If you are in a dangerous situation, please reach out for help: National Domestic Violence Hotline : 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)
It’s been a heavy week.
If you’ve been following the Gabby Petito/Brian Laundrie case, then you sadly are aware that on Tuesday afternoon of this week, the Teton County Coroner, Dr. Brent Blue, announced Petito’s autopsy findings. She died of homicide by manual strangulation/throttling.
And ugh, that is such a terrible sentence to type.
To think of the incredible pain her family is in, knowing that she died in such a deliberate, terrible, and disturbingly intimate way, all I can do is offer up all my prayers to Jesus that He cover them in the consolation that only He can provide as they grieve their daughter, and travel to Wyoming to retrieve Gabby’s remains, all the while grasping for answers in this unresolved case.
This case has become a media storm, as you may know. News stations and cameras staked outside the Laundries’ home — as Brian has now been missing for over one month, since Gabby’s initial missing persons report, and subsequent death. “Dog the Bounty Hunter” has been on the case for several weeks, with camera crew in tow, searching for Brian – who could be anywhere in the world.
And the entire world is invested in finding the culprit who killed “America’s Daughter.”
There have been numerous “Brian sightings” from the Appalachian Trail, to Ohio, to Seattle. His parents reported him missing in the swampy Carlton Reserve – so there’s been an (unsuccessful) manhunt there for the last 3 weeks. There are conspiracy theories that he’s hiding in a bunker underneath his parents’ flower beds in their Florida home. There are people who believe he’s fled to an organic co-op farm community in Central Amercia. And there are many people who believe that his family’s laywer, Steven Bertilino, is hiding him in a safe house somewhere.
But all the evidence is seeming to point to her fiance, Brian, who she was traveling in a camper-van across the country with — and who returned home to Florida on Sept 1 in Gabby’s van, without her…ten days before her parents reported her missing, [which as we know now, is just a couple days after when the coroner reported her time of death].
As a Christian, I always like to give people the benefit of the doubt. I try really hard not to make a snap judgement, and to hear people out. But sadly, with this case, it’s really hard to look past the overwhelming evidence that points to Brian Laundrie. Especially with his parents’ stone cold silence, and the fact that they “lawyered up” before Gabby was even reported missing.
But the biggest indication, is the alleged domestic violence that Gabby was suffering in their relationship. Before Gabby’s disappearance, the two were pulled over in Moab, Utah, after a 9-1-1 call reported Brian hitting Gabby on the street, outside of her van. When they were pulled over, – as many victims of DV do – Gabby (who was hyperventilating, uncontrollably crying and in a state of complete distress) took the blame, saying she “hit him first.” But admitted that he had hit her, and grabbed her face — with an accompanying cut on her face and bruise on her arm to prove. (This stop was documented on body-cam footage from the police officers.)
I have, clearly, been very invested in this case. And I’ve been researching it in my *limited* free time. There are some very insightful YouTube videos out there, with interviews with former detectives, private investigators, former FBI agents, etc – who are all giving their thoughts on the case. And these live-stream YouTube channels will always include a portion of the show where viewers can call in, live.
And every show, the phone lines are just flooded with women, calling in, and sharing how they relate so personally with this case because they, themselves, are survivors of domestic violence and abuse.
These women are just sobbing, sharing their stories, and sharing how they see themselves in Gabby, how close this hits to home, and how beneficial it is to just have a place to share their story – share what they went through, to people who care, who will listen, and have compassion.
As someone who has been fortunate to have never been through anything like that, and who grew up in a loving, stable home, I have been truly astounded and gut-wrenched by the sheer volume of the number of women who have had to deal with such absolutely heinous and terrible abuse, in the place where they were supposed to feel safe and loved.
It breaks my heart. But also, is so inspiring to hear these women who found a way out of a dangerous situation, took back their lives, and became strong, brave women who overcome the worst situation imaginable.
And with October being Domestic Violence Awareness Month, I wanted to honor these incredible survivors by opening floor to them tonight. Like these women on the live-stream videos I’ve been watching, I want to offer a safe place for you to, not only share your stories, but also to share how you overcame your situation. What did you do? What did you think about? What did you learn from it? How is your life different now?
Everyone’s story is important and deserves to be heard. And every.single.one. of us has had to overcome something in their lives. For me, it was anorexia. And sharing my story, and offering insight into how I overcame those demons in my life has been so healing for me, personally, and has become my online ministry, here on this blog.
So with that, thank you for anyone who chooses to share their vulnerable and personal story. Know that your voice is important, safe here, and we offer nothing but compassion, love and support.
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
MAGIC TOOTHPASTE? Yes! I am in love with this superior whitening toothpaste. It keeps my smile sparkling, without sensitivity or bleach! I made a website where you can directly order this miracle product! So if you want to give it a try, you can go ahead and grab a tube for yourself. I promise, your smile will thank you!Get a tube!
Be sure to check out my affiliate, Audible. Listening to audiobooks while I cook is literally my new favorite thing. And just for you, they’re offering a Free 30-Day Trial Membership. And with this free membership, you’re going to get 2 free audiobooks! Literally. Free. It is the best deal ever. And if for some reason, you decide it’s not for you, you can cancel within those 30 days and it’s zero money out of your pocket, plus, you get to keep the 2 audiobooks. Soooo…it’s pretty much a no brainer. Plus, it’s a free and easy way to support this blog! So thank you!!
@beauty.beyond.bones – Instagram
For Podcast versions of my posts, please check out Patreon! It’s only $2 a month!! You make this blog possible 🙂
And really quickly, I’ve had several questions concerning my Amazon link (amazon.com/shop/beautybeyondbones) — You do not need to buy one of my specific highlighted products on my page, in order for it to “credit” my account. Any purchases that you search or make from anywhere on Amazon, after first visiting my Amazon page, will credit this blog and help support this blog ministry. I am truly so grateful and appreciative to those of you wanting to do so! So thank you! Again, it is an absolutely free, and easy way for you to help keep this blog going!