“You know, my grandma was a traiteurs…uh huh, she was. Laid her hands on people and cured ‘em. Took away sickness, cancer, you name it…I remember she used to pray a lot…talked to God about the pain she pulled out. Asked Him to carry it away. That’s what she did.”
-Eugene “Doc” Roe, Band of Brothers
In law enforcement, some days there isn’t a right answer.
Sometimes you bust down a door to get to a “suicidal” party who isn’t suicidal. But as you build rapport with her she starts saying weird stuff.
You realize she doesn’t remember anything between arriving at Hooters and being in that bathtub.
She only had a Long Island iced tea and she didn’t finish it all.
She’s got scars on her wrists from her ongoing battle with depression – but she can’t explain the bruises to the back of her head, her buttocks, her thighs and her shins.
She says this happens often. Every time she has a good day.
Even after you explain to her, in kinder words, that she was most likely slipped rohypnol and passed around like a bong…she still won’t leave the house. She just wants to go to sleep.
You recognize every classic sign of psychological abuse, but she’s terrified that she’ll get put in a mental institution. She was in rehab once and she hated it. She won’t go to the hospital to get checked out.
It’s possible that she’s still popping Xanex, and the bruises come from falling down and tripping on end tables. It’s possible that she’s lying about how much she had to drink, or whether or not she took any pills before drinking, or just lying because she likes the attention. It’s possible.
Your instinct tells you she’s telling the truth, at least as she sees it. But she’s a grown woman. She’s given no indication that she wants to hurt herself, or others. She’s safe, in her own home – no weapons to harm herself with, conscious and uninjured. There is no basis to involuntarily commit her to the hospital.
As to the possibility that she’s being raped, she seems to think it’s possible too – but she insists that she stays.
So you turn out the light, lock her bedroom door, and leave her.
Some days there isn’t a right answer, and you have to carry it.