Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel
Like you're less than, less than perfect
I've dealt with a couple of these situations also, and the last one, after I realized what had happened, I totally disconnected from it, like it wasn't even happening to me. This one is taking me YEARS to work through (and I am still working through it a bit) but it involved a guy that wanted to kidnap me and it just seems very surreal......
I'm so glad you are okay! ((((Jrazz))))
I'm shaking just reading about your horrible encounter.
My skin crawled and the hair stood up on my neck when you wrote what he said to you.
I am so happy you got out of there.
I have the worst feeling that "talking" was not on his agenda.
I hope the calls to the police went well.
DD(21), DS(18, PDD-NOS)
6 Furkids - 4 dogs, 2 cats
WXH (serial cheater, 12+ OW) - Legally married 18yrs
I edit often for clarity.
The police took a statement but said they couldn't file a formal report unless I physically show up. I have a pile of family in police and I'm going to ask them if that's true or if I'm getting blown off. I don't want to obsess over this, but I want to do something to help if I can.
Still haven't locked in an IC. I know it's really important but I'm starting to feel the wall go up there and I need to push through it.
You went through a traumatic experience and the last thing you want is to have it boomerang back up to the surface at a later date if you don't deal with it now. I only say that from experience. I put stuff off, it was done over and finished, only to have it come back to bite me in the butt at another time. That may not happen to you, but you can't predict if it will or won't.
We care and want you to take care of yourself. Now my CoD pushiness is showing.
I'm so glad you are ok. What an absolutely terrifying experience!
I haven't read all the posts but I did see your last one where you talked to the police. Did you talk to a detective? If not, then that's probably the next step I would take...particularly if you can get in touch with the department that handles sex crimes. I would let him/her know the connection to the call that came from the store. It would be most interesting to know if the man actually stayed for the cops to come. Because that's what you would expect someone who is innocent to actually do, right? If he has stayed and given his information, that's the main thing. If he hasn't, then I think it's really important that you make yourself known to detectives that handle these types of assaults. They may already be working a case where your information could be vital; they may be working one in the future.
If all you've done is to talk with officers then that may be why you are hitting a brick wall. There's really not much that they can do for you. But there's the potential that there may be MUCH you can do for them (as well as other victims that may not have been as fortunate).
I would also consider going back to the store to talk to the clerk that was on duty. I would be particularly interested to know where their cameras are located. If there's not one in the hall (if I'm understanding the layout) then there should be. If there is, then it should clearly show that the man entered the women's restroom TWICE. Don't wait on that. The police can - and should - request any footage that is available.
Document everything. Start now. Include names, dates, times. This is a big deal. It needs to be addressed. Your actions can literally be the thing that saves another woman. I hate to put the heavy on you but that may be the role you are being called to play.
Big hugs. Keep that same fighting spirit going.
First of all, I am so glad you are ok. Fortunately, you seem to be one who is able to just react and sort of go on auto-pilot in a crisis. Not everyone has that ability.
It sucks that, as a woman, these types of things just seem to be a fact of life. I know that men get assaulted too - but for the most part, women (and children) are the ones most in danger from this sort of thing. Most men never think twice about going to a restroom alone. And they wonder why women travel in packs!
I know I've had several minor encounters - a random man grabbing my breasts at a tech conference, for one (and he escaped in the crowd before I could deck him, which is what I was trying to do.)
But I've had two that were especially rough. In college, I was going to meet a group I was a part of. It was on a Sunday afternoon, so other than the main buildings, most of the buildings on campus were pretty deserted. We were meeting in a theatre in one of the smaller buildings - except they had changed the meeting location and I hadn't gotten the message.
As I was heading towards the theatre, a man of (I think) middle eastern descent who did not seem to speak much english started talking to me - asking where I was going, saying things like "your skin is so pale" and "your eyes are so blue". I kept walking and said I was meeting my friends. As I got to the theatre, several things happened all at practically the same time:
-I took one step in, realized the theatre was dark, and stopped.
-The man kept following me in, and was right behind me, blocking the door.
-Out of instinct, I started talking very loudly, saying "oh, they aren't here, they must be at the other meeting place, and they'll be looking for me." And I walked straight forward into him, pushing him back out of the theatre so I could get out the door past him.
