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samurai_sarah

The Willis Family: Rape Charges Part 2

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mydoggoskeeper

I think many viewers noticed that there were some unusual and perhaps alarming dynamics going on within the Willis family from their show.  I wonder if Jair's failed relationship was due in part to his ex-fiancee seeing or sensing some of the dysfunction or abuse or perhaps even seeing some of the same traits in Jair.  

3 minutes ago, SamiKatz said:

I've worked as an admin assist for many, many years and during that time have dealt with corporate, real estate and criminal lawyers.  Lots of of them could not spell or punctuate correctly. They have admins and software programs to do it for them.

just saying.  :)

I am an attorney and but for Grammarly and spell check, my writing would be atrocious.   You should see how many red lines appeared even in the writing of this post.  Bloodbath...

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Themanda Duggar

I don’t think it’s clear that Brenda knew about the sexual nature of the abuse from the interaction Jessica described from when she was nine.  She may have, but it’s not clear, and it doesn’t sound like Jessica had the vocabulary to really express what was happening.  

I know from my own life how significant the lack of the right words can be.  My father died when I was 7, and my mother remarried a few years later.  Her second husband adopted my sister and me.  We messed up by not figuring out a way to distinguish between our 2 fathers in a way that didn’t sound like we were ranking them, and because of that, it became very difficult and uncomfortable for us to talk about our deceased father.  It’s kind of hard to explain the dynamic, or the impact it’s had, but it’s been significant.  My sister  gets physically ill if we try to talk about him now, she either throws up, or gets an instant migraine.  She didn’t want her child to even know about this part of her history.  All because we never figured out the right words to use in talking about it.

Our circumstances are totally different that those of the Willis family, obviously, but having the language to talk about something is a bigger deal than a lot of people realize.

I do think Brenda failed her children, but I also think she probably lacked the ability to advocate for them and for herself.  Remember, it was Toby who decided they were done having children after the last one almost killed her, not Brenda.  She was raised fundie, it was discussed in one of the episodes of the show, and was taught to be a subservient wife.  I don’t know if she would have been capable of leading her children out of that nightmare.

I don’t think they could have just fled to a shelter, based on my experiences as a volunteer.  I don’t know of a shelter that has the capacity to place 13 people all at once, or all together.   It would likely have taken their local system at least a few days to find a placement, maybe longer, and during that interim time their lives would have been endangered.  The logistics of safely fleeing as a group of 13 would have been almost impossible, from what I have seen.  

 

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mstee

My father walked in on a family member being innapropriate with me when I was very young. He reacted in the moment, but due to other circumstances, never told anyone or took any further action. When I confronted him about it as a teen, he was broken over it. He had buried it very deep. But the guilt was there. It ruined our relationship for many years. I look back and understand my anger, but I also understand his actions. I am going to have my first child soon, and all I want to do is protect her. And I hope that I can spare her any pain like that. 

Im telling that story because it seems like it relates in a small way to Brenda. Denial is so powerful, as is fear. I defended Brenda when the news first came out on here because I took her original statement as saying that she didn’t know, and I was happy to see her standing by her children. So when this blog came out, I was upset to find out that she knew something was going on and that I had defended her. But, as we all know, circumstances are complicated. All I can definitively say is that I hope that all the children can heal and live fulfilling lives without anger consuming them. 

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Stpauligirlmn
Quote

 I would rather offer compassion where none is deserved to avoid withholding compassion from someone in desperate need of it.

Someone above said this.  Very powerful.  I'm very, very anger with Brenda Willis (I guess you figured that out), but I will think on this quote. 

... and yes, that should say "angry with Brenda Willis" not anger with Brenda Willis.  I'm not necessarily a bad speller or punctuator (although not the best either), but I'm a lousy typist and a lazy proofreader.

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Eternalbluepearl

I just continue to be horrified by this story. Jessica is really brave. Toby Willis is the worst human being. I have no clue what to think about Brenda. I have no words for this. 

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Alicja
3 hours ago, Themanda Duggar said:

I don’t think it’s clear that Brenda knew about the sexual nature of the abuse from the interaction Jessica described from when she was nine.  She may have, but it’s not clear, and it doesn’t sound like Jessica had the vocabulary to really express what was happening.  

I know from my own life how significant the lack of the right words can be.  My father died when I was 7, and my mother remarried a few years later.  Her second husband adopted my sister and me.  We messed up by not figuring out a way to distinguish between our 2 fathers in a way that didn’t sound like we were ranking them, and because of that, it became very difficult and uncomfortable for us to talk about our deceased father.  It’s kind of hard to explain the dynamic, or the impact it’s had, but it’s been significant.  My sister  gets physically ill if we try to talk about him now, she either throws up, or gets an instant migraine.  She didn’t want her child to even know about this part of her history.  All because we never figured out the right words to use in talking about it.

