Transcript: Surviving a Stalker | Aug 31, 2020

Nam sits in the studio. She's in her early forties, with shoulder length curly brown hair. She's wearing glasses, a purple blazer over a pink blouse, and a golden pendant necklace.

A caption on screen reads "Surviving a stalker. Nam Kiwanuka, @namshine, @theagenda."

Nam says STANDING UP FOR WOMEN AND GIRLS WHO FACE SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND VIOLENCE ISN'T EASY. AND ESPECIALLY WHEN BEHIND CLOSED DOORS, YOU'RE ALL TOO FAMILIAR WITH THE VERY REAL PAIN AND FEAR IT INVOLVES. JULIE LALONDE IS A SEXUAL VIOLENCE EDUCATOR AND ACTIVIST. HER RECENTLY RELEASED MEMOIRE IS CALLED RESILIENCE IS FUTILE: THE LIFE AND DEATH AND LIFE OF JULIE S. Lalonde. AND SHE JOINS US NOW FROM OTTAWA WITH FOR MORE...

Julie is in her thirties, with long wavy blond hair. She's wearing glasses and a floral print blouse.
A picture of her book appears briefly on screen. The cover is white and features a picture of a burning match.

Nam continues WELCOME.

[SPEAKING FRENCH]

Nam says SO NICE TO SEE YOU ON THE SHOW. I SHOULD SAY FOR ANYONE LISTENING OR ANYONE WATCHING, JUST TO GIVE THEM A HEADS-UP BECAUSE SOME OF THE STUFF WE TALK ABOUT MIGHT TRIGGER THEM, I WANT TO PLAY A CLIP OF YOU FROM A PREVIOUS APPEARANCE ON THIS PROGRAM BEFORE WE START THE CONVERSATION. COULD YOU ROLL IT.

A clip plays on screen with the caption "June 9, 2015. Julie Lalonde."
In the clip, Julie speaks in a previous edition of The Agenda.

She says says IT'S AN INTERESTING CONVERSATION FOR ME BECAUSE I HAVE WORKED IN THIS FIELD FOR OVER 10 YEARS, I HAVE TWO DEGREES IN GENDER STUDIES SO I KNOW THIS ON AN INTIMATE LEVEL BUT I'VE ALSO EXPERIENCED IT PERSONALLY AND THE IRONY THAT I WAS INVITED LAST FALL TO GIVE A TALK AND A TRAINING TO ALL OFFICER CADETS AT THE ROYAL MILITARY COLLEGE OF CANADA ON WHAT IS CONSENT, WHAT IS SEXUAL ASSAULT UNDER THE LAW AND WHAT CAN YOU DO AS A BYSTANDER IF YOU SEE SOMETHING. THE FACT THAT I WAS SEXUALLY HARASSED BOTH AT THE BRIEFINGS AND HAVING SPOKEN OUT ABOUT IT LEADS TO THE FACT THAT WE HAVE A PROBLEM.

The clip ends.

Nam says WHAT HAPPENED WHEN YOU WENT TO HOLD WORKSHOPS ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT AT THE ROYAL MILITARY COLLEGE?

The caption changes to "Julie S. Lalonde. Author, 'Resilience is futile.'"

Julie says WELL IT WAS THE FALL OF 2014, AND I SAY THAT BECAUSE THIS WAS PRE-GHOMESHI, PRE-ME TOO, PRE-US HAVING THIS CULTURAL CONVERSATION ABOUT CONSENT AND SEXUAL VIOLENCE AND SO I WENT INTO THIS INSTITUTION WHERE I WAS INVITED TO TRAIN ALL OF THE OFFICER CADETS ON SEXUAL VIOLENCE PREVENTION THROUGH BYSTANDER INTERVENTION. IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, HERE IS SOMETHING YOU CAN DO. AND IT WAS CLEAR FROM THE MOMENT I ARRIVED THAT THE INSTITUTION HAD REALLY SET ME UP TO FAIL, THEY HAD SCHEDULED IT ON A WEEKEND WHICH MADE THE CADETS REALLY UPSET, THEY DIDN'T GIVE THEM A LOT OF WARNING ON WHAT IT WAS ABOUT AND THEY DIDN'T EVEN HAVE A MICROPHONE FOR ME THAT WORKED SO I WAS EXPECTED TO JUST YELL AT THESE PEOPLE FOR EIGHT HOURS AND IT WAS VERY CLEAR THEY WERE ANTAGONISTIC, THEY WERE OFFENDED BY THE VERY NOTION THAT THIS CONVERSATION WAS HAPPENING, AND THEY WERE UNASHAMED IN TAKING IT OUT ON ME BOTH IN THE MOMENT AND IN THE AFTERMATH.

Nam says BUT WHY WOULD THEY INVITE YOU TO COME THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE?

The caption changes to "Julie S. Lalonde, @JulieSLalonde."

