Not walking by

My day to day work is interspersed with assisting victims of intimate violence to rebuild their lives.

By and large these (mainly) women rely on the generosity of neighbours and other more loosely connected supports to assist them to stay safe, until friends, family or the police arrive.

Recent events in Melbourne, where what seems to be the death of a caring man, who came to the aid of a woman, who was being assaulted, will only serve to alienate those who are vulnerable to domestic and family violence further. I say this because I predict that as a society we will pull back from helping strangers in need, even more than we did before this man’s unfathomable and confusing death. If you don’t feel safe to help, you can always call the Police. Use 000- it is an emrgency.

Ironically, my day to day work could also see me offering support to the partner and the three children who will be burying their brave partner and father, respectively. My work may also require me to work with perpetrators. It’s challenging , but they also have the opportunity to change, repair and redeem.

I will continue to work very hard to reduce violence in our community- and will not walk by.

I know I am not the only one and I hope it never costs me my life.

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11 Responses to “Not walking by”

  1. Red Ink Says:

    Yes Soooooooki, not walking on is a challenge … yesterday, I had a go at some bald-headed youth who had his feet up on a train seat … his three mates had a go at me, but I stood my ground and threatened them physically, using my best Scouse language and accent … it’s quite amazing what a mouthful of colourful language will do to subdue the most arrogant youth. My point is that it is important not to hold back – even though it may cost you your life.

    Like Howard saying that there is no point in Australia taking action on climate change because in the world spectrum, we are so small. If everyone had that attitude, we would all be part of the German or Japanese Empire. It is really important to CARE !

  2. weezil Says:

    Feet on the seat is not exactly something I’d risk my life for… and I think it was a bit more serious than that down in Melb.

    But Scouse will get you out of damn near anything. 😉

  3. Suki Says:

    Red Ink the rail warrior- good job!

    Hmm, yes HoWARd and his inane rhetoric.
    The entire taxation system works on (generally) small contributions made by all who should.

  4. Dave C Says:

    Reminds me of the thought: To care is to risk being hurt.

    To care for a stranger is to risk being assaulted
    To care for your child is to risk being disappointment in their actions
    To help others is to risk seeing them fail
    To reach out is to risk being rejected

    But to live as a real person, there is no option other than to care.

  5. Suki Says:

    In 3 words Dave C- antisocial personality disorder.

  6. Dave C Says:

    In 3 words Dave C- antisocial personality disorder.

    I don’t understand. What are you thinking?

    I might be coming from a different angle. (Or about to make a dickhead of myself)

  7. Suki Says:

    Sorry Dave C,

    I was responding to the bluntness in the hurt part of your quote “To care is to risk being hurt.”

    Care meets antisocial personality disorder and care does get very hurt!

    Some things are very unjust. I guess we expect justice and some sort of “good things happen to good people” however the reality is far more complex, scary and unfathomable as evidenced by this story.

    Some people have mental health issues that make them terrifying to encounter.

  8. Dave C Says:

    I see that now.

    I was thinking about this last night, and I can see I was universalising my own experience. Taking myself to be a template for the human condition (Doh). Sorry – but I suppose through discussion we learn.

    So to rephrase:

    For me, caring for others is how I connect to them, learn more about myself, and grow as a person. I don’t mean rescuing them – but listening, empathising, sympathisising and when I can, doing something – even if it means just listening without judgement.

    Though it may mean I get hurt or that I may be destroyed through this at the hands of others (though I’ve only have to do that in the psychological sense – the death of my identity or role) for me to not care is to have a half life/half death state – which for me is a life not really worth living.

    So, all of the above statements, but with “for me” added on the start of each sentence, and “what’s been your experience?” inserted at the end.

    (My words still sound a bit pretentious to me – perhaps I’m taking credit when credit is not due?? mmmmmm. Have to reflect on that.)

  9. Dave C Says:

    I’ve had a new thought:

    Stephen Cummings sang: “Walk softly, but carry a big stick”.

    Perhaps the trick is to care, but to ensure I have the protection I need so I don’t get destroyed – for example, duress alarms, the ability to remove myself from the scene, the distance of the blogosphere between us.

  10. Suki Says:

    …Or care within a community setting.

    Grab a like-minded person (or three) and have a group intervention where all carers are supported.

    If you do need to do this on your own, organise for debriefing and professional support.

    You are right Dave C, not caring is only half living.

  11. Dave C Says:

    Grab a like-minded person (or three) and have a group intervention where all carers are supported.

    Like you have done with your blog – created a community of different but like minded individuals who care and support one another.

    Though we may not fall into a common idea of ways to solve the world’s problems (such as outreach or direct intervention), I think we are making the world a better place. Just by talking openly about ourselves and the things we care about.

    You are right Dave C, not caring is only half living.
    I think you’re right too. The above statement may be true for some (or hopefully most) people, but not all.

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