November 2, 1989 – Interview with Mr. Kevin Blunt.
Observations: Mr Blunt (Kevin) has been in and out of trouble with the law and as part of his sentence in an assault charge from a bar fight he attends court ordered anger management therapy. I am his court-ordered therapist and conducted an interview with Mr Blunt today. He arrived agitated and out of sorts, fidgety. His body language was aggressive and tense. After some trolling questions, I have learned that Mr. Blunt has attacked his wife, viciously, on multiple occasions. The most recent was Hallowe’en night. To my knowledge she has not charged him, nor reported this or prior incidents to the authorities. They have a newborn daughter at home.
The following is a transcript of my interview upon discovering the details of the violence he perpetrated on his wife for the record:
Me: So, what happened after you left?
Him: I stormed out of the house seething mad. Ever see red? I was seeing white. I don’t think I’ve ever been that pissed off before. What the fuck?! Mike said he saw her there talking to that loser Jessie guy. No damned wife of mine is gonna talk to another man! No fucking way.
Me: Did she? Talk to the other guy, I mean?
Him: That’s what Mike said.
Me: What did she say?
Me: What does that mean? (shrug)
Kevin: I don’t know……. I DON”T KNOW!! She didn’t deny it, she just looked at me. I didn’t want to hit her but she made me. She just stood there with that stupid look on her face. All I could see when I looked at her was her talkin’ to that other guy and I lost it! How could she stand there and just look at me like that. With that stupid look on her face, I just couldn’t take it! She thinks I’m an idiot, she thinks she’s too good for me. At her mother’s my ass.
Me: So, maybe it wasn’t actually her. Did you check whether her story was true?
Kevin: course I did. I got in the car and went to that cunt’s place to find out. I knew she’d probably lie anyway. She hates me; always has. Though not as much as that little puke of a brother. What a twerp that one is. Tara got the lucky side of the gene pool. She’s not a knockout, but she’s pretty enough. What can I say, I’m a sucker for the freckles.
Kevin: And what?
Me: And? Was she at her mother’s?
Kevin: (looks at the rug, shuffles his feet) Ya. Least that’s what her mother said. But she’s a liar too.
Me: Why would her mother lie to you, Kevin?
Kevin: I told you! She fucking hates me! She thinks Tara’s too good for me. She’d love it if she could hook her up with someone else.
Me: Do you honestly think that? Or are you just mad right now?
Kevin: I don’t think it, I KNOW it. She told me. On my fucking wedding day, for chrissakes! Can you believe that?
Me: And how did that make you feel?
Kevin: I don’t care.
Me: Really? You don’t care? You’re putting a lot of energy into something you don’t care about.
Kevin: So? Whatever, maybe I care, maybe I don’t. Whatever. (looks away, fidgeting)
Me: Well, do you think maybe you’re hurt by Tara’s mother and so you’re taking it out on Tara cause it’s her fault that woman is even in your life? Do you think that because Tara’s mother wants her with someone else that it’s possible you’re seeing signs that say she’s cheating that aren’t actually there?
Kevin: No! Mike said he saw her. I trust Mike.
Me: Are you sure? Has Mike never lied to you? Why would you think Tara would cheat on you?
Kevin: Cause her mother says I’m not good enough for her! I’m just a truck driver. Her mother is always trying to say that Jessie guy is better for her and kept trying to get Tara to give him a chance before I asked her to marry me. I started to go crazy thinking about it even then. I’d call her place and her mother would just say she’s out, she wouldn’t tell me where and when I got mad and demanded to know where my girl was, she hung up on me!
Me: Ahh. So, when Tara wasn’t home when you expected her to be there, you would get mad?
Kevin: Not every time, just when her fucking mother would play those head games with me. You know, make me think Tara was out with another guy cause I’m not good enough.
Me: But I thought you said she only told you on your wedding day that she didn’t approve of you. Why would you have thought you weren’t good enough back then?
Kevin: I could tell. Just because she didn’t say the words, that woman has a look that says it all. And I would get that look every time I was there. I could hear that look when I would call and that cold voice. She never said things nice to me, never. She’s just like my old lady. Vicious bitch.
Me: Your mom was vicious or Mrs. Willows is vicious?
Kevin: They both are! Nothing I ever do is good enough. My mom slapped me around every time I’d screw up until I got bigger than her. Then she only hit me one more time.
Me: Why? Did you hit her back?
Kevin: No fucking way! My old man would have killed me if I did that, are you kidding me?
Me: Did your dad ever hit you?
Kevin: Nah. For such a tough guy to the world, he was real gentle with us. It was my mom who was the mean one. She always was. You never knew when those claws would come at you. I didn’t know from one day to the next what to expect. One day it was fine to say hello the next it wasn’t. Who the fuck knew? I got out of there as fast as I could.
Me: So, you got hit a lot growing up?
Me: Okay. You’re a dad now. What about your little girl? If she broke a rule, does hitting her seem right to you? Do you think it would change her behaviour or fix it?
Kevin: (snorts) hell no, it didn’t do anything to make me change!
Me: Okay, it didn’t change you. Why not? Did you believe changing would help you? Did you think that if you changed your mom would stop hitting you? Or did you think it would never end, no matter what you changed.
Kevin: (shrugs) dunno
Me: Okay, let me ask you another way. Do you think that if Chloe were to take her milk into the living room after you told her not to and she spills. Do you think hitting her as punishment is a reasonable way to correct her behaviour?
Kevin: no, how the fuck would she know what she did wrong? If I just hit her, she won’t know what she’s getting hit for. I’d have to tell her
Me: Okay. Well, that’s good that you understand that, Kevin. That’s a big deal. Okay, so if you would have to explain it to her, do you think you’d still hit her after you’ve explained?
Kevin: dunno. Maybe. Probably not.
Kevin: cause she’s just a little girl!
Me: But, she messed the living room and you told her not to take the milk in there in the first place. You TOLD her not to. You still don’t think you’d hit her for it?
Kevin: No. you shouldn’t hit a kid.
Me: Kevin, you shouldn’t hit anyone, period.
Kevin: (shame colouring his face) I know
Me: But you hit Tara. Not only did you hit her, you kicked her, you choked her, you punched her, you spit on her, you ripped her hair out of her head and then you hit her some more. All this time, you were screaming vicious things at her, just like your mother did to you.
Kevin: (starts to cry) I know (a whisper)
Me: Kevin, Tara didn’t deserve it either. Tara didn’t deserve it any more than Chloe would for spilling her milk.
Kevin: I know (still barely above a whisper)
Kevin spent the next 10 to 15 minutes crying and keening over what had happened. I believe he has genuine remorse for beating up his wife. I’m not sure if she will charge him this time or not, but I almost hope she does. He needs to be monitored and I wonder if court ordered therapy is the only way he will seek help. I see the mixture of confusion, fear, anxiety and worry and hear it in the soundless murmurs he makes. He knows he was a monster when he beat up his wife. He knows she didn’t deserve to be beaten, but he also admits he barely remembers doing it. He wasn’t really present, mentally or emotionally. He knows that what he has done cannot be undone and cannot continue, but I’m not convinced he will keep coming here for help. I advised I would like him to bring his wife Tara to our next meeting in 2 weeks time.