Refer to question that led me to ask this question How to call out narcissistic father on emotionally blackmailing my sister

I am considering calling the police station to explain my situation and asking for advice, but I want to have a planned explanation why they should take me seriously. I have reason to doubt that police officers in general do not get involved with personal disputes with family members unless they are threatening bodily harm.

Because of this, I need a bit more preparation and consideration before I do this.

TL;DR: My sister has her things at my dad's house, my dad won't give her things back until she gives in and lets him see her in person.

What points do I need to consider for speaking with a person of authority about an emotional issue between my dad and my sister, and asking for their intervention?

If anyone has a frame challenge ("this is not a good idea") please explain your thoughts fully instead of "don't do this!" as an answer.

  • Can your sister prove that the things she need to retrieve are her possessions?
    – ooOOooK
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 8:58
  • I don't think there is a need for proving the things are hers. The only things there are hers and my dad's and there's an obvious difference with the clothes and objects.
    – ElizB
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 18:44
  • Well, there is a difference: she could have them delivered, or made accessible to a proxy, by force of a legal argument.
    – ooOOooK
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 22:08
  • There's no need for delivery- he lives 10 minutes away, and he's not gonna push anything legal because it costs money that he doesn't have and he doesn't like the legal system.
    – ElizB
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 22:52
  • 1
    Oh, I misunderstood you before. I understand better now. Yes, she has an issue with our dad, but her anxiety has prevented her from really standing up for herself
    – ElizB
    Commented May 17, 2019 at 15:16

1 Answer 1


They will typically not care about emotional blackmail, so raising that issue with police will get you nowhere. Someone being an unpleasant person is not a police matter. However, most police departments will send a police officer to escort you to your previous home to pick up your belongings if you feel unsafe doing so on your own.

Therefore, I would recommend calling the non emergency police number and explaining that your sister feels unsafe going to your father's house to pick up her belongings. Mention that you have reason to believe that he won't let her pick them up. Ask for a police officer to escort her there to fetch the belongings.

This answer is based on personal experience, from helping a friend get out of an emotionally abusive relationship.

  • 6
    I can confirm: in a small Ontario town, one of my daughter's room-mates was getting the runaround from an ex (and his mother) and the police were happy to arrange to meet her at the old house to retrieve her things. Don't tell them he's a manipulating narcissist: tell them she wants her stuff and he's not letting her have it. Commented May 7, 2019 at 12:00
  • 3
    Can also confirm in midwestern small town. Had to grab my stuff from an ex's place and arrived on scene with a couple of police waiting to greet me (despite the ex being the one threatening harm ironically). Though in my situation, the police had to leave to deal with another matter but everyone was civil. May need to be prepared to have cops wanting to leave. Commented May 8, 2019 at 18:02

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