I'm immensely grateful I'm not part of a community that expects me to beat or mutilate any woman who has brought "shame" on my family by damaging our "honour".
I don't understand how any man who carries out such arbitrary punishments can live with himself. Presumably because he does it in the name of morality and decency. As defined by him and his puritanical brothers, of course.
Umpteen "offences" will put a woman in their sights. An unsuitable boyfriend. Objecting to an arranged marriage. Lesbianism. Revealing clothing. Make-up. A request for a divorce. Exposing domestic abuse. If the men say it's wrong, it's wrong. No arguments. No protests. Just do what you're told, woman.
Around 3000 "honour" attacks are recorded by police every year in the UK. And that's just the ones they get to know about. Many others go unreported because the victims are too terrified to say anything.
It might be obvious to us that what really brings shame on a family is bigoted attacks on its female members and attempts to stop them leading independent and fulfilling lives. But the "honour" vigilantes have a peculiar code of conduct all of their own.
At the end of the day, I guess it's only women standing together and demanding their freedom who can stop this reign of terror and get their lives back. And that takes an awful lot of bravery.
Pic: Banaz Mahmod, 20, from Mitcham, South London, was strangled on the orders of her father and uncle because she left her violent husband for a new boyfriend they deemed "unsuitable".