This past week has been much of an emotional roller coaster. I have committed to volunteer at the Women and Children's Crisis center which is a shelter for domestic violence victims and a rape hot line. Last Tuesday, I started my 20 hours of training and it was sure exhausting. Tuesday night it was from 5-9 pm, Thursday it was from 6-9, and Saturday it was from 8:30-4:30pm. We had workshops and lessons on how to deal with people who have been victims of these traumatic experiences. We had to learn all about rape and domestic violence, how to talk and listen to the victims and their children, how to get out of our comfort zone, different protocols to take, how to run the shelter, how to answer the phones, what to do in emergency cases, etc. At the same time, in my Women's Health class we were learning about the SAME topics. THEN, a UVU female student, living at Branbury Apartments in Provo, was raped while walking on a very popular trail at 3:00 in the afternoon. Her predator beat hear almost to death but somehow she managed to crawl up to the trail where people found her. She is still in critical condition and the doctors do not know if she will end up living. It seriously makes me physically ill to hear about this kind of thing. Utah is the highest state of rape...1 in 3 women will be raped. The national average is 1 in 4. I can't believe it! This subject is the only thing that poor Josh has been hearing about lately. Everyday I come home and tell him everything I learned throughout the day. I am so glad that I have chosen to volunteer though. Going through all the workshops I have learned so much and a lot of my prejudices and stereotypes have been broken. We only think that one kind of person is raped, or a certain social group, or in certain situations...but it can happen to ANYONE at ANYTIME. It just really makes me so sad that our world has become so violent.
One thing that I learned is that there are video games where you get points for raping and beating women and for having sex with a prostitute. WHAT?! Luckily they recalled the game, but it is still out there just with the raping part out. You get points and health for doing these activities on a video game? Young kids and teenagers are doing this everyday on their TV, no wonder it's going on all the time in the real world.
I just want to let everyone know what a big deal this really is and how often times we live in a bubble and are not educated on the matter, or we try and ignore it and think it will never happen to us, or whatever the reason is. Let's stop blaming the victim, they are already blaming them self they don't need others doing it too. Let's be very cautious everywhere we go and be familiar with our surroundings. Let's not go places by ourselves, but with others. Let's not be ignorant and understand that we too can be victims.
These are the types of people who need to be loved the most. I would love to have a career where I was working with these victims. That's why I decided to volunteer and be their friend. I would encourage everyone to reach out to those who are in need. It could be a neighbor or a family member. We don't know everyone's stories, especially cases like these...they are not going to tell people. We have to be so sensitive to others. I have really learned this this past week. My blog is right now acting like my journal. I am not calling people out, but reminding myself and hopefully I never forget the things I have recently learned.