Sorry to ask, but it's about that Lemongrab print your selling on your store. I was wondering, since it's a collab, does that mean that the other person who worked on it can also sell it too? (I know you and this person aren't on good terms, so that's why Im asking).
A regular client turned good friend was sexually assaulted and asked me if I would go with her to the police station to make the report. Here is what happened.
Things to note:
1. There may be some triggers around sexual assault, victim blaming, and incompetent police officers.
2. My friend gave me permission to write this and actively encouraged me to do so, as a learning opportunity for all of you. However her name has been changed to LC for this post.
The assault occurred in a different state than where we live, so we made plans for a few days away as evening work schedules allowed for us to make the drive. In the interim, LC bravely posted about it on her facebook page, letting her extended family and friends know what happened. Already I knew this was going to be a harrowing experience for her because in response, she received dozens of well-intentioned but totally awful and counterproductive comments. After a violent experience, the last thing many assault survivors want to hear about is more violence, but there was the “let’s kill him! Let’s kick his ass!” comments about the attacker, which serve the commenter’s fantasies for revenge far more than they serve LC, the person the comment is supposedly trying to help. There was also the ill-advised attempt at optimism with the comment “just be thankful you weren’t raped” and the ever popular “why aren’t you over it yet?” I cringed at “If it was me, I wouldn’t have let it bother me that much, but that’s just my strong personality, I guess?”
It’s amazing that as common as sexual assault is and as many people we all know who have experienced it, people are largely still clueless about how to be a friend to someone who has been victimized. For the record, creating a hierarchy of assaults of which you have decided their assault is not the worst, and telling them how they should best handle their trauma based on how you would, especially when you have never actually experienced sexual trauma = bad.
LC incidentally had a date which she had to cancel. This was with a man she had not yet met in person, but had met online and had been chatting with on the phone and via text for a month or so. I thought she was more than gracious when she texted him:
I don’t know if you saw my facebook, and please don’t take this personally. I was really excited to go out with you and see you but I had a really emotional week and right now I’m just too emotionally exhausted but hopefully we can get together soon.
At first he expressed concern, saying: U ok honey? I didn’t see your facebook.
She said: I’m hanging in there just really emotionally drained :(
He then must have gone to look at her facebook, because he texted back awhile later and the tone had completely changed. He went from concerned to indignant, texting: I’m sorry to see that post. Understand but disappointed… Not all guys are like that babe.
Of all the things a new potential boyfriend could say to such news, this was one of the more obnoxious choices. It’s astounding how he turned HER assault to be about HIM. HE’S disappointed. HE feels the need to defend himself as a man. He hijacked the conversation to make is such that in addition to everything else LC had experienced and had to contend with in the aftermath of the assault, she now would also have to contend with HIS emotions, HIS disappointment about not seeing her when he wanted to, HIS fragile ego around masculinity (because apparently being emotionally drained after being sexually assaulted by a man is in and of itself an attack on all men such that in a 16 word text, 7 of them need to be spent defending men). AHHHHH!
After hearing all of this, and in thinking about our trip to the police station, I decided that I would rather be with LC as her friend, not as the sexologist/activist around sexual violence. But I did want such a person there, so on the day we went to the police, I did a google search for the crime victims center in the state/county/town where the assault occurred. Couldn’t find any. I searched for a rape crisis center. Couldn’t find any. And I’m someone who knows what they’re looking for. I’m someone who knows about these resources, know that they even exist, and that they provide services like sending a trained advocate to accompany rape and sexual assault survivors to the police station, hospital, and courthouse to be a support person, explain the procedure, answer questions, and make sure things run smoothly and the survivor is being treated fairly by police/doctors/lawyers. If I had trouble finding help, how hard must it be for people who are not professionals in the field?
Finally I found a general crisis/suicide hotline, called in, and finally got routed to someone who could help. I explained that I would be coming in from out of state with a friend and wanted an advocate to accompany us just to make sure, frankly, the police didn’t act like assholes to LC- that they didn’t blame her, get hostile or aggressive, give her misinformation (for example I had fears that they would say it had been too many days since the attack to make the report, even though that’s not true, etc.)
