A courageous bystander’s actions meant a lot: Sarah’s Story

Written by Workhorse Marketing

Guest post by Sarah W. – student at the University of Texas

“A couple of years ago I was going through a breakup with my abusive girlfriend. I had been trying to distance myself from her and had recently told her that I didn’t want to see her anymore. She started following me on her moped as I walked to the UT campus, harassing me and yelling at me for trying to end the relationship. I was really scared and upset and was trying to get away, but she kept riding right up next to me as I walked and I had nowhere to go. I knew that attempting to call the police or run away at that moment would greatly escalate the situation (as it had in the past), and I honestly didn’t know what to do. Thankfully, an older woman in her car drove up and asked if I was okay, and if I needed a ride. That scared my ex off and I was able to get to class quickly. Not only did the bystander help diffuse the situation, but she also made me see the situation from an outsider’s eyes, and helped me realize that the way my ex was treating me wasn’t okay. The woman’s concern for my safety also validated my feelings of fear and frustration.  I think about that day often, and wish that I could thank her for stepping in; such a small gesture really meant a lot to me.”

Last month, we asked people to send in their stories of times they, or someone else, had been a “Courageous Bystander.” Thanks for sharing Sarah!

If you have a story you’d like to submit, send it to Communications@SafePlace.org!