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January 7, 2013 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Me! Me! Pick me! (or else)

She’s tiny and a real cutie.

Dedicated. Totally professional.

And terrified.

Life can be pretty scary. (1880 Image by Yaroshenko, 1846-1898. US public doman: expired copyright. Artist's life./commons.wikimedia.org)

Life can be pretty scary. (1880 Yaroshenko painting, 1846-1898. US public domain: expired copyright/Artist’s life./commons.wikimedia.org)

Jennifer Reyna landed her dream job as a TV anchor and reporter in a major media market.

She was a standout and people noticed her sparkle.

That was the problem.

(Ok, Baby. It will be OK. We’re calling the police.)

A 38-year-old man, who lives with his mom, is delusional.

Totally infatuated with her.

Determined she’d realize they were soul mates.

Obsessed.

(Baby stay calm. Just keep driving. Don’t get boxed in.)

In 2007 he drove his car through the front door of the news station – twice.

Once after returning to home, he yelled at his mom when the phone rang: “Are they calling about me driving into the station again?”

A judge charged him with felony mischief and ordered him to stay away – no contact.

(Yeah, wave that Protective Order paper in front of a determined unstable person. That’ll stop him.)

Like a toreador waving a red cape in front of a charging bull. 

Maybe that’s the deal.

Perhaps Americans are satiated with the current reality shows and are ready to accept real life blood sports events?

(Stay on the line with me, Baby.)

Doctors and medical personnels are often plagued by stalkers: unstable individuals who mistake customary care and concern for something else. (Image US Navy.US public domain as work of US fed. gov./commons.wikimedia.org)

Doctors and medical personnel are often plagued by stalkers: unstable individuals who mistake customary care and concern for something else. (Image US Navy.US public domain as work of US fed. gov./commons.wikimedia.org)

Of course Jennifer had options. The ones police quickly offer:

  • Change phone numbers
  • Change cars (Can’t afford it? Uh, how about switching with someone. Yeah, find someone who is wiling to risk mistaken identity)
  • Shut down social media entries and websites
  • Move – preferable out of the area (but realize if you register the restraining order in the new location, the system will notify the creep you’ve moved, but the order still stands and stay away from her/him in this location, too.)
  • Move to a state with tougher stalking laws (Oh, this is one of those.)
  • Leave the career you’ve built – abandon your dream job (Will a new employer hire someone with “issues”?)
  • Leave friends and family that may offer some protection
  • Basically run and hide. Give up everything. (And who’s the victim here?)
Hope and dreams of a normal life fly away.  (1907 Shaw painting.US Public domain: copyright term of life of author + 90 yrs /common.wikimedia.org)

Hope and dreams of a normal life fly away. (1907 Shaw painting.US Public domain: artist’s life+90 yrs /common.wikimedia.org)

(Baby, the police want to intercept at this corner. Drive, Baby, drive!) 

In 2010, the man was arrested for disregarding the Protective Order. The judge upgraded the charge from harassment to stalking.

Around September, 2012, things got worse – despite the Protective Order and his promise to be good.

Constant hammer calls

In November, he spotted her at a car dealer getting her car serviced. She hid until she could sneak away.

Following her to and from work.

When she frantically drove to a police station while being followed, he waved as he went by. In December.

Parked next to the TV station and shouted her named over and over again.

(Baby, don’t worry. They promise they will be there to meet you. Stay on the line, Baby.)

Finally, this man was arrested for harassment and stalking last Wednesday.

You have got to be kidding - it took this long? Image from Darwin's Expressions of Emotions of Man and Animals, 1872 (Public domain image expired copyright / commons.wikimedia.org)

You have got to be kidding – it took this long? Image from Darwin’s Expressions of Emotions of Man and Animals,1872 (Public domain: expired copyright / commons.wikimedia.org)

There are laws.

State and Federal stalking laws.

If the authorities choose to use them.

And the prosecuting attorney feels like pursuing it. (These cases are complex and not career builders.)

Yep, arrested.

And quickly out on $80,000.00 bond.

Despite it all: years of  harassment, disrupting her life, terrorizing her.

He’s out on bond.

(Well, seriously, he hasn’t killed anyone.)

Unstable. Delusional. Free.

Who’s the one getting punished?

(Baby, Do you see them? No, don’t leave – it’s safer if there’s lots of people around. We’re calling 911 again. Don’t get out of the car – try to keep moving. Hit the horn, Baby. They promised, Baby. They promised.)

