Three Cover-up Lies the Abused Tell
It is very common behavior for victims to protect, cover-up for, and take the blame for their abuser’s crime. Often, they help the abuser get away with it by telling one or more of the following lies:
- The survivor lies and says that the abuser did not do it.
- The survivor lies (out of fear, coercion, or love confusion) and says that she started it.
- The survivor lies to herself and says that she deserves it.
Partner-on-partner crimes are not just ignored in professional sports. Law enforcement is often hesitant to get involved in domestic disputed. Police officers do not like going to domestic violence crime scenes and members of the court do not like prosecuting them. One of the main reasons is the abused unwillingness to cooperate. Another reason is the abused complicity in covering up the crime.
The aforementioned should be considered in terms of the current discussion regarding Janay Palmer’s attack and what the NFL knew, when the NFL- specifically Commissioner Roger Goodell- know it, and why they come back with a harsher penalty after the second tape was released. In the case of Ray Rice, it is quite plausible that Rice was the instigator; yet, Palmer told NFL officials that she started the fight, but they saw a different story when they viewed the latest tape. This scenario is possible, because Palmer is no different than many other unknown women facing domestic violence who lie for their abusers. Her horror story is just more public.
The increased exposure in high profile cases can make the victim feel that much more protective of her abuser. Nevertheless, the abused rich and famous are not the only ones who enable their partners by covering up their crimes. Your neighbor, co-worker, fellow church friend, sister, mother, or perhaps even you have done the exact same thing. One of the ways we can end abuse is by empowering women to take the first step in freedom- being honest with themselves and admitting the problem.
Previous posts in the Domestic Violence Awareness Series
The Cover-up: Three Lies the Abused Tell for the Abuser