June 12, 2010

How do you deal with the trauma of an order of protection?

Yes, I'm still taking a brief break from my PPD posts here and posting on my current ordeal instead....

But, before I delve more into my stuff, it just occurred to me that it must be an absolute nightmare to be a new mom AND to deal with the devastation of a traumatic divorce. I can't imagine juggling the demands of a newborn while coping with the fear, shock and craziness that comes with divorce. And what if you have to deal with filing a restraining order against your spouse or significant other at the same time? I can't even begin to imagine.

It's difficult enough wading through the court system while trying to find people who can help advocate for you. I've been extremely fortunate to have found an incredible local resource that I never knew existed until I was forced to call upon the police one horrible night this past February. That incident triggered a phone call with the Victim Services Program at my local police department where I discovered amazing advocates (both paid and volunteer staff) who are incredibly knowledgeable and supportive.

These dedicated Victim Services advocates are amazing and heroic in their efforts on behalf of women who are suffering, and who need legal guidance as well as police assistance. I will forever be grateful to Betsy, one of the advocates there who not only held my hand throughout the traumatic Order of Protection filing process, but she also successfully tracked down my ex-husband, Neil Zucconi, in California to have him served with the Order of Protection.

But even with that tremendous support, I have often felt very alone throughout this time. Not because I don't have amazing, caring friends and family supporting me, but because I really don't know others who have gone through this. I never imagined this would happen to me. I never even imagined that I'd ever have to call 911. This wasn't supposed to be part of my life.

But then again, whoever expects this stuff to happen. Things like postpartum depression, cancer, losing your job, death of a loved one, domestic violence, ... you name it. Something devastating can seep insidiously into your life with little or no warning, and there you are. I guess it's all about how you cope....

You can find a lot more about this part of my life on my other blog, http://orderofprotectionsurvivor.blogspot.com.


Anonymous said...

I'm glad that you found help but it sucks that you had to go through what you did. There are some really bad men out there who have no problem abusing and scaring women. I hope you find closure and peace.

Susan said...

Hey, girl. I got here from your Facebook page. Just want to say I applaud your bravery here. You go!

Anonymous said...

i think i need to get an order of protection but i dont know how.. do i call the police first or do i get an attorney? any advice will help!

Kristin said...

Hi, Anon,

I'm so sorry that you are in this kind of scary situation.

Since I've been writing online on various web sites about my experience filing an Order of Protection, I've had a couple of people reach out to me for help. I don't know how much I can help, other than sharing my experience and the resources that I found helpful when I was going through it. If you'd like to communicate with me directly, I'm using the following email address for this topic: kristinzucconi@gmail.com.

I hope you feel safe soon!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you are writing about your experience. People need to know that there are really bad people out there who can destroy your life. You are warning women based on your own experience, and that is a good thing.