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18 June 2007 @ 05:29 pm
Holy chrisly jumping jacks of fury, this is social work?  
i will vent about today. my day, although i'm not sure it belonged to me.

i get to work at noon, hungry, a bit twitchy, but otherwise in a good space. One of my clients comes up to me in the lunch line (today was quesadillas...mmm, cheese) and tells me that his girlfriend is upset about something that happened last night and she wants to talk to me. I find her in the courtyard, with the highly-pressurized facial expression i see all the time here. we go out back to my office and this face crumples like bits of soggy paper towel. She tells me she was raped last night, by someone who happens to be at the teen center at the moment. i won't share the details of our subsequent conversation, but it involved lots and lots of "this is not your fault" and "you didn't deserve this because you were drunk" responses on my end. she tells me her mother doesn't believe her, and that she thinks that anything that happened was a consequence of her drinking. She tells me people are already warning her against telling anyone because she's lying and she will get jumped. Her boyfriend believes her and people are also threatening him. she tells me the grisly moment-to-moment account of the event, and i jot key phrases down, like "dragged by hair into bedroom," "held knife beside her during rape," "warned not to tell anyone because he'll kill her--motioned knife across throat."
we finish filling our protection from harassment form, later to become protection from abuse, which holds more clout, although if you don't talk to the right clerk at the courthouse, they won't allow it, because "abuse" is defined by 3 or more occurances. uh huh. we call for an advocate from sexual assault crisis services to meet us at court. we get the boyfriend, waiting out in the drop-in.

we go to court and meet this fumbling waste of an advocate, a woman named Marty. Marty does a lot of staring blankly and looking confused about where to go from here. She looks at me a lot, whenever a question is asked, because i'm the person trained in sexual assault treatment and victim advocacy. We don't have the address of the boy who raped my client, and they won't file a report without the exact address. of course this agitates my poor client. it agitates me, as well,but i can't yell or kick the table like i want to. Marty suggests driving by the apartment of the rapist. this sounds a bit shady to me, but i decide to do it, if it gets the slime-fuck away from this poor girl. In retrospect, this was an absolutely horrible thing to suggest, and for me to agree to. Send a victim of sexual assault away from safe place, in the car of young female teen center caseworker to do a couple drivebys to scan for a building number on rapist's apartment building. have any of you seen me drive and try to obtain information in my surroundings? it usually involves some kind of near-crash or scenario where i drive away and quickly, nervous for 48 hours about a potential door-knocking or phone call from a Law Enforcement Officer.
my two clients and i go outside to my car, parked in front of the courthouse. It has already been ticketed. who the fuck would ticket someone helping a rape victim file protection paperwork? Near my car are three females who use the teen center. Somehow the universe has timed it perfectly so that the queen homicidal-suicidal-rage-filled-fucking-pissed-and-personality-disordered client leading this group of similiarly dysfunctional girls is perched right beside my car. like fat pigeons on a perfectly beautiful sunny day, the clement green of the park lolling behind them like a goddamn edward hopper painting.

she spots us walking towards the car and starts screeching about talkin' shit because you wanted to fuck him, you fucked him three nights in a row--she comes around the expired meter and i order the kids to get in the car and lock the doors. i do the same. my female client is super-smart and has locked the door before i even tell her to. this move turns out to be a parallel to adding volatile chemicals to an already seething hiss for leader-of-the-pack girl, who starts screaming orders to get out of the car. she rattles off ass-kickin' talk and bangs against my car, pulling on the handle of the passenger side door, bracing against it with her foot, where my female client is sitting, yelling back: "i'll get a restraint order against you too, you fat fucking cunt!" toughgirl is pounding against my car, I'm yelling at her too at this point, to get away from the car, as i jolt into reverse and literally bump this bitch out of the way. we zip off, luckily my car can still zip, ganggirl yelling, running and waving fists at us in the rearview mirror. her minions stand with fuck-you faces beside her.

let me give some background here. last night, gang-girl leader, i'll call her...Dizzy... to protect confidentiality, came into the teen center, barking up hell clouds. She let everyone around her, including staff, know she was going to kill one of the girls that comes here. I also happen to work with the targeted girl, (not the same girl i've already discussed). my client already knows this, Dizzy has been threatening her for a week or so, only today have the threats elevated from "kick your ass" to "i'm going to kill you." Dizzy goes to confront my client, however, a protective friend stands between them. A protective pregnant friend. there was no ass-kickin right then.
Dizzy leaves and i talk to my client, devising a plan for her to stay safe. She doesn't want the cops involved, and that makes sense, especially now. that would guarantee death. you don't snitch if you live on the streets. i learned that right away in this particular field. (not because i've lived on the streets. i don't even like camping on the weekends, hello.) this is ultimate betrayal and it's incredibly dangerous. and if there is no concrete situation, nothing happens except imminent death and pissy cops.

