June, I went through a shorter version of what you did. Only one trial six months after the first aborted one and 8 years after the initial complaint. I was naive about the trial process because I thought I knew about courts. I had worked in news and for the police.
I also went into court without a supporter because I didn't want the offender to see anyone attached to my adult life. My detective was not allowed into court at the same time because of a request by the offenders lawyer and this felt patently cruel.
I was still totally unprepared for the assault of the defense lawyer. We eventually got a guilty verdict but with some charges dropped. I was too traumatized by the process to even find out what charges were dropped.
The offender (a direct family member) was released early fro prison and not even the police were informed.
Like you, I remain terribly conflicted on what to advise other people about this process. I often think that if it nearly broke me then what would it do to the more brittle?
The offender in my case also successfully received his firearms license back after a few years which the police were powerless to stop.
I sincerely thank you for writing about this. I have wanted to but it remains too unpleasant for me to navigate.
In the act of writing this and reading the responses, I hope you have felt some potency in what has been a situation forced on you.
Thank you again.