Excerpt from STALKED! By Voices
The years from 1992 – 1999
THE SCREAMING started in the parking lot. Every morning as I arrived at Apex, for work, while I was parking the car, before I opened the car door, before I’d set foot inside the building, I could hear The Voices/Stalkers screaming insults from inside the building, at me. There were days when I arrived at work and it took every ounce of courage and strength I possessed to walk into that building.
Before I list for you some of the harangue I endured, let me tell you a little bit about Apex. Apex was an automotive parts warehouse that did business twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
Apex employed lots of men. Most of whom I had to work with on a daily basis. Men who stocked shelves, picked parts, packed orders, worked as warehouse managers, and supervisors.
Everything The Voices/Stalkers screamed at me was heard by everyone, both men and women. I was spared nothing! I was not given the respect that one human should give another. And when I tried fighting for it, I was declared unstable.
Here’s a partial list of what was screamed at me on a daily basis for no other reason than they could get away with it.
- The Stalkers screamed that they were mind readers.
- That they were reading every thought that went through my head and had control over all my actions, emotions, and health.
- That they’d read in my mind that I wanted the men in the warehouse to ‘run a chain’ on me.
- They screamed out that I had Aids. Not true. But remember this was back in the early nineties when Aids was still the ‘terror’ disease of the decade.
- They would scream out to the entire warehouse when I had my period.
- They screamed out every time I went to the ladies room and gave explicit details of what I was doing in there. Even to the point of screaming that I should make sure to ‘wipe the crack of my ass.’
- They’d scream out about my underwear. Things like if it were new, what color underwear I was wearing that day, if they damaged in any way, and how much I’d paid for it.
- They’d scream that I fantasized about my supervisor while masturbating.
- They’d scream that I had false teeth.
- They’d scream out descriptions of how I looked naked.
- They scream descriptions of how I went about taking a bath, showering, or shaving my legs.
Let me repeat, my coworkers, both male and female heard it all. So, now other people were listening, publicly, to what I’d had to listen to, privately, for years.
And believe me, they were not at all pleased with the things they were forced to listen to on my account.
As my coworkers dislike for The Voices/Stalkers grew, they began taking their frustrations out on me. I became their punching bag. People didn’t talk to me, they screamed at me. I guess, they assumed that I must have been hard of hearing or something, because I didn’t react to The Voices/Stalkers the way they thought I should have.
“Why doesn’t she just go crazy so those damn screaming bitches will go away and we can have some peace around here!”
I heard that whispered behind my back more times than I’d care to remember.
How It Was Before Sensitivity Training
“Now Miss Ankum. It is Miss? Is that Right?” The Maywood Policeman asks me.
“It’s your complaint that, ahh,.. someone is following you?
“Miss Ankum have you recently broken up with a boyfriend?”
“Are you dating someone’s husband?”
“Uhmm. Miss Ankum are you engaged in an illegal activity that would cause someone to be upset with you? And by that I mean drugs or prostitution!”
“Ok. Well, then Miss Ankum, are you a singer?”
“Are you an actress?”
“Are you a dancer, particularly, of the exotic kind?”
“Miss Ankum, he says a bit frustrated, you admit that you are not conducting an illegal business. You are not an actress, singer, or exotic dancer. Well, then Miss Ankum, help me understand why anyone would want to follow you around.”
What I hear, is that you’re a nobody and no one would follow you around with a cause. I crawl out on my battered ego, walk slowly over to the park behind the Police Station and sit defeated on a bench beneath a tree. I’m wearing a green plaid madras skirt that’s new because I’ve regained the weight that I’d lost. I look down at my hands which are folded in my lap and I start to cry.
U. S. Senator Dick Durbin, U. S. Congressmann Danny K Davis, Illinois State Senator Kimberly Lightford, Mayor Edwenna Perkins, Police Chief Vladmir Talley how would you like it if this happened to your mother, sister, or wife?
At every job. In my Church, on vacation and at both my brother’s funerals. And all this over something they made up to have a reason to scream and holler obscenities. Their anger is a fake.
Eliza D. Ankum
STALKED! By Voices