When we think of domestic violence, we usually think of women as the victims. However, statistics are showing that over 40% of domestic violence victims are men.
As we come up on the end of October (Domestic Violence Awareness Month) I feel compelled to share with you the facts about the other side of domestic violence. In a society that goes by gender roles and gender qualities, it can be quite critical for a man who is a victim of domestic violence. The idea of a man being abused by a woman is a taboo. Usually swept under the rug, men will receive less support than women victims.
Men are naturally stronger than women and at an average of six feet, a man should be able to handle a woman half his size. Men often don’t report being physically abused by their wives/girlfriends for fear of being looked at as weak and become emasculated with judgement. As a result, they suffer in silence. Just like women, domestic violence affects men just the same; They become ashamed, frightened, and experience loss of confidence, self-worth and self-esteem.
The unfortunate part about all of this is the lack of support for male victims of physical abuse. While there’s plenty of resources and countless shelters for women and their children, men are left sleeping on their boy’s couch with no plans for counselling and proper housing, which are vital for a DM victim.
In most cases, men will take a beating rather than hit back for two main reasons; They believe in not hitting women and they’re aware of the possibility of being accused of being the abuser if they defend themselves.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, please get help and know that you don’t have to suffer in silence. This goes for both men and women! Guys, there are agencies hotlines, and even women-centered shelters that can help you and point you in the right direction. They will link you to resources designed with you in mind. Just because you are a man does not mean you are impervious to pain!