This woman, we’ll call her KR, asked me if I was comfortable sharing my name and my relationship to LC and when I told her my name, she chuckled. “Get out! I follow you on facebook. We are all big fans of your work. You’re a big celebrity over here” (referring to the agency she works for doing counseling, education, and advocacy around sexual assault). I felt good about this. I felt like I had an “in” and that LC would get the care and compassion she needed because I know that people who follow me on the interwebs are good people and sexual assault counselors do amazing work.
KR was helpful and explained the process very thoroughly. She said the advocate on staff that night was amazing and that we’d be in good hands. She explained that rather than meet us at the police station at a set time, we’d have to go to the police first and ask for an advocate, and the police would call them as only the police can dispatch a crime victim’s advocate. She assured me the police deal with her agency every day, and one member of her staff even has a permanent office in the police station and works there every day. I was feeling very confident about my visit to the police station with LC.
We took the drive from PA into the neighboring state and arrive at 9:15pm. We parked in a metered parking spot out front of the police station and look around for signs that would indicate if we need to put money in the meter. Alas, there were no street signs and no sign on the meter itself. We see a woman in a uniform walk by and LC asks her, “excuse me, do you know if I need to feed the meter right now?” to which she replies, “not at night”. Seeking further clarification (does “night” mean 10pm? Midnight? Now?) LC asks, “So I’m OK right now?”
The woman barks back “I SAID, not at night. It’s night, ISN’T IT?!”
LC and I just stared at each other wide-eyed at the uncalled for anger on the part of the police officer, but we didn’t say a word and began walking. She was several steps ahead of us and despite the fact that we didn’t even say anything, she turned around to continue the conversation, adding “Look, I don’t know what your problem is. You asked me if you need to feed the meter, and I said not at night, AND IT’S NIGHT!” LC just said “Ok thank you” and we continued on our way.
“Oh, my god” I said to LC under my breath after the officer was out of earshot. “This is not off to a great start”, which I said half-jokingly, because an interaction with a cranky cop about parking has nothing to do with how we would be treated by a detective when reporting a sexual assault- until it did, and we went inside and found out the cranky cop was the person we needed to talk to :/
The station was… well, it looked like this:
LC went to the tiny corner to the left, picked up the black phone to speak with the cranky officer through the Plexiglas, and was told an officer would be out in a moment to take her statement.
Not long after a man wearing baggy jeans and a too-big un-tucked polo shirt saunters over, walking slowly, with an attitudinal swagger, pushed open the blue door, sticks his head out and asks “who wants to report an assault?”
You have got to be kidding me.
LC says, “I do, but first, could you please call an advocate?” doing exactly as I told her I was instructed to do from KR earlier.
I’ll do my best to describe his face at that moment. In slow motion, he dramatically cocks his head to one side so that it’s almost touching his shoulder while at the same time scrunching his eyebrows to make an overstated look of bewilderment and says, “Huh?” (Yes, HUH! Very professional.) Then he asks… “What’s an advocate?”
Once again. You have GOT to be kidding me.
I interject, “You know, from the XYZ agency, you dispatch an advocate to sit in while crime victims make reports… you have one on staff here…”
He says, “I ain’t never heard of such a thing in my life.”
And I’m about to hit the roof.
He continues “I don’t know why you’d need one of those anyway. You just tell me your story, I type it up, and you go on your merry way.”
Correction, he goes on his “merry” way. LC goes on to deal with months of court dates, and interviews, and cross examining, and trial hearings, and being poked and prodded by nurses, and having to relive a hellish experience again and again and again. There is nothing “merry” about this.
LC says, “But I don’t just want to make a statement, I want to press charges. But I want to wait for an advocate” and this guy, with his head sticking out through the cracked open door while we stand in the cold and dirty public lobby, continues to say he has no clue what we’re talking about.
I finally just said curtly, “Give us a minute please” and I get on the phone to call the XYZ agency’s crisis hotline that I had called earlier. The responder shared my frustration that these police who work every day with their agency and have been through multiple trainings about their services would claim to have no knowledge of it. But then the breakdown continued.
Me: So I know this is not your typical protocol, but since the police won’t dispatch an advocate, can you just send one here anyway?
Her: I’m sorry, we don’t have an advocate on staff this evening.
Me: But I spoke with KR today and she assured me my friend was in good hands and that there is a person on staff tonight and she’s very good. What happened to that person?