Julie says I THINK LOOKING BACK ON IT NOW, HAVING MORE CONTEXT, THERE WAS A NUMBER OF SCANDALS HAPPENING AT RMC AT THE TIME, A NUMBER OF STUDENTS HAD TAKEN THEIR LIVES, THERE HAD BEEN A NUMBER OF SEXUAL ASSAULTS ON CAMPUS AND I THINK THEY SUSPECTED THAT THERE WAS GOING TO BE SOME SORT OF INVESTIGATION INTO WHAT THE HECK WAS GOIN' ON AT RMC AND SO THEY WERE TRYING TO GET AHEAD OF IT. I ALSO THINK THAT THE PROFESSORS AND THE CAPTAIN WHO INVITED ME HAD GOOD INTENTIONS, I THINK HE REALLY WANTED TO SEE CHANGE AT RMC BUT THIS SYSTEM MADE IT CLEAR THERE WAS ABOUT CHECKING OFF A BOX FOR LIABILITY PURPOSES.

Nam says YOU END UP MAKING HEADLINES. WHAT LED TO YOU MAKING HEADLINES AFTER YOUR APPEARANCE AT RMC?

Julie says SO IMMEDIATELY UPON GETTING BACK FROM THE PRESENTATION, KIND OF SHAKEN FROM JUST THE HORROR OF THAT DAY, I FILED A COMPLAIN 6 PLAIN WITH THE INSTITUTION, THEY IN FACT INVESTIGATED ME BECAUSE THE DATA A DEATHS ARGUED THAT I WAS THE ONE WHO WAS ANTAGONISTIC, THAT I SAID "ALL MEN ARE RAPISTS" JUST THESE LUDICROUS CLAIMS. I WAS INVESTIGATED BY ABOUT FIVE MONTHS FOR RMC AND THEY FINALLY ISSUED AN APOLOGY AND SAID YOU WERE IN FACT THE SUBJECT OF HARASSMENT. AND RIGHT AROUND THE TIME I RECEIVED MY APOLOGY IS WHEN THE JUSTICE REPORT CAME OUT WHICH WAS THIS MASSIVE SKATING REPORT LOOKING AT THE DEPTHS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN THE ARMED FORCES. THE REPORT COMES OUT, THE MILITARY DENIES IT. I SAID I HAVE THIS APOLOGY LETTER AND BACK UP BECAUSE I EXPERIENCED IT PERSONALLY.

Nam says I WANT TO READ A QUOTE FROM YOUR BOOK AND THIS WAS AROUND THE TIME THAT YOU APPEARED ON 'THE AGENDA'. IN YOUR BOOK YOU WRITE "I WAS 30 YEARS OLD AND NEEDING TO make peace with THE TRUTH, THAT THERE WAS NO END IN SIGHT. I WOULD NEVER ESCAPE THAT DAY AT RMC, I'd NEVER ESCAPE DATING (AND LEAVING) XAVIER. THIS WAS MY LIFE NOW." WHILE YOU WERE TRAVELING AROUND THE PROVINCE EDUCATING PEOPLE ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND VIOLENCE YOU WERE CARRYING A VERY BIG SECRET. WHO WAS XAVIER?

Julie says XAVIER WAS MY EX-BOYFRIEND WHO WITHIN THE ON TO TALKING ME FOR OVER A DECADE. WE MET IN HIGH SCHOOL, WE WERE THE BEST OF FRIENDS AND THEN I GRADUATED AND PLANNED TO GO TO OTTAWA TO START MY EDUCATION, HE PLEDGED HIS UNDYING LOVER, WE ENDED UPDATING FOR ABOUT TWO YEARS, IT WAS AWFUL AND I LEFT HIM. YOU KNOW, I DID ALL THE THINGS WE TELL WOMEN TO DO AND HE WENT ON TO STALK ME FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS. AND SO I REALLY HAD THIS PARALLEL LIFE WHERE I WAS THE WOMAN CALLING OUT THE CANADIAN ARMED FORCES ON TV AND THEN GOING HOME AND SUFFERING PRIVATELY WITH THIS VERY PRIVATE, VERY HUMILIATING EXPERIENCE.

Nam says WHAT WERE THE, IF YOU THINK BACK... AND AT ANY POINT IF YOU WANT US TO STOP WE CAN STOP BECAUSE I KNOW THIS MUST BE DIFFICULT TO DO... WHEN YOU LOOK BACK ON YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH XAVIER WHAT WERE THE FIRST SIGNS THAT MAYBE THE RELATIONSHIP WASN'T A HEALTHY ONE?

Julie says I THINK FOR ME IT WAS DEFINITELY A BOILING FROG EXPERIENCE, IT WAS A SLOW EROSION OF MY SELF ESTEEM, WHO I WAS AS A PERSON, CHIPPING AWAY AT ME, CRITICIZING MY DREAMS, MY FRIENDS, THE WAY I LOOKED, UMM, BUT MORE THAN THAT IT WAS ALSO THIS VIEWING OF DEEP LOVE WITH OBSESSION AND I QUICKLY REALIZED THAT, OH, WHAT I THOUGHT WAS JUST SOMEONE BEING COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY IN LOVE WITH ME AND HAVING THAT CONFIRMED BY EVERYONE AROUND ME WAS ALMOST THAT I JUST WAS ALMOST NO LONGER A PERSON, HE WAS OBSESSED WITH THE IDEA OF ME. UMM, AND THAT'S A VERY DE-HUMANIZING EXPERIENCE BECAUSE IT'S MEANS THAT SOMEONE IS KEEPING TABS ON YOU 24-7, THIS IS THE EARLY 2000S WHERE, YOU KNOW, CELL PHONES WERE FAIRLY NEW, TEXTING WASN'T REALLY A THING, SO LITERALLY HIM CALLING ME INCESSANTLY OR MAKING SURE OKAY, FINISH YOUR CLASS AT THIS TIME YOU SHOULD BE HOME ON THE BUS AT THIS TIME, IF I WASN'T I WOULD COME HOME TO "WHERE WERE YOU, WHO WERE YOU TALKING TO." AND IT WAS THE SENSE THAT MY WORLD WAS GETTING SMALLER AND SMALLER AND I ONLY REALIZED IT AND LOOKED AROUND AND FELT EXTREMELY ALONE.