Being famous has its' perks. (Image: US Public domain by Ranguuelov / commons.wikimedia.org)

Being famous has its’ perks. (Image: US Public domain by Ranguuelov / commons.wikimedia.org)

Jennifer Reyes is lucky. She’s someone.

But what about those who aren’t?

Who don’t have money and bodyguards like Madonna (only 3 years probation for him – just ignore those odd love notes posted outside your door) or Justin Bieber (murder plot from behind bars because admirer felt ignored?).  

There are laws.

Like there are laws against murder.

But people still kill.

Can’t seem to stop them.

(Baby, hang on. Hear any sirens? Stay on the line with me. Please Baby, hang on.)

What's an ordinary person to do?(1885 painting by Bouguereau,1825-1905.US Public domain image-life of artist+100 yrs./common.wikimedia.org)

What’s an ordinary person to do?
(Painting.Bouguereau,1825-1905.US Public domain artist’s life+100 yrs./common.wikimedia.org)

Laws and promises to be good obviously aren’t working.

(Baby? Baby? Baby talk to me!)

So all those out there rabid about banning semi-automatic handguns, please look into Baby’s eyes –

And tell her why you want to take her only chance.

Take away her back-against-the-wall-last-ditch-Oh,-no-God-please,-no-one-is-going-to-be-there-to-help-me chance away because you, safe in your home, are frightened.

Between a rock and a hard place. (Image: Escapologist / commons.wikimedia.org)

Between a rock and a hard place. (Image: Escapologist / commons.wikimedia.org)

Please could we just take the delusional unstable people away first?

Could authorities please enforce the existing laws first?

Could the legal system firmly sentence those who break laws and contain individuals who are a real danger to society first? 

Thanks for considering

I know you mean well.  

Are good-hearted.

Never in your worst nightmares have had to live like this.

But many do. More than you can imagine.

Men and women.

Stalking is an equal opportunity terror.

Sometimes the guys in the white hats just aren't there.  (Movie trailer shot, 1950. US public domain: publishing date and no copyright notice /commons.wikimedia.org)

Sometimes the guys in the white hats just aren’t there. (Movie trailer shot, 1950. US public domain: publishing date /no copyright notice /commons.wikimedia.org)

Just think about it, Ok?

Baby would appreciate it. 

Wish it was all fiction,

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

 (Public domain image by Marc NL / commoms.wikimedia.org)

(Public domain image by Marc NL / commoms.wikimedia.org)

Read more about unstable people?

” The tragedy in Newtown, Conn. has brought the nation together once more. Communities nationwide are saddened by the loss of innocent lives and horrified that what is supposed to be a safe, protected environment where children can grow has had such a disaster occur. We are still trying to figure out what went wrong. The spotlight is shining on many difficult topics, and we are again reminded that we are all affected and that we must work together to find solutions. While it is not clear what role mental illness or intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) played in the Newtown shooting, the incident has sparked a conversation about the need for more access to mental health care. We must deal with untreated mental illness and the consequences that may impact the community at large. Access to appropriate, timely and adequate mental health care must be made available.”

A lifeline, but won't stop someone determined to to harm. (Image: Ben Schumin/User-Zach Vega /commons.wikimedia.org)

A lifeline, but won’t stop someone determined to do harm. (Image: Ben Schumin/User-Zach Vega /commons.wikimedia.org)

 

55 Comments

  1. JackieP / Jan 7 2013 9:46 pm

    yeah, police are there to protect. Just sometimes wonder WHO they protect. I know how it feels to get stalked and feel helpless. Been there. For five years I was there! Yeah, police are there to protect. Afterwards. When it’s too damn late.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 7 2013 11:06 pm

      Stalking is a terrible situation no one should have to endure. Glad you made it through. Thanks for running over to chat.

      Like

  2. Ally Bean / Jan 7 2013 11:05 pm

    Our world is so complex and unnerving at times, isn’t it? I cannot imagine how frustrating it’d be to deal with a stalker. I remember years ago a soap opera star on One Life To Live had a similar problem with a stalker. She eventually had to give up her career because there was no [legal] way to stop him. What a sad commentary on our society that this problem continues unabated.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 7 2013 11:11 pm

      Why can a stalker repeatedly break laws with no consequences? That’s why I have little faith in new laws when the old ones aren’t enforced. But it’s a new year, who knows. If there’s enough outrage things can chance. Thanks for adding a thought here

      Like

  3. maddie22201 / Jan 7 2013 11:20 pm

    I love the art you pick for your posts…Also, we as a society are creating very unstable people by the way they are raised.

