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Felicia Jernigan seemed, from all appearances, to be a typical suburban housewife. But behind her closed doors she kept a dark and shameful secret. Gradually.
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To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Retribution , please sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. Sort order. Apr 23, Marianne H. Good story All too often domestic abuse happens and sometimes we do wish What happened in this book could be done. It was well written. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. About Gerald Bullock. That's upwards of three million male domestic violence victims every year, or one man in America abused by an intimate or domestic partner every Highlighting these statistics is not meant to downplay in any way domestic violence among women.

It is, however, intended to add to the growing conversation that anyone can be the victim of domestic abuse and everyone who needs protection deserves access to it. Male victims of domestic violence, just like female victims, often deal with intense self-doubt and anxiety before reaching out for help. Victims may fear their abusers will seek retribution if they go to the police, or they feel great uncertainty about leaving their home for temporary safe house shelter.

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Men and women can both experience these kinds of worries. But one barrier to that tends to only apply to male victims? The belief that domestic violence laws and resources don't apply to them. Is there any truth to this? There may be no better time than October's Domestic Violence Awareness Month to clear up a misconception that has persisted for far too long. If you are a man in an abusive relationship, or know someone who is, here are five reality checks that your safety is valued and important. Fear: Police Don't See Women as Abusers Reality Check : A few weeks ago, a domestic violence case in Florida made headlines when a man - an army ranger - came forward with evidence that his estranged wife had physically abused him.

His proof? Video from a Go Pro camera he was wearing that allegedly showed his wife physically assaulting him in front of their children. The two have been engaged in a bitter divorce and custody battle, and now domestic violence has been added to the mix. The wife in this matter has been charged and is currently in jail.

You don't need video evidence before the police will take you seriously. Start keeping a log of all instances of abusive actions taken by your partner, and be as specific as possible with dates, places, times, what happened, and the names of any witnesses. Carefully document any cuts, bruises or other injuries, taking photos whenever possible and seeking medical care as needed. If you feel unsafe having this information in your home, ask a trusted friend or family member to keep it in a secure place in their home. Whilst the participants had mostly not had formal therapy, they had often been involved in psycho-educational groups, and traces of their interactional encounters in these groups can be found in their talk.

They used terms like stress, release, support, self-esteem—seemingly reproducing the language of professionals, and of various support programmes they had gone through. This kind of language suggests the incorporation of therapeutic dialogue into the sense of self, and the construction of a more managed therapeutic self.

This may enable the expression of experience in a way that feels safe and boundaried for children, and that perhaps does not risk too much self-exposure. In reproducing the language of the group they are simultaneously able to express themself, and produce an account of the self that is part of a shared community narrative, authorized by a professional voice. Rather, children and young people seem to draw on the cultural resources available to them within their families and support services, to make sense of the experiences they have.

What emerges instead is an active, reflexive and strategic decision maker—a child who weighs up all the risks before making a decision about who they will speak to and how. The children and young people interviewed were very articulate, strategic and reflexive communicators. Far from being passive witnesses to violence, the children and young people interviewed had a clear understanding of the interpersonal and social constraints on their ability to talk about their experiences, could reflect on the impact of those constraints, and could find creative ways to work around them.

They showed an awareness of the potential risks involved in disclosing domestic violence, and appeared to make active and conscious decisions to quieten themselves. However, self-silencing and managing disclosure also appeared to function as complex and adaptive coping strategies that children and young people used to keep themselves and others physically and psychologically safe.

This self-silencing was produced interactionally. Participants described how they monitored, weighed up and managed the potential risks of disclosure in domestic violence, making relational decisions about when to speak up, and when to concede to the overt oppressive and coercive behavior of the adult perpetrator. Whilst disclosure is risky physically, relationally and psychologically , for children, young people and their families, children also recognise that it is a potential resource, that enables them both to gain support and cathartic release.

This analysis highlights that this active management of disclosure in relational encounters is not merely an artefact of the interview interactions, but rather is reflective of a broader relational strategy children and young people use in managing how they tell, and who they tell to. They are skilled in telling their stories, and in avoiding telling their stories. This analysis has shown that children and young people are highly agentic in their management of this disclosure, but that their ease of interaction with others is limited by their experiences of violence and threat, by their self-silencing, and by their strategic management of disclosure.

