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    Posted July 25, 2014 by
    Biglerville, Pennsylvania

    Domestic Violence is a two-way street

    Here is something I came across which you might find interesting:

    Domestic Violence -- Men Can Be Victims, Too

    Over 800,000 men in America are victims of domestic abuse annually. One case is detailed in the new novel “inTWINition of murder” by author Michael Houbrick, as he raises awareness about a man who fell victim to this mostly unreported crime.

    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," Michael Houbrick, author of the newly released novel "inTWINition of murder" states. "Men are likewise victimized by their significant others -- female or male."

    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," Houbrick states. "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."

    "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'," according to Houbrick. 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, cohabitating 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," the author of "inTWINition of murder" relates.

    "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," Houbrick concludes.

    Additionally, Gay Relationships May See Spike in Domestic Violence Cases

    Nearly one-million men in the United States are victims of domestic abuse every year. An expert on the subject, Michael Houbrick, author of “inTWINition of murder,” predicts that figure will rise as gay relationships become more accepted in America.

    A March, 2014 research paper released by the Public Library of Science (PLOS) entitled, "Associations between Intimate Partner Violence and Health among Men Who Have Sex with Men: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis." [1]

    In the paper, the authors state: "Men can be subjected to IPV (Intimate partner violence) either by a female partner or by a male partner in the case of men who have sex with men (MSM, a term that encompasses homosexual, bisexual, and transgender men, and heterosexual men who sometimes have sex with men). Recent reviews suggest that the prevalence of IPV in same-sex couples is as high as the prevalence of IPV for women in opposite-sex relationships: reported lifetime prevalences of IPV in homosexual male relationships range between 15.4% and 51%."

    Additionally, Houbrick quotes an article appearing in the November 5th, 2013 edition of The Atlantic [2]. Titled, "A Same-Sex Domestic Violence Epidemic Is Silent," this excerpt gives credence to Houbrick's claim:

    "... shelters that cater to LGBT people are even more perilously few and far between. Cassildra Aguilera, the LGBTQ program coordinator for Safe Space, said there is one shelter in New York City that identifies as LGBTQ-specific, with 200 beds."

    "According to the U.S. Department of Justice [3], in 2013, 15% of all domestic abuse occurred toward men by their significant others," Houbrick notes. "The DOJ's latest statistics reveal that, on average, 3 females and 1 male are murdered by a partner each day."

    "Research from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence [4] states that over 800,000 men in America are victims of domestic abuse every year."

    That same report, entitled "Male Victims of Violence [5]," released by the NCADV, puts the figure higher than that issued by the Federal Government. "Sixteen-percent of adult men who reported being raped and / or physically assaulted were assaulted by a current or former spouse, cohabitating partner, boyfriend / girlfriend or date."

    "As acceptance of male-to-male and female-to-female marriages continue to rise, so will the amount of cases of same sex abuse," Houbrick believes. "Liken it to a new shut closet for both sexes. A crime which goes mostly unreported because of the stigma attached."

    "Men and boys are shamed into not speaking-out concerning domestic abuse to law enforcement. Only 25% of domestic crimes are reported to police," Houbrick refers again to the Department of Justice report released on June 28, 2013.

    Houbrick suggests that same sex companions heed the warnings issued by the Mayo Clinic [6].

    The Clinic relates these admonitions for gay, bisexual or transgender relationships.

    The abuser will:
    • Threaten to tell friends, family, colleagues or community members about the victim's sexual orientation or gender identity.
    • Say that authorities won't help a gay, bisexual or transgender person.
    • Threatens when a relationship reaches a "breaking point" that leaving the relationship means an admission of a gay, bisexual or transgender relationships are deviant and open to ridicule.
    • Justifies abuse by misleading the abused party that the individual is not "really" gay, bisexual or transgender.
    • Says that men are naturally violent.

    "No matter your sexual preference, domestic violence is something which has been a personal course of study," Houbrick says. "The biggest fear that, as an authority on the subject, we might see a spike in gay, bisexual or transgender abuse. It is a crime which should not be swept away. In the novel "inTWINition of murder," which chronicles a heterosexual case of abuse, the victim ends up dead."

    "Domestic abuse does not need to happen in any relationship. Giving people the warning signs and how to get help has become a cause célèbre which requires a national discussion," Houbrick says.

    [1] http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001609
    [2] http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2013/11/a-same-sex-domestic-violence-epidemic-is-silent/281131/
    [3] http://www.statisticbrain.com/domestic-violence-abuse-stats/
    [4] http://www.ncadv.org/
    [5] http://www.ncadv.org/files/MaleVictims.pdf
    [6] http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/adult-health/in-depth/domestic-violence-against-men/art-20045149
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