because you think anyone is better than being alone."

acg 11 years, 8 months ago

I also say that I do know how I would react in that situation, justthefacts, because I once had a boyfriend that thought he could treat me with that sort of disrespect. I believe I've told this story before, but he hit me once. One time. He regretted it instantly. I smacked him across his jaw with a skillet that was on the stove and when he woke up, he realized the error of his ways and I was gone. So, yeah I do know how I would react. Hit me, buddy and I'm gonna lay your a** out. Period!

Linda Aikins 11 years, 8 months ago

juscin3, they do that in Johnson County too where if the police are called at all, it's up to the DA to decide if charges will be filed.

I'm not so sure that will reduce withdrawals of charges, but I am afraid it would reduce the number of initial calls.

reginafliangie 11 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, police can go to every call, fill out the reports and turn them in. But it is up to the DA's office to follow through and punish these people. Without alot of evidence they can't prosicute without testimony from the victim, which in most cases the victim refuses to do. So they are just enabling the offender to offend again and again. Stop the cycle. Get him off the streets, even for a little while. That might be the time you need to get out of the house and way.

Adrienne Sanders 11 years, 8 months ago

It's because, how many women have the resources, financial and otherwise, to up and move away from some bstrd at the drop of a hat? Very, very few could even if they wanted to... and some don't want to for all the reasons y'all have already mentioned.

Cait McKnelly 11 years, 8 months ago

My daughter's ex threw her into a neighbors apartment door so hard her body crashed the door in. When the police got there they charged HER with domestic violence. They were seperated and she had gone to HIS apartment. Despite the fact the violence was against her she had gone to his home and in the minds of the judicial system caused the incident by doing so. They actually succeeded in getting a conviction because my daughter didn't fight it. Go figure.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

Bone777, If you were my husband, you would have been sitting next to me as I typed my answer this morning and then you would have said "Good answer, babe!" And then you would have hugged me and kissed me and...that's pretty much it 'cause the kiddies were still home.

Gootsie, I shall never behave!

samsnewplace 11 years, 8 months ago

R_I I loved the roundabout thing and it's so true! I couldn't live like that and no man would slap me around more than one time, for sure! I can live fine alone if need be and so can anyone else who needs to. You don't have to put up with being treated bad.

Kontum1972 11 years, 8 months ago

How many Amps is a Domestic Battery....and will it turning over your vehicle?

Kontum1972 11 years, 8 months ago

is a roundabout anything like a slapabout?

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

Bea, funny!

Dulcinea, I think that's what most women believe, but I don't agree with that. If I had a beating hubby, I'd OWN his @$$!

cait, unbelievable! Why didn't she fight it? And what was she doing there? She should have gotten a police escort if she needed to pick some stuff up. They will do that if you call them. I'm NOT blaming her. The guy is a complete _! Does that mean we have the right to beat anyone who shows up at our door? I don't get it.

reginafliangie 11 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, unfor the officers saw your daughter as the aggressor of the fight sense she showed up at his residence. Why did she go there? Like sunflowersue mentioned, call the cops for an escort if you gotta get stuff. That way everything is witnessed.

ms_canada 11 years, 8 months ago

This is a subject that angers me to the highest degree. And badger seems to have said it all. Fear, low self esteem and no one to turn to. No where to seek sanctuary. I would never have put up with any degree of abuse, no way. Thank God my man is not like that, because, thinking back many years, I don't know what I would have done with no family near to turn to and rotten govenment aid. Some women don't seem to have a choice. To RI and S_S I delight in your flirting :o)

craigers 11 years, 8 months ago

Well now that badger has answered the question for all of us I guess we can goof off the rest of the day. Thanks badger, you really understand domestic violence.

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago

Why do I think so few charges are filed?

"... If the continued prosecution of the matter has the effect of destroying a good or a viable relationship that somebody made mistakes during, that's contrary to our goals." DA Branson

No wonder so few are prosecuted, given this warped opinion of our illustrious DA!! What "good or viable relationship" ends up with a woman being beaten? And why? Because according to the DA, "somebody made mistakes." That somebody being the sorry, worthless, waste-of-skin, cretin who was doing the beating!!

