Common Questions About Domestic Abuse Against Men

Started by dr e, Oct 17, 2002, 02:22 PM

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dr e

This excellent fact sheet is one of three available via the mensactism.org web site.


Common Questions About Domestic Abuse Against Men

Q: Why haven't I heard much about this problem?

A: A number of factors contribute to the lack of awareness about domestic violence against men. Men know that there is little support they will receive if they tell others they were abused by their girlfriends or wives, and are more likely to be ridiculed than taken seriously. Men are expected to take abuse "like a man" and not complain.

There are many social messages which tell us that it is OK for a woman to hit a man. On television, women slapping men in the face or kicking them in the groin is often portrayed as a justifiable act, sometimes even as humor. Rather than thinking that a woman hitting a man is violence, we are led to think, "he must have done something rude to her to deserve being hit."

This double standard also contributes to the under-reporting of domestic violence against men. Both men and women are much less likely to think of it as a crime for a woman to hit a man than the other way around.

Sadly, the women's movement, which has done an incredible job of raising awareness of domestic violence against women, has not been particularly supportive of abused men. Erin Pizzey, a founder of the battered women's shelter movement, has been very outspoken about the need for male shelters and services, but has been silenced at every opportunity. [1] Richard Gelles, a leading sociologist in domestic violence research, has also written extensively on the political activism which has attempted to undermine the credibility of domestic violence against men. [2]

Q: But aren't women injured more than men?

A: Yes and no. When it comes to physical abuse, men are on average larger and stronger than women. However, women can easily make up for this inequity by using weapons, anything from kitchen knives to a frying pan. And according to the statistics, they do. [3] Women also don't only attack in self defense. A great deal of research has repeatedly confirmed that women are as likely to initiate a violent fight with their partner as men.

The physical abuse of children by mothers is yet another example where women have a physical advantage over their victims, and is a rarely-acknowledged aspect of domestic violence.

Also, domestic violence isn't just about hitting. A violent relationship is also when one person controls the other's self-esteem through manipulation, threats, and coercive actions. Many men are quite vulnerable to emotional manipulation by women, and some men have been emotionally destroyed over the years through verbal abuse from their partner. The scars from emotional battering are often just as painful as those from physical abuse, if not more so.

Q: Why don't men leave violent relationships?

A: Often, for the very same reasons that women don't leave violent partners. Men can have as much psychological dependency in a relationship as women, and still care about and want to support their partner. Men don't typically have the kind of emotional support network with their friends the way many women do, so this dependency can be very strong.

Also, married men with children know that in divorce court, it is very difficult for fathers to gain full custody of their children. Often, abusive wives are abusive mothers, and many fathers choose to endure abuse, sacrificing their own physical safety and sanity, rather than leave the children they love unprotected and at the mercy of a violent mother.

Q: So what's the solution?

A: The solution must first begin with the acknowledgment of battered men and a willingness to listen to their pain. Talk to your friends and family about the problem - you may be surprised at the number of men who have dealt with abuse, even those who never acknowledged it this way themselves.

Shelters and hotlines which serve men are also a much needed resource. Many men have nowhere to turn for help, and this needs to change. There are only a handful of shelters and phone lines which were created to serve abused men, compared to hundreds across the country for women.


Q: What should I do if I know a man who is being abused?

A: First, be willing to listen and provide support for this person - remember, he probably doesn't have anyone else to turn to. Contact a local domestic violence shelter and ask if they know of any shelters or resources for men. Also see the section on Advocacy and Services below.

Q: Where can I find more information about domestic violence against men?

A: There are many informational resources on the internet about abused men, including the following:



Research

Domestic Violence Research at UNH:

www.unh.edu/frl

The work of Dr. Murray Straus, a UNH Sociology professor for over 30 years and founder and co-director of the UNH Family Research Lab, has been instrumental in raising awareness of the domestic abuse of men. His groundbreaking work in domestic violence has been replicated and confirmed by more than a hundred other studies, which all found that men and women are assaulted by their partner at about equal rates.


The Fiebert Bibliography:

www.csulb.edu/~mfiebert/assault.htm

This 20-page bibliography examines more than 100 studies which demonstrate that women are as physically aggressive, or more aggressive, than men in their relationships with their spouses or male partners.


Mensactivism.org Research Flyer:

www.mensactivism.org/dv_flyers.shtml

Please see our research flyers for more information about domestic violence research.



Advocacy and Services


The Battered Men's Helpline

www.noexcuse4abuse.org

As one of the few resources in the country that was created to serve abused men, the Battered Men's Helpline is a non-profit organization which supports battered men with a toll-free hotline. Their number is 1-877-643-1120, access code 0757. They are based in the Portland, Maine area but have assisted men all over the country.


SAFE: Stop Abuse For Everyone

www.safe4all.org

SAFE is a non-profit organization advocating for underrepresented domestic violence populations, including straight and gay men. The website has an international list of local resources, an online support group, references to research, news, essays, and  offers training programs on how to provide services for these populations.



Domestic Violence Against Men:

www.dvmen.org

This web site also has many essays and resources about domestic violence against men and services for battered men.



Gay Men's Domestic Violence Project:

www.gmdvp.org

While most of the information presented in this flyer has referred to heterosexual relationships, domestic violence can also occur against gay men. GMDVP offers shelter, guidance, and resources to allow gay, bisexual, and transgender men in crisis to remove themselves from violent situations and relationships. They are based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.



