Our new podcast “L’abus au petit feu” is Live

Dear readers, listeners and fellow bloggers:

Good morning. The new podcast L’abus au petit feu is now Live at anchor.fm/dr-mario-o-laplume.

We discuss the significant implications of the summation of “little abuses’ in the daily, monthly, yearly lives of our dear women. Are they more dangerous than a single big abusive event? Maybe.

In the following excerpt form our new book Emotional Frustration – the Hushed Plague we said:

—”Doctor…It’s not how much he pisses me off—but rather how often.”

Sheila X. is a jovial, good mannered nursing aide that had chronic migraines for years; almost all the therapies failed and now she participates in a clinical trial. The trigger for her headaches lies close to her. She has an uncooperative husband. Occasionally she bursts out with anger, which does not elicit any real changes in him but ends up worsening her headaches. Silently soldiering on, she gave up.

A French chef recently explained in a TV program the advantages of a slow burning fire to tenderize hard-to-cook meats like game and fowl; when we watched him, we could not help comparing that technique to the way Sheila’s husband is slowly sapping her strength, a little abuse at a time. Gently. L’abus au petit feu.[i]

The low-intensity abuse is a sum of little acts that damage our self-esteem. A flutter of the hand that never lands… Or perhaps a not-so-subtle-threat in a chat… Or, worse still, a stony silence after only asking for an explanation for a misdeed. Women might be subjected to many instances of verbal and physical abuse that taken individually do not reach the threshold of intensity to elicit a firm response. But the baneful buildup of angst from small incidents can test their patience as its cumulative effect may be as (if not more) toxic than the one of bigger incidents.

In Japan, due to the Narita syndrome—named after the Tokyo airport— some young Japanese women coming back from a foreign trip —where they were exposed to other cultures with kinder men— dump their boyfriends on the spot. [ii]


[i] The literal translation is “slow-cooking abuse.” The term “au petit feu” means “a low simmering fire”; it is used as a metaphor for any human action or interaction that is carried out on purpose very slowly, almost parsimoniously.

[ii] Jeff Kingston “Japan’s Quiet Transformation : Social Change and Civil Society in 21st Century”, Routledge Curzon, Oxford, 2004.”

Note. We would like to acknowledge the usefulness of the great article written in 2019 by Elizabeth Ruth, a.k.a Notaguru, who explained the major/ minor mental and physical repercussions of Low Intensity Abuse of Women.

We recommend it to all concerned physicians, nurses, psychotherapists, social workers, teachers, first responders, etc. Why teachers? Because sometimes they are the very first ones that spot the marital abuse when an unusually evasive woman comes to pick up her kids at school.


Stay distant. Stay safe. Stay beautiful.

What do you think? Please tell us.

Don’t leave me alone.

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

Dear readers and fellow bloggers:

Good morning. Today the United Nations, the European Union and other large international organizations are hosting events for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Sadly it is still a major Public Health and societal threat that involves almost all communities. This terrible scourge must be eradicated from our civic, labor and personal spaces.

Unfortunately the forced Social Isolation and extensive economic aftermath provoked by the pandemic has only worsened the living conditions of countless women living with serial abusers. Because most of the cases of violence against women involve familiar perpetrators like partners. Our dear father Mario always admonished us: “Whomever hits a woman is a coward.” Ever since then we have lived with that motto seared in our minds in all circumstances and social settings.

Let us help in this worldwide campaign by developing more civic conscience in the younger generations that must clearly understand that there is never a justification for that barbarism. And let us demand that the laws and regulations of our countries pursue and punish abusers. Moreover, the subliminal violent messages of the “popular culture” must be firmly denounced.

Note. This picture was taken from Wikimedia Images.  https://commons.wikimedia.org

No more violence against Women.

Stay distant. Stay safe. Stay beautiful.

What do you think? Please tell us.

Don’t leave me alone.