I think everyone who gets off with a plea bargain or diversion should be compelled to spend a day sitting in the middle of a round-about with folks allowed to shower them with rotten fruit (we wouldn't want to bruise one of the darlings -- they have their rights donchaknow).


sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

prospector, you just had to go and pee in our cornflakes, did ya? ;) What's next?

Ms_C, Awww, your making me blush. Are you 'flirting' with me? :o*

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

Ceal, I have a bunch of rotten crabapples under a tree in my yard. Well, a few of them may still be quite firm. Shall I bring them?

reginafliangie 11 years, 8 months ago

Ceal, good point. I have heard cases on where one party will intentionally hurt themselfs (ie: causing bruising, punching themself, etc) to get marks and say, "hey, look what they did to me, lock em up". Sometimes it's hard to know whos telling the truth and what really happened.

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago

s_sue: Anything firm should be kept at home.

craigers 11 years, 8 months ago

Gootsie are you barking? I thought arf was barking. :)

SouthernBelle 11 years, 8 months ago

It is so easy to sit back and say what you would do if you were in the same situation. One thing I have learned..."never say never". Especially when it comes to matters of the heart. I would hope that I would think enough of myself to fight back, walk away, prosecute, etc... But, the fact of the matter is, I cannot say with 100% certainty what I would do if faced with a situation like this.

paladin 11 years, 8 months ago

Unconditional Love is a myth. Its not divinely inspired or founded. Love, in these times we live in, is a contractual emotional arrangement. A contractual consignment. Allot of us, girls mostly, already know this. Allot of us, boys mostly, have yet to get wise to this. It is always tenuous and in danger of being broken, sometime beyond repair. So, be ever vigilant and always nurture it, because its never, anymore, an intractable entity which will unfailingly withstand outside influence or internal corruption or betrayal or abuse of one sort or another. So, watch yourselves. There are no guarantees.

Linda Aikins 11 years, 8 months ago

Yes. I'm barking. It's my little way of saying bye bye to Pluto.

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago

My father never physically abused my mother. There was however a social mindset, not dissimilar to the point made by badger. I remember my father would rant and rave about how worthless a man was who would hit a woman. . . . then . . . . cautioned me about the consequences that might result if a woman were to "throw herself up in a man's face like another man" . . . seems if a woman did that she would probably be knocked down like a man :( Seems the big Irishman was concerned that I might have trouble controlling my temper and/or mouth, not sure why that was:)

That warning did accomplish one thing . . it was understood from the beginning that while I would never have struck him, I also had zero tolerance regarding abuse from him.

southerngirl 11 years, 8 months ago

Posted by blue73harley (anonymous) on August 24, 2006 at 6:39 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Fear. If you were married to a redhead, you would understand. Ouch!

Watch it Harley, I'm a redhead!!! Don't make me hurt you! LOL

passionatelibra 11 years, 8 months ago

Thank you SouthernBelle! Finally someone speaks realistically. Never say never...

justthefacts 11 years, 8 months ago

I've been very happily married to the same man for many, many years. .......GOOD FOR YOU..... People need to learn that they don't have to "settle" for whoever, find the person who will treat you right, they exist. And don't be afraid to be alone. TRUE ENOUGH....


sgtwolverine 11 years, 8 months ago

Perhaps we should overwhelm the scientists with emails and letters saying only "arf arf" until they get the idea and bring back the planet Pluto.

I bet they'd be confused for a little while.

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago

A grassroots barkathon, who could resist that? ;)

reginafliangie 11 years, 8 months ago

I lived alone for several years before I met my husband. I personally loved living alone. Nobody messed up my

sgtwolverine 11 years, 8 months ago

A grassroots barkathon, that's perfect, Ceal! Just don't eat grass and throw up.

