Listen to your instincts

What would you think if you arrived home and found a  little gift on your doorstep, prettily wrapped in pink tissue paper and tied with a red bow?

This woman was suspicious. And she had reason to be. She had been receiving little “gifts” from a former boyfriend consisting of photos of the two of them. But in the photos her face was disfigured.

When she opened the package she was horrified to find the severed head of a kitten. There was also a note

“I love you, Your Ben.”

It was not her kitten as she didn’t have any. But she loved pets and volunteered at an animal shelter. Likely the ex-boyfriend was aware of that.

She contacted police. She showed them what she had received, and told them about her ex-boyfriend Benjamin Gregory, 30. She told them she knew her ex-boyfriend was on probation, for unknown charges.

Police say the black kitten was young, only a few months old. And they don’t believe it belonged to Gregory.

Police arrested Benjamin Gregory and charged him with stalking and cruelty to animals. Gregory’s attorney denies the charges and says his client is not a violent person. Reportedly Gregory has an extensive criminal record including charges related to drugs and simple assault. He had been accused of trying to suffocate that victim, it isn’t clear if the victim in that case is the same victim in this case. But after his release Dec. release from jail on that charge, he attempted to reestablish his relationship with the unnamed victim.

Receiving the photos with her face destroyed in the photo is a clue to a possible intention. To leave more than one, would be an indication that he is trying to tell her that he is “still around.” I would probably have contacted the police at that point. Likely they could not have done anything other than to offer guidance on what steps to take next. But by making a report it is the first step in establishing a pattern.

Then she receives a package with the kitten’s head. Likely he was aware that she was an animal lover, that she spent her free time volunteering to care for animals. So at the very least an attempt to hurt her emotionally, possibly even a warning.

It is important to listen to those vague instinctive warnings we receive during relationships. From the beginning when we get the initial “I don’t know if I like this” response to a controlling action, to later in the relationship where the warnings may be louder and harder to dismiss. It may be possible to work it out, but if that is not possible then do not ignore it.

But no time is more important to listen to your instincts than in the ending of the relationship. If actions are being taken that are disturbing to you, listen to them. And act on them.

Gregory will get out of jail. He may possibly get out on bond even before trial. Hopefully, the victim will listen to her instincts and get to a safe place before he gets out.


The animal cruelty charge has been reduced as medical evidence shows the kitten was dead before it was beheaded.


1 Comment

  1. Becky J said,

    February 5, 2007 at 5:10 pm

    The best advise i ever got after i left my husband was from a very smart friend, and to this day it is the advise i give to everyone when they ask me “what do you think” about there new relationship. Its not what i think that matters, and the smartest thing you can do is listen to your gut, it will never lie, your heart and head will lie to you because they want to think the best of everything, but your gut will always give you the right answer. I live by that advise now and its true, it hasnt done me wrong yet and has kept me out of many bad situations. Another instinct that never lies is that of your pets, i havnt met a dog yet that cant sense a bad person from a good one!!

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