Today is the first day in National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Domestic violence affects many worldwide. In the United States alone, the statistics on domestic violence are staggering:
- Nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner. In one year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men.
- 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner. Of those, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have been victims of severe physical violence (e.g. beating, burning, strangling) by an intimate partner.
- 1 in 7 women and 1 in 25 men have been injured by an intimate partner.
- 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime. Almost half of female (46.7%) and male (44.9%) victims of rape were raped by an acquaintance. Of these, 45.4% of female rape victims and 29% of male rape victims were raped by an intimate partner.
- 1 in 7 women and 1 in 18 men have been stalked by an intimate partner during their lifetime to the point in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close to them would be harmed or killed.
Two days ago, our family said goodbye to a humble, hard-working, sensitive, soft-spoken man—my Uncle David.
Uncle David was a devout Christian who tried to follow the path of righteousness every day of his life. My uncle practiced random acts of kindness, always lending a hand or giving encouragement. He never expected remuneration for his kindnesses. Instead, he hoped that those he helped would pay it forward, doing good deeds and spreading goodwill to others.
Unassuming and modest, Uncle David would not have wanted accolades. However, because he was such a special person, I wanted to honor him in a way that would best exemplify the way he lived his life. So, in memory of my Uncle David, I am paying it forward.
Every family tree has them. Those eccentric kin who march to their own beat. However, there is a point where eccentric becomes something more. For some, this is a temporary condition; for others, it is long-term reality. Either way, for these family members, people euphemistically say that they are not all there, are off their rocker, have a screw loose, are out to lunch, or are just not right in the head.