H_Lecter 11 years, 8 months ago

Just because it hurts doesn't mean some people don't like it.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

RI, "berated?" re-read. I said "beating." And your right, I do OWN him...well, just his @$$, anyway.

H_L, how true. Sick, but true.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

p.s. what are they going to do with all of those atiquated science books in our schools? The hubby thinks that the publishing warehouses are behind this travesty. Next they'll be saying we didn't actually go to the moon!

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago

sgt: I never eat grass . . makes it too difficult to calculate the effect. Throwing up, I was just talking about throwing it up :)

sgtwolverine 11 years, 8 months ago

No, sue, next they'll remove a lake from the Great Lakes. What will happen to all of us who learned the Great Lakes by HOMES (Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior)? That would be a tragedy.

Although I'd be willing to give up Erie for a first-round pick or two second-round picks. Besides, then they could teach the Great Lakes using MOSH.

GOPConservative 11 years, 8 months ago

There is no doubt that in some cases it is intense fear by the woman of her man that causes her to not go through with filing charges, but often it is simply a matter of cooling off and realizing that the she was as much to blame as him or even caused the altercation in the first place.

I've heard several women admit that they she started the altercation by, for example, going nuts and breaking everything belonging to the guy in sight and then got hurt when the guy tried to restrain her to keep her from destroying more of his property.

In these instances, sometimes the woman is vindictive and goes through with filing charges. In some cases, her intentions were premeditated of starting an argument and getting bruised because she wanted out of the marriage and wanted to win in court by portraying the man as an "abuser."

Fortunately, most women are moral enough to realize that it would be unfair to have her partner go to jail when she was just as much at fault as him.

Linda Aikins 11 years, 8 months ago

OH NO! Not Windy!!! Poor Gary. They've been buddies for as long as I can remember.

Windy Pluto

Who's next? Probably Apollo from Magnum P.I.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

RI, I beat my hubby? biting tongue And btw, knowing your spousal unit, I'd say you're right on as far as what her reaction would be to domestic abuse! Better be a good boy! (And quit smacking your neighbor's wife upside the back of her of these days she may retaliate!) :P

Sgt, Huron is clearly the lake to get rid of. Much simpler to learn "MOES" or "SOME"

Gootsie, Alex... the dog from that beer commercial from 19 yrs ago has to be gone by now, too! Was it Schlitz? I do feel terribly for poor Gary. I like him. He's been through a lot and to lose a pet (especially one you've had for so long) is horrible. a moment of silence for Windy :*(


Kontum1972 11 years, 8 months ago


sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

TOB, how old is that kid now? Time to start on another one? The little tyke needs a new baby Bob to beat on. :)

sgtwolverine 11 years, 8 months ago

I thought Pluto was a smoke screen established by Iraq to cover up the mess in the U.S.

acg 11 years, 8 months ago

That's funny, sgt, I always used the sentence My sister hates eating onions (which is true, btw) to remember the lakes. What a day! I'm pissed about Pluto and bummed about Windy. I'm going to go home, kick the dog and smack my husband around a little. ; )

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

Ahhhh...this is the OTS I remember and like! You guys are hillarious today.

TOB, My sis was 6 mo. when I was conceived. It's perfect timing!!! Better get going on that. Practice, practice, practice...

Ceallach 11 years, 8 months ago


If you are a woman -- seek help!

If you are a man -- seek help!

If you are looking for sympathy for an abusive spouse I can tell you where to find it in the dictionary. btw, I don't care if the abuser is male or female, abusing another person is never justified. That's the type of rhetoric used by losers who abuse their children.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, Ceal, that's the same logic that the dad of a friend used when I was 14 and at the public library doing research for a term paper. A man sat down next to me and "pleasured himself." I hadn't slightest idea what to do so as I was forming opinions on different reactions I could have, he was done and gone. When my friend told her dad about the episode, he said: "Well, she must have been asking for it." That's the day I lost all respect for my friend's dad. I'm not sure who the bigger creep was.

