10/17/2010 | Share this article: View CommentsI work in a call center, doing Internet technical support for a huge company. I get a lot of calls where people try to bring up religion, and I normally just change the subject. I got a call this past week that broke my heart and made me so angry at religion.
Image by Bridgette Taylor via FlickrThis woman called in wanting her Internet set up. Normal call; not a big deal. I noticed she sounded a bit slurry, but we have had drunk customers before, so I didn't think anything of it. Then at one point, I had to read her a code, and as I started reading it, she asked me to go real slow, because four days previously her husband had beat her pretty badly, and she might have a concussion, some broken ribs and a broken foot. Horrible situation, and my first reaction was to ask her if I could call her an ambulance or the police at least. She told me, "No. If I call he will just beat me again. I have made a covenant with God in my marriage. This is my burden." Are you fucking serious!?!?!?!?! I was so taken aback by that. Throughout the call I offered several times to call an ambulance, telling her that the hospital staff would help her, that a womans shelter would help and protect her, that she could be safe. Each time she told me no. Towards the end of the she asked me if I believed in God. I told her yes, hoping that if she thought I was a Christian she would listen to me. I told her no one ever has the right to hurt her, and God wants her to have a loving, pain-free marriage. And if her pastor told her anything different, he was not a man of God. She again told me her marriage was a covenant with God, and she would not break her covenant, and if God wanted to save her, he would. I told her that God will only help those who help themselves. She then asked me in the most heartbreaking voice I have ever heard, to pray for her, and she hung up. I was so angry and upset I had to leave my desk.
Why does this woman think it's ok for her husband to beat her? Because she thinks the Bible told she has to stay with him, no matter what. I am still so angry about this, and feel so powerless to do anything.
(Side note - I reported the entire phone call to my management, but because she specifically told me not to call the police or an ambulance, that if I did she could have legal recourse against me. I was told that my company security group would handle the situation, whatever that means)
Filed Under: Opinion