I started walking as quickly as I could, almost running down the stairs. He kept up with me, grabbed my arm, held it next to his, and said, "See, so pale. Your skin is so much lighter than mine. You go out with me? You be my girlfriend?"
I yanked my arm away from him, yelled "I HAVE A BOYFRIEND!" (I didn't), and ran out the door and into the open mall area. I looked desperately for other people, saw some all the way across the mall, and headed straight for them. About halfway across, I realized he had quit following me.
The other one was when I was driving cross country alone while I was in college. I was supposed to stop before it got dark, but I waited a little longer than I should have, and ended up on a stretch of road that had NOTHING right off the highway for between 50 - 80 miles or so. And I managed to (accidentally) catch the eye of some trucker who started making lewd gestures at me. He then proceeded to play "tag" with me (slowing in front of my car until I had no choice but to pass him, unless I wanted to stop in the middle of the road, and then once I passed him, speeding up and passing me).
After a couple of rounds of that, we got to a sign for a rest area coming up in like 5 miles or so. He stayed in front of me and turned on his turn signal, trying to get me to follow him. I knew that an 18 wheeler couldn't maneuver very well, so I tried to get some space to get away by acting like I was following him into the rest area, waiting until (I thought) he was too far committed to go back out on the road, then speeding past him. He went across a gravel divider at full speed to get back out on the road and chase me.
The problem was, I didn't know the area, and was afraid to stop anywhere without knowing where I could find a police station. I didn't know if I pulled off if I would find a place with enough people to make this guy leave me alone. And I was afraid if I tried to go find a motel for the night, he would just watch where I went, and then come track me down.
So... I just pushed my car up to about 120. Yep, 120 ('76 Chevy Caprice Classic!) I knew there was no way he could keep up with me in his rig. I just kept my foot on the floor for at least 20 miles or so, hoping a cop would pull me over! None did. But by then, I couldn't see him at all, and knew he was a ways behind me, so the next exit that had decent motels, I pulled off. And I made sure I parked where my car couldn't be seen from the highway or by just driving past the motel - you had to drive around the motel to see my car. I barely slept that night. I figured there was no way he could have followed me, but....
I was young, and didn't know completely what to do. I just called my parents to let them know I'd stopped, and didn't tell them anything (because I didn't want them to worry! ) I realize now I should have called the police so they could have kept an eye on the motel where I was staying that night, but I didn't know any better then.
It's scary, because I realize (as I know you do) that these situations could have gone MUCH differently than they did.
I'm so glad you're dealing well with it. I know I did too - If you're anything like me, part of it was that the situation was past, so I couldn't do anything to change it. I just let it make me more aware of my surroundings. And I did take some self-defense, and started trying to be more aware of my surroundings. Still, there's only so much you can do.
Lots of big hugs, (((((((((Jrazz))))))))))
[This message edited by osxgirl at 11:59 AM, July 3rd (Thursday)]
This isn't nearly as extreme, but I remember the first time I realized how vulnerable I was (we all are) to assault. I was in high school, either a freshman or a sophomore, and I was walking to a school dance after a football game. I don't know why I was by myself, but I was. To get to the gym I had to walk through a large open area and up some stairs. I saw a group of teenage boys, maybe five or six of them, standing to the side of the open area. My school was rather small, maybe 900 students total, and I didn't know any of these boys, so I felt kind of nervous. I thought it would be RUDE to move away from them to the other side of the open area, as they were near where I was walking, so I didn't (stupid). As I walked by, one of them reached out and grabbed my ass and squeezed. I whirled around and said, "Um, excuse me?!?" and the guy said, "What, what are you going to do?" And they all laughed. I looked around, realized that I was 5'7" and weighed maybe 120 pounds at the time, and that these guys were all big six-footers. And I was all alone. And it was dark. And what WAS I going to do? Jack shit. I was completely helpless and it felt awful. So I turned around and walked into the gym while they laughed and I guess I'm lucky that nothing else happened.
And it sucks that this happens all the time.
Dixie - CoD at me as much as you want. I'm one of those people that actually considers and takes advice rather than get defensive, so I can use all the pushing I can get.
truthset - I completely agree with you. I'm going to talk to my uncle today who has been an officer in a major metro for a long time and find the best chain to get this ball rolling. I also have a call out to the manager of the CVS (not shift manager - she was useless) to have a conversation about the security tapes. The lady I talked to couldn't tell me if they had cameras in the hallway leading to the restroom, but they sure as hell have footage of me bursting back into the main room, going to the pharmacy, then the front counter as that skeeze followed me.