They have learned to be cautious about what and how they disclose. For fraught and difficult experiences like domestic violence, the available language for children and young people to articulate their experiences can be very limited —culturally available resources to talk about such difficult experiences of family life are very limited. Adult talk about violence and recovery is one resource that is available to children and young people. This builds on work that highlights the importance of the relational context in which children and young people experience domestic violence Callaghan et al.

All human narratives are intersubjective and multivoiced in their nature Bakhtin The conscious management of disclosure means rather that children and young people—like all reflexive human beings—are active and reflexive in their production of their own accounts, and consciously and agentically manage their disclosures. For example, professional understandings of domestic violence become an important resource for children and young people who are in contact with services and can help them to frame their experiences.

However, if those accounts are framed by normative understandings of childhood and child development, and include entrenched ideas about how violence impacts children and young people, this can have a more problematic impact for the child trying to build a positive image of themselves in recovery Callaghan and Alexander In supporting children and young people, it is important to find ways for them to talk about their experiences on their own terms, and to promote less pathologising ways to think about their lives.

Children and young people are cautious about talking about their experiences, and consequently will only discuss them in quite specific and limiting conditions. This provides a relatively limited range of cultural resources—often quite adult dominated resources—within which to locate and make sense of their experiences. Rather it provides insight into how this experience is constituted. This construction of children and young people who survive domestic violence offers them two potential subject positions to identify with—future victim or future aggressor.

This kind of talk does not equip them with a language register within which to constitute a positive sense of self as survivor, nor does it provide children and young people with an alternative narrative to the family narrative of abuse and victimisation. Adult and family narratives, and professional discourses about domestic violence can help and hinder children and young people articulate an experience that is often difficult to express, both because of a lack of language to talk about violent family relationships, and because of the censoring and self-censoring of their expression.

Adult accounts of surviving childhood domestic violence have identified having someone to confide in outside the home as an important resilience factor Anderson and Danis ; Gonzales et al. In a context where maintaining silence is an element of coercive control, breaking silence is a potent act of resistance Callaghan and Clark This potentially opens up a window in which the child is able to construct a sense of self beyond the familial patterns of violence and abuse.

As Hebdige suggests, small gestures of defiance signal a refusal, they have a subversive value that extends beyond the immediate act of defiance itself. In the context of domestic violence, such gestures of defiance signal a refusal of the coercive practices and oppressive silences of the family—they are an explicit resistance to the familial order which is characterized by regimes of silence.

It enables them to feel they can protect themselves and their families, by making conscious choices about who to tell, how and when they tell. In common with much research on children and domestic violence, this study was limited by its focus on children and young people recruited through support services for domestic violence. Further, whilst it was not our intention to only recruit families where the main identified victim was female, only a small number of participants came from families where the main identified victim was male, or where professionals judged both partners to be violent.

This limits the relevance of these findings to similar families. A further concern in interpreting the findings of this research is that presumably those children and young people who chose to participate in the study were more inclined to talk about their experiences, potentially skewing findings to children and young people more comfortable with disclosure. This research emphasises the need for professionals working with children and young people affected by domestic violence in which they can disclose safely, and work on the production of alternate family narratives.

One way to enable this is to ensure that all those who work with children and young people affected by domestic violence establish clear lines of communication, in which children and young people know the boundaries, and understand the limitations and potential consequences of disclosures. It is crucial that children and young people are supported to feel secure in their disclosures, so that they can rebuild their sense of trust in adults who both believe them, and are trustworthy.

By making boundaries overt and explicit, professionals and other adults can enable relational space in which the pressure for children and young people are relieved of the need to constantly scan and monitor the safety of their disclosures. It is also important that professionals and other adults supporting children and young people who experience domestic violence overcome their own collusions with the silencing of children and young people.

This can be achieved by recognizing that children and young people are conscious, sense-making beings who are aware of the violence they have experienced, and have developed complex strategies for coping with those experiences Vetere and Cooper This requires that those supporting children and young people suspend adult denial and minimization of both the impact of domestic violence on children and young people, and of their agentic capacity to cope with and manage that violence and its consequences.