Harry_Manback 11 years, 8 months ago

Sometimes the police don't take the victims seriously. When I was younger I had an ex-boyfriend hit me. I called the cops and they gave me a lot of trouble about it. They said since I didn't have marks on me there was nothing they could do, and they said that if I hadn't made comments to anger him, than it never would've happened. Then they told me not to bother him or come around his house anymore and that was that. This was in JoCo.

I also had a friend who hit her boyfriend in self defense who got charged with beating him! This was because a neighbor saw her push him off her and called the police. The boyfriend didn't want to press charges, but because they had a kid together the state automatically presses charges. This is despite the fact that he had been beating her behind closed doors for a few years.

Tychoman 11 years, 8 months ago

5:51, huh thunderbuns. NERD! Lol.

Domestic violence charges are extremely hard to keep because it's hearsay. "He/She fell down the stairs" or something like that. It's not very objective. Plus the victim is so desperate to keep the family together that they'll do anything to keep it that way. Domestic abuse is a tragedy.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

All this talk of domestic violence makes me want to watch "Chicago" tonight. Nothing like a good musical about husband killing to cheer a girl up. ;) "Pop, Six, Squish, Uh-uh, Cicero, Lipshichtz..."

Linda Aikins 11 years, 8 months ago

TOB, don't forget to take your foot out of the pail first.

R_I, I know who you are now!!! Mr. Britney Spears!!!

Tychoman 11 years, 8 months ago

This brings to the surface so many bad abuse jokes...

GOPConservative 11 years, 8 months ago

Ceallach wrote:


If you are a woman -- seek help!

If you are a man -- seek help!

If you are looking for sympathy for an abusive spouse I can tell you where to find it in the dictionary. btw, I don't care if the abuser is male or female, abusing another person is never justified. That's the type of rhetoric used by losers who abuse their children.

You and RITICENT_IRREVERENT both made off-the-wall conclusions about me based on what I wrote. You remind me of those who assume I'm a Godless atheist because I believe in evolution or those who feel that a 16 year old boy who has sex with a 15 year old girl should suffer the same fate in the legal system as a 50 year old man who molests a child.

Extremists always see things in black and white terms with no shades of grey.

Your attempts to put words in my mouth and make libelous assumptions about me are based on your OWN delusional prejudices and irrational thought processes, not reality.

Your absurd assumptions have nothing to do with who I am or what I believe.

Despite your irrational sidetrack, the fact still remains that as I said, when two people fight, often both parties were being abusive and often both were being physically violent.

You both seem to feel that in ALL instances there is ALWAYS only one abuser and one victim.

As I clearly stated, that is often true, but it is also true that in many cases, both parties were being abusive. As I said, that is one very good reason why some cases are dropped and not prosecuted.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 8 months ago

GOP, your earlier post is still exactly what it is. You should have more clearly stated what you meant and I believe you were even asked to clarify if wrong assumptions were made.

Example: when my children argue, the one that loses their cool and throws the punch is the one that gets the greater matter who started it. Physical violence to another person is NEVER acceptable. I don't care how much the other one was "asking for it."

In your post you mentioned (hypothetically) that a man may have a need to restrain a woman who is breaking all his stuff. NO...he has a need to call the police and have THEM restrain her. Your logic is still warped.

Good night all!

btw, calling Ceal and RI "extremists" is such a hoot! You have no idea how terribly funny that is. Thanks for the laugh.

ladywriter 11 years, 8 months ago

Its too hard to tell who is at fault. Even if its the woman with the brusies, it doesnt mean that the man wasnt defending himself, or vice versa. I kn ow many women with nasty tempers these days, me being one of them, and if a woman has the bs to punch a man, well she should also have the b to take it like a man right back regardless of size and strength. If we want liberation, we have to take it to the limits and stop crying abotu it. :)

GOPConservative 11 years, 8 months ago

Sunflower said,

You should have more clearly stated what you meant and I believe you were even asked to clarify if wrong assumptions were made.

