Anyone who has ever been a victim of stalking knows what a debilitating impact it can have on their life. Unfortunately, far too many people fail to get the help they need because they don’t recognize the threat of certain behaviors or they don’t know what they can do to get help. If left unchecked, this can give the stalker an opportunity to commit rape or other acts of violence.
So how can you identify the warning signs of having a stalker? The stereotypical view of stalking is that someone is following you, or showing up uninvited at a place where they know you’ll be going. Alternatively, victims may receive unwanted messages via phone or social media. Keep in mind that this behavior will typically become more frequent and severe as time goes on.
However, these are far from the only potential warning signs of a stalker. Stalkers may vandalize your property, threaten acts of violence against you, or even track your location with cameras or a GPS device. In some instances, stalkers have even been reported to go through a victim’s garbage to seek information about the individual — often as a means of spreading rumors or gaining access to sensitive information.
If these forms of unwanted contact are impacting your life, you shouldn’t wait to seek help. Informing law enforcement and other trusted individuals as soon as possible could very well protect you from becoming a victim of violence.