Dear Dr. Romance:

I was beaten unconcious by a client. He is a convicted sex offender and gang member who has been put in jail and let out many times for crimes against women. He has told people he is going to kill me. I continue to go to court on the issue and they simply won't help me and say since we were not in a relationship they can't even give me an order of protection. I am having anxiety attacks every day and lose conciousness sometimes because of it. I am constantly waiting on the day he will hurt me again and am scared to death of going to jail for defending my self if I do it successfully. We live in the same town and my life can't recover from the event because we go to court over it every two mos. If you have advice I need it.     

Dear Reader:
I'm so sorry you're caught in this.  I don't understand why the court won't give you an order of protection. I don't know what state you are in, but I'm not aware of any state where you need to be in a relationship to get a protection order.  I don't know what kind of client he is, or what you do for a living, but you probably need a lawyer to fight this for you. If you're on Twitter, search for #MeToo for help from others in similar situations.   Call the Domestic Violence hot line. They will help you even if your problem is not technically domestic  They will be know people in your area who are able to help.  For more information about seeking protection from violence, read "Friends in Need: Interventions for Domestic Violence" and It Ends With You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction  will help you heal the Post Traumatic Stress from your incident.

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Author's Bio: 

Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D. is a licensed psychotherapist in S. California since 1978 with over 30 years experience in counseling individuals and couples and author of 13 books in 17 languages, including It Ends With You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction; The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again; Money, Sex and Kids: Stop Fighting About the Three Things That Can Ruin Your Marriage, The Commuter Marriage, and her newest, Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences. She writes the “Dr. Romance” blog, and the “Happiness Tips from Tina” email newsletter.