Wednesday, December 10, 2008

"Wellness Check"

I have been receiving many e-mail letters from women who have told me that they feel that they have nowhere to turn for help.  Some have confided that because of this isolation they have had thoughts of suicide.  Many others who have contacted me via e-mail also know of women who have confided that they too are similarly desperate.  In both cases fear of the abuser and possible retaliation are effective roadblocks.  The abuser frequently counts on intimidation as a weapon.



 Depression is a very serious matter, one cannot simply snap out of this type of emotional pain. It is truly terrible to lose one’s dignity, no one should feel so alone and unheard that suicide becomes an option.  I would like to suggest a possible solution that can aid women who otherwise feel helpless, and hopeless.  What I am suggesting is known as a “wellness check.”   Anyone who suspects or knows of an impending plan to hurt oneself can contact the local law enforcement authorities.   A police department or county sheriff for those who live in rural areas can be contacted through calling 911.  An law enforcement officer will dispatched to the residence.  A request for a “wellness check” may provide help and save someone’s life.



I know that there is reluctance for people to admit that they suffer from this level of emotional pain and grief.  Some people believe that taking such action further erodes their dignity by seeking help.  I beg to differ in that the alternative to not getting help may be far more catastrophic.  I have counseled many women who have told me that they see no other way.  The immediate pain overshadows their logic.  Many times these feelings motivate actions that are both powerful and impulsive.  Once in motion these plans are hard to stop.  Professional help is required.



Therefore, what I am advocating is a chance to take a time out away from the abuser. This is only a suggestion but I know that “wellness checks have saved many lives.  I know of a situation where someone recently called for such a wellness check and the police arrived in time to save the life of a young mother.  Had someone not called for a wellness check when I was living with my abuser, I could have been killed.


Let’s never forget that we are “our brother’s keeper”…Is it ever too late to do the right thing?  If I could, I would (((hug))) each one of you.  Be reminded that there is an army of women praying for you.   







Anonymous said...

I see you're back at it. Helping to tear families apart. Wellness check! Are you an idiot? Cops are not going to side with some smart ass woman. This would never happen out here where the real men live

Kathryn said...

Anonymous claimed that my post is "helping tear families apart" and that "cops are not going to side with some smart ass woman". In answer to this comment let me respond by noting:

Families are already being torn apart! Women and children exposed to unabated violence suffer irreparable harm. What I am advocating is a time out, to help families.

It is amazing that you would advocate violence which is illegal in all states. If two people are unrelated this is not an issue. Somehow in the minds of some people being married gives license to abuse and violate one's rights.

A "wellness check" is a standard proceedure to protect citizens. The state has a valid interest in the health of the individual residents.

Kathryn said...

I had to end up deleting most of what was written from a man by the name of Dave. It was a wonderful comment...however, there was far too much identifiable information contained in his reply. So, I've chosen to leave out the identifiable information and re-copy the body of his comment. It is as follows:


My sister lives there in the US. I wish I could say that the difficulty women have experienced within the churches are strictly there, but they are here as well.

My wife's sister just recently got out of a horrible marriage. She put up with far too much, but when her husband broke their son's arm, they left for good.

I've read all your posts. It's embarrassing as a man to read some of the comments you've gotten from those that have the deluded idea they speak for all men. The do not.

Keep telling the truth and being that beacon of hope for others that are caught in the vicious cylce of abuse.

I now have you on my RSS feed.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

This is in reply to the individual that referred to himself as a "real man"

“Real Men”? You’re not a real man, you’re a pathetic joke! Real men treat their wives with love and respect! Real men would never abuse a woman or a child. You obviously suffer low self esteem and must beat someone down to make yourself feel good. Abusing someone who has no ability to fight back is beyond sick! Do you feel good when you look at your wife all bloody and bruised? Does that make you a “real man”? I’m a man who’s been married almost eight years and I would never dream of assaulting my wife under any circumstance! Not just because of the obvious physical harm I would cause being twice her size, but because it’s just not right! And don’t try to give me the typical Biblical twist of an excuse you jerks use, telling me a wife must submit because “it’s Biblical”! Is abuse Biblical? Show me where is says that – I must have missed that page. When you made your marriage vows to love, honor and respect your wife where does that translate into abuse? Someday I hope your wife gets enough of the joke she married and has your pathetic butt thrown in jail. Then we’ll see what kind of “real man” you are! Unbelievable.