Her: I’m sorry. I can’t give out that person’s contact information.
Me: I’m not looking for anyone’s contact information, I just want the advocate KR said would come to the police station tonight. Do you know KR?
Her: Yes I do, but she is home for the evening. You’ll have to call back tomorrow morning.
Me: Not good enough. We are from PA and we drove here tonight. We’re at the police station. She’s ready to make this statement. The police have already been rude and unprofessional and I just don’t feel comfortable doing this without an advocate.
Her: I’m so sorry. But there just isn’t anyone here who can help you.
Me: So you’re a crisis center that can’t help someone in a crisis?
Her: Please hold.
KR is patched through and tells me how appalled she is at the information breakdown from her agency, as well as the treatment from the police thus far. She says she will leave her home 45 minutes away immediately and personally meet us at the police station to handle this herself. I was so thankful that she was willing to come out late at night to help someone in need even though it was her night off. What a wonderful woman!
As we waited for her I couldn’t help but wonder that if I wasn’t me, if I wasn’t a “celebrity” at this agency, and I didn’t advocate for myself on the phone as strongly as I did, what would have happened? If a person not well-known for their work in the field of sexual violence prevention walked into a police station asking for an advocate and was told by the police there is no such thing, that person would be standing in the lobby telling their story to a dude in street clothes through a half-closed door. And if they had the wherewithal to call the agency to ask for an advocate directly, the officer’s assertion that there is no advocate would have been corroborated by the woman on the phone at the agency, and that would have been the end of that. I cringe.
While I was on the phone, I could overhear another woman making a report to the guy in the baggy jeans. She stood in the lobby and spoke to him through the blue door he had his head poking out of. I can’t tell you how many times I heard her say “I’m afraid for my life” but he just let her stand out there and talk in front of us with no privacy and all body language seemed to say that he couldn’t give a shit less. I was just so confused, so after she left I asked him, “are you a police officer?” In response he gives me, “Uh… yeah…” Ugh.
About halfway through the 45 minute wait for KR to arrive, the mean woman police officer behind the Plexiglas beacons LC over. LC walks over and picks up the phone to talk through the glass.
She asks, “what’s your name sweetie?” Encouraged that she might be nice now, LC tells her. She asks “Do you know the name of your attacker?” LC says, “Yes, but I’d like to wait for my advocate.” The woman gives her a dirty, annoyed look so LC tells her his name. Then with a raised voice and aggressive attitude, her entire demeanor changes and she asks, “How old are you?!” LC tells her. “Where do you live?!” LC tells her.
Learning she’s from out of state, she says, “We’re going to do things OUR way, the way we do them here. Look, if you want to have some “special” treatment and wait for some “special” person, no. We’re going to do things OUR way.”
With exasperation, LC said in a voice begging for mercy, “Please, I just want to wait for my advocate.” And the cop snapped back, “WATCH YOUR TONE!” LC just hung up the phone and sat back down in the lobby.
LC just kept saying to me, “This is why people don’t report. This is why sexual assault is so under-reported.” And she’s right. I found her resilience during this ordeal remarkable because she had been mistreated by not just the assailant, but also almost every single person she has had contact with since including her friends, her date, the police, and the rape crisis agency- all people who are supposed to be on her side.
When KR arrived she brought the uplifting energy the space needed. She was calm, and kind, and compassionate. She apologized again for the misinformation I was given on the phone by her agency. She asked LC how she’s feeling and listened for a good 20 minutes about how difficult this has all been. Then she explained the options from that point. She didn’t tell her what to do, or even make recommendations. She simply explained the pros and cons of column A and column B, and empowered LC to make her own decision. YES! Finally. THIS is how you engage with a survivor. 1. LISTEN 2. LISTEN.
LC decided to go to the hospital because making the statement at that awful police station, and having them take evidence photos of the bruises on her body was out of the question at that point. But there was another problem. The state has a law about how many hours after an assault takes place a SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) can examine a survivor, and the clock had run out by just a few hours. This is one example where an advocate is so important, because KR was able to call ahead to the hospital, explain the situation, and get them to agree to admit LC.
We drove about 20 minutes to the hospital where LC was assigned a nurse who was very sweet. She did the examination, took photos of the bruises, and took LC’s statement. She brought her food while we waited for police to come and take an official statement in the ER.