Nam says YOU TRIED TO LEAVE A COUPLE TIMES BUT YOU ENDED UP, THE RELATIONSHIP STILL STAYED. AND I KNOW IN THE BOOK YOU ALSO WRITE ABOUT HOW YOU STRUGGLED WITH THAT AND HOW YOU FELT LIKE PEOPLE WERE JUDGING YOU AND HUGH YOU SAW YOURSELF AS IN A WAY THAT YOU DESERVED WHAT WAS GOING ON. I KNOW YOU GET ASKED THIS A LOT. WHY DIDN'T YOU LEAVE HIM?

Julie says I RELIED ON HIM AND IT'S REALLY DIFFICULT TO WRAP YOUR HEAD AROUND SO IF THAT DOESN'T RESONATE WITH YOU I ASK YOU TO AT LEAST LISTEN WITH EMPATHY BECAUSE I DON'T BELIEVE IN THE BY NARY OF PEOPLE ARE ALL GOOD OR ALL EVIL, AND I SAW SO MUCH GOODNESS IN XAVIER. I CARED ABOUT HIM DEEPLY AND I JUST THOUGHTS HE WAS UNWELL. HE MOVED TO OTTAWA TO BE WITH ME, HE WASN'T IN SCHOOL, HE DIDN'T HAVE A GREAT JOB AND SO I THOUGHT YOU KNOW HE IS JUST DEPRESSED, HE IS JUST... HE IS OBSESSED WITH ME BECAUSE HE HAS NOTHING IT'S GOING ON MAYBE IF HE DISCOVERS A PASSION, I MADE EXCUSES TO BELIEVE HE WAS A FUNDAMENTAL PERSON WHO DIDN'T INTEND TO HARM ME BUT WAS JUST UNWELL AND, AGAIN, IF YOU'RE NOT PARTS OF THAT, IT'S REALLY DIFFICULT TO WRAP YOUR HEAD AROUND BUT THAT'S THE REALITY FOR SO MANY PEOPLE. EVEN YOU KNOW CHILDREN WHO GREW UP IN ABUSIVE HOMES THAT RATIONALIZE THEIR ABUSIVE PARENTS FOR EXAMPLE, I THINK IT'S EASY TO SCOFF AT THAT BUT TO ME IT SPEAKS TO THE FACT THAT WE WANT TO BE THAT PEOPLE ARE GOOD, THAT WE JUST MAYBE GOT TO DIG A LITTLE DEEPER TO FIND IT.

Nam says AND YOU ALSO TRIED 20 GET A RESTRAINING ORDER AGAINST HIM, WHAT HAPPENED?