    Those who like to push their advertisements on young unsuspecting children in the hopes to make a profit don’t understand what they may be creating 20 or 30 years down the road. Sadly those kids most affected are not just the ones who live in households where only 1 income is just not enough and the parents must work a lot. It also happens in other households where children are seen as a nuisance and a television in their bedroom a relief. We have some messed up morals in this society and it will only get worst if we keep blaming it on a single mental disability that can be fixed with drugs. Profits are not worth our humanity.

    It is sad that instead of raising decent human beings we just keep making up more laws for those that don’t want to take the responsibility.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 1:19 pm

      This is a complex issue with more than one cause. Many do feel that the changes in society allowing “do-overs”, “misspeaking”, and a “let me explain it to you” excuse for everything hasn’t helped. Family units are not as strong. Some feel being gone and working all the time while kids are dropped off or left alone is best in order to provide things that make life better in their eyes. The economy is so bad that most families have both parents working to pay bill – sometimes the kids must work also. There’s a great deal of stress for all ages, pressures, and anger.
      A solution will probably be as complex as the problem.
      But meanwhile society has a responsibility to enforce laws and protect those who need it. Thanks for adding your thoughts. It’s time an answer if found.

      Like

  4. robpixaday / Jan 7 2013 11:24 pm

    Extraordinarily sad…and frustrating. What a messed up world, in so many ways.
    ::sigh::

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 7 2013 11:40 pm

      Getting ‘way too common. Too easy to just tell the victims, “just go hide” – and then ignore them. Best turn on the lights and make the roaches scramble? Waving waving! So good to see you!

      Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 1:23 pm

      A ugly situation people would rather ignore and hope it’s going away. But stalking seems to a growing issue…there are laws, but the defendant has so many “socially acceptable” ways of wiggling away from justice. Would like that stopped – and the victims free of fear and able to go on with their lives. Thanks fro fretting along

      Like

  5. PiedType / Jan 7 2013 11:26 pm

    Temporary Restraining Orders and Protective Orders are, as you noted, mere pieces of paper. Try waving a piece of paper in the face of someone determined to do you harm. Will it stop a fist? A knife? A speeding car? A bullet? I don’t know what the answer is, but society must find something better than a piece of paper to protect threatened individuals.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 1:36 pm

      Stalking is thought by most to be rare or a domestic violence issue – which is not true anymore. Many are totally unstable people are obsessed with a person who may not even know them. Usually they are very angry and tend to have explosive tempers and bursts of violence. Their families know. Society needs to stop telling the poor victims to just go away and hide. There are laws. If laws are enforced, other violent incidents might decrease also? Thanks for adding your thoughts to a difficult subject.

      Like

  6. My Ox is a Moron / Jan 7 2013 11:57 pm

    People no longer feel shame when they do something wrong. They blame someone else. “It’s not my fault because the devil (or someone else) made me do it.” Then there is the “it is not my problem so I won’t get involved.” These societal attitudes make those legal documents irrelevant. If families, neighbors, and neighborhoods would become more interactive these documents would become more relavent. People who work together to care for and protect each other often have safer neighborhoods and feel safer in their homes.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 1:53 pm

      Thanks for the insightful and common sense comment. People must take responsibility for their actions. The legal system should function with punishments – unpleasant ones which do deter – for those who break laws and harm others. People/families should look down on those who break laws – not find excuses or glorify them.
      Your last two sentences say a great deal. It’s a new year. We can hope for changes. Thanks for your thoughtful response

      Like

  7. John / Jan 8 2013 12:29 am

    I have suggestions for this jerks punishment, but none are fit for print. I respect you, and your domain. 😉

    Like

  8. jmmcdowell / Jan 8 2013 1:14 am

    This is a perfect example of how so many laws today work to protect the dangerous elements of society—not normal law-abiding, decent citizens. I wish I knew a good answer. But I’m afraid that even if I did, it would fall on deaf ears and blind eyes.

    Like

  9. aFrankAngle / Jan 8 2013 2:54 am

    Powerful post about a worthy topic … and you captured it with different emotions.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 2:10 pm

      A harsh brutal topic but very real. It’s not right the victims are forced into a shadow world of fear. Victims must be able to protect themselves because no one else seem to be interested in helping them. All I ask is make the fight fair – give them a chance – and enforce the laws. Thanks for for driving along.

