Recent studies have shown that cases of domestic violence against men are just as likely to occur as those against women. This is quite a surprising find, as the cultural treatment of cases of domestic violence against men is generally to ignore, downplay, or even take light in them.
Men tend to be physically stronger than women, more prone to violence, and perceived as less susceptible to their emotions or to terrible self-esteem issues. Because of this, there is a stigma surrounding domestic violence against men that involves an idea that they could easily prevent it from happening, or somehow could have more control over the situation as victims than females could in the same situation. This stigma, coupled with the fact that cases of domestic violence against men widely go unreported (due both to the believability of such cases – relating to the incredible ability of abusive women to portray themselves as victims, which is more believable to most then a man being one – by juries, authorities, etc, and due to the fact that it is often seen as shameful or embarrassing to admit being a victim of any kind, much less the victim of female aggression as a male), masks a very real and serious problem that permeates our society today.
Domestic violence against men involves the physical assault of men by their wives or girlfriends, with or without the use of weapons. It is often accompanied by other forms of abuse, including (but not limited to) verbal and psychological abuse, threats or blackmail, sexual abuse, and even financial abuse.
This can absolutely destroy a man’s family and social life, his sex life, his career, his dreams, goals, aspirations, etc and, ultimately, his entire existence. Such victims – similar to any victims of similar crimes – can often be made to feel like whatever is going on is their fault and will be embarrassed or ashamed to seek help and, further, ashamed or afraid to separate themselves from their abuser.
In short, domestic violence against men can be every bit as damaging as domestic violence against women. But while much effort has been put into raising awareness of such acts against women and into encouraging them to seek help and come forward against their abuser, very little action has been taken in support of male victims – so much that most people are wholly unaware that the problem even exists. In order to fight the problem of domestic violence against men, such actions need to occur, awareness needs to be raised, and stigmatization needs to be diminished and eventually overcome.
It is almost impossible to imagine trivializing, ignoring, or even laughing at a female victim of domestic violence, and somehow blaming her with inciting the problem in her male spouse or partner; one who did so would be seen as nothing short of a nefarious human being. And, yet, this is what happens routinely towards male victims of domestic violence, with very little realization of the double standard that is going on. This is, as of now, extraordinarily unfortunate and tragic, and we can only hope that it can eventually become much less of a problem.