I need to reiterate, I am 2,150 miles from where this happened, so going in to physically meet with anyone is pretty impossible right now.
Thank you all for your support.
[This message edited by Jrazz at 12:22 PM, July 3rd (Thursday)]
I had to calm myself a bit before I could reply too. I've had a few scary encounters as well.
Once when I was in my early 20s or late teens I went to Mardi Gras in NOLA with friends from college. We were on the street and pushing through the cloud when I got pulled away from my girlfriends (we were all holding hands). I got trapped in a crowd of young men that were dressed kind of gangsta and talked kind of ghetto. They proceeded to grope me all over while I pushed to get out of their crowd and screamed. They were laughing. I still don't like crowds though I rarely get panicky anymore. I will not be in a crowd without knight at my side.
Once when I was living outside of the beltway near DC, when my oldest DD was a baby, a "deliveryman" rang the doorbell. I went to the door with my full grown boxer and just cracked the door. No uniform and an unmarked white van with no windows...we weren't expecting any packages.
Delivery guy: I have a package for you.
Me: where is it?
DG: in the van. I need you to come get it.
(Dog who usually tries to lick strangers to death is growling menacingly)
Me: no bring it to the door. I'm not leaving my baby in the living room alone. My husband is in the kitchen. (He wasn't home)
DG: goes to his van gets in and speeds off.
I called the police and they had had a rash of abduction/rapes in the area.
I asked them to come speak to the other military spouses in the small unit that was temporarily (1 year) in the area for training. We had a spouses meeting at my house with a policeman telling us how to protect ourselves. It helped me cope with the fear. I loved that dog.
Telling the story will help you and helping others to be safe will too. You have done that by sharing here. And by talking to the police and store manager.
[This message edited by knightsbff at 6:16 PM, July 3rd (Thursday)]
I edit often because I make a lot of typos. ☺️
I got the name of the officer I spoke to, because I was getting the distinct feeling that maybe he was trying to brush me off. At one point I was like, "So, I was attacked in a restroom and I'm calling you to do something about it and you're telling me that there's nothing you can do?" and he said, "Well, if you call back in a few hours you can talk to someone else, but we really can't help you unless you come in."
I'm like, "Who is the someone else? Does that person serve a function where they take statements over the phone?" and he paused and got short, like "Well, you can TRY. You can try to call back or I can have someone call back but there's really nothing we can do."
Like he just didn't want to deal with it.
I also asked if they get calls like this often/ever and he mentioned that they are "Very busy - all the time."
I am glad that you are pursuing it with the police and with IC.
I think it is something that we as women need to be reminded of. It happens, we don't get too old for it and always need to be aware.
I read recently, I wish I could remember where that we have a protection mechanism and we have been taught to disregard it, telling ourselves, "I am overreacting", "he meant no harm", listen to your internal gut.
I also had an "incident", a couple of weeks after dday #1, November 2012, I stopped at a convenience store on the way home from work. It was dark, I needed dog food and was too tire to go to the pet store. I parked on the side, not wanting to block the pumps.
I went in bought the dog food but was tunnel vision, lost in my own head, not aware at all of my surroundings. Just going through the motions but not paying attention to my surroundings at all.
I went to my car, started to unlock it and a man grabbed me from behind, I could not move, dropped the keys, the dog food. He had me pinned and I could not get away. He was in my ear saying, "hug me, hug me".
Then he ran away. I took it as a warning, be aware. I didn't report it. What could I say? I never saw him and that still makes me nervous. He could be standing next to me and I wouldn't know.
To add a bit more bizarreness to the story, as I was struggling to get away, wh drove by as I was fighting off this guy. Too strange.
I think I was in shock after. I got in my car and just drove around. I was too afraid to go home to a dark house. I was so afraid that I never saw his face.
It sounds silly, "hug me" but it scared me.
It sure was a wake up call. I am 54 and thought that I was not at risk so much any more, not true. We all have to be aware, protect ourselves.
Be kind to yourself, it really is traumatic.
I would now like to be known as Can!
dday October 21,2012
dday December 20, 2013
attempted R, it was all a lie
Do what you can with the police, but make sure you get some healing counseling.
Don't let them get you down.
Love you, rosacea and all.