There is a man, who I had a super icky creepy relationship with nine years ago, who has appeared in a photo that was leaked to the media, paired with what are apparently now definitively false accusations that it is Cpl. Jim Brown. That man phoned me today, out of the clear blue sky, for the exclusive and express purpose of demanding that I take those screenshots from the news media off of my blog (and thus cover his ass).
The fact that this man, who apparently hundreds of people recognize as the subject of that photo, did not volunteer himself to the police (and actually complained that someone “outed” him), and has now resorted to trying to terrorize me (he would have to be at least as recklessly stupid as Jennifer to think he wasn’t going to have that effect, and twice as fucking arrogant to think it would work), should tell all of you reading this that he made that choice because he has shit to hide. And hundreds of you, who think it is your duty to cover it up to protect his privacy, are obstructing justice.
My relationship with him (let’s call him Mr. Charles, just for shits and giggles) began the same way my relationship with Jim Brown began: in an online chatroom (the same one, even). Then we took our relationship out of that public chatroom, to an instant messenger service. I disclosed to him that I had just broken it off with my boyfriend at the time, the business I was working for had gone bankrupt and I lost the only job I was ever happy working at, and that I no longer wanted a relationship with my parents (who manipulated me repeatedly back into that same turbulent relationship for years, until last Summer, when I finally denounced them). In other words, I was expressing (honestly) that there was nothing left keeping me where I was sitting while we had these conversations nearly every afternoon for weeks. That I would just pack up and leave if only I had a place to go. He offered to buy me a round-trip plane ticket, and said I could stay with him, his wife, and his 3-year-old son.
He tried to ease the extremely few concerns I had (which should have been astronomically more numerous, considering that I was planning to move to the next province to live with a complete fucking stranger). He told me he was trained as a volunteer (whose job was essentially to police the community’s events). He gave me his driver’s license number and told me to feel free to call the police to check his background. Then he told me he would help me fix my teeth, pay for me to go to university, and get me set up with a high-paid modelling gig and take me to be interviewed with modelling agencies to find me legitimate work (in my head, I thought “Yeah, yeah. Tell me another one. Like how you’re going to take me on a cruise around the world or some bullshit you can never fulfill.”)
I took down his driver’s license number and indeed, actually did call non-emergency dispatch to speak with an officer. The only problem, I was told, is that this is not how security checks and records checks are done, which cost money and require the shuffling around of papers over at least a couple of weeks. Things with my ex were becoming increasingly turbulent as he became jealous of Mr. Charles’ interest in me. I decided I needed to pick up the pace and pack up. I was satisfied with what little the operator was willing to disclose to me, and how many people I personally knew who had met him and were willing to sing his high praises in the chatroom. I was stepping out of the plane at YVR, towing what was left of my entire life in an overweight suitcase, within a week.
What I didn’t know before I was already hauling my life into his, was that he had neglected to tell his wife that he had secured a willing female to live in their home, who he expected was going to be his submissive sex slave. I also didn’t even know that he had a whole other ongoing relationship with another woman, whom his wife knew about, or that it was becoming a regular source of significant tension between husband and wife. But it was too late to blow a gasket. I was already stranded in his home without the faintest clue of how to get around, how to secure a job, or how to get outside help if I needed it. I convinced myself (rationalized, really) that these (major) oversights could be forgiven and overlooked. I could make the best of what I was now already up to my eyeballs in.
That’s when he started making uninvited sexual advances on me, despite multiple declarations on my part that his wife was the (fucking hot!) person I was attracted to. Not him. And especially not this other woman, who he treated like a higher priority than his neglected wife, and even his own child. Between his sexual advances — and constant reminders that if I am to touch him, I need to beg his wife for permission first (which I conveniently just didn’t do) — I was left unattended for approximately 6 to 8 hours at a time with his 3-year-old boy, despite having no first aid training and no prior experience with any children at all. Then he started making sexual advances on me in front of his child. I didn’t know what to do, so I would tell him his boy is right there. I would tell him I’m not comfortable with his boy watching. He would tell his boy to go play. In my own head, I was retreating back to the place I constructed as a child to deal with being molested by my own parent. I just didn’t know what else to do, but something deep down was telling me this was wrong.
The day he took my hand and put it down his pants while his son sat next to him, I finally said “What the fuck do you expect me to do? Your son is sitting right there.” He got angry with me that I wouldn’t just jack him off while his son was sitting next to him, and started a fight with me. I tried to wait for the “right time” to say something to his wife, and after a couple of days, I couldn’t hold it in any more. She was furious. I thought she was mad at me, the way I thought my incestuous parent would be mad at me if he found out I was raped by my boyfriend at 17 . But she was angry with him, and rightfully so. Other parents where they were living at the time were already telling her that their children were getting creeped out by her son’s sexualized play style with their own children’s Barbie dolls. Now she knew why. I still hadn’t put it all together, in my emotionally fragmented head (parts of which were still 3 years old and now re-living what it is to be sexually abused by a parent).
