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Whenever young women meet tragic endsa jogger who is raped and murdered by a serial killer, a teenager who is killed by her boyfriend after she breaks up with him, a high school girl who gets beat up by a group of girls she thought were her friends, or a series of prostitutes go missing after advertising on Craigslistmy phone starts ringing.
I spend the next few days on The Today Show, The Early Show, Nancy Grace, Jane Velez-Mitchell, Inside Edition, FOX and Friends, Dr. Drew, or HLN's Prime News talking about what kind of person would commit such a horrendous crime. I often discuss how the poor woman or girl ended up a victim and give advice to other females on how to avoid a similar situation. I hope to save lives by sharing some thoughts that maybe haven't occurred to some of the viewers or that might remind them of certain behaviors or choices that can put them in harm's way.
Usually after the shows, I get e-mails from many people thanking me for sharing information that can keep them or their loved ones from harm. Here are two e-mails I received following my July 2011 appearance on The Today Show when I spoke of the brutal murder of high school graduate Lauren Astley by her ex-boyfriend:
I just saw you on The Today Show speaking about a recent tragedy involving the violent murder of a recent high school graduate by, police believe, her boyfriend.
In that interview you spoke directly to girls who have recently broken up with their partner, advising that if that partner requests a meeting post-breakup that it not be done privately because the partner is counting on the fact that she's nice and will agree to meet.
I can't agree with you enough!
I fear however that wein particular womendon't actually teach our girls that it's okay to refuse that 'one last time' or that it's Okay and likely wise to break up in a public place or over the phone even, when one's partner exhibits dangerous traits.
Moreover, we don't even do a good job of teaching our girls how, in the depths of teenage love, to spot the subtle signs that scream 'danger.' Nor do we teach them how to put words to those gut instincts that tell us something is amiss with our partner and relationship, or, simply, that we deserve better than what we've been experiencing in the relationship at hand. We do, however, do a great job of teaching them that it's important to be nice, understanding, caring, and nurturing without also teaching them to be wise and deeply instinctual, as though the former and latter attributes are mutually exclusive.
So thank you for your very frank statement. It is my sincere hope, however, that you are able to carry that statement widely to girls and women everywhere as I truly believe we are needlessly losing our sisters to the false idea that our gender requires us to be 'nice' and 'nurturing' in all circumstances.
Best regards, Aurora Vasquez
Dear Ms. Brown,
Thank you for being the only voice [I hear] in the media calling domestic and dating violence what it is: power and control. Anchors and interviewers insist on trying to spin the 'he just snapped' angle . . . 'he was a great kid, great guy, wonderful man . . . what caused him to snap all of a sudden?'
You made that point this morning on The Today Show, countering the therapist's comments and speaking directly to girls and women. Giving them information that could save their lives.
©2012. Pat Brown. All rights reserved. Reprinted from How to Save Your Daughter's Life: Straight Talk for Parents from America's Top Criminal Profiler. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442