Relationship Violence Kills Four Women a Day in the U.S. Join Glamour’s Tell Somebody Campaign to Put a Stop to It!
Lily Collins is featured in Glamour Magazine‘s Tell Sombody campaign, watch this video with Lily and many other celebrities and victims of Relationship violence.
There are a lot of things I’m proud of in the upcoming June issue of Glamour, but there’s one I want to tell you about now—a report that opened my eyes, pissed me off, but then gave me hope. I believe it will do the same for you. It all comes down to two simple words: Tell Somebody.
Here’s the backstory. One year ago today, 22-year-old University of Virginia student Yeardley Love was found dead in her apartment; her boyfriend later told police he’d shaken her so hard her head repeatedly hit the wall. At the time, Glamour reported on the tragedy in an editorial—and then we watched as, over the course of the next months, similar stories hit our front pages and TV screens. There was the swimsuit designer Sylvie Cachay, 33, strangled and abandoned in a hotel bathroom, allegedly by her boyfriend; Samantha Miller, 34, shot in the head in Tennessee; Courtney Delano, 19, killed in Michigan while six months pregnant; and on and on and on—a seemingly endless series of young women killed, reportedly by the men they were involved with.
The pattern seems almost unbelievable: How, in this day and age, can abusive relationships still be so common? Aren’t we a generation that grew up being told that men should never lay a hand on women? But when Glamour’s Liz Brody dug into the numbers with the help of criminology expert James Alan Fox, Ph.D., a scary trend emerged. Even though domestic-violence deaths overall have dropped markedly over the past decades, Brody reports, “among women who are dating—as opposed to married—the homicide rate is climbing.” And an exclusive Glamour/Harris Interactive survey of more than 2,500 women confirms how common the brutality is: A full 29 percent of respondents said they’d been in an abusive relationship—and an additional 30 percent said they hadn’t, but then went on to acknowledge that at some point they’d been degraded; threatened with a gun or knife; or otherwise harmed by a partner. Taken together, these numbers make it pretty clear that if you’re a woman in twenty-first century America, odds are good that you’ll either face this issue personally or have a friend, colleague or sister who needs your help right now.
So let’s do something about this. To honor the anniversary of Yeardley Love’s death, Glamour is kicking off a campaign called Tell Somebody—designed to encourage women to talk about relationship violence. If you’re suffering yourself, Tell Somebody; many survivors say opening up is the first step to getting out. And if you suspect a friend is being hurt, Tell Somebody about that too. “[My friends] saw the signs from the beginning,” Vanessa Saulter, 37, whose boyfriend, in a marathon of violence, punched and choked her, told Glamour. “They would tell me I would go missing and my picture would end up on a milk carton. Over time, it slowly sank in.” Unsure of what you’d say to a friend who is in danger? Most people are—but it’s better to say something, anything, than nothing, and our story offers scripts for the most common situations. (One thing I learned: If a friend confides in you about her abuse, take notes and keep them; many victims have little proof of what happened to them, but your notes could help substantiate her story in court one day.)
Here’s what else you can do:
1. Watch our video, featuring Ashley Greene, Emma Stone and other celebs who’ve joined our campaign, to learn more and pass it on.
2. Read an exclusive interview with Vice President Joe Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, who have committed to keeping this issue a national priority.
3. Text TELLNOW to 85944 to make a $10 donation that will go toward keeping the nation’s biggest domestic violence hotline open. (Shockingly, it’s currently so underfunded that 83,027 calls went unanswered last year.) In a beautiful act of generosity, the Avon Foundation for Women has volunteered to match every dollar you donate up to $200,000.
4. Spread the word by changing your Facebook status to “Join GLAMOUR’S Tell Somebody campaign. Change your status to: Relationship violence kills 4 women a DAY in the U.S. If you or someone you know is being abused, Tell Somebody. Make sure someone is always listening by texting TELLNOW to 85944. Your $10 donation will help keep the National Domestic Violence Hotline open.”
5. Find out more at glamour.com/tell-somebody. As part of our ongoing support of the campaign, we’ll be sharing a different relationship violence survivor’s story each week right here on Smitten.
Right now, four women a day are killed in the U.S. by a partner they’ve loved. Let’s stop accepting this violence as the way the world works, and make our own world a little better, and safer, today. Who’s with me?