Our circumstances are totally different that those of the Willis family, obviously, but having the language to talk about something is a bigger deal than a lot of people realize.

I do think Brenda failed her children, but I also think she probably lacked the ability to advocate for them and for herself.  Remember, it was Toby who decided they were done having children after the last one almost killed her, not Brenda.  She was raised fundie, it was discussed in one of the episodes of the show, and was taught to be a subservient wife.  I don’t know if she would have been capable of leading her children out of that nightmare.

I don’t think they could have just fled to a shelter, based on my experiences as a volunteer.  I don’t know of a shelter that has the capacity to place 13 people all at once, or all together.   It would likely have taken their local system at least a few days to find a placement, maybe longer, and during that interim time their lives would have been endangered.  The logistics of safely fleeing as a group of 13 would have been almost impossible, from what I have seen.  

 

*replying to bolded*

That's the impression I got too. IIRC, the blog post actually said that Brenda was already having suspicions of Toby's behavior and was the one to approach Jessica about her father's behavior. Toby of course denied any wrongdoing and I'm sure Jessica didn't have the language to clearly articulate what was happening to her, which probably lead to Brenda "letting him of the hook" while still remaining wary and suspicious. 

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Black Aliss

[Edited to remove speculation] As humans we go to incredible lengths to normalize our own experiences. I'm not letting her off the hook. Intellectually she knew that what Toby was doing was not normal and just plain wrong. 

Edited by laPapessaGiovanna
Edited to remove speculation

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wild little fox

The fact that Toby severely beat 20+ year old Jessica TWICE and nobody did anything about it tells me VOLUMES about the family dynamics. It tells me that this kind of abuse was probably the norm. And when the cops came everyone knew how to cover and what parts to play. Toby had his family trained very well to cover for him and minimize the abuse. When you live under physical abuse death is a constant threat. It becomes not if but when. Will it be this time? And when you know this it makes you feel and act helpless. You have no rights and if you think you do it is only because the abuser lets you believe that. The abuser creates a world where they are free and able to do whatever they want. The more a person is steeped in beliefs that the man is the head and you must be submissive, well, to go against him and what he says is being disobedient to God. The wife is supposed to trust God and her husband over everything else. Is it beyond ducked up? Yes. And it is why this very board exists is to shine lights on why this belief system is so dangerous and toxic. 

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SweetLaurel
5 hours ago, Themanda Duggar said:

Remember, it was Toby who decided they were done having children after the last one almost killed her, not Brenda.  S

I remember differently and maybe I'm wrong, but I remember watching the show and being totally aghast that despite the fact she almost died with the youngest boy - she got pregnant again almost immediately with the youngest girl.  I thought at the time - what kind of man would do that to his wife?   I 'knew' from that things weren't right.  But of course no clue how not right they were. (unless my memory is off)   

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Eternalbluepearl
9 hours ago, Black Aliss said:

[Edited to remove speculation] As humans we go to incredible lengths to normalize our own experiences. 

Wow. That's so interesting. I never thought of life that way before. Thanks for that insight. 

Edited by laPapessaGiovanna
Edited to remove speculation in quoted post

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patsymae

"I hold judgment on Brenda because I believe her story is probably much more complicated than we know"

This.

When I finally called the hotline I couldn't believe what I heard myself saying--even as I was talking I was aware that if I'd heard anyone else saying that I would have been horrified and known what they should do.

People who've never been in that kind of situation have no idea how messed up your head can get. And these guys are master manipulators--there is also enough lovingness, etc. to keep you off guard. That's how they work it.

Why didn't Brenda/Mary Jane Buttafucco/any woman leave? Lots of complicated answers. (and the question should be why do these men do what they do, not why don't their victims do something).
And then the simple one--because he said he would kill her and her children and she believed him. Because it happens all the time.

 

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patsymae

"I don’t think they could have just fled to a shelter, based on my experiences as a volunteer.  I don’t know of a shelter that has the capacity to place 13 people all at once, or all together."

Probably not. I've actually both lived in and worked at shelters, and the idea that you just pop up and people take you in is such a delusion. There are applications, intake procedures, waiting lists. Also limited time stays. Many if not most won't take males over age 10/12 or so. You might have to have police reports, etc., that prove a direct threat, prove you don't have other resources. Enroll the children in the local public school, agree to job training--being part of a family band wouldn't count. All sorts of complications.

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Themanda Duggar
5 hours ago, SweetLaurel said:

I remember differently and maybe I'm wrong, but I remember watching the show and being totally aghast that despite the fact she almost died with the youngest boy - she got pregnant again almost immediately with the youngest girl.  

I think you remember that correctly.  I think her last 2 births were traumatic, and that’s when Toby decided they shouldn't have any more kids.  He said something like he didn’t want 13 kids with no mother.  It makes me sick to think that Brenda thought he was being considerate of her in making this decision. 

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