fast-forward to 10ish minutes later. my client has left. Dizzy comes barreling in, fuckin' pissed. she has the pressurized look i described earlier. she wants to talk to a staff person out back, right the fuck now. she picks me. we go out back to the office. at that moment i'm a little intimidated. i haven't had much one-on-one with this girl and she's a tough-fucking-bitch. you get that. she's also someone i am SO intrigued by. if this girl used her powers for good instead of evil, she would be the goddamn President of the World by now. i've never met a young girl who is such an advocate for herself, is so unconditionally loyal to her friends and who has dealt with more horrible trauma and pain from birth. and she's a mean motherfucker. this girl can and will tear the toughest boy's dick off. in her words. actually every time she gets pissed at staff, she'll yell, "get the fuck off my dick!" "quit riding my motherfuckin' cock!" i always want to yell that when i get annoyed by someone....

Dizzy sits down and gives me the scoop. it's been a long time since she's held a gun. She's fucking pissed. a girl here is talking shit, actually, the only thing that comes out of her mouth is shit. spreading lies about her friend, how he tried to drug her,rape her,(this is common here) and now she won't even come near Dizzy to say it to her face. Dizzy's not afraid to kill anyone. Dizzy's not afraid to punch her fat fucking bitch-ass friend in the stomach and kill her baby. After Dizzy finishes here, she's going to her uncle's house, getting his gun, and shooting (former) bitch, shooting her fat cunt friend and her (pussy, not fuckin' tough, and people around here know i fight guys) boyfriend, and then shooting herself afterwards. that was the jist of our conversation.
Dizzy does not remove her eyes from mine the entire time. like a laser-suction-tunnel of fury. then she stops suddenly, saying, "i feel better now, i'm done talking" and gets up to leave. i won't give all the details of the rest of the night, but it involved a lot of phone calls and attempts at some phantasmal version of protection for as many people as possible. i hate the cops too. i hate calling them and having to ask them to come to the teen center for whatever reason. anytime a cop enters the teen center, it's like an elephant filled with inky black slime exploded and saturated everyone with sticky venom-tar. cops are severely retarded and whole-heartedly dangerous when it comes to mental health and dealing with crises. and they are also all-around remedials in most situations involving homelessness, not wanting to be homeless, and wanting to be intoxicated. say no-no to the po-po.

so back to today's situation. Dizzy ain't too fond of life right now, probably not me either. one of the scarier parts of yesterday's situation (there are so many to choose from) is that my client never came back to the teen center last night, like she told me she would, and she hasn't been around today. When someone makes specific threats against another person, social workers have A Duty To Warn. that means when she does come in, along with the other two targets, we all have to sit down and i have to explain that their lives are in danger and why. It amazes me that the Bayside area of Portland doesn't just explode into black-orange death-flames of pain and fury. and this is Portland Maine. for christ sakes.

Can you imagine being raped, running away from the scene to the shelter, where the cops are called because you're freaking out, and have "become a danger to others", and the next day when you have the guts and strength to report the rape--your life, your boyfriend's life is threatened because you were a lying snitch? telling your mother and she hangs up on you, after yelling that it was your fault because you drank? actually being in That Situation, where you have to convince others, friends, family, that you didn't ask for it, that you aren't lying and that you weren't actually alone and drunk and wanted to cheat on your boyfriend? this is the bullshit of decades ago, right? when you had to convince a judge that it wasn't your fault because you had on tight jeans. And this isn't a scenario where pruned, wilfull conservatives fight against the slut trying to ruin some guy's life because she wants attention. this is right now, and these are kids, 18, 19 years old, so controlled by the alpha-supportive pack leader/street father-figure that they try to hurt or kill someone else when situations that threaten their sense of control in their world arises. Homeless kids, with fucked-up abuse and trauma histories, kids who throw around any kind of threat or talk and land in Spring Harbor for 24 hours, where the system brands them as manipulative borderline personality disorder cases,"not biological but characterological" which means they're fucked up because of WHO THEY HAVE BECOME and HOW THEY HAVE ADAPTED and not "real" illness, that is "genetic" and therefore funded, then take away or never provide any long-term support or assistance. then they actually jump an older homeless man for his scripts, and become fucked-up traumatized manipulative-personality-disorder cases in Warren until they get out and become homeless adults, or fossilized scared kids of a bullshit system in a bullshit world.

fishing for the positive fishing for the positive...ooh, does this mean now i'm an almost-tough-bitch? tough mofo by proxy? D'oh.