If a man raises his voice to a woman, she flies to the nearest domestic violence refuge.
If a woman yells, screams, swears, slaps, strikes, punches a man, _______________.
Men had no recourse. Nowhere to flee. No one who understood.
Year ending March 2017, the Office for National Statistics reported a shocking total of 1.1 million reported incidents of domestic abuse in England and Wales. Those are just the reported ones.
The total people involved totalled 1.9 million. Of that number 713,000 or 37% of the victims of domestic violence were men. But that’s just a tiny snapshot of the whole picture. The report goes on to say, ‘The majority of victims of domestic abuse, as measured by the CSEW, will not report their experiences to the police’. That’s even more true of men than it is of women.
What man wants to admit that he got beat up by a girl? What man will admit to his mates that his blackeye isn’t from a tumble playing footie, but actually from the fist of an irate woman? How often does the bruised and bloodied face of a male victim of domestic violence make the headlines? Not very often. That’s why I maintain that the statistics are actually much higher.
A male victim of female-on-male domestic violence, Philip (not his real name), told the BBC ‘she’d just start punching me when I was sleeping’. The abuse became so bad, Philip tried multiple times to take his own life.
According to the BBC:
Natalie Hancock from Calan DVS, a specialist domestic abuse organisation, which works across Bridgend, Neath Port Talbot, South Powys and the Amman Valley, told councillors it was developing a male support programme.
She said: “We have got a lot of programmes that are working with females around recovery and identifying what an abusive relationship looks like but there’s not one for a male so we have designed one which is being evaluated by the University of South Wales.
The Chief Executive of DVS, Rachael Eagles, had this to say:
‘We are seeing an increase in the number of male victims using our drop in centres…The organisation, which works across Bridgend, Neath Port Talbot, south Powys and the Amman valley in Carmarthenshire is now developing a male support programme.
“We’ve got male victims on the steering group to look at how best the support can be delivered for them…there is no specific programme tailored for male victims that professionals can use.’
If you are a male victim of domestic violence and abuse, set the example. There is no shame, no unmaliness in raising your hand and seeking help. For every man who admits that he’s being abused, there are ten who wish they had the confidence to do the same.
Set the example and lead the way.
Photo by tinou bao