Over 800,000 men in America are victims of domestic abuse annually.
The face of domestic violence is usually that of a battered woman or a small child. There’s another face which needs to be added to this horrific crime. Men are likewise victimized by their significant others — female or male.
I wrote a murder / mystery novel, “inTWINition of murder” that chronicles this hidden secret of domestic violence. The plot revolves around twins who remained inseparable in life … and death.
This gripping story even involves an on-the-stand witness account, which was deemed admissible in a court of law. Related to the central character, the brother — beyond-the-grave — reveals critical clues of his murder to his living sibling.
While “inTWINition of murder” is a fictional tale, a similar case — an “other-worldly” recount of the crime, in the late 2000’s about an abused companion — was the basis of the storyline.
This problem goes mostly unreported. Usually because men and boys are less likely to enlist the help of law enforcement. The self-perceived stigma of being labeled ‘a male victim’ is at the top of the list. In the novel, “inTWINition of murder,” the ‘dirty little secret’ is exposed.
The central character, in the piece of fiction, likewise feels the pattern of abuse will “get better.”
In my novel, that never happens. The denial of the character’s victim status spirals out-of-control. Women and children who have been hurt — sometimes murdered by the hands of companions — know this feeling all-too-well.
I found a study from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. In it, the organization states, “It is estimated that 835,000 men are physically assaulted by an intimate partner annually.”
But men may feel society will criticize the male victim because of a perceived failure that the sufferer is not conforming to a common ‘macho stereotype’ Authorities on the subject of female-perpetrator / male-victim domestic violence agree.
In a report (Male Victims of Violence), issued by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, “16% of adult men who reported being raped and / or physically assaulted were assaulted by a current or former spouse, co-habitating partner, boyfriend / girlfriend or date.”
Both heterosexual and gay men need to emerge from this new closet of horror. Having both women and male friends, who have endured abusive relationships, has revealed a unique perspective on this troubling matter. It’s often swept under-the-rug.
Bruised bodies are one thing — unacceptable. But by raising awareness, the novel screams loudly that bruised egos be damned. Sometimes the terrorists, feared from afar, are living right under the same roof. The time has come for men to raise loud voices, and bring individuals who reign terror on ‘loving’ partners to justice. Report this crime to law enforcement. Run, don’t walk, for help.
It could be a matter of life-or-death to men, as well as women and children..