      Like

  10. roughseasinthemed / Jan 8 2013 8:55 am

    When I read the title I thought it was going to be a dog post. All our last three rescue dogs said ‘pick me, pick me’.

    But back on the serious topic. I can’t agree with promoting gun use – I come from a culture that just doesn’t do the gun pysche. It just seems like a vicious circle to me.

    As for the drugs however, I totally agree. Reading the article about meds, I wondered about the correlation with UK shootings and drugs. GPs (I think you call them physicians?) are far too happy to dish out drugs to anyone and everyone. ‘Hey, you’re having a bad time, here’s a happy pill’. Or lots of happy pills in fact.

    My head is whacky enough as it is. I certainly don’t want to rely on some loopy chemical concoction to ‘correct’ what is going on in there. I want to be in charge of my head, however crazy it may be.

    As far as I know, the USA seems to be more reliant on drugs than Brits are. I used to be on one forum, and I swear virtually everyone was on some type of SSRI or other for depression/anxiety, well, if their insurance company would pay for it. They all loved them to bits and thought taking their tablets was wonderful. Maybe it is good for some. But there could be other solutions.

    A quick search on SSRIs suggests suicide is a risk, but nothing is mentioned about shooting sprees.

    When I was off work with sheer exhaustion, my GP suggested SSRIs. I said no. Not content with that, she asked me again a few appointments later. That is bad policy. Keep taking the tablets.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 2:59 pm

      Glad you stopped in – I was hoping you would as you do have more insight and knowledge to the meds.Seems like here they are handed out everywhere as an easy answer…only many are not an answer (why develop focusing skills when a chemical can do it for you? Why learn to self control impulses when a med can make you calm and compliant?)
      The article was interesting and something I hadn’t considered.
      One common here – preferred by college kids as study aid (and big on black market as kids sell their prescription supply) is Dextroamphetamine-amphetamine (Adderall). Lots of side effects here: violence is one of them along with mental changes and hallucinations. (I have personally witnessed personality changes in young adults prescribed/abusing this drug) Mayo clinic: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/drug-information/DR602653/DSECTION=side-effects. Schools, some doctors push some of these drugs – but if all the serious side effects were considered, it’s a close call if the benefits outweigh them. It requires serious consideration.
      Society as a while might need to decide if children’s/adults needs can be addressed in other ways?
      I do not promote gun use. I am determined that victims must be able to protect themselves since society/laws are not doing so. It is a choice. Bring what you like: baseball bat, pepper spray, hammer, car, what ever your choice is. But once those hands are around your throat, you’ll want a chance. And this isn’t hypothetical – so we may have differing views – which is fine.
      Totally in agreement with the pill use.
      Thanks for adding your expertise – greatly appreciated (and a pat for Pippa!)

      Like

      • roughseasinthemed / Jan 8 2013 7:30 pm

        My knowledge isn’t pharmacological (only Pippa claims to be the pharma dog). But I did need to know about meds for work.

        Side effects with all drugs. Absolutely all, and not everyone reads what they are 😦

        Mayo clinic is a great source of info. I used to use it in the UK. If I am looking for anything it is one of the main ones I go to.

        I don’t understand why active kids are prescribed drugs. Kids have a lot of energy. Their parents may have a lot of stress and that will impact. But addicting them to SSRIs – or whatever? No. Not the right road to go down.

        Our views about violent society are very different.

        I currently live in two relatively safe places. My partner hates parks, but in the UK, I would walk through one at night, because it was my right to do so. I firmly believed everyone should have the right to walk where they want. I don’t believe that should extend to carrying a gun.

        My personal and totally unsubstantiated view is that family influence has a lot to answer for.

        Separately, I did know someone who was stalked on the internet. I helped her through it. Stalking comes in many ways.

        Different cultures regarding guns huh? It is just anathema to me. Sort gun problems with more guns? No.

        Pippa sends an extremely sleepy paw wave.