My post was clear. It was yours and other's reading words into it that created the problem; however, you are correct that I was asked to clarify by RETICENT, and I did that.

Ceal did not ask for a clarification. She made absurd assumptions without any basis.

Example: when my children argue... Physical violence to another person is NEVER acceptable. I don't care how much the other one was "asking for it."

I'd go farther than that. Any kind of violence to another person or his/her property is NEVER acceptable.

BTW, you put quotes around the words "asking for it." Where did I say that????

In your post you mentioned (hypothetically) that a man may have a need to restrain a woman who is breaking all his stuff. NO...he has a need to call the police and have THEM restrain her. Your logic is still warped.

Where did I say that he was correct to restrain her rather than calling the police? You are doing the same thing as Ceal; i.e., making assumptions based on your own manufactured quotations.

I also never said anything about "hypothetical." I said I knew of women who trashed a man's belongings and that the man had tried to restrain the woman. I never said "he had a need to restrain her." I never said that he was correct in trying to restrain her.

Both you and Ceal misquote me, make off-the-wall assumptions and then go off into prissy lectures about the incorrect words that you put in my mouth. That is "warped."

The question in this article was why some of these domestic disturbances are not reported. I provided an example.

Unlike you, I can easily see how these women, who I know to have a clear sense of morality, could see after they cooled down that they were wrong to act as they did. I can understand why they would drop the charges.

Any person who would intentionally destroy another person's property is wrong. If that person cannot see that she was wrong, she is a sociopath.

If I were to play the same game as you and Ceal, I would claim that you and Ceal do not believe that destroying another person's property is wrong. Would I be correct in that assumption?

I hope not.

btw, calling Ceal and RI "extremists" is such a hoot! You have no idea how terribly funny that is. Thanks for the laugh.

Both you and Ceal are obviously extremist with respect to this issue.

RETICENT only asked for a clarification. I was wrong to include her.

However, you and Ceal made assumptions based on misquotations and then responded to your manufactured misquotes as if they were reality. That is no different than the tactics of any other extremist.

beenthere2006 11 years, 8 months ago

I used to think, "How could a woman let herself get in a situation like that? I would never let myself end up being treated like that."

Well, never say never I have learned. I met a man and three years later someone pointed out to me - "You - You are there......don't you see?"

No, I didn't see. After three years of enduring the psychological abuse - which I didn't recognize b/c I was too smart to be trapped like that (or so I thought) - I did not see the potential danger I was in. It was so routine and normal to me at that point, I could not see clearly what was happening. I accepted responsibility for his actions because of something I had done. I was convinced I was the crazy one and if I hadn't done this or that I would not have caused the problems.

This process of abuse, which sometimes leads to physical abuse, is a very long one and the dynamics of which are very complicated. You think this person loves you. You have loved this person and tried so hard to prove yourself to them and win their approval/love. You keep trying and trying but it is never enough for them. And so the cycle continues.

I am an educated woman from a wealthy home and have travelled and lived all over the world. This happens to women from all walks of life - not just those in trailer parks.

Once I realized what was going on after many couseling sessions, I tried to break free and that is when things got worse. The intimidation, the threats, the stalking, and his friends/family believing and talking about how crazy I was.

I am a very recent victim of a severe beating and was strangled many times. I tried to defend myself but the fact of the matter is - I was no match for him and his strength. It's elemetary for some to think, "I would just knock him sideways if he did that to me." It simply does not work that way. There is a difference between men and women and when they are that angry - you, as a woman, are no match.

While I understand that physical abuse from women is possible and does happen the fact of the matter is it is most often the man beating the woman. A sad fact. A sad fact that happens too frequently in this society.

My comments to be continued.

beenthere2006 11 years, 8 months ago

In my situation, which is still pending in the courts, I found the Douglas County DA's office to be most helpful and supportive. It is when it got in front of the judge things began to go in favor of the criminal - at least so far. The judge here - in this town - actually told the criminal he could undestand what a confusing time it was for him. This man will never spend a day in jail for what he did. He was never arrested even tho LPD knew his address and had evidence of the fact (a crime did happen) after interviewing me in the emergency room.

