Help make domestic abuse disappear

Published 11:35 pm Friday, July 16, 2010

There are a lot of things that are just foreign to me.

Like what the big deal is about Paris Hilton and the “importance” of being her BFF (best friend for now).

Like the attraction of “reality TV.” “Lost”? You betcha.

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Or the media’s near-mania over anything released by Sarah Palin’s public relations firm of Facebook, Facebook and Facebook.

Other more serious topics are totally foreign to me, too, and I’m kinda glad they are.

Not saying that I don’t believe in them or that I think they don’t exist. I am all too aware of their existence in our society. I am just thankful that I did not grow up around them.

At our last session of the Citizen’s Police Academy Thursday night, we watched videos talking about domestic violence and abuse.

Maybe that’s not the best thing to call it. “Domestic” makes me think of something tame or harmless, but domestic abuse is far from that.

We saw women who were victims of abuse from their relationships — some were married women in their 30s and 40s, while others were high school students taking abuse from their boyfriends or guys wanting to be their boyfriends. Talking down to someone is a weird way of showing it.

The women were called names, told they were worthless or worse.

They were shoved around, beat up, ignored or ordered around.

They showed some men, too, who were victims of abuse. Their wives or girlfriends told them what to do, how to dress — pretty much how to live.

It was said that domestic abuse is the most common call that the Demopolis Police Department receives, and men or women alike are the ones assaulting their spouses, boyfriends or girlfriends.

It is hard to call them “loved ones,” although many times, the victims see the abuse as a sign of love.

The video showed places that victims of domestic abuse can go to — even with their children — to escape the abuse and seek help in getting away from it.

Harriet’s House is a local place for victims of domestic abuse. It also takes in the children of those trying to get out of the abusive relationship.

It operates entirely on donations, too, so if you want to do something to help end domestic abuse, consider making a donation of money, clothing, soap or any other thing a person leaving their home would need in making the transition from that life to a better one.

To make a donation to Harriet’s House or to seek its help, call 289-8985 or 289-8988.

Harriet’s House is a 501(c)(3) organization, meaning any donations are also tax-deductible.

Consider doing what you can to help victims of domestic abuse. It will make this a better community.

David B. Snow is the managing editor of The Demopolis Times.