        Like

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 8:22 pm

          One parent when questioned when her perfectly normal little boy – who was turned into a cranky drooling blob along with his younger brother said. “Well, we are tired when we come home and want to have a quiet dinner.” They also demanded their boys not be allowed naps in the afternoon because if they napped the boys wouldn’t want to go to bed early enough and the parents couldn’t enjoy some downtime after work. (encountered during research about developmentally appropriate education for young children at a stellar school with excellent teachers…parents fought to get kids in there..some of kids would have done better if raised by wolves). Possible problem here?
          So as you say, family is important. If a person is raised in a society where one is held accountable for their actions and recognizes cause and effect at an early age, laws and social rules are generally respected and followed. Society could be a lot more sane, orderly, and peaceful.
          Unfortunately that is not the case in many areas of the US at this time.
          I am envious of you living in a safer place. If our local, state, and federal law authorities and judges would go back to enforcing the laws, perhaps life here would have less violence. It is getting worse.
          Internet stalking is terrible also. (There are state and federal laws here if they choose to enforce them). But the physical danger when a stalker is actually in front of you is worse.
          I know we have grown up in different worlds, but once again I have to say everyone bases their opinions upon their own experiences (might want to read comments and responses). Everyone should have the right to their personal choices to insure their personal safety. (Not talking about gun vs gun incidents here – only last resort personal safety.)
          Pippa – it’s raining again – I think we shall all nap!

          Like

          • roughseasinthemed / Jan 9 2013 9:22 am

            I can’t talk about children because I don’t have any experience. Well, I can, inasmuch as to say, to me children should be energetic and have high spirits, that’s what being a child is about – isn’t it?

            I was very impressed with my friends who I stayed with in the UK. Their kids were young, both at school say, around 5 and 7/8? Not sure but you get the idea. We all ate together at every meal, and the children were treated respectfully whenever they wanted to say something. They learned good manners, and although we would break off one of our conversations to listen to them, they weren’t demanding. And there was no ‘Be quiet, mummy/daddy is speaking’ edict.

            As for naps. I loved naps at school. And I still went to bed at night-time.

            I nearly always read comments and responses (I say nearly to allow for the odd exception). I don’t follow blogs that have 179 comments as that is too many trite comments to read through. I’ve tried and they are usually trite. I even have to keep re-reading the comments on my own blog to remember what has been said, as people add such varying and rich points to the discussion. I find the discussion on yours similar, so always check out the comments first to see what has been written.
            I also read the comments/replies after my own. With which, I will say how sorry I am about both yours and your daughter’s experiences. 😦

            My internet friend was worried about ‘her’ stalker because he actually found out where she lived because she had put photos on her blog and talked about her home town. Sad that we become so restricted about what we post because of such activities.

            In and ideal world (HA!) we could all walk down the street without fear. It’s somewhat like the classic rape discussions – why was the woman out late, alone? – why not? Why wasn’t the man at home instead of being out on the streets?

            Smaller places have a bigger sense of community, and the situation here in Gib is that people need to pass through a frontier, or jump on a boat (illegally) to get away from the place. May help towards keeping our crime rates low.

            I keep trying to send you some sunshine in return for some rain. Not working yet, although we are looking slightly cloudy now.

            Like

          • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 9 2013 3:46 pm

            You know, one of the reasons I loved Spain was it was so darn safe – anytime day or night you could walk around. But there were all the tanks, barbed wire around the university, and the serious guards with the guns – intimidating trade off.
            In an ideal world, communities would be strong and welcoming, families would care for their own and everyone would be considerate, kind and follow the laws. You have to have hope that someday things will swing back.
            It is appalling how lawless this country has become in such a short time. We do consider where to go.
            Children are more and more being dropped at day cares (infants to school age. There are public school programs for children as young as 3 yrs…and parents are eager to use them).Even the best one isn’t the best for a young child. (These kids are usually tired, whining, stressed, and become aggressive because they have to fight for attention of the adult monitoring the group).
            Some families have no choice but for both parents to work – and don’t have family around to raise kids. Some people seem to be willing to trade their kid’s development for a higher standard of living and things: the Paris Hilton lifestyle. Sacrificing for a few years, and not having the new cars/big houses/expensive entertainment is unthinkable for some. Different views of what is important. Sigh.
            Anyway, always enjoy your insights (not scolding about reading comments – just to lazy to re-write some of the background stuff over and over)
            Thanks for stopping by…it’s still raining, but hoping for some sun maybe Friday ( not complaining…they are concerned irrigation river water will not be available for the rice farmers end of March…hard to believe that at this point….some of it is politics as a big chemical plant and several major cities are trying to claim that water…oh, for a much more simple world!)

