It is possible for men to be abused physically, emotionally, verbally, or sexually. It is possible to break free from an abusive relationship, regardless of your circumstances.
You’re Not Alone In Domestic Violence
It’s important for men suffering from abusive relationships to know they’re not alone. It is far more common for men to be abused than you might expect—whether they are in heterosexual relationships or relationships with the same sex. Males of all ages and professions are affected by it, regardless of their culture or occupation. The majority of domestic violence victims are males, according to statistics. However, men often hesitate to report abuse out of embarrassment, fear of not being believed, or for fear of retribution.
You may be hit, kicked, bit, punched, spit at, or thrown things by an abusive person. In order to make up for strength differences, they may attack you while you are sleeping or otherwise surprise you. You may also be assaulted with a weapon, such as a gun or a knife, struck with an object, or have your children or pets abused.
Violence is not the only aspect of domestic abuse. It is just as damaging to suffer emotional and verbal abuse. If you are a male, your partner or spouse may:
- Belittle, humiliate, or verbally abuse you in front of friends, coworkers, or family.
- Engage in possessive behavior, act jealousy, or accuse you of infidelity.
- Make sure you have no access to your car keys or medications and try to control where you go and who you meet.
- Control your finances or deliberately default on joint debts.
- Lie to your friends, employer, or police about you, or isolate and manipulate you in any other way.
- You could be threatened with leaving and prevented from seeing your children if you report the abuse.
An abused man may find himself lacking resources, facing friends and family who misunderstand him or disbelieve his claims, and overcome legal obstacles when trying to regain custody of their children from their abusive mother. Despite these challenges, you can escape violence and abuse, no matter what your circumstances may be.
Whether you’re gay, bisexual, or transgender, your partner may abuse you if they do the following:
- Threatens to disclose your sexual orientation or gender identity to friends, family, colleagues, or members of your community.
- He convinces them that the police won’t help LGBT people, bisexuals, or transgender people.
- Labels you as someone who thinks that gay, bisexual, and transgender relationships are irrational or unnatural by ridiculing you for your attempts to escape the relationship.
- Implies that you are not truly gay, bisexual, or transgender.
- Justifies their abuse by saying that all men are violent and aggressive.
What Keeps Men From Leaving Abusive Relationships
It is never easy to end a relationship, even one that is abusive, regardless of gender. In the case of isolation, threats, manipulation, control, as well as physical and emotional abuse, it becomes even more difficult.
The following reasons may make you feel obligated to remain in the relationship:
It makes you feel ashamed. Some men feel great shame because they have been abused, have not been able to stand up for themselves, or have failed in their roles as men, husbands, or fathers.
It may be your religious beliefs that force you to stay, or your low self-worth may leave you feeling that this abusive relationship is all you are entitled to.
There aren’t enough resources. It is common for men to worry that the authorities will not believe them, or they will be treated differently because they are male, or they will find few resources available to help them.
A same-sex relationship exists, but you haven’t told anyone and are afraid your partner will expose you.
You’re living in denial. In the same way that female domestic violence victims will prolong their abuse if they deny that there is a problem in their relationship, denying that there is one will prolong the abuse. It’s possible you can still love your partner despite their abuse and still believe that they will change and that you can help them. You can only expect change if your abuser seeks professional treatment and takes responsibility for their behavior.
Protecting your children is important to you. The fear you have is that you will no longer be able to see or have access to your children if you leave your spouse. Fathers often face challenges when it comes to obtaining custody of their children. But even if they are confident that they can do so, they may still feel overwhelmed faced with raising their children by themselves.
Looking Out For Yourself As An Abused Male
The physical and psychological effects of domestic violence and abuse can be severe. You have to reach out in order to protect yourself and stop the abuse. Contact a domestic violence helpline or speak to a trusted family member or friend.
Accepting the problem and seeking help does not mean you are a failure as a husband or as a man.
You are not to blame, and you are not weak. As well as offering a sense of relief and providing some much-needed support, sharing details of your abuse can also be the first step in building a case against your abuser.
If your partner is abusive, you should:
Try to leave as soon as possible. Be prepared to leave as soon as you see signs that your partner may react violently. In the event that you need to remain to protect your children, call 911. Just as with female victims, the police are obligated to protect you.
If you are in such unfortunate circumstances, it is critical you come to terms with your situation and understand how to get out of an abusive relationship.
Don’t retaliate. When you are being abused by a partner, he or she may attempt to provoke you into retaliation or force you to escape by using force. Your home or your freedom could be taken from you if you retaliate.
Document the abuse. Every incident should be reported to the police, and a copy of the police report should be obtained. Document all abuse with dates, times, and witnesses in a journal. Document your injuries with photographs and ensure your doctor or hospital does the same. As a man, you are responsible for making sure that the cause of your injuries is documented since medical personnel is unlikely to ask about domestic violence.
Mobile phones, evidence of abuse, and other documents should be kept nearby. It is imperative that you take the evidence with you, along with a passport and driver’s license, if you have to leave immediately in order to escape the abuse. Keeping these items outside the house may be safer.
Seek help from a domestic violence program or legal aid resource about getting a restraining order against your partner. If necessary, you may also have to seek temporary custody of your children.
Leaving An Abusive Relationship
A domestic abuse victim can move on from an abusive relationship with the support of family and friends, counseling, therapy, and support groups specifically for survivors. You may experience upsetting emotions or feel disconnected, numb, and unable to trust other people. When you’ve been in an abusive relationship, you may need some time to heal and move on from the pain and bad memories.
If you lack intimacy and support in your current relationship, it’s good to take things slowly and ease into a new relationship. Understand what it takes to build healthy, new relationships and how to spot red flag behavior in a potential new partner.
It is unfortunate that the number of abuse victims is far greater than the number of people who come forward. Each year, approximately half a million elder abuse cases are reported in the United States alone, while millions more cases go unreported. In order to solve this serious problem in society, we must educate the public. Learn more about elder abuse and neglect in our blog section.