While there aren't many details, the gist is a man beat his wife - and mother to his three kids - to death, then set her on fire. Her own father was the one who found her charred body. Horrible, right? Yeah, here are some of the comments that followed the story:
Look, I was in a very abusive marriage for over seven years. Many times I tried to leave. And ever time, he would apologize, beg for forgiveness, and promise to change. He never did. Last I heard, he's still beating his girlfriends. When I did finally get out, I applied and was granted a protection order. Of course, that didn't stop him from calling and threatening me. Did the police do anything? Nope. They can't. The order and law states unless he actually shows up, there's not much they can do other than calling him and telling him to stop.
Statistics show the most dangerous time for an abused woman is the first two weeks after she leaves. That's right, AFTER she leaves. It's terrifying. I don't think I got more than a few minutes of sleep at a time, waking to every noise outside, just positive he'd come back.
Those who've never been through domestic violence like to say things like, just leave, or if it was my daughter/sister/friend I'd xxx. You'd do nothing. Because, believe it or not, we actually love the assholes. And we don't want them hurt. Not to mention, we're grown women. I've heard other say "why didn't her parents call the police when they saw the bruises?" Because there's nothing the police can do without evidence. All she has to say is she fell down the stairs, or was playing football, or wrestling with the kids, or *insert excuse here*. Police can't just arrest someone because a third party said so. That's now how the law works. On the bright side, most states have instated laws that takes the option to prosecute out of the victims' hands. This was done because so many women were dropping charges, whether it was because they feared retaliation or because they genuinely believed the man would change.
My life did get easier, and I eventually married my best friend and love of my life. But, I still have those moments. I still cringe at certain noises and words. I still can't stand to read stories or even watch scenes in movies or television shows with domestic violence. But, my heart has healed, even if my mind and body still remember.
I've forgiven my ex. Not for him, but for me. I've moved on. I've built a better life for myself. But the scars will be there for the rest of my life. Just remember next time you hear a story or even know someone in your own life who is being abused, they don't always have the option to leave. It's terrifying, it's dangerous, and there just aren't enough resources. It's up to every single one of us to reach out to these women (and men) and let them know they have someone on their side.