Two burly male police officers arrived and were just ok. They did their job. They weren’t perfect (I believe one officer used the phrase “cop a feel” when asking LC about one part of the assault, and other tactless and insensitive remarks.) They also asked “Did you tell him to get the fuck away?” and “How many times did you verbally tell him to stop?” when in her narrative she described at least a dozen times where she did tell him to stop, to go away, to “leave me alone”, “Whoa there, not cool” and so on. Not to mention, “NO” is the default setting, so even if she didn’t “verbally tell him to stop”, it’s still a violation and a sexual assault because her mere presence is not an invitation.
But at least they weren’t as bad as the officers back at the station, and LC told them so. They asked he what she meant, and when she told them how she was treated, they softened their demeanor and left the room. When they returned, they said they spoke with the Lieutenant who urged us to return to the police station to file a formal complaint with Internal Affairs against those officers, their colleagues, because such behavior was substandard and inexcusable.
In the room at this moment was LC, KR, the two police officers, and me. This is another example of why having an advocate was so helpful. When the police came in to the hospital room they automatically excused KR and I until KR butted in and said “Why don’t we ask LC who she wants in the room”, knowing that in the hours we waited at the ER, LC was adamant that we both stay during the police interview, and empowering LC to make the decision that SHE wants vs. what someone else has decided for her.
Then in walks the doctor. The SANE nurse told us that because she was admitted to the emergency room, LC would have to be seen by a physician before being discharged. So the doctor comes in and starts asking LC about her medical history and any medications she’s taking, with all of us in the room which I thought was inappropriate. She listens to her heart and all of that, and before leaving looks her in the eyes and says in a heartfelt way, “I’m sorry this happened to you.” LC seemed happy that in the long string of people who have been shitty to her through this whole ordeal, here was one more person showing the appropriate level of care. But then, the doctor added, “Be careful next time.” Sigh. KR and I shot looks of dismay at each other as the doctor left the room. Sure. If only LC had been more careful not to exist in the world in a female body, this never would have happened. Unbelievable.
LC was discharged and we made the drive back to the police station where we filled out many Internal Affairs forms with many sympathetic SVU detectives who were not pleased at the treatment LC received the first time around. A formal investigation was opened against the two police officers as well as against LC’s attacker.
We left and I arrived home after 6am. In all, it was about a 10 hour ordeal. I continue to be in awe of LC, and grateful to KR for her compassion and for staying out all night comforting a stranger through an unimaginably hard time. I appreciate the SANE nurse who has a very challenging job and does it with kindness and empathy, and to the two police officers who came to the hospital and stuck their necks out to report their own colleagues’ misconduct because it was the right thing to do.
Hello PK! Back in PMD-E, I really loved the Dark Moon Clan and its mysterious relation to Darkrai and the "nightmare zone" Smudge was permanently stuck in. Do you have plans on implementing those in Flora somehow?
I can’t talk a ton about it BUT I do want to import some characters from arc 2, one way or another
Everyone knows about second hand smoke, but did you know there was third hand smoke? That's the smoke that gets trapped in carpets and fabric etc. So even if someone's not even smoking, they carry molecules of smoke and chemicals on them. You can tell who's a smoker by their horrible smell, right? I simply can't help thinking smoking is such a selfish thing to do. You hurt your body, everyone else's body too and you don't give a damn. Cigarettes are also very expensive. I just don't get it.
Well since we're reminiscing about pmd-e times, what was your favourite pmd-e moment? Mine has to be the slasher story because there was just so much development going on without being overwhelming and it was well executed and very tense or the palette story right at the beginning which almost made me cry.
my favorite maybe was also the slasher story; it was the beginning of riiko writing things, and it got me REALLY into writing more myself (and wanting to read more)
it was also when I had the most ideas about everything, and was so excited about the future
sorry you guys have to deal with all this nonsense. as an aside to the thing on smarm, ive noticed that smarmy people seem to have this belief that behavior can be unhooked from identity. such as, "well, i know x did all this bad stuff, but hes actually a good guy on the inside, you just have to get to know him!" what a convenient life that must be. you get to act however you like but hey, its OK - its not who you "really are"! where who you "really are" = you around certain people, some times.
