Being a Courageous Bystander: Melanie’s Story

Written by Workhorse Marketing

Guest post by Melanie

“I was in my mom’s home sitting on the front porch with my laptop when I started to hear a lot of yelling. At first I thought it was just my neighbors and their kids yelling, but then I heard a car door open and slam, over and over again. I was scared and went inside for a moment to grab my cellphone. I went back outside and kept listening. It became obvious after another minute that it was a man and a woman inside a vehicle.  The woman was trying to escape and he was screaming obscene sexual demands at her.  I dialed 911 and as soon as someone was on the line I ran toward the car. The girl’s window was down.  Her hair was wild and her face was swollen and covered in tears. I told her to please get out of the car and I would help her. The man said he was her boyfriend and to fuck off. I told him no boyfriend should ever speak to his girlfriend that way, and he needed to let her leave and the cops were on their way.  I opened her car door and carried her out. He sped away. She had been beaten and was hysterical. I held her and talked to her until the cops arrived.  I never knew who she was or if she ever pressed charges.  I’ve thought of her a lot lately. I was raped in April. SafePlace has helped me every step of the way.”

Being a Courageous Bystander sometimes looks like this. Sometimes it’s not safe to intervene.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month so we asked people to share stories about times they, or someone else, has been a Courageous Bystander, and we’re sharing them on the blog. Thanks for sharing Melanie! If you’d like to share your story it’s not too late! You can email it to the SafePlace Communications Department. Don’t forget to take the pledge to be a Courageous Bystander!