What he did was not only a crime against me, but a crime against society. He is a danger and will continue to be a danger to each of us because he has not been punished. That is why domestic abuse cases are treated as felonies because they are crimes against society as a whole. Perhaps the judge forgot this. Perhaps it takes a woman's death for the judge to consider the beating as 'great bodily harm."

Being strangled many times should be treated as if a gun shots were fired. That is how close to death you are.

It was difficult to testify against a man I loved, the father of my child. But as long as he is not punished or held accountable for what he did - he will continue to be a danger - perhaps to your daughter, sister, friend, ex-wife or ex-girlfriend.

I can understand why women are reluctant to testify or push charges in situations like this. After my experience in the courtroom in Lawrence, I felt like I was the criminal and he was the victim. The judge actually verbally stated his support for him in the courtroom, even after seeing evidence. He 'felt' for this man. Perhaps if men were beaten as often as women, this whole problem would be addressed more seriously and consistently. Perhaps these crimes should be treated as if a woman is a police officer. If someone beats a police officer - that is treated very seriously. Why isn't it done the same for a 'civilian' woman (or man if that is the case)?


beenthere2006 11 years, 8 months ago

Since this has happened I have had the support of family, a couple of friends, and the DA's office. Many people won't talk to me now or have been told not to due to their positions. By some, I am treated as the criminal himself. The support and concern I so desperately need right now, is not there. I have the responsibility of seeking that support out.

I do not intend for my experience being shared here to slash hope for anyone else in my situation. I am simply stating that a difficult situation has become moreso after going before the local judge. Now - NOW - I understand how incredibly hard it is and how intimidating it can be.

For all those women (men too) who have experienced the pain and humiliation of being beaten and begging for your life - know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

It is true- no one deserves to be treated like that.! I understand- now- how difficult it is to get away and to feel strength from within. But you must pull yourself up. It is not your fault and you did nothing (no matter what he/she says) to have deserved to be treated this way.

The hardest thing for me right now is to accept the fact he had no love for me - if he did - he would not have beat me. In my mind I know that all men are not like this but I must admit when I look at a man now - I know what he is capable of and it is very intimidating to me.

Love yourself - take care of yourself. And if you have children remember this - you have to take care of yourself first before you can take care of them. An analogy I always think of is: when you are on an airplane they instruct (if change in cabin pressure/air) for the adult to put on their air mask first before putting it on the child. This is the same at home. Remember this. Take care of yourself so you, in turn, can care for them.

Also, use the resources available to you for support. It is up to you to seek the help you need. It is provided for you - use it.

Look deep with yourself, find the strength that I know is there, and make things right for yourself and those that love and need you!

Linda Endicott 11 years, 8 months ago

I applaud your struggle, beenthere. Don't give up, even if things don't go well in court. No matter what he says, or his family says, or the courts say, YOU know what the truth is, and don't let the system do the crazymaking on you the way that he did.

I sincerely hope you are in counseling. I found great help in that. It's best to find a therapist that is familiar with abuse issues, either through experience or training. Not all are.

Yes, it was the most difficult for me, too, to get past the idea that my ex didn't love me. But I reached a point where I could no longer make myself believe that a man who truly loved me could treat me like dirt. This is just not love. Perhaps, in their own twisted sense of reality, they even believe it is love. What it really is is possession. They think you are their property, and they can do whatever they want to you.

You're who are abusers, even if you get away for good, are still a danger to society. They will look for another woman, usually as quickly as possible, to take the place of the one that got away. And so ALL women are a potential next target. Men like this do not give up the abusive behavior just because one relationship ended. They will continue the same behavior in the next relationship...and the next, and the next...

They have to be stopped. They should be stopped. Why are the police and the courts so lax in this effort?

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