Julie says IN ONTARIO WE HAVE WHAT IS CALLED A PROCESS WHERE YOU CAN GO TO A COURTROOM AND REQUEST THAT SOMEONE STAY AWAY FROM YOU BOTH, YOU KNOW, LITERALLY BUT ALSO YOU KNOW WHETHER IT'S ONLINE, MAKE NO CONTACT ORDER IS HOW IT'S ESSENTIALLY DEFINED FOR A YEAR, AND I DECIDED THAT, OKAY, THAT'S WHAT I'M GONNA DO, I'M GONNA JUST FORCE HIM TO STAY AWAY FROM HE. I TRIED TO KINDLY ASK HIM TO LEAVE ME ALONE, I FURIOUSLY ASKED HIM TO LEAVE ME ALONE SO I'M GONNA GET A PIECE OF PAPER THAT LEGALLY SAYS DUDE, YOU GOT TO STAY AWAY FROM ME. UNFORTUNATELY WHAT I DID NOT REALIZE WAS THAT THERE WERE A NUMBER OF BARRIERS TO ACCESSING THAT FOR EXAMPLE HE WAS ENTITLED TO HAVE A LAWYER IN THE ROOM PAID FOR BY LEGAL AID BUT I WAS NOT BECAUSE I WAS NOT BEING ACCUSED OF ANYTHING SO I WOULD HAVE HAD TO FIND MY OWN LAWYER. I WAS 20, A BROKE STUDENT, LIKE I DIDN'T HAVE MONEY FOR THAT. SIMILARLY I WASN'T INFORMED THAT HE WOULD BE SERVED AT HIS WORKPLACE ANDS, WHICH WAS OBVIOUSLY HUMILIATING FOR HIM SO THAT MADE HIM FURIOUS AND HE TOOK THAT OUT ON ME, AND I DIDN'T REALIZE HE WOULD GET SEVERAL DAYS NOTICE TO APPEAR IN COURT WHICH MEANS HE HAD SEVERAL DAYS TO TERRORIZE ME AND GET ME TO BACK DOWN AND I WAVERED AND WHEN I WAVERED THE PEOPLE AROUND ME GOT MAD AT ME BECAUSE THEY WERE LIKE "THIS IS YOUR CHANCE TO GET HIM OUT OF YOUR LIFE" AND I JUST WASN'T SURE WHAT TO DO. FINALLY I DECIDED OKAY, OKAY, I'M GONNA GO AHEAD WITH IT AND THE DAY WE WERE TO APPEAR IN COURT HE SHOWED UP AT MY HOUSE AND SAID "GET IN THE CAR, TELL THEM NO, OR YOU'RE NOT COMING HOME" AND SO THAT'S WHAT I DID. AND INSTEAD OF THE PANEL OF JUSTICES RECOGNIZING, YOU KNOW, SUSPICIOUS THAT SHE ARRIVED HERE WITH HIM, IT SEEMED THAT HE SEEMED VERY HAPPY GO LUCKY AND SHE IS NOT SAYING A WORD, THEY STARTED QUESTIONING ALL OF THOSE PIECES, THE PANEL OF JUSTICES ABSOLUTELY RIPPED INTO ME, SAID I WAS IF REASON WHY WOMEN GET ABUSED, I CLEARLY HAD LIED ABOUT IT, I WAS CLEARLY NOT AFRAID OF HIM, I SHOWED UP WITH HIM, MY FAMILY SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF ME, THEY JUST ABSOLUTELY HUMILIATED ME AND THEN I LEFT. AND I THOUGHT WHAT'S THE POINT OF ACCESSING THE SYSTEM. I HAVE SO MANY ADVANTAGES AND PRIVILEGES IN THIS WORLD AND I'M STILL NOT BEING BELIEVED SO THE SYSTEM IS CLEARLY NEVER GONNA HELP ME. AND IN THAT MOMENT WAS ONE OF THE MOST HUMILIATING, EXPERIENCES OF MY LIFE AND I'LL NEVER FORGET HOW ALL HE HAD TO DO WAS STATE HIS NAME, HE JUST HAD TO WALKED IN FRONT OF THE ROOM, STAND BESIDE ME AND STATE HIS NAME. AND THE LEGAL SYSTEM DID ALL THE WORK OF ABSOLUTELY TERRORIZING ME AND HE DIDN'T HAVE TO DO ANY OF THAT. AND THAT ALWAYS REALLY STUCK WITH ME.

Nam says HOW WAS THAT HUMILIATING?

Julie says BECAUSE, I MEAN I NEVER FELT SO SMALL IN ALL MY LIFE. YOU KNOW, I HAD NEVER EVEN AT THAT POINT GOT A PARKING TICKET, NOT GOTTEN DETENTION, I NEVER HAD ANY INTERACTION WITH POLICE. MY ONLY KNOWLEDGE OF THE INSIDE OF A COURT ROOM WAS CRUSHING LAW AND ORDER. IT WAS AN INTIMIDATING PROCESS AND A PANEL OF PEOPLE, A PACKED COURTROOM WHERE THERE WERE JUST PEOPLE THROUGH ONE AFTER THE OTHER, LIKE YOU DIDN'T MATTER. LIKE I WAS JUST SO OVERWHELMED, SO SCARED AND THEN TO SHOW UP FRONT AND BASICALLY BE PLEADING BUT WITH MY FACE, LIKE SOMEBODY HELP ME AND NOR THEM TO BASICALLY TAKE THE SIDE OF THIS WOMAN IS A DRAMA QUEEN, SHE IS A LIAR, I JUST THOUGHT OH MY GOD, NOBODY IS GONE 6 GOING TO PROTECT ME.

Nam says XAVIER WENT FROM BEING A PERSON TO BEING SOMETHING LARGER THAN LIFE FOR YOU. HOW DID THAT OATH SOLUTION TAKE PLACE?

Julie says THE NATURE OF STALK SAINT JOHN THERE IS A PHYSICAL MANIFESTATION OF THAT PERSON INVADING YOUR YOUR SPACE, HE SHOWED UP AT MY WORK, MY SCHOOL, MY HOUSE, BUT ALSO, AND 0 OF COURSE ONLINE AS WELL, BUT THERE IS ALSO THIS SORT OF INSIDIOUS WAY THEY GET PLANTED IN YOUR HEAD WHERE YOU'RE CONSCIOUS OF BEING WATCHED EVEN IF YOU ARE LITERALLY NOT BEING WATCHED. AND IT'S A FORM OF PSYCHOLOGICAL TRACTOR THAT IS REALLY HARD TO EXPLAIN TO PEOPLE BUT THAT SENSE THAT YOU COULD HAVE LOCKED ME IN A CLOSET SURROUNDED BY ARMED GUARDS, LIGHTS OUT NO, WINDOWS, AND YOU COULD HAVE TOLD ME THERE IS NO WAY THIS MAN COULD CAN SEE YOU AND I STILL WOULD ACT AND THINK AND DO THINGS WITH THE ASSUMPTION HE WOULD KNOW ABOUT IT. SO YOU END UP POLICING YOURSELF AND DOESN'T MATTER IF HE IS WATCHING YOU OR NOT, YOU'RE JUST ASSUMING HE IS AND THAT PUTS YOU ON LEVEL OF VIGILANCE THAT REWIRES YOUR BRAIN. WE TALK ABOUT THE NEURO- BIOLOGY OF TRAUMA AND YOU KNOW I HAVE TO DO, LIKE IT LITERALLY IMPACTS YOUR MEDULLA AND YOUR PHYSICAL SYSTEM AND YOUR... NECK PAIN, ALL THESE THINGS ARE CONSTANTLY BRACED, ASSUMING THE WORST IS AROUND THE CORNER AT ALL TIMES.