            Like

  11. Beth / Jan 8 2013 1:24 pm

    I remember when I was a sophomore in college there was an odd little fellow (but pleasant enough) who always seemed to be at events I attended (I brought speakers to campus, so I wasn’t hard to find) and one day I was walking him back to his dorm. He’d gotten sick at one of our events, and I was making sure he got back to his dorm ok when he basically said, “I know your schedule. I know where you are at all times of the day.” It was one of those things that shook me to the core. I’d go to lunch, there he was. We’d have another event, there he was. Fortunately, I transferred to UT the next semester and that solved the problem (and there wasn’t FB or Twitter). The last time I saw him was years ago at Scarborough Faire in Waxahachie. Thankfully, I saw him first and was able to drop back and blend in with the crowd. Situations like this are horrifying, because it seems like it’s only after the stalker has finally attacked their victim that any real action is taken. It’s ludicrous that he drove into the TV station twice, he followed her in his car despite a Protective Order (do mentally disturbed people really follow those?) and basically terrorized her for 5 years without any serious repercussions. I do absolutely believe she should have a concealed carry license (and all the training that comes with earning that license), because honestly I’ve only seen these types of cases end badly for the victim; it’s a shame it has to come to that. This could be avoided if he were either institutionalized or behind bars. No one should have to live in terror.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 3:09 pm

      You understand. Thank goodness you were able to transfer – and saw him first and were able to escape. It was an escape. Some people don’t realize the threat NEVER goes away. (and most never feel safe – who knows when he/she will reappear – even more angry as you have been avoiding them.)
      These people are unstable, obsessed, and dangerous. It is not a domestic violence issue. It is a mental health issue, families always know something, and the federal and state laws on the books are not being enforced.
      It is important victims be allowed the tools necessary for their survival. (And no one – media or otherwise should publicize which houses have owners with guns. The element of surprise may be all that lets them survive an attack.)
      Thanks so much for your experience – it’s one most want to forget. It’s creepy, I know, too.(he was finally institutionalized, but he still managed letters for a bit.)

      Like

  12. robincoyle / Jan 8 2013 3:23 pm

    Wow. This made me uncomfortable and I’m not being stalked. I can’t imagine what it is like to have someone watching your every move. Has it happened to you? That too personal a question? Sorry if so.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 5:40 pm

      No one can understand how terrible stalking is unless they have experienced it. It’s important to realize laws some demand can affect innocent people/victims negatively – and create dangerous situations for them.
      I know 5 doctors who have dealt with this since their intern/resident years. Yes. A very hard topic to write.

      Like

      • robincoyle / Jan 8 2013 6:04 pm

        I wonder what it is about doctors being stalked.

        Like

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 7:25 pm

          Stalkers are nuts. Obsessive. Not seeing reality clearly.
          It started for one male doctor after he went on TV to be interviewed about something…then the guy called for appointment, and continued to try to make appointments although nothing was wrong – refused to see another doctor…started sending gifts. Lots of them. Showed up unannounced at office and home….and it continues. Another woman doc being stalked actually secured a job outside the 48 states trying to escape – hers showed up within weeks. Another female resident had a guy who arrived at the ER, ended up deciding her kindness was something else and fixed on her, breaking into her apt multiple times stealing underwear – and doing things in her bed you do not want to know. Her dad set up hidden video and once they had footage, the cops had to admit there was a problem. (it’s been a few years, but she’s still afraid he’ll show up.)
          Want me to go on? I can. A real nightmare. Especially for those who sacrifice so much of their own lives to help others.
          Society must address the issue of unstable people who endanger others.

          Like

          • robincoyle / Jan 8 2013 11:30 pm

            You have the makings for a novel in there . . . or a made for TV series. Scary stuff, especially because it is true.

            Like

          • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 9 2013 12:02 am

            Not nearly as frightening as the stalker after my daughter. Even better he’s a serial stalker – stalking 6+ women in multiple states – yet they refuse to enforce state and federal stalking laws and internet stalking laws. I know more than I ever wanted to know about stalking. A quiet but serious issue. I can’t abandon these victims and watch their only line of defense taken away by those who are emotional, but have never faced personal danger like this. (Ok going to sit quietly over here for a while…and think positive thoughts. Thanks for hanging around)

            Like

          • robincoyle / Jan 9 2013 3:08 pm

            Oh gosh! Now I remember you daughter is being stalked. We talked about that issue over the summer. Bless her heart.

            Like

          • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 9 2013 3:50 pm

            So far so good. But I’m very concerned about all the noise about confiscating guns. I’m afraid once again the victims’ desperate pleas won’t be heard. Self protection isn’t on people’s radar if they haven’t felt a real threat and serious need for it. Hope things are going well for your family!

            Like

  13. shoreacres / Jan 8 2013 5:53 pm

    Here’s my first proposition. Take concealed-carry weapons and body guards away from every celebrity, politician and bureaucrat who has them, and let them experience living among the crazies/the angry/the obsessed for a while without protection. Then, we’ll talk again about these issues.

