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Would You Help a Domestic Violence Shelter That Helps Men?
September 15, 2004
by Ray Blumhorst

There's a place I know about on the East coast, that assists male victims of domestic violence, but they don't stop just with male victims. They also assist people of any gender. I've been trying to provide my assistance to them for some time so it was with a sense of concern that I read a recent correspondence from the good folks in that kind hearted group. I guess it should have come as no surprise, in these difficult times, that my favorite charity is struggling valiantly to get ready for the harsh Maine winter soon to descend on that region of the country. I must admit, it is a little hard for me to think of Maine winters as I sit sweltering in the blazing heat of another 100 degree California day, but I have seen those kind of winters, and know that it is wise to be fully prepared when those conditions descend. Here in a nutshell is a brief description of the situation that the Domestic Abuse Helpline for Men (DAHM) is facing,

"We have enough materials to finish the walls and framing the inside of the apartment for bathroom and bedrooms but not enough to put a roof on it to protect it through the winter. We need about $4,500.00 more for materials to do this. It still won't be finished but at least it will be covered up and safe from damage through the winter. New England winters are long and with the constant barrage of snow, ice and sleet it would not be a good thing to leave that apt. "un-roofed." Then through the winter my husband will do the plumbing and electrical work needed as well as install the heating system. Hopefully by spring we will have figured out a way to get more funds to finish the project."

In the past, members of the domestic violence community in California have accused "Father's Rights Advocates" of "attacking" domestic violence shelters and trying to "tear down." I for one can tell you that it is highly offensive for any victim of domestic violence (male or otherwise) to be accused of "attacking" or "tearing down" domestic violence services, knowing fully how badly those services are needed for real victims of domestic violence. Many men as well as women are working hard to try to provide domestic violence services for all victims of domestic violence, and they are not "attacking" or "tearing down" domestic violence services when they ask for "equal protection under the law" at government (taxpayer) funded domestic violence shelters.

DAHM has a National Hotline making themselves available to victims nationally. Although that may not appear to be much help to someone who is far away and has been battered, I can tell you that it can be a lifeline to those men who have been denied services, or worse, denied services and falsely accused of domestic violence. DAHM can certainly be a blessing when you're a man trying to get away from domestic abuse, and you run into the strong opposition against male victims, that is so prevalent in the mainstream domestic violence community. Again, however, DAHM is open to all. DAHM provides it services to all. Isn't that really something all domestic violence shelters should be doing, instead of further victimizing male victims (as many do), when they deny them the same services that they so freely provide to female victims?

In supporting the efforts of DAHM, men as well as women can show concretely that they are literally "building up" up shelter services for all victims of domestic violence, no matter what their gender.

An anonymous contributor to DAHM has pledged $500.00 in matching funds to any contributions received (up to $500), but as anyone doing the math can quickly see, that is not enough to meet all of the needs of DAHM as they prepare for winter. For those out there who think, "They are asking for big money only," don't be put off. No gift is too small. I wish everyone, but especially men, would take this opportunity to show their willingness to "build up" DAHM, a domestic violence service, that recognizes men can be victims of domestic violence just as well as women. Men have been the forgotten victims in the campaign to assist victims of domestic violence, and the time is now for everyone to step up to the plate and assist in providing badly needed help to make sure that male victims of domestic violence are fully included along with all the rest.

Please consider what's been said here, then please, give as generously as you are able. Please send your tax deductable donation to:

Domestic Abuse Helpline for Men (DAHM)
P.O. Box 252
Harmony, Maine 04942
or give online at:

I remember hearing men being told to "Get Tough or Die" in time of war, but really, is that the same message we want to see one of the greatest societies on earth send to half it's population (men) who are daily denied the domestic violence services they need and deserve?

Ray Blumhorst is currently a Supervisor of Maintenance, and has worked in California public schools for 30 years. In addition to his day job, he worked for 8 years as a part time teacher in California public schools in the evenings. Ray is a Vietnam Vet, and a member of the National Coalition of Free Men, Los Angeles. Ray is also a victim of domestic violence and is currently the plaintiff in a civil rights lawsuit for an injunction against ten state funded domestic violence shelters that refuse to provide shelter or even motel vouchers to male victims. The action is currently on appeal before the 2nd District Court of Appeals of California.

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