It wasn’t long after that, that asking a simple question about how to operate an internet browser I was unfamiliar with, rapidly erupted into him patronizing me in an argument that ended with him telling me to fuck myself when I told him to stop talking to me like I’m a 3-year-old. I did my best to cope with his silent treatment for the subsequent two days, while I made a plea for help to leave him on the chatroom where he found me. That plea was answered by people who were already familiar with other women’s stories of how unsavoury (and creepy, and icky) a person he is, who picked me, my belongings, and my iguana up, and took me to a house where I was told I would be safe (that would turn out to be a lie).
I told the only two people I thought I could trust at the time, about how worried I am for Mr. Charles’ son. I told them what he had done, and they said “that’s child abuse” — as bluntly as when they told me years later that what I had seen sounded like snuff. They told me to call social services, and gave me the business card of a social worker who had helped them when someone called social services on them with baseless accusations. I held onto that card, trying to remember any information I could offer, other than Mr. Charles’ (real) name. I had been moving around from place to place and lost track of the address for where I had stayed when all this happened. I didn’t have their phone numbers, either. I was convinced that, like trying to prove rape, no one would believe anything I have to say except for my two friends, because everything would be completely unsubstantiated. I was worried that if I should make that phone call, and it gets out that I’m the one who dialed that phone number, I would be ostracised from my community, regardless of the outcome of the investigation. I accidentally threw the card away when I had to get rid of about half of my belongings during another move.
What I didn’t expect to happen was for my two friends to tell other people* what I told them with the expectation of confidentiality. Like a bunch of toddlers playing telephone, people dropped and fabricated context until the only truth remaining was that it was Mr. Charles involved. When I found out years later that the rumours were still catching up with him, I offered him my sincerest apology for creating this trouble by disclosing to the wrong people. I confronted my two friends for violating what I could only expect was my confidentiality on such a serious issue. I told them that I don’t have any hard feelings towards them, because no one is perfect, but finding out that what I only ever told them had become a permanent fixture in the rumour mill, had eroded my trust in them. They took it about as well as can be expected, and we’ve never been as close (or even close at all) since.
* Update: It occurred to me on the way to the detachment to provide my 2-hour statement on this information, that these rumours may very well have preceded my presence in this province. The way that child was when I was there, could not possibly have been a product of my very brief stay in that home.
Mr. Charles acted on my apology as an opportunity to try again with me. We began talking on the phone for a couple hours at a time every day again, as he worked on wearing me down and extracting my consent for an S&M scene. He wanted me to do it in private with him, claiming he knew of a space where no one would know about it. I told him that I have nothing to hide or be ashamed of, and would prefer that this takes place in public, if I agree to it. That I would have to put some serious thought into it before I give him an answer. He assumed that meant yes, and conducted himself in our phone conversations in congruence with that expectation. I still hadn’t made up my mind, even as I was telling him exactly what I expected and would not tolerate, if I even agreed to step up and engage with him in this manner. And part of me really wanted to. Part of me was craving it, and he could hear it — so he only talked to that part of me.
I’m not an idiot. I know that’s exactly what he was doing, and I knew then too. I know I’m smarter than him, and I don’t just intellectually and emotionally “check out” of the room as soon as I step onto the dungeon floor. When I bared my flesh, and he treated it like he wanted to instead of giving me what I came for, I ended the “scene” within minutes, found a chair to sit in, and refused all of his subsequent advances for my attention (like I told him I would, even if it had gone well). Both he and his wife seemed to act offended that I was getting angry that he wouldn’t listen to me when I told him to leave me alone. When I left the club that night, it was the last time he and I spoke. It wasn’t the last time he spoke of me, though — he has been spreading gossip about me to anyone he knows who steers their life into my path ever since.
So when his name showed up on my call display this afternoon, I answered with “What the fuck are you calling me for?” and ended the conversation (after he outed himself and demanded I take the pictures down) by saying “Stop calling me” and promptly hanging up. While my hands were still shaking, I dialed the RCMP officer who had already been here to ask me about what I published after seeing that very same photo on the evening news. I cannot wait to tell him about that phone call, and every detail he needs to know about my relationship with Mr. Charles. It’s time we stop hiding, stop obstructing justice, and live with the consequences for having protected people like this because we place a higher priority on their so-called privacy than on the criminal behaviour they engage in outside of their kinky sex “scenes”.
I wasn’t alone at the time of that phone call.
Grow a fucking spinal column, kinksters. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: you owe Coquitlam RCMP a phone call if you have information to share about Cpl. Jim Brown that would help investigators. Now the same goes for Mr. Charles.