Silence Is Violence

Sarah Hummell
6 min readNov 11, 2023
Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

Have you ever watched the news and seen one of those horrible stories about some stranger who killed their whole family and then killed themself? I have, I watched in horror, asking myself, “What kind of person does that?” I was thankful that I had a loving husband who would never do that to our family.

In August 2017, the person I thought was my loving husband turned out to be a monster. We came dangerously close to being one of those families killed at the hands of the person they trusted the most. Thankfully, we all survived that horrible day.

While there weren’t physical casualties, there was indeed death. My children’s innocence and our safety and security died that day. Our “Rock,” who we thought loved us enough to die for us, nearly killed us. Our image of our loving husband/father was forever shattered. Our entire world, as we knew it, changed, never to return.

It would take exactly four more years to the date of this incident for my husband’s self-destruction to catch up with him, leading to his physical death. My children and I would not stick around to be dragged down with him.

We fled the state, leaving our home, my business and livelihood, and the community I had spent my entire life building. We started all over in the world’s toughest, most expensive city! I quickly learned that we would never be safe no matter where we went.

You see, a piece of paper does not keep someone with mental illness away from you. In my husband’s mind, I stole his children from him; therefore, his violent actions were justified in his warped sense of justice. Yet, I still carried that order of protection in my purse. It became tattered and torn; the 52 times the order was violated, as I pulled it out for the police.

We couldn’t talk to anyone who knew my husband because they would innocently give up our location. We moved three times, and I changed jobs every six months. He always found us. He was finally arrested in Family Court for attempting to kidnap the kids from their school four months earlier. The judge still granted him visitation rights that day!

Going back to the first question I asked when I heard about the families that died, “What kind of a person does this to his own family?” After all that I went through, I still didn’t have an…