Dr. Petit Keeps Memory Of Family Alive - Connecticut News Story - WFSB Hartford
I was recently made aware of the Petit Family Foundation's expansion into helping victims of violence and needless to say was deeply moved by this news.
I have said from the beginning that I firmly believe that the Petit crimes crimes of violence against women rather than the "robbery gone awry" theme that seemed to dominate the traditional media outlets immediately after the crimes happened.
Today I read within the linked article that the Petit family foundation is helping to fund a new domestic violence shelter in New Britain. This is simply awe inspiring to me and proof that the circle of hope and healing only grows when separately and together we turn toward difficult and painful issues rather than turning away from them- because they are uncomfortable or perhaps we feel that they don't affect us.
At the core of domestic and partner violence is a veritable well of pain, suffering and fear.
It is the only type of violent crime that stands very nearly mute within society's daily discourse. This silence has served as its enabler and at times even its co-conspirator.
It is time that we grow as a people and break this silence. We can begin with awareness and education; learning about the hallmarks of an abusive relationship and what to look for in people with abusive behaviors. Very Often these tendencies begin in the teenage years.
Teen dating violence is on the rise and already more prevalent than most could imagine.
Its easy for a teenager who is perhaps experiencing their first relationship to mistake extreme jealousy and controlling behaviors for love or passion.
This jealousy or controlling can be the hallmark of an abuser. What starts as verbal or emotional abuse can escalate to pushing, slapping and much worse.
Adolescence is a time often fraught with secrecy, and as such many well meaning parents are unaware that their teen is experiencing physical or emotional abuse- the latter can include threats or directives re things like who to talk to, how to dress etc.
Clearly we need to de-mystify the entire issue of partner dating violence for our selves and our children. It should become a well talked about issue and in turn, everyone becomes familiarized with the hallmarks of abusive behavior as well as where to seek help for a freind or loved one.
In the meantime, I am heartened when I think about how many lives that Dr Petit and family have helped and perhaps even saved, by turning their foundations efforts towards this grave and important cause.