Liz Chisholm still remembers the domestic abuse cases she handled during her 33-year career as a police officer in Saint John.

During her time in the family protection unit, Chisholm, who is now retired, said alone, she would handle 700 to 800 cases a year. 

Chisholm said a recent open letter by a Saint John lawyer about intimate partner violence has hit close to home.

"We would try to get in touch with these people … often take women to Hestia House and try to get them the services they need to maybe leave an abusive relationship," she said.

Nathalie Godbout wrote the open letter to a woman she encountered at a hotel in New Brunswick on New Year's Day.

As she and her family were packing to check out, there were alerted to yelling across the hall in Room 805.

"There were loud sounds and then muffled sounds, all telling for both a verbal and physical violence," Godbout wrote in her post on Facebook, which has been shared over 2,300 times.

"He was getting more and more agitated, and we quickly figured out that he was directing his rage at someone. At you."

Chisolm said in an interview with Information Morning Saint John, on Friday that the letter struck close to home.

"I matured in my career, as a woman and in my life. This is not something that somebody can just say, don't do it, just stop." 

"It's ingrained that these women and these men. The victims were brought up in abusive, alcohol or drug-addicted families and they knew no other way to deal with the person they think they love."

Chisholm said that it became easier for victims to reach out to her.

"It's not as easy as I had hoped in that the stigma attached to it has changed.They don't feel stupid, they feel they can come forward and ask for the help they need."

She said the things that have changed really is the acceptance of women into transition homes, the way police handle domestic violence and the way the courts dealt with domestic violence.

But the calls still come in on a daily basis.

"I don't think there's a day goes by that police officers don't respond to this type of call or another," she said.

"There may be a day or two without a domestic violence call then you'll have three or four in a run of a day."

She says she rarely remembers names, but remembers the circumstances in which the calls were made.

"I get messages from people to this day that I've dealt with 25, 30 years ago saying, 'Thank you for the help you gave me at that time, it took me awhile but I got out.'"

"That is what has kept me going and made everything I ever did worth while."