The following is the second of three excerpts from a recent column by Nancy Eshelman of the Patriot-News in Central Pennsylvania. Ms. Eshelman’s husband was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in a domestic violence related incident.
“The terror is constant. It takes a toll, physically and mentally.
If I think about it, and I try not to, I still shiver from the fear.
Night after night, unable to sleep, convinced that every passing car, every tree branch blowing in the wind is him.
For a victim of domestic violence, peace is elusive, sleep unknown.
I recall rushing home from work and taking a shower because somehow being naked and alone in the bathroom felt less vulnerable in daylight.
The victim longs to feel normal, but normal is no longer part of her existence.
If she’s a mother, she strives to create a semblance of normalcy for her kids. She helps with homework, but can’t concentrate. She attends their activities, but often misses the action.
Instead of watching her son running up and down the basketball court, she’s scanning the stands, terrified she will see that face, the one that haunts her.
As one woman described it, ‘You become like a guerilla warrior – constantly scanning your surroundings, looking over your shoulder, and jumping at every sound.’
Spivak Law Firm provides strong, compassionate representation in PFA and criminal domestic-violence cases. For a free consultation, call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.