Nam says XAVIER WAS KILLED IN THAT CAR ACCIDENT THAT SAME SUMMER YOU APPEARED ON OUR SHOW. WHAT DID IT FEEL LIKE WHEN YOU FOUND OUT HE HAD DIED?

Julie says IT WAS BY FAR THE MOST SURREALIST EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE. IT TOOK ME A VERY LONG TIME TO FEEL LIKE HE REALLY WAS GONE. IT WAS SHOCKING, I MEAN HE DIED IN AN ACCIDENT, HE WAS YOUNG, SO IT HAD ALL THE MARKERS OF JUST BEING SHOCKING, OBJECT ACTIVITY, BUT FOR ME IT WAS THIS FLOODING OF ALL OF THE EMOTIONS YOU EXPERIENCED, THE TRAUMA AS, THE TRIGGERS, ALL THE STUFF I HAD IGNORED FOR SO MANY YEARS AND TOLD MYSELF "IF I DON'T LOOK AT IT I DON'T HAVE TO DEAL WITH IT." AND ALL OF A SUDDEN I WAS FORCED TO FACE IT AND BY THE SAME TIME SURROUNDED BY PEOPLE WHO THOUGHT OH MY GOD GIRL YOU'RE LIVING YOUR BEST LIFE NOW, YOU'RE FINALLY FREE, OH MY GOD I'M SO HAPPY FOR YOU. IT WAS THIS WEIRD JUXTAPOSITION WHERE EVERYONE AROUND ME WAS SO SUPPORTIVE AND KIND BUT SO CONFUSED BY THE FACT THAT I LOOKED AND FELT WORSE THAN I HAD IN YEARS AND PEOPLE JUST DIDN'T UNDERSTAND WHY I SEEMED TO BE DOING BETTER WHEN IT WAS LAPPING THAN WHEN IT WAS OVER.

Nam says SO EXPLAIN THAT TO ME BECAUSE I'M ASSUMING THAT IT'S, ONCE HE DIED, THAT MAYBE YOUR FEAR AND ANXIETY WOULD HAVE STOPPED BUT THAT'S NOT WHAT HAPPENED?

Julie says NO, SO THE NATURE OF POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER IS THE POST PIECE, RIGHT, IT'S THE... IT HAS... IT'S AFTER IT HAPPENED. AND SO YOU KNOW I DATED THIS PERSON FROM THE TIME I WAS 18 UNTIL 20 AND THEN HE STALKED ME FROM THE TIME I WAS 20 UNTIL SHORTLY AFTER MY 30TH BIRTHDAY. MY ENTIRE ADULT LIFE I SPENT LOOKING OVER MY SHOULDER, YOU KNOW SPEAKING IN FRONT OF AUDIENCES AND WONDERING IF HE WAS HERE, AND THAT WAS MY WIRING. SO I THINK IT WAS NAIVE OF ME AND OTHERS TO THINK THAT YOU COULD JUST UNSWITCH THAT THE SECOND HE DIES AND THINGS ARE OVER. WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT TRAUMA IS THAT THE MOMENT YOU HAVE SPACE TO ACTUALLY ADDRESS WHAT IS GOING ON AND TO FEEL IS WHEN ALL OF THAT STUFF COMES TO THE FOREFRONT AND SO I WAS FORCED TO FACE ALL OF THE PHYSICAL AND MENTAL, REPERCUSSIONS OF TRAUMA. SO EXHAUSTING TO THE POINT OF LIKE BEING UP FOR THREE, FOUR HOURS AT A TIME, I WOULD NEED TO TAKE A NAP, I WOULD JUST CRY SPONTANEOUSLY, I WAS YOU ARE FUR FURIOUS FOR NO REASON, IT TOOK EVERYTHING I HAD TO GET OUT OF BED AND GET MOTIVATED AND I JUST COULDN'T GET OUT OF WHAT PEOPLE THOUGHT WAS A DEPRESSION BUT WAS REALLY JUST INTENSE POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER.

Nam says I WANT TO READ SOMETHING YOU WROTE IN THE BOOK. YOU WRITE "I HAD SURVIVED SOMETHING THAT WAS STATISTICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. STALKING KILLS. DOMESTIC VIOLENCE KILLS. ONTARIO'S DOMESTIC VIOLENCE DEATH REVIEW COMMITTEE HAS A LIST OF RED FLAGS FOR A WOMAN EXPERIENCING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE who IS AT RISK OF HOMICIDE. I MET NEARLY ALL THE CRITERIA. I SHOULD NOT HAVE SURVIVED. YET, I WAS HERE. COUNTLESS WOMEN WEREN'T. THE BURDEN FELT UNBEARABLE." WHY DID THE BURDEN FEEL UNBEARABLE?

