When you think of domestic violence or Intimate Partner Violence between couples what usually comes to mind? A woman being hurt or abused? This is the majority of public thought in the United States, yet the latest studies on domestic violence are showing a new and very alarming trend: notable rising rates on Intimate Partner Violence against Men.
In 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey. This was a serious eye opener on violence and men. In the United State for the previous 12 months, app. 5,365,000 men had been victims of intimate Partner physical violence compared with 4,741,000 women. This physical violence includes slapping, pushing, & shoving. Also tracked were more serious threats of being beaten, burned, choked, kicked, slammed with a heavy object or hit with a fist. Roughly 40% of the victims of severe physical violence were men. Again in 2011 the CDC repeated the survey and the results were almost identical!
Domestic violence (intimate partner violence) against men include emotional, sexual, verbal, physical abuse or threats of abuse. It happens in heterosexual and same-sex relationships. Have you ever felt scared of your partner and changed your behavior since you were afraid of what your partner might do? If so, you may be in an abusive relationship.
Are you being abused? What are the warning signs? What kind of abuse are you experiencing?
Emotional & Verbal Abuse:
- Calls you names, belittles you, or puts you down regularly
- Is jealous and possessive and accuses you without just cause of being unfaithful
- Tries to isolate you from family and friends
- Tries to totally control your life: how you spend your money, what you wear and where you may be going
- Constantly makes unreasonable demands for your attention.
- Blames you for her violent behavior and says you deserve it
- Gets very angry or violent when drinking alcohol or using drugs
- Biting, burning, or choking you
- Hitting, punching, or slapping
- Pushing, shoving, or throwing things at you
- Knifing or burning you
- Forcibly holding you down
- Hurting you, your children or your pets
- Forcing you to have sex or engage in sexual acts against your will
- Hurting you during sex
- Forcing you to have unsafe sex
Threats and Intimidation:
- Threatens to hurt / kill you
- Threatens to kill themselves or the children
- Stalks you
- Reads all your emails, texts, or mail
- Destroys things that belong to you
Being a man in an abusive relationship, it may seem hard finding the help that you need. It has been estimated that about 20% of men who call the police to report an abusive spouse /partner are themselves arrested for domestic violence.
You do not have to stay in an abusive relationship. You need to start by discussing your situation with either someone you trust or a health professional who can give you guidance. Gather evidence on what is happening, photographs of any injury or bruises experienced during a confrontation, threatening emails or texts that can be used in a court of law, make a list of people who have experienced confrontations between you and your intimate partner.
Stay away from any type of violence with your partner since she may try to put you into a damaging situation with the police to make you look like the abuser or try to entrap you.
You can overcome these challenges and escape from the abusive intimate partner. If you have a family or are concerned for your well-being, contact a legal professional who can help you break from this situation and also work to get your children out of harm’s way. Just remember, if you are not available for her domestic violence, a predator will look for someone else to take your place and children are easy targets!
Would you know if your good friend from the office or your aunt that lives in Dallas is involved in a domestic / intimate partner violence relationship? Probably not. Many times the abuse starts slowly, is concealed, and accelerates over time.
Domestic violence takes many forms, which include emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. It occurs in heterosexual or same-sex relationships. Husband, wife, children, partners. The most important goal of domestic violence and abuse is to gain and maintain total and unyielding control over the victim.
How do you know if you may be in a domestic / intimate partner violence relationship with your partner?
Does your partner have a bad or unpredictable temper? Call you horrible names, insult you or put you down?
Does your partner limit your access to money, the phone, or the car? Are you constantly checked on about your whereabouts?
Are you discouraged from seeing family members and friends? Does your partner act excessively jealous and possessive without cause or reason?
Does your partner see you as property or a sex object and force you to have sex at times or in ways against your will?
Does your partner threaten to take your children away and harm them or to commit suicide if you leave him/her?
Does your partner blame you for his/her abusive behavior or destroy your belongings?
If you are already in an abusive situation, are your currently living in a hostile environment and:
Is your abusive partner threating violence
Has your abuser attacked you with aggressive, belittling, profane, or violent behavior so you know “Who the Boss is”?
After the abuse, does your partner feel concocted or temporary remorse, guilt and does he/she repeatedly promise to change?
Your abuser comes up with excuses and blames “you” as the abuser. Does your relationship periodically go back into a” Normal Phase”?
Is all well until your abuser sets up his/her next situation when he/she can justify abusing you again?
If you are in a relationship with a Domestic / Intimate Partner who is exposing this behavior or you are already having abusive situations, seek help now! Abusive relationships will destroy your self-worth and lead to anxiety and depression. Break free from this relationship by recognizing that such conduct is dangerous, that you are valuable and that you do not have to suffer this emotional pain!
If you are currently in a relationship or marriage with an abusive partner and need legal help, contact a knowledgeable attorney, other shelter or enforcement agency to obtain help.