News and Media Reports


The Men's Activism News Network:

www.mensactivism.org

Tracks news stories on men's issues, including domestic violence against men. Encourages activism through awareness and letter writing campaigns.



The DesertLight Journal:

www.desertlightjournal.homestead.com

An e-mail newsletter edited by Trudy Schuett, which also tracks news on men's issues, focusing on domestic violence and father's issues.



Notes:

1: Erin Pizzey authored a book, Prone to Violence, in which she described the resistance to her efforts to create the first shelters for battered men and women in Britain. Pizzey received death threats from women's groups shortly after writing it for supporting shelters which serve battered men.

2. Gelles, Richard J. Who's abusing whom?: Domestic violence and political correctness, The Women's Quarterly, Fall 1999.

3. 1992 National Alcohol and Family Violence Survey, conducted by Dr. Glenda Kaufman-Kantor from the UNH Family Research Lab
Contact dr e  Lifeboats for the ladies and children, icy waters for the men.  Women have rights and men have responsibilties.

DavidByron

Trudy Schuett is taking care of some familly business for several months at the moment.  She has had to suspend her activism for a while.  I hope she gets back to it.
size=9]I am the victim of unregulated sarcasm[/size]

Trudy W. Schuett

The DLJ is back with a refurbished website and new Smartgroups sign up for the monthly newser.

Check the resources section for support groups, and etc for men. The Abused Guys Yahoo Group is excellent!

dr e

Welcome Trudy.  Glad to hear the DLJ is up and running.

Good to see you.
Contact dr e  Lifeboats for the ladies and children, icy waters for the men.  Women have rights and men have responsibilties.

turmeric

and dont forget the most effective solution is to sue womens shelters to force them to allow men in, because after all, thats the most important thing we can do to help men.

also you should scream alot about how 'the gays' are ruining society. like Annie or whoever. remember, DV amongst gays is only because they are not true followers of jesus christ our lord and savior.

dr e

Ah yes, I wonder how that suit is going in LA?  The one where the man is suing a number of shelters for not providing help for men.  GREAT!    Sue them and put their bigoted sexism on page one of the LA Times.  Getting a dose of their own medicine I think.  hehehehehe  More suits will be following that one.  The DV system is going to be changing soon.  Thank Goodness.

This summer will be a huge time for men's rights.  Just have a look at the protests in London.  This will snowball all over the world.  The cow is teetering.   Mooooooove out of the way you fembots.  You are outdated, hateful, and not needed anymore.
Contact dr e  Lifeboats for the ladies and children, icy waters for the men.  Women have rights and men have responsibilties.

turmeric

please read about the lawsuit. if the guy/organization wanted to have 'more funding for mens shelters' he would have sued the state.

instead, he just wanted womens shelters to turn co-ed or start mens shelters. the womens shelters are already usually near being broke, and funded largely by private sources not the government.

this guy is not trying to help me. he is trying to tear down womens shelters. that is completely totally and utterly stupid. it offends me that he thinks he is trying to 'help men' with this action.

in fact, i am quite good and fed up with social engineering liberals like you and these people trying to pretend they are 'helping me' by doing stupid shit like this. you arent 'helping men', you are embarassing me and annoying me and wasting money and time. for your own patronizing bullshit purposes.

URnotmeRU

What a fucking sad excuse. You think anyone really buys this act?
nd the time will come when you'll see we're all one and life flows on, within you and without you. - George Harrison

turmeric

do you think anyone cares about a goddamn thing you have said on this entire message board?

the people who agree with you dont even like what you are saying because the way you say it is FUCKED UP.

here is what you should do. print out a bunch of the threads you have posted to, and read them outloud to yourself. or if you have other people invite them to join in playing the different parts.

ask yourself, how does this sound? am i glad to have written this?
is it helping anything?

URnotmeRU

Oh my, another run around the proverbial mullberry bush.

Listen, I dont give one fucking shit who likes what I say, I dont give one shit who agrees with me and who does not.

If my posts look stupid, especially the ones trailing behind yours, it's because everyone, even the ones attempting to take you seriously wind up looking stupid responding to your bullshit. I would rather look stupid while having fun, and calling you the fucking idiot you are.

Like Anniee said, I won't cast pearls before swine. :lol:
nd the time will come when you'll see we're all one and life flows on, within you and without you. - George Harrison

turmeric

you wouldnt cast pearls before anyone

URnotmeRU

Not swine like you, but I sure like watching you attempt to dazzle me with your crackerjack pearls of whit and wisdom, how disappointed your parents must be.
nd the time will come when you'll see we're all one and life flows on, within you and without you. - George Harrison

turmeric

christ is there some kind of spelling disease on this board?

no i dont mean to be culturally insensitive to the spelling disabled,
but youd think the bulwarks of western civilization would at least
turn some of that western technocratic utopian world they live in,
computers (which are somehow all made in asia.... i guess thats
another thread though) to good use and figure out how things
are spelled before hitting 'submit'.

URnotmeRU

When was the last time you read your drivel, idiot? You can't start a sentence properly without fucking it up before you type the second letter.


What a silly little faggot you are.
nd the time will come when you'll see we're all one and life flows on, within you and without you. - George Harrison

turmeric

you seriously need a shrink.

or else you are probably going to wind up killing yourself.

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