There’s a reason my husband is an officer and I am not. I’m a relatively good person, but he’s better than me.
He became an officer for all the right reasons. He was that little boy who never knew his daddy. He watched his mother struggle to make ends meet. He easily could have chosen a path less honorable, but instead he chose to do something with the goal of making a difference.
You see, my husband took an oath to be committed to you and your safety, regardless of whether or not that takes him from me. I never took that oath, and I’m beginning to wonder if you’re worth it. As I said, he’s better than me.
He’s better than me because he’s never cared if you see him for his worth or not. He doesn’t care if you have any respect for him or if you loathe him. He will still be there for you. He will help you. He will save you. He will stand in front of your bullet to save an innocent behind him. I don’t think you’re worth it, and I apologize for not being as good of a person to you as he is.
You see, I don’t want to help you if you hate me.
I don’t want to run to save you if it means I might not make it home to my husband. I would never want to stand in front of a bullet to save a stranger if it meant my children would never have their mother again. I apologize, but you’re not worth that to me. Thank God, you’re worth it to my husband. He’s better than me.
I’m sorry for resenting you when I have never met you. I am sorry for wishing my husband didn’t care about you the way he does. I’m sorry for being selfish and wishing lately he were a plumber or a dentist and not the one who would race in to save you, a total stranger, who would most likely never know how much he means to me. I’m sorry for not being the person I used to be, but you have made it hard to keep caring about you more than the father of my children, my best friend, my partner in this life.
I’m sorry for allowing you to make me fearful and angry and resentful when I’ve never even met you. I’m sorry for seeing bricks and rocks and trashcans ablaze being hurled at officers on live television and wishing you ill will. I’m sorry for seeing credible threats of violence aimed at officers across this country and, in turn, feeling hatred towards you when I’ve never met you.
I’m a Christian and I know those feelings are born of weakness. I’m human, so is my husband. He’s just better than me.
I’m sorry for wondering if you would spare my husband for wearing a badge because his skin is black, or if you would target him more because he’s a traitor in your eyes. I’m sorry for allowing myself to be reduced to a person who wonders if race could help keep him alive. I’m sorry to all the other police wives for wondering if that gives him an advantage. I’m weak lately, and I’m sorry for blaming you when it is I who has allowed your hate and your violence and your judgment of my husband to affect me negatively.
I’m sorry that I care more about my husband making it home alive than I care about him dying for you. It didn’t used to be that way. Luckily for you, there are hundreds of thousands of officers who still remember the oath they took. They will not allow other corrupt officers to change who they are nor will they allow a public that increasingly hates them to change how they protect and serve.
Luckily for you so many officers are just as my husband is – willing to stand up and honor that oath. I apologize, for they are better than me.
About the Author Melissa Littles