I’m a family therapist at a community mental health agency, and I work with a lot of teenagers and families that destain the police. They’ve wound up on probation or been involved with the law in some type of negative way, and now they hate all cops.
My status as police wife doesn’t usually come up with my clients. Typically I shy away from that sort of personal disclosure, and honestly…typically I don’t feel safe sharing it. But once in awhile, through a recognition of our last name or some sort of incident, the fact that I’m married to a police officer comes out. And most of the time it turns into something beautiful.
Sometimes the conversation goes like this: “You’re married to a cop? Ugh. But I guess…you’re pretty cool. And if you’re married to someone then they must be pretty cool, too. Maybe your cop isn’t so bad.”
Maybe your cop isn’t so bad.
That’s not exactly a glowing review, but it’s a world away from “ACAB”. And you know what? I’ll take it. Every interaction that we have with someone, and every interaction that our officers have, is a chance to show the hearts behind the badges. It’s a chance to humanize them. It’s a chance to plant the seed that maybe-MAYBE-all police aren’t the racist monsters that the media and world have painted them out to be.
Every time we share a positive story, every time our officers go above and beyond doing their job, every time we respond with kindness, and every time we quietly pray for softened hearts…it matters. Don’t give up, friends. Keep having the conversations, keep planting the seeds, and keep backing the blue. You never know who’s listening and who’s hearts may be stirred 💙