yeah uh i don’t know what the hell “good guy” is supposed to mean
people by and large tend to act nicely towards the people they care about most of the time? wow here is your nobel prize in sociology
i am kind of in favor of describing people in terms of what they do rather than what role we imagine they play
also let us stop to consider the subtext of “but he’s a good guy really”, which i think can only go one of two ways really
he’s a good guy, so for him to have acted this way, there must have been extenuating circumstances. in other words, you were asking for it
he’s a good guy to me, and i don’t really care about you in the slightest, so fuck you i got mine
But, think of the feelings of the abuser, they have strong and profound feelings, too! So much so, in fact, that the feelings of those abused should be casually dismissed, because I'm tired of hearing about those. "Won't someone please think of the abusers."
I just want to say, that when you lose a friend, even if you lost them because they fricked up your life and you had to cut it off, it's still painful, and regardless of whether your blog has a lot of followers or not, I know it still feels better to get your frustrations out in the open, so it's not pk's fault for calling Mike out, understand that it was Mike doing shit things to keep PK frustrated for this long.
i hope i get over it soon because im not happy about being reminded of something he did or hearing about some new fucking thing he did last week or whatever
anyway yeah it was fucking painful and i spent a month angry that i lost a friend because of him being a fucking jackass
was it so hard not to lie??? and then try to get attention??? or make things up??? or be shitty to so many artists?/????
I've had mike come to me and ask me to draw things for him back at pmd times and being new I thought I had to since I wanted to "do things for my guild leader" needless to say I left the group after.I'm still a bit nervous to say anything upfront at this point I can understand why your still upset over this
I’m so sorry
I will try to be more careful in the future in letting anyone into positions where they can influence what people do
This "if you hate smokers just go somewhere else" defence riles the fuck out of me. I was once in an empty bus shelter, alone, and this lady sits right next to me and lights one up without even asking if it was ok. Between having an actual asthma attack or standing outside where it must've been -20°C, I decided the latter was preferable. And that's totally reasonable to some people, a fair compromise, apparently...
Hi PK! OMG I"M FREAKING OUT ABOUT SAI 2 AHHHH! Sounds like it will be a pretty much 1 stop program now (for most things anyway). I was a bit curious though you never seem to mention Open Canvas? Have you tried it?
I tried OC a long time ago, but its tools are just so outdated! if I could get some of the way it handles painting into sai that would be neat but I can live without it
Two weeks ago a man in France was arrested for raping his daughter. She’d gone to her school counselor and then the police, but they needed “hard evidence.” So, she videotaped her next assault. Her father was eventually arrested. His attorney explained, “There was a period when he was unemployed and in the middle of a divorce. He insists that these acts did not stretch back further than three or four months. His daughter says longer. But everyone should be very careful in what they say.” Because, really, even despite her seeking help, her testimony, her bravery in setting up a webcam to film her father raping her, you really can’t believe what the girl says, can you?
Everyone “knows” this. Even children.
Three years ago, in fly-on-the-wall fashion of parent drivers everywhere, I listened while a 14-year-old girl in the back seat of my car described how angry she was that her parents had stopped allowing her to walk home alone just because a girl in her neighborhood “claimed she was raped.” When I asked her if there was any reason to think the girl’s story was not true, she said, “Girls lie about rape all the time.” She didn’t know the person, she just assumed she was lying…
No one says, “You can’t trust women,” but distrust them we do. College students surveyed revealed that they think up to 50% of their female peers lie when they accuse someone of rape, despite wide-scale evidence and multi-country studies that show the incident of false rape reports to be in the 2%-8% range, pretty much the same as false claims for other crimes. As late as 2003, people jokingly (wink, wink) referred to Philadelphia’s sex crimes unit as “the lying bitch unit.” If an 11-year-old girl told an adult that her father took out a Craigslist ad to find someone to beat and rape her while he watched, as recently actually occurred, what do you think the response would be? Would she need to provide a videotape after the fact?