    As long as my government continues to run guns into Mexico and refuses to deal with the drug and gun runners who are bringing their violence and their weapons into my city and state, I will not be lectured by a single one of them about the evils of guns. They have no desire to protect me, so I will protect myself with a variety of weapons – including common sense. (Who would suspect that? For that matter, who would suspect I could break someone’s nose? Even I never expected that.)

    As for being stalked – I have been. It went on for three years, and I never knew who it was. It was all phone calls, and it was waaaay back in the day when there weren’t any cells phones or such. It was unnerving, to say the least. I’ve known others whose stalkers were more obvious, and more dangerous.

    You’re right that the laws aren’t being enforced. And the societal norms and expectations that used to help keep people safe are nearly gone. Releasing mental health patients into the general population is sometimes a good thing. When it’s meant only to prop up a professional group’s theories and prejudices, it’s bad.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 8 2013 7:40 pm

      Maybe I should just copy all your comments in caps and repeat it several times.
      Things were simpler back with mine – Towards the end, a football jock who was passing by pried the stalker’s hand off my throat, told me to run while he pounded the guy who was quietly, but quickly jerked out of school and committed. (many events leading up to this including his getting a dog, naming it after me and beating it everyday). But then the letter…
      Love your last sentence. Reminds me of the ones who have their stalker patients write letters to all those they have “wronged” or treated badly so that the stalker can feel better about themselves – and feel a release. Mental Health people: are you nuts, too? The victims do not want to hear from the stalker – EVER. (and the letters are always “odd” and you wonder how they found your address after you moved and when they will show up at your door) If you Health Professionals think those letters must be written – thrown them away – do not mail them. The stalker will get benefit you think they get even if you don’t mail the letters. Seriously. Have some common sense. Why would victims want to hear any thing from a stalker?
      Thanks for adding to the conversation (I will be quiet now and sit over here)

      Like

  14. dogear6 / Jan 8 2013 11:03 pm

    I got to watch this play out first-hand when a co-workers daughter went through it in high school. The parents of the boy were like “well, boys will be boys” and “she should just relax and enjoy it”. My co-worker eventually had to send her daughter out of state to live with her older brother to finish high school. It was sickening and my co-workers was heartbroken that she couldn’t enjoy her daugher’s last few years at home before college. The boy was never held accountable even though her seriously injured other boys who paid attention to the girl.

    Great topic – one that needs attention.

    Nancy

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    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 9 2013 12:07 am

      What a horrible situation. So glad there was an escape route, but it isn’t fair. You see how it goes – authorities just want the victim to go away – it’s easier for them that way. Bet you money that boy will escalate his behavior in the future…once they learn they can get away with it, it reoccurs. (And eventually a tragedy and lots of wringing of hands and “where did we go wrong”) As things stand now, you have to take care of your own.
      Glad there was a happy ending to this one!
      Thanks for adding that to the conversation

      Like

  15. littlesundog / Jan 10 2013 3:24 am

    I’ve been through similar experiences, though nothing so harrowing. Still, it matters not what the level of harassment or stalking takes place, it’s a horror to experience on any level. More laws do nothing to help. I don’t know what the answer is, and frankly, what society has become is one of the reasons I have dissected myself from it… becoming something of a hermit. I find the world is full of noise and chaos. People are often mean-spirited or hateful. It’s every man for himself… and it’s acceptable to hurt, slander, and steal from our fellow man. Rarely are folks held accountable. Rarely does anyone get involved to stop it. I think the reasons for this demise of mankind are too many to comprehend. It’s what makes me run to the woods many days… finding peace and solace with nature. I don’t have any answers. It just makes me sad.

    This is an important post, and quite thought provoking.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 11 2013 12:08 am

      I think you’ve found a good refuge – you’ve nailed the complex analysis. Sorry you’ve had the same experience – people do not realize how common it is – it’s something no one wants to talk about. Totally unfair. Enjoy wandering the wood for me!

      Like

  16. jannatwrites / Jan 10 2013 6:08 am

    Restraining orders…hahahaha…yeah, right. The stalking laws are a joke. I’ve dealt with stalking before and it messes with your head. You’re always looking over your shoulder, you always feel like you’re being watched. Oh, but until he actually hurts you, they can’t do anything. I do wish things would change.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 11 2013 1:17 am

      HA! It’s obvious you do understand. But you have to keep going and out pace it. Thanks for shuffling your comments over here.