What’s wrong with a wellness check? I’ve never heard of it before but it sounds like a great idea to me! If there’s nothing to hide, why would “real man” have an issue with it? How touching that he doesn’t want his “family” torn apart by having a wellness check done… He’s not concerned with his “family”, he’s concerned that he may lose his punching bag and go to jail. Ladies, as a man who would never dream of abusing his wife, do whatever it takes to protect you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kathryn,
It really saddens me that someone would leave such hurtful remarks. Violence is what is tearing families apart. Only someone who is filled with hate and ignorance would leave such a response. Just keep doing what you are doing Kathryn and be that voice for those who are affected by domestic violence.

Feathers said...

Have just read your post and it is excellent. "The immediate pain overshadows their logic. Many times these feelings motivate actions that are both powerful and impulsive. Once in motion these plans are hard to stop"...that is so well described and very insightful into what happens.

The comments you are receiving are appalling, to say the least, however, it is proof that such information needs to be put out there.

The Constant Complainer said...


I found your blog very interesting. I came across it through Blog Catalog when I was doing some research for one of my own posts.

I applaud you for trying to help educate others and for overcoming domestic abuse yourself.

You're always going to get anonymous hate mail on here, but don't let that stop you. Keep making a difference out there.

a.k.a. The Constant Complainer
Cleveland, OH

The Constant Complainer said...


I just tried to post a comment on here, but I don't it went through. If it posts twice, I apologize.

I like your blog and found it very informative. I came across it through Blog Catalog, where I was doing some research for one of my own posts.

I applaud you for overcoming domestic violence and trying to help educate others.

Keep up the good work.

a.k.a. The Constant Complainer
Cleveland, OH

Barbara said...

Anonymous (the first comment in this post) betrays himself as supportive of the abuser's mentality.
1. He put downs Kathryn and women in general ("idiot", "smart ass woman").

2. He denies reality ("This would never happen out here where the real men live") --- All the evidence of the Justice System and the Medical System about the domestic abuse epidemic is not recognized by the anonymous author.

3. He attributes blame falsely ("I see you're back at it: helping to tear families apart") As many other comments have said,l this is not what Kathryn is doing at all.

4. He blusters and casts scorn ("Wellness check!")

5. He portrays untruths about the world ("Cops are not going to side with some smart ass woman". Not true. The truth is that many victims have found that cops do their job properly, which is not to 'side with the woman' but to protect the vulnerable and to restrain the sinner by appropriate sanctions duly legislated by the Government.

Put-downs, denial of reality, blame shifting, scorn and lies... all classic techniques of the abuser. All designed to throw a smoke screen over the abuser's abusiveness.

Lyn said...

I'm so glad you're back to your blog.
I've moved into domestic violence for a while on Wednesday's Woman and I'll put up a permanent link to your site. Although I've moved into a different topic on Lyn's Circle I'll put your link on there, too.
I did a workshop on blogging two weeks ago and happened to drop back to a post on domestic violence on Lyn's Circle to show how to link. The workshop had nothing to do about dv, but four women came up to me during the break and asked for help for a friend, relative or themselves. I think it's easy to forget just how many lives this touches.
Thank you for all your effort, and again, I'm happy you're well.
AKA Molly Brown

wisdomteachesme said...

my dear sister kathryn, Greetings to you and yours!

i stop by here often though i may not speak a comment--prayers and thanksgiving to God in the name of Jesus are always being said from my Heart!

I just want to encourage you to continue the good fight of Faith and Trust that I know you hold dearly in your heart for our Lord.

You know we may not speak often-please know that you are thought of everyday and prayed for even more!
beloved sends her love also!
to you and yours,
our friends you are!
~on feet of peace,