Julie says IT'S A VERY SORT OF BIZARRE VERSION OF SURVIVOR'S GUILT SO, YOU KNOW, YOU'RE THE ONLY PERSON THAT SURVIVED THE PLANE CRASH AND YOU'RE GRATEFUL BUT THEN YOU ALSO THINK WHY ME AND WHY NOT THE OTHERS AND ALSO NOW I HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO DO SOMETHING WITH MY LIFE BECAUSE I WAS SPARED IN A WAY THAT OTHERS WEREN'T AND THAT'S REALLY HOW I FELT AND FRANKLY HOW I STILL FEEL WHICH IS I WANT TO BE GRATEFUL AND I AM INCREDIBLY GRATEFUL BUT GRATITUDE CAN ALSO BE A BURDEN, IT'S A SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY, IT'S A SENSE THAT I HAVE TO SCREAM AND YELL AND TELL MY STORIES TO AS MANY PEOPLE TO GET AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE ON BOARD BECAUSE I'M SPEAKING FOR PEOPLE WHO AREN'T HERE, I'M SPEAKING FOR PEOPLE WHO MIGHT NOT BE HERE FOR LONG, AND AS AN ADVOCATE I'VE WORKED WITH COUNTLESS WOMEN WHO KILLED, WHO ENDED UP TAKING UP... TAKING THEIR OWN LIVES AS A RESULT OF VIOLENCE THEY EXPERIENCED AND SO I DON'T FAY MY BEING HERE LIGHTLY, UMM, AND... BUT I ALSO WANT TO PROBABLE TIES IT AND THINK THROUGH THE FACT THAT I FEEL THIS OVERWHELMING SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY TO BASICALLY GIVE UP MY LIFE AND END THIS HAPPENING TO SOMEONE ELSE AND THAT'S NOT FAIR TO MYSELF AND IT'S AN INSTINCT THAT I REALLY HAVE TO CHALLENGE BECAUSE I DON'T WANT TO BE A MARTYR FOR THE WOMEN'S MOVEMENT BUT I ALSO WANT TO WAKE UP EVERY DAY AND USE THE PLAINTIFF I HAVE TO SAVE SOMEBODY ELSE HAVING TO GO THROUGH WHAT I DID.

Nam says ON HIS DEATH, YOU TRIED TO MOURN HIS DEATH, HOW DID PEOPLE FEEL HOW YOU DID THAT.

Julie says I TRIED TO FIGURE OUT WHY HE DIDN'T FEEL DEAD TO ME AND MY THERAPIST WAS WONDERFUL AT THIS BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE ANY SORT OF RITUAL OR I DIDN'T ATTEND HIS FUNERAL, I DIDN'T... YOU KNOW, I HAD NO WAY TO CREATE THAT CLOSURE SO IT WAS UP TO ME TO CREATE THAT CLOSURE AND SO I DECIDED TO THROW A PARTY AND MY, SOME OF MY FRIENDS ABSOLUTELY ENCOURAGED IT KNOWING THAT JULIE LALONDE LOVES A GOOD PARTY AND IT WOULD LIFT MY SPIRITS TO CELEBRATE MY FREEDOM AND CELEBRATE IF FACT THAT I'M 30 YEARS OLD AND I'M ALIVE AND I SHOULDN'T BE AND THAT'S WORTH CELEBRATING. BUT THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO WOULDN'T COME. THERE WERE PEOPLE WHO THOUGHT IT WAS MORBID, AND I RESPECTED THAT BUT ALSO FELT PUT OUT BECAUSE I THOUGHT "I COULD ASK FOR SO MUCH FROM THE PEOPLE AROUND ME," YOU KNOW, I SUFFERED FOR A VERY LONG TIME AND I INTENTIONALLY DIDN'T TALK ABOUT IT BECAUSE I DIDN'T WANT TO TO BURDEN THEM AND ALL I'M ASKING YOU TO DO IS COME DANCE TO SOME, YOU KNOW, EARLY 2000 TRASH E POP MUSIC IN MY HOUSE WHILE WE EAT SOME SNACKS AND THAT FEELS LIKE TOO MUCH FOR YOU, THEN ARE YOU REALLY MY FRIEND, YOU KNOW. SO IT WAS A WEIRD MOMENT FOR ME WHERE I SAW THE PEOPLE WHO SHOWED UP SHOW UP, AND THERE WAS ALSO THIS BEAUTIFUL MOMENT OF PEOPLE WHO WERE LIKE "I DON'T GET IT BUT THIS IS WHAT YOU NEED SO I'M HERE." AND THAT IS WHAT I WANT FOR ALL SURVIVORS, FRANKLY.

Nam says TEN YEARS AFTER YOU LEFT XAVIER YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY WATCHED YOU CREATE THIS REALLY SUCCESSFUL CAREER AND YOU ARE IN A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP AND THEY ALWAYS WENT BACK THROUGH JULIE IS SO RESILIENT BUT YOU CALLED THIS BOOK "RESILIENCE IS FUTILE," WHY IS THAT?

Julie says WELL ONE, I LOVE A GOOD "STAR TREK" REFERENCE, SO...

Nam says OKAY.

