Think of the term domestic abuse for a bit. Swirl it around in your head the way wine snobs swirl around an Italian chardonnay. What does it make you think of? Most likely, how your brain interprets that dry, rather clinical term involves a man in a beer-stained sleeveless t-shirt. The back of a hand. The word “bitch” thrown around with abandon. “Look what you made me do, bitch.” Bruises, black eyes. Perhaps you might even imagine the cops getting involved, or a DV shelter, or the brute driving around searching furiously for said DV shelter, thumbing the revolver tucked into his belt.
And, above all, a female victim. That is the universal of almost all abuse scenarios (absent the rare gay-male-DV story, which almost never broaches public imagination for some reason). Probably curled up in one corner, crying, a menacing shadow looming over her, belt in his hand.
Now, with those Godfather movie scenes still fresh in your mind, read this.
No, seriously. Go and read it. Then come back. It’ll even open up in its own tab and everything. I’ll wait.