#DickheadDextox: Richard Brittain for VAWG

Richard Brittain drScreen Shot 2015-11-11 at 16.26.25ove 500 miles from London to Scotland to assault a teenage girl, Paige Rolland, who posted a negative review of a draft of his book online. He tracked Rolland to her job and proceeded to break a bottle of wine over her head.

This is not the first time Brittain has engaged in male violence against women and girls. In fact, the book Brittain wrote was part of the sustained harassment and stalking of a woman, which included traveling to Scotland to ‘ask if the woman he was in love with wanted to pretend to be kidnapped to share their love with the world and sell his book. Brittain pled guilty to “engaging in a course of conduct which caused Miss Durant fear or alarm by repeatedly pursuing her, approaching her, following her and publishing a story about stalking her in September 2014.” One month later, Brittain assault Rolland.

He detailed his criminal behaviour in a post entitled The Benevolent Stalker.* Having been called out on his CRIMINAL behaviour, Brittain took a stalking “seminar” and came to this conclusion:

Over the last few weeks, I have learnt a lot. In various corners of the web, my blog post The Benevolent Stalker was discussed. One thing that struck me is how many girls claim to have had stalkers; often multiple. I therefore believe that this could be a problem verging on endemic, particularly when considered in the context of a general vibe. There seems to be less trust between genders than ever. We’ve seen videos of women walking down the street and being harassed, and the misogyny of Julien Blanc and Dapper Laughs. In my view, the latter is not necessarily misogynistic but a rather desperate and unfunny comedian who played a caricature which we were supposed to laugh at for its outrageous offensiveness. But misogyny is no laughing matter, and more troubling is that such personality types are common enough for this brand of ‘humour’ to work.

He certainly showed a lack of awareness. I, too, have shown a lack of awareness; for the person I stalked, for myself, and for the nature of stalking. As it appears to be a fairly common problem, I feel that more education might be needed.

I don’t know who ran the seminar, but they need to work on their training and perhaps not use ‘seminars’ to work with perpetrators. Possibly his therapist needs some training as well because this doesn’t make me think Brittain gives a shit about anyone but himself.

I want to use my experience, of having been a stalker, to help others from going down that dark route. Here are some warning signs which I would look out for:

a) You find that you’re comparing yourself to characters in fiction. For example, I frequently compared myself to Han Solo and her to Princess Leia. Sometimes, I even had the music of Star Wars running through my head.

b) There was a strong, impulsive feeling that I had to act in order to keep the love alive. It could well be that this biological process was useful when we were cavemen, but it is of fundamental importance that we overcome such carnality in today’s society. I’m not talking about lust, by the way. This was something very different, much more powerful, a feeling which took hold of all my thoughts and emotions.

c) My psychiatrist said that I showed an ‘erotomanic’ quality. Erotomania is a type of delusion in which you believe that someone is in love with you. You believe that she/he is declaring her/his affection through special glances, signals and hidden messages. In my case, I looked at her Twitter and believed that many tweets were directed at me.

d) When the person rejects you, you manage to convince yourself that it is part of a challenge or game. Or that she is only denying you because she wants to keep it as a forbidden love, hidden from the rest of the world.

If you are showing any of the above symptoms, it is possible that you are in danger of becoming a stalker. I would advise you to take a step back and re-evaluate.

When I first heard this story, I assumed Brittain would get only a slap on the wrist for his assault despite the stalking. Having read parts of his blog, I’m now worried he will still only get a slap on the wrist even though he has stalked and harassed two women, assaulted one woman and has repeatedly harassed and behaved in an abusive manner to anyone who spoke negatively about his book. I’m worried he will step up his abusive behaviour and continue targeting women.

Brittain’s blog seems to suggest he has self-diagnosed with narcissistic personally disorder and paranoid schizophrenia. It also says a psychiatrist has prescribed him anti-psychotics. Whatever the truth, Brittain shows a long history of extremely problematic and criminal behaviour.


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