      Like

  17. Kourtney Heintz / Jan 13 2013 6:55 pm

    Individuals have the right to protect themselves–especially law abiding individuals. It’s the law breakers who won’t follow the law–why are they getting so many breaks?

    Like

  18. jmlindy422 / Feb 1 2013 1:24 pm

    I’m late to the party, but thought I’d weigh in. As a person with a mental “illness,” it scares me when people start talking about making registries of those who’ve been treated with such illnesses. Mine is one of those that is generally completely misunderstood. When we talk about better treatment and equity in insurance coverage for mental illnesses, then I think we’re on the right track. It is ridiculous that my goddaughter, who is only 18, has exceeded her lifetime benefit for mental health coverage because she was wise enough to seek help when she was suicidal. Now, she has no recourse should she have a recurrence of her depression. No insurance company will provide her insurance at a price she can easily afford and public assistance? Ha!

    So, let’s care for the mentally ill and enforce the laws we have. There are so many things that people on both sides of the gun violence debate can agree to. We aren’t going to get anywhere with it until we start to find the places we agree. Thanks for a thoughtful piece.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 1 2013 5:33 pm

      I know exactly what you are saying about a “registry”. Some state have laws preventing sharing of that info. I worry if doctor-patient privacy laws/HIPPA are breached, fewer will seek treatment.
      And it is an invasion of privacy.(Which is why I oppose digitalizing doctors’ medical records – first they aren’t secure and second you/your doc has not control over them and who know who will read that info and how it will be used in the future)
      Insurance companies are evil. Seriously – any excuse to refuse coverage – only about making money for them. (Have docs and family member who struggles with mental health issues: insurance or public assistance – double HA for sure)
      We already have laws. Enforce the laws we have – that would make a huge difference.
      Making more laws won’t stop those who don’t obey the laws already in existence.
      A lot of emotional noise for political and PR purposes – not trying to solve issues.
      And you are never late – especially with solid comments like yours

      Like

  19. pnwauthor / Feb 5 2013 12:22 am

    This is a darker topic than I’m used to reading. However, I have had to deal with harrassment (heck, I’ll call it stalking) in the past, and it was frustrating dealing with the police and the law. They do tell you to move to another city, and basically give up your right to a life so that you can protect yourself.

    True empowerment however comes from owning your life and transcending fear and whatever self-abuse or programming is happening within. Once a person no longer carries the victim frequency in the subconscious or conscious, they no longer attract mentally ill types. We can think of the harrassers or abusers as mirrors into our own psyches. That’s what I ended up having to do.

    Like

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 9 2013 3:09 pm

      Reality is sometimes dark. It’s wise to avoid the victim mentality, but easier said than done with violent obsessed stalkers who are relentless – which technology(such as spoofing phone numbers). And as you say despite the state and federal laws, law enforcement usually doesn’t want to bother – it’s easier to tell the victim to move ( and leave their jurisdiction so it becomes somebody else’s problem).
      Some well meaning people without knowledge or experience are very vocal about limiting other’s ability to defend/protect themselves quietly (because no one else will). Unfair and cruel. Just wanted to raise a little awareness.
      Wise to be strong and move on ( and hope the stalker sees they are ineffective so they might as well go terrorize someone else to get their kicks)
      You are right, mental strength and courage are always a good tools for whatever life throws at you.
      Thanks for being patient for a response – about to get over this cold and catch up.

      Like

      • pnwauthor / Feb 10 2013 2:20 am

        Listening to happy music will help you boost your immune system. Mozart got me through a flu in 2010.

        Like

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 10 2013 5:11 pm

          That’s a good idea. Do believe stress really attacks the immune system and that’s how this nagging cold got started.

          Like

          • pnwauthor / Feb 10 2013 5:47 pm

            Yes. Stress is a huge factor with weak immune systems. Stress and diet. This is why college students are usually sick with colds or flu. I cut out sugar as much as possible during the fall-winter months too and eat tons of yogurt.

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          • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 10 2013 8:48 pm

            It’s yogurt mania for all here most of the time: RC prefers Chobani pineapple (yogurt takes care of her tummy issues). But she’s noticed the Noosa vanilla/honey, so I sneak that one. Sugar we try to avoid – but rationing some old fashioned Ginger cookies we found recently. (cant deprive yourself of everything). Happy Lunar New Year and Year of the Snake (we have a large Chinese and Asian population here).

            Like

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