This requires strong support for families struggling with domestic violence within an integrated framework that can encompass multiple layers and perspectives rather than privileging the adult one. This requires a safe, flexible, responsive, but clearly structured environment that can encompass multiple layers of disclosure and make sense of its implications. Telling their stories in such a safe and respectful context will enable both professionals and children and young people to make sound decisions that support a sense of rational and realistic maintenance of safety in the family, beyond the coercive relationships that have previously characterised their family life.

This will enable the emergence of alternative stories of self and other that could lay the foundations for children and young people to live their life free of abuse. Could you tell me a little bit about yourself? For example, where do you come from, do you have any brothers and sisters, where do you live now, and with who? How would you describe your family? If you had to tell the story of you and your family, what would it be?

This project is about children growing up with domestic violence—with lots of fighting and maybe hitting in their home. Do you think of yourself as growing up in that kind of situation? What is that like for you? When there were bad times at home, when people were fighting or getting angry with each other, what was that like for you? Is there anything you did that made you feel better, when bad things were happening at home? How did it help? Is there someone you can talk to about the things that happen or have happened at home?

What do you think needed to change to make things better at home? What could other people have done to change things? Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal of Child and Family Studies. J Child Fam Stud.

Published online Jul Author information Copyright and License information Disclaimer.

Jane Elizabeth Mary Callaghan, Email: ku. Corresponding author. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Children and young people who experience domestic violence are often represented as passive witnesses, too vulnerable to tell the stories of their own lives.

Keywords: Domestic violence, Children and young people, Disclosure, Agency. Open in a separate window. Table 2 Details of participants with extracts included in this article.

Introduction

Results This analysis explores how children and young people reflected on and managed the tensions they experienced around disclosures. Being Silenced or Choosing Silence? For instance, Rachel explains how her brother attenuated himself, making his presence less noticeable in response to family violence: Rachel 11, F, UK : Marcus would like whisper to me and everything because he was scared that he was going to shout too loud or something Rachel suggests here that her brother has adapted the way that he speaks within his violent familial environment, keeping quiet, avoiding being too noisy.

Some children and young people also reported actual or feared retribution from the perpetrator when violence was disclosed: Marios 14, Greece : Whatever happened in the family, stayed there. When asked how she reacted to a very violent incident at home, Anna 18, F, Italy responded: I went to school as if nothing happened. Elda: My age Int: Why? Elda: It is a constraint. Managing Disclosure: Finding Ways to Tell One way children and young people managed disclosure was by finding safe ways to express themselves, and by making clear and conscious decisions about who they could and could not trust with the details of their lives.

For many children and young people, this sense of others as trustworthy was built on shared experiences of violence: Angelo 15, M, Italy : I do not remember, maybe I was talking with my classmate who had the same situation. In addition to their awareness of the physical and psychological risks of disclosure, children and young people were aware that deliberately breaking family secrets was also a powerful thing to do, a gesture of defiance: Matina 11, F, Greece : However, none of my family knew that me and my sister, we were trusting a common friend that we had.

Matina: uh uh Matina here described a disclosure of family violence, trusting a friend her family did not even know about. Speaking with Many Voices: Authorised Accounts, Ventriloquation, and Therapeutic Talk When children and young people do tell their stories, their accounts are often polyvocal, shifting between adult, professional and child voices as they constitute their narratives. Int: Who have we got here? However, in describing the importance of talking about their experiences, the children and young people again used quite adult constructions of their experiences: Kostas 14, M, Greece : Every day I was telling more and more, I was taking it out… I was feeling guilty inside of me, I was feeling guilty, how can I say it?

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Nancy: In a way, she speaks stuff. Nancy: In a way yeah.

Keith Ellison domestic violence accuser posts 2017 medical document identifying Democrat as abuser

She has a voice recording thing Int: Oh! Laughs Okay, so do you talk into the voice recorder? Nancy: errm like, happiness Nancy described how she uses her doll in a range of ways: for example, as a representation of an encouraging, competent and brave possible self—she records her own voice, affirming her own courage which she can then listen to through the doll.

Author Contributions J. Appendix 1 Sample from Interview Schedule Could you tell me a little bit about yourself? How do you think you could have changed things? Compliance with Ethical Standards Conflict of Interest The authors declare that they have no competing interests. Informed Consent Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. References Alderson P, Morrow V.

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Domestic abuse - Julie's story. Contains graphic images

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