The hidden half of domestic violence
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ACFC ANALYSIS -- Decline in Abuse Post 9-11
Thanks to Frank Lindley for this typical propaganda from the domestic violence industry, complaining about a decline in calls for their services in the wake of 9-11. Of course, what this article forgets to tell us is that about two-thirds of women who claim to be abused, are actually the abusers themselves, and initiate most of the incidents they complain of. Most domestic violence is confined to a small minority of about 11% to 13% of both men and women. In most cases abuse by the men and women in abusive relationships is roughly equal.
A likely explanation for the decline in women's complaints is that many of these women appreciate their spouse more after 9-11, thus they are less likely to initiate physical or verbal abuse, and are therefore less likely to have anything to complain about. Typically you never hear anything about domestic violence that is remotely connected to common sense reality from the "domestic violence industry", nor will you find any reasonable explanation for the decline in abuse after 9-11 in their typical one-sided propaganda below.
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The New York Times October 21, 2001
Shelters Have Empty Beds; Abused Women Stay Home by TAMAR LEWIN
Refuge House, the battered women's shelter in Tallahassee, Fla., is usually full - so full that there are plans to replace the 28-bed facility with a 70-bed shelter.
But since the Sept. 11 terror attacks, most of the beds at Refuge House have been empty. The day after the attacks, it was less than half full; by Sept. 24, it was less than a quarter full.
"Women just stopped calling our hot line after the attacks," said Kelly Otte, the executive director. "One day, there were only two women in the whole shelter. Just as other people in relationships are pulled together in a tragedy, feeling that family's the most important thing, battered women feel that same pull. They're already very vulnerable, and they may feel they need to be with somebody, no matter what, so maybe the violence of the relationship is not such a big deal compared with a huge national crisis."
After the terror attacks, many people are reviewing their priorities and clinging tighter to loved ones, psychologists say. More people are interested in writing wills: ARAG Group, which provides group legal insurance plans, has been getting 20 percent more calls about will preparation than usual since Sept. 11 - and its Web site offering legal forms has had a fiftyfold increase in the number of will documents purchased. Concerns about protecting family members have contributed to surging sales of life insurance, cellphones, gas masks and guns.
But for some of the nation's most vulnerable people, including battered women and those who are chronically depressed or isolated, the crisis has had quite a different impact.
In Cleveland, Paula Koos said that of 69 women at the Domestic Violence Center, at least eight left the shelter in the week after the attacks.
"Women went back to their abusers, precipitated by a feeling that a bad home is better than no home at all," Ms. Koos said. "These are women who often feel overwhelmed, and not in control of their lives. So some of them feel that even if they're not returning to the best situation, at least they won't be solely responsible for taking care of themselves and their children."
At Tallahassee's Refuge House, women were beginning to come back last week. But the attacks were still affecting victims of domestic violence, Ms. Otte said.
"Some batterers have made the terrorism part of their repertoire of pain-invoking techniques," Ms. Otte said. "One woman got an e-mail from her abuser, saying that it was a shame with all these buildings getting hit, that no one had hit her building."
She continued: "Our occupancy rate is still way down, but the staff tells me that they're again getting calls from women who want help. Last week, they held beds for three women and seven kids who had called, but they never came in. It's not normal for so many to call and not show up."
While not all shelters reported so many empty beds - a few said they had more clients than ever, because of increasing domestic violence they linked to the declining economy - many, across the country, said the women they served had come under increased pressure to return to abusive relationships.
"The batterers will say this is a time when we need to be together as a family, you need to be here where I can protect you," said Kristina Matkins, the director of community relations at Safehouse Denver Inc. "We had at least two women whose perpetrators used the terror attacks as an excuse to coerce them back into the relationships. The problem is that what we know about domestic violence is that it will happen again."
At crisis hot lines, too, the terrorism, at least initially, brought an eerie lull. The usual calls from depressed people contemplating suicide all but ceased in those first few days, when much of the nation was watching television.
"There was a huge silence on crisis hot lines right after Sept. 11," said Reese Butler of the National Hopeline Network, which connects 73 hot lines nationwide in its 1-800-SUICIDE line. "Calls dropped in half. Most people who call hot lines don't have anyone in their regular lives they can call and say, `I hate my life.' But after a tragedy, things are different. People take care of each other more, check in, hug. So the chronic callers, the typical depressions, are less isolated, and they're not calling. Now, our callers are people trying to deal with the anxieties and the grief left in the aftermath of the tragedy."
In Arlington, Va., Arlene Krohmal said that after an initial period of "deathly quiet," the call volume at the CrisisLink hot line had picked up, but more than a quarter of the calls were still about the Sept. 11 attacks.
"We're hearing from a lot of the first responders, people who had to deal with the initial trauma," she said. "We know that after man-made disasters, suicide rates go up and stay up for several years. In Oklahoma City, it was still up five years later. So we're expecting that, but none of this is immediate. After a huge trauma, it can be a long time before you see all the effects."
Copyright 2001 The New York Times Company New York Times Home: http://www.nytimes.com/
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JUNE is Domestic Violence Against Men Awareness Month