[LAUGHTER]

Julie says BUT, TWO, I THINK IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT WE PROBABLE MA TIES OUR CONCEPT OF RESILIENCE. WE CLINIC TO RATE SILL AGAINST FOR THE POSITIVE REASONS, WE WANT HOPE, WE WANT TO GIVE HOPE TO OTHER PEOPLE THAT THERE IS A REASON TO GOALTENDER UP IN THE MEANING AND A REASON TO FIGHT.

Nam says ISN'T THAT A GOOD THING?

Julie says WHICH IS GOOD, YES. THE PROBLEM WITH RESILIENCE AND FOCUSING SOLELY ON RESILIENCE IS WHEN YOU FOCUS ON RESILIENCE YOU FORGET THE REASONS PEOPLE FIGHT SO HARD IN THE FIRST PLACE. WHEN WE FOCUS ON RESILIENCE IT ENDS UP BEING THIS INDIVIDUALIZED EXPERIENCE WHERE WE TALK ABOUT, YOU KNOW, WE PITTED ONE SURVIVOR AGAINST THE OTHER AND I SAW THAT REALLY HAPPEN FOR ME WHERE I CAME FORWARD AND TOLD MY STORY ABOUT A GOOD 6 THING AFTER SOMETHING HAPPENED TO ME AT RMC AND ONE COULD MOTTE COMPREHEND THAT A WOMAN TAKING ON THE ARMED FORCES WAS AFRAID OF AN EX-BOYFRIEND SO THEY THOUGHT EITHER YOU ARE LYING ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU OR IT CLEARLY WASN'T THAT BAD BECAUSE YOU SEEM TO BE DOING WELL. AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN PEOPLE WERE LIKE WOW WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU WAS REALLY HORRIBLE BUT LIKE LOOK AT YOU NOW, LIKE YOUR THRIVING AND YOU WOULDN'T BE THRIVING IF THIS WOULDN'T HAVE BEEN HAPPENING TO YOU. SO WE GLORIFY SUFFERING AND I TAKE IT AS AN INSULT WHEN PEOPLE ASK AS IF I WOULDN'T BE DOING THIS WORK IF IT WASN'T FOR WHAT HAPPENED TO ME. ONE BECAUSE THAT'S NOT TRUE, I START DOLLARS DOING THIS WORK BEFORE I WAGS BEING STALKED BY HIM, BUT ALSO I THINK WE DEPRIVE PEOPLE OF THEIR HUMANITY BY ACTING A AS THOUGH YOU HAVE TO SUFFER TO BUILD EMPATHY AND I DON'T THINK WE HAVE CREATED A WORLD WHERE WE EQUATE SUFFERING WITH BUILDING OF CHARACTER I WANT TO END SUFFERING, FOR EVERYBODY, ALWAYS. SO FOR ME IT IS A MATTER OF RECOGNIZING MY RESILIENCE DID NOT SAVE ME MY RESILIENCE IS NOT WHY I'M HERE TODAY AND A LACK OF RESILIENCE IS NOT THE REASON WHY THERE ARE SO MANY WOMEN AND GIRLS WHO ARE NOT HERE. THEY FOUGHT AND THEY FOUGHT HARD BUT THE SYSTEM FAILED THEM AND I I WANT US TO THINK ABOUT THE SYSTEMS, I WANTED US TO TEAR DUNE IF SYSTEMS INSTEAD OF CONSTANTLY HOLDING UP INDIVIDUAL SURVIVORS AND SAYING LOOK AT HER, LET HER BE AN INSPIRATION BECAUSE THERE WERE FACTORS DIFFERENT FROM HER THAN THERE WERE FOR ME, NOT ABOUT HER BEING BETTER OR STRONGER IT'S ABOUT THE IMST, GOT TO DARE DOWN THE SYSTEM.

Nam says YOU WERE IN WRITE ABOUT A DOUBLE BIND OF RESILIENCE. NA WHAT YOU'RE SAYING?

Julie says YES, FOR ME IT'S THE FACT MY RESILIENCE IS APPLAUDED BY PEOPLE AND PEOPLE ARE LIKE WOW YOU'RE SO INSPIRING BUT THERE IS NO SPACE FOR ME TO TALK ABOUT HOW UNWELL I'M DOING, BUT YOU'RE DOING FINE. AND PEOPLE WHO GOT THEIR LIVES TOGETHER ARE PEOPLE WHO ACCOMPLISH ALL THE THINGS YOU HAVE AND SO THERE IS NO WAY YOU COULD HAVE ACCOMPLISHED ALL THOSE THINGS IF YOU WEREN'T SOMEONE WHO WAS STRONG AND NANA NANA NANA AND INSTEAD OF RECOGNIZING THAT I WORKED REALLY REALLY HARD FOR SO LONG BECAUSE I THOUGHT I DIDN'T HAVE A LONG TIME TO LIVE. LIKE I LITERALLY WAS I GOT TO ACCOMPLISH AS MANY THINGS AS I CAN WHILE I'M STILL ALIVE, SO I WAS FUELED BY SOMETHING THAT YIELDED GREAT RESULTS BUT WAS USED TO SAY OH, JULIE CAN HANDLE ANYTHING. WE SEE THAT SO OFTEN, SHE'S STRONG, GOT STRONG SHOULDERS, SHE CAN HANDLE ANYTHING. PEOPLE HAVE THE RIGHT TO HAVE A BREAKING POINT AND THAT'S NOT BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT RESILIENT AND NOT TOUGH, WE'RE HUMAN BEINGS.

