#CW domestic violence
Read here for details about this project. Please send your open letter to email@example.com.
Dear Prosecutors Dennis Watkins and Stanley Elkins,
My name is Kathleen Pliska and I live in Long Beach, California.
That Bresha Meadows is behind bars rather than receiving therapeutic care with her family and in her community is nauseating evidence that there is still something deeply anti-human about our country’s attitude toward violence against women and children. It is hard to believe that we have progressed so little since the days when husbands and fathers could treat their family as little more than property, I realize there are many outrages still allowed to continue in our supposedly modern and enlightened society. This particular outrage touches me deeply because I could easily have been Bresha Meadows. I am a 70 year old white woman who along with her mother and siblings was terrorized for almost two decades by a violent, alcoholic father. I feel sympathy for Bresha because a part of me wishes I had killed my own father for the suffering he caused our family. After many years of therapy my life turned out ok.
But here are some things I remember:
Turning on the radio as a child when I wanted to be able to sleep at night in hopes that the music would drown out the sounds of my father screaming at and beating my mother.
Going into the bathroom in the morning and seeing clumps of my mother’s dark brown hair in the sink. I wasn’t exactly sure how it got there but I knew it was connected to his violence of the night before.
Keeping a knife under my pillow at night to try to reassure myself that I was safe.
Having nightmares almost every night that my father was coming to kill me. These nightmares continued until I was in my late twenties, happily married and living far from my father.
Hearing my mother say many years after finally divorcing him that she would rather be dead than still married to him.
Promising myself and my mother that if I ever had a child I would never let my father touch him.
Feeling very relieved when my father died a few months before the birth of my first child because this meant he would never even have to see his grandfather.
Thanks very much to anyone who reads this.