***ALL POINTS TRIGGER ALERT FOR RAPE AND CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE IN LINKS***
This is one of those things from which we wish to recoil. But we cannot. One of the hard truths we have come to realize in the wake of this is that despite what we may wish otherwise, there is not a thing that Backup could have done to prevent this. It is just so far beyond the scope of what we envisioned the Backup Ribbon Project to do that we left are struggling to understand the enormity of it.
When it is abuse in the home (although we would not be surprised if it also went on at events), that is at a level beyond our capabilities. This is, as they say, best left to the professionals.
The problem, of course, is that it is well-documented that first responders and ER personnel dread domestic violence or abuse cases. First responders are walking into a volatile situation in which the dynamics can go badly wrong at any given moment, resulting in danger to victims or even to themselves. In the ER, personnel may get conflicting or outright untrue stories as to the source of the injuries (“Janey fell off the swing set again”)
If cases like those surrounding MZB are difficult for trained professionals to handle, we have but no choice to admit that we are out of our league.
That may be all the wisdom we can hope to glean from this. That there are things beyond our abilities to avoid, and the best we can do is provide as much solace and comfort to victims after the fact. And that is both the hardest thing we can do, as well as the best.