Nam says I JUST WANTED TO QUICKLY CATCH ON WHAT YOU ADJUSTED SAYS. YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY THAT YOU WOULDN'T HAVE LONG TO LIVE ON A DAILY BASIS?

Julie says YEAH, YEAH.

Nam says YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THAT?

Julie says YEAH, WHETHER IT WAS CONSCIOUSLY OR SUBCONSCIOUSLY THERE WAS AN URGENCY TO EVERY SINGLE THING I DID IN MY LIFE DURING THAT PERIOD, I COULD JUST HEAR A CLOCK TICKING AT ALL TIMES. UMM, AND AGAIN, I WASN'T NECESSARILY CONSCIOUS OF IT BUT I JUST HAD THIS HUNGER THAT AGAIN PEOPLE APPLAUDED AND THOUGHT SHE IS SO CHRISTOPHER AND SO AMBITIOUS BUT REALLY IT WAS PEN IT TENT, IT WAS I GOT TO DO AS MUCH AS I CAN WHILE I'M HERE AND NOW THAT THAT THREAT IS NO LONGER THERE I HAVE RECALIBRATE AND FIGURE OUT JULIE LALONDE, IS SHE SOMEONE WHO WANTS TO WORK 80 HOURS A WEEK OR TOO AFRAID TO FACE THE DARK THOUGHTS IN HER MIND THAT WERE TOO SCARY TO ADDRESS AND IF I STAY BUSY I DON'T HAVE TO THINK ABOUT MY SCARIEST BOYFRIEND, RIGHT? THAT BALANCE IS REALLY HARD TO STRIKE.

Nam says HOW ARE YOU NOW?

Julie says I'M REALLY WELL, THANK YOU. YEAH, I'M REALLY REALLY WELL. BUT I'M WELL BECAUSE I DID THE WORK AND THAT'S WHY I ALWAYS TRY TO PUT A CAVEAT LEADERSHIP I TALK ABOUT IT TO OTHER SURVIVORS AND OTHERS PUBLICLY. I DIDN'T JUST GET WELL BECAUSE TIME PASSED. I GOT WELL BECAUSE I DID THE WORK. I WENT TO THERAPY AND I WENT TO PHYSIO AND I TALKED ABOUT IT AND I PUT MY MENTAL HEALTH FIRST. IT TAKES MONEY AND RESOURCES AND TIME. AND THE IDEA IS THAT YOU JUST WAKE UP ONE DAY AND ARE WELL IS NOT TRUE BUT I'M PROUD THAT I HAVE DONE THE WORK AND I'M PROUD TO BE WELL AND I'M GRATEFUL TO BE HERE.

Nam says LOOKING BACK AT THE CANADIAN MILITARY ALMOST SIX YEARS SINCE THAT FATEFUL DAY DID THINGS IMPROVE IN THAT INSTITUTION?

Julie says I HAVE NOT BEEN INVITED BACK BY THE INSTITUTION, WHICH I FIND INTERESTING, AND MY UNDERSTANDING IS THAT THEY TEACH SOME OF MY CONTENT SORT OF INTERESTING IN THAT SENSE. BUT I THINK IT'S CHANGED BECAUSE THE WORLD HAS CHANGED, I THINK THE IMPROVEMENTS THAT HAVE HAPPENED THERE, ONE, WE'RE NOT NECESSARILY ABOUT MOTIVATED ABOUT ENDING SEXUAL VIOLENCE BUT THE FACT THAT THEIR REPUTATION WAS DEEPLY TARNISHED BY ALL THE OTHER SCANDALS THAT CAME OUT INCLUDING AS I SAID A NUMBER OF STUDENTS WHO TOOK THEIR OWN LIVES, BULLYING, A TERRIBLE CULTURE. SO I THINK THEY WERE FORCED TO FACE SOME OF THIS. BUT I ALSO THINK OUR CULTURE HAS CHANGED. YOU KNOW, AN INSTITUTION IN 2014 COULD ABSOLUTELY STAND UP AND SAY "WE DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM WITH SEXUAL VIOLENCE." IN 2020, AFTER EVERYTHING THAT WE'VE DONE INCLUDING hashtag METOO AND EVERYTHING, THERE IS NO WAY A CANADIAN POST-SECONDARY INSTITUTION COULD STAND UP AND SAY WE DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM THERE. AND THAT'S JUST WE COLLECTIVELY AS THE CULTURE CHANGED, I DON'T THINK THAT WAS A WILLING CHANGE ON BEHALF OF THE CANADIAN ARMED FORCES OR RMC FRANKLY.

The caption changes to "Producer: Sandra Gionas, @sandragionas."

Nam says JULIE THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIME. I KNOW IN THE BOOK YOU WRITE ABOUT HOW DIFFICULT IT WAS TO WRITE THE BOOK BUT I KNOW IT'S GOING TO HELP SO MANY PEOPLE AND IT'S REALLY NICE TO HAVE YOU HERE. THANK YOU.

Julie says THANK YOU SO SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME.

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