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WATCH: Trans YouTuber's Shocking Reminder About Domestic Violence

WATCH: Trans YouTuber's Shocking Reminder About Domestic Violence


Seeing trans woman Julie Vu's bruised face -- a condition depicted with makeup -- caught the attention of tens of thousands of viewers.

Julie Vu, the popular trans 23-year-old YouTube vlogger known as PrincessJoules, released a powerful video Wednesday to bring attention to the epidemic of domestic violence in Canada and beyond.

In the video (included below), Vu wears makeup depicting her with a black eye, split lip, and buised neck, simulating the injuries a victim of domestic violence may experience. Images of her sad face are interspersed with statistics on domestic violence, including this fact: "One in every two transgender individuals are sexually assaulted and abused at some point in their lifetime."

Vu, whose videos are followed by more than 250,000 people, explained she released the message to show that, "domestic violence can not be wiped away," later asking rhetorically, "What if it happened to me in the past?" Viewed more than 60,000 times, the video has been well-received by many who expressed gratitude to Vu for raising awareness on an often silent issue.

Some viewers, however, became angry when they learned that Vu's bruises were solely makeup, feeling they had been tricked into thinking she had truly be attacked. Others expressed fear, then relief, when they learned the marks were just temporary. Addressing her detractors, Vu stated in the video's updated description:

"I know some of you don't agree that I did so in the video, but please do not be mistaken. The wiping away of the marks and bruises symbolizes someone who is living in fear and do not know how to escape from it. As she starts again with a fresh face, she is healed for now, not knowing when her partner will strike again. It shows you that domestic violence can happen to anyone, even the girl under the bruises."

In the U.S., domestic violence against trans women, and particularly trans women of color, emerges as a trend each year nationwide. Trans men, as well as gay, lesbian, and bisexual people, also face domestic violence at rates equal to or greater than their non-LGBT peers.

Of the nine trans women reported murdered in the U.S. this year alone, at least five have been killed in apparent acts of domestic violence: Ty Underwood, Yazmin Vash Payne, Bri Golec, Kristina Gomez Reinwald, and London Kiki Chanel.

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Mitch Kellaway