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Accountability of Victims

Updated on November 22, 2015
adriennechristine profile image

Adrienne, is a Mommy to two beautiful boys. A Survivor of Domestic Violence. She hopes to become a voice for other victims.

Victims Being Prosecuted

Cast your vote for Domestic Violence Victims

Victims Being Prosecuted

Domestic Violence is such an epidemic now. One in four women are in a domestic violence relationship. It could be your friend, neighbor, or family member. It may not be the old fashioned punch to the face, but they maybe suffering from other physical abuse. Such as, being pushed, shoved, or choke. Maybe it's mental abuse that that the victim is enduring or it could be spousal forced sex. There are many different ways that someone can be abused. As well as, many definitions for what constitutes abuse. The law views domestic violence in many different ways. I know personally, when I was being interviewed by the District Attorney for my Domestic Violence charge against my ex (it was for stalking), they asked me many questions. Such as, has he ever choked you, take your keys, scream at you, take your cell phone, or rape you. Since I answered yes to being choked, they then asked if it took my breath away and did I ever pass out. This is also something that's very important to note on your Order of Protection if you're ever requesting one. They take choking and spousal rape very important as it is more of a violent crime and shows that you're in dyer need of protection. All of this being said, where I live if the District Attorney and Victims Advocacy are helping to protect you, they now hold you accountable to protecting yourself.

When I was at court last week, I overheard the Director of Domestic Violence say that we care so much about these women and their lives that we will go out and get them if they do not show up for court. That made me think. Here I am on my second attempt to get an Order of Protection in place and I couldn't imagine not showing up to court that day. However, it took me 7 years to get to the place that I was in to finally stick up for myself. Looking back to when I was 24 would I have shown up? Would I have even asked for help? Probably not, I was terrified of my ex. My lawyer had tried to get charges against my ex for abuse and I fired him. One one abusive occurrence, witnesses reported it to the cops. The cops then called me and asked if had taken place. I lied and said no. Even though, he did hurt me. He had grabbed my fists and hit his face over and over. I just wasn't strong enough at that time to fight him. They say it takes a victim leaving over seven to eight times before they actually stay gone for good. In my case it was definitely over seven to eight times.

Most women know they need to leave, but don't feel there are any options. The men likely control everything. The money, their children, and much more. The women have likely lost contact with their friends and family. In my case I only saw his friends and family. My abuser didn't like my Mom or friends. He knew my Mom could see right through him and that my friends would give me strength. That's the last thing Abusers want...their victim to have any type of strength. Economic reasons are huge with us. The first time I left, he took my house, car, baby, and clothes. I was lucky enough to have my Mom to help me rebuild that time. This second time, after I requested an Order of Protection, he took my car from me. I then lost my job and home. I literally have nothing and that's what he wanted. Most women are not aware of resources out there for victims. There are some like the YWCA and Mary Parrish, but I'll be honest they have waiting lists and some are up to 2 years. That can make a woman feel like she can't leave or she will lose everything.

When a woman finally does decide to ask for help from the law or someone else reported it, they may at first be all about prosecuting, but then reality kicks in that they may not have anything and could possibly lose their children. So they decide to drop the charge. Since the US, is taking domestic violence more seriously these days, the District Attorney may still go forward with prosecuting. Leaving the victim lost as to what to do. In some states, the victims are now being prosecuted for not showing up. While, I do agree that victims tend to be wishy washy when it comes to these charges and need some accountability for their sake and the children. I also know all too well the feeling of being stuck and not wanting to further be a target for their abuser.

Once, the victim does leave they're often still the target for abuse. However, not it could be the abuser using the courts to abuse the victim or friends and family being turned by the abuser. It's a very scary position to be in. I knew I had to go because I was either going to end up dead by his hands or slowly die inside from the abuse. So, I took my chances and left. Even though, it has been extremely hard I'm so glad I did because I'm still ALIVE. If you or a loved one are the victim of any type of abuse, please contact the Domestic Violence hotline. They're a free hotline and are open twenty four hours a day. They can offer you resources and crisis support. They have helped me with phone numbers for legal aid and so much more. 1-800-799-7233 If you want more local information, please call your local Domestic Violence unit and they can help you with resources available to you in your area. They also offer free counseling. Which will definitely be needed!

Sound off below and tell me whether or not the Victims should be prosecuted for not showing up to court.


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    • dashingscorpio profile image


      3 years ago

      This is a very important topic and hopefully it helps others.

      You said some key things that stuck out for me.

      "One in four women are in a domestic violence relationship."

      " They say it takes a victim leaving over seven to eight times before they actually stay gone for good. In my case it was definitely over seven to eight times. "

      "My lawyer had tried to get charges against my ex for abuse and (I fired him)."

      "One abusive occurrence, witnesses reported it to the cops. The cops then called me and asked if had taken place. (I lied and said no)."

      In order for there to be an abusive relationship someone has to be willing to stick around after being abused the first time.

      Life is a (personal) journey.

      Each of us gets to (choose) our own friends, lovers, and spouse.

      Each of us gets to have our own boundaries and "deal breakers".

      Too often the person being abused may interpret the initial abuse as being their fought or in some way a sign of love. They may view it as proof of how much passion they stir up in their mate.

      Oftentimes the first time a person is abused is before they became an adult. Lots of young women in high school have experienced being pushed around or even slapped by "boyfriends". Society doesn't count that as domestic abuse because they're not adults and don't cohabitate but it's often the training ground for learning to accept bad treatment.

      The girls doesn't tell their parents because they don't want them to file charges or insist upon they breakup with the boys. As adults you exchange parents for cops and the "protection" for the guys continue.

      I once had a fellow co-worker who married a guy whom her parents disapproved of. He turned out to abusive soon after they married. This woman was too embarrassed to go to her parents because she didn't want to hear "I told you so." Her (misplaced pride) caused her to stay in an abusive relationship far more longer than was necessary.

      No doubt there are numerous reasons for why people don't walk out after the first push, slap, or verbal threat. It ranges from having a low self-esteem to having grown up in an environment where it was normal.

      Last but not least some folks believe their abuser will "change".

      Generally speaking people don't change unless (they) are unhappy.

      The goal is to find someone who (already is) the type of person you want to be with. It's important to remember there are over 7 Billion other people on the planet. Odds are in everyone's favor there are more than a few people who would make an "ideal mate" for any of us.

      "Never love anyone who treats you like you're ordinary."

      - Oscar Wilde

      Anyone who yells, chokes, rapes, or threatens you doesn't think you're "special". Life is too short to be wasting years taking that. One has to learn to (pick) the "right mate".

      A lot of folks advise victims of domestic abuse to leave after the first slap or push. However I suggest one leave a relationship the moment they witness violent anger whether it was geared towards them or not.

      Today it's the guy who cut him off on the road, the boss who rode him, his friend who disappointed him, a bet he lost on a sports team....etc. Nevertheless it's only a matter of time before it's (you) that draws his anger. If you witnessed him punching holes into walls, throwing things across the room, driving very aggressively, threatening violence towards others, disrespecting people, and cursing up a storm it would be a mistake to believe that you would be an "exception" to his tirade if (you) pissed him off.

      One man's opinion!:)


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