It goes way beyond sexual assault as well. That’s just the most likely and obvious demonstration of “women are born to lie” myths. Women’s credibility is questioned in the workplace, in courts, by law enforcement, in doctors’ offices, and in our political system. People don’t trust women to be bosses, or pilots, or employees. Pakistan’s controversial Hudood Ordinance still requires a female rape victim to procure four male witnesses to her rape or risk prosecution for adultery. In August, a survey of managers in the United States revealed that they overwhelmingly distrust women who request flextime. It’s notable, of course, that women are trusted to be mothers—the largest pool of undervalued, unpaid, economically crucial labor.
I actually like the smell of cigarettes, like they give me some sort of comfort? I guess 'cause my mom smoked when I was little, though she stopped years ago. I don't know, do you know anybody who enjoys the smell too?
huh ive never heard that before
honestly i cant think of anyone i know who feels that way; i can sense it like many yards away ack
My mom was a smoker for the past 30 years, and quit two year ago, but she didn't like the electronic cigarettes because they left moisture in her lungs, and tasted weird/gross. Personally I think smoking is disgusting, and I'm glad she quit!
oh, no, not moisture, let’s go back to tar shit instead
Hey PK, ever since this Sean guy has been a major dick to you, I'm feeling conflicted to whether I should buy Dangan Ronpa or not. I'm aware it'll come with the JP audio but something tells me it'll feel like I'm supporting him if I do buy it, localized and all.
he’s already gotten his paycheck so the it doesn’t matter; you should support the game being localized for sure
My mom smokes as well and she only smokes in the kitchen or the bathroom. She's attempted to quit before but she couldn't do it :c. I've been trying to get her to buy one of those E-Cigarette things because they seem a bit healthier than normal cigarettes, but she's having a hard time transitioning.
it wouldn’t be so bad if people just did it away from everyone else or not in the house at all; my mom used to smoke only outdoors but then just didn’t feel like doing that anymore, much to my chagrin
also she would get pissed at people for not buying her cigs
That's another thing about my dad, for years he's smoked and he never tries to do it in another room, he just blows the smoke wherever the hell he wants. In elementary school I probably reeked and in high school teachers started asking me if I smoked. It became really embarrassing. My mom actually got on the electronic ones though. They really are great.
that makes me so sad i fucking hate smokers’ reek being all over non-smokers
Yeah my parents smoked when I was a kid too, and while they've long since quit now, the damage is done. If I get a cold I get that whole 'smokers cough' even though I have never smoked once in my life, and god forbid I do too much strenuous exercise. They've fucked up MY lungs, and suddenly I'm supposed to cater to the very people making things worse? No thanks.
Why is it that smokers are so afraid of electronic cigarettes to begin with? Sure, they're a little expensive, but they last a whole lot longer and don't threaten to suffocate my airway as I wait for the bus. Not to mention they're reusable and it should be the same without all the rat poison and road tar that a normal cigarette is loaded with.
yeah seriously i don’t know why people who NEED THEIR NICOTINE don’t just move to those
actually the whole habit just makes me mad; i lived with two smoker parents who didn’t give a shit about us kids, so
What could possibly justify this jerk hitting your friend to begin with? He should be castrated and sent to a mining prison where all the inmates dig for uranium if he has such a pig-headed ego that should have died off centuries ago. You should let your friend live with ya for the time being as she files for a permanent restraining order and papers to transfer this offender to prison.
it was a while ago apparently so I think she just wants to focus on getting her stuff and leaving ASAP
it’s going to be especially hard because they share a lot of things and
I just got really mad when I think about it but we offered her to come over anytime she needs it; we have her back as much as we can
Hi PK! I hope you're doing okay today. So, I have some questions. If I drew something for you, would it be best to submit it to you, and if so, to which blog? This one or your purplekecleon blog? Or would it be best to just post it to my own blog and tag you in it? Thanks!
oh! submitting to this blog is fine, or just tagging with my name does the trick as well! I follow that tag (purplekecleon)
Yeah, Sure, but if it effects you that bad, then maybe you should walk in their shoes. This is what I mean, there’s no convincing people of some small sort of acceptance. You can accept everyone except for smokers here apparently, and that’s a deep personal issue that you only see as a nuisance to your health.
NEWS FLASH: The world doesn’t revolve around you!
Maybe you should get your ass out of the smokers area. I’d hate for their lungs to be polluted by someone so vile and self centered. If you don’t want to help them, get the fuck out. Then maybe the world wouldn’t have a problem with Smokers.