Male Domestic Violence Victims Suffer from Wrongful Gender Bias

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September 30th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Statistics from many studies in the last few decades show that domestic violence is not a gender issue. Harvard Medical School and the US Centers for Disease Control studied 11,000 men and women ages 18-28 and found 24% of heterosexual relationships have had violence in them. Half of these relationships experience reciprocal violence, meaning that both partners have physically assaulted each other. Of the other half, women committed more than 70% of the non-reciprocal violence and were more likely to hit first in the reciprocal violence. Both sexes suffered significant injuries.

Domestic violence is typically an issue of control and learned abusive behaviors stemming from childhood. Nobody deserves to be abused, but contrary to popular misinformed opinion, it is clear that both genders are often responsible for abuse. Yet men continue to be wrongly blamed as nearly always being the abusers.

The result of this bias is that domestic violence problems do not get resolved. The false feminist fringe’s male-bashing propaganda seems to claim that the only good man is a dead man, or perhaps one who obeys and subordinates himself to a dominant woman. It turns out that physical violence often results from attempts to wrongly control another person. While abusers certainly use physical violence to control, victims also use it to resist control. Children in the home suffer and may learn to become abusers themselves, and these future abusers are likely to attack both genders.

Police seldom believe male victims of DV. They often allow the female perps to go right on abusing. It’s not uncommon for them to arrest the male victim because they refuse to believe that women can be violent. Some police departments even have “must arrest someone” orders for DV calls, so if the cops can’t figure out what happened, by default they arrest the man.

The level of damage being done in the few cases of DV prosecuted against female perps can be astounding, as the case of Ian McNicholl shows:

(from More than 40% of domestic violence victims are male, report reveals)

Ian McNicholl, 47, has painful memories to remind him of the terror he endured when he found himself a male victim of domestic violence.

His then fiancee, Michelle Williamson, punched him in the face several times, stubbed out cigarettes on his body, lashed him with a vacuum cleaner tube, hit him with a metal bar and a hammer and even poured boiling water on to his lap. That at 6ft he was almost a foot taller than her made no difference. He still has burn marks on his left shoulder from when she used steam from an iron on him. Williamson, 35, is now serving a seven-year jail sentence for causing both actual and grievous bodily harm. During the trial last year McNicholl told the court that, during more than a year of attacks and intimidation, he had lost his job, home and self-respect. He had been too scared to go to the police and had considered suicide. She was only arrested after two neighbours saw her punch him.

Sentencing her at Grimsby crown court last year, judge John Reddihough told Williamson: “Over the period of time you were with him you destroyed him mentally and seriously harmed him physically, leaving him with both physical and mental scars.”

Domestic violence is often thought of as physical violence, but as the judge suggests, the psychological damage experienced can be far worse than the physical damage.

It is unfortunately much more difficult to find studies of emotional and verbal abuse than physical abuse. But when you include the full range of behaviors seen in both genders, it is entirely clear that some people (women and men include) are even more vicious emotional and verbal abusers than anything they may have done physically. Almost all have seen both very demeaning and hostile women and men and how they interact with their partners and children.

Further, it’s clear that not all domestic violence involves men. One study of 1100 lesbian and bisexual women suggests that lesbian relationships are even more violent than heterosexual ones.

Society is not going to successfully stop domestic violence without stopping the gender bias that both dilutes efforts at helping or forcing abusers to stop and creates a tremendous amount of distrust by men who are victims of either actual domestic violence or false accusations of domestic violence. It is time that gender be taken out of standards for handling DV and be replaced by a gender-neutral approach.

Further Reading

Personality Disordered Abusers in Family Law Courts

Poor Married Joe: Abused by “Psycho Demon” Spouse

California Men’s Centers – San Diego

Abusive Women “Acceptable” By Double Standards

NFL Football Star Steve McNair Allegedly Murdered by Girlfriend

Recovering from Personality Disordered Abusive Relationships

Ellie Cunningham Arraignment for Assault on Husband Adam

Canadian Wife Assaults Husband Who Later Dies

Domestic Violence: Women Abusers on the Rise?

Custody Dispute Involves Child in Murder Attempt on Father’s Family By Mother Toni Valentin, Boyfriend Dante Quezada

False Feminists and Abusive and Murderous Women

Domestic Violence – Are You Being Abused?

Lesbian Relationships More Violent Than Heterosexual Relationships

Domestic violence: Not Always One Sided

Men Shouldn’t Be Overlooked as Victims of Partner Violence

Differences in Frequency of Violence and Reported Injury Between Relationships With Reciprocal and Nonreciprocal Intimate Partner Violence

  1. Dan Abshear
  2. Jordan Bauman
    January 24th, 2012 at 02:20 | #2

    @ Dan Abshear

    YOUR ARTICLE IS DEAD WRONG ! IN 1997, WATCHED THE SAN DIEGO POLICE DEPARTMENT IGNORE MY 83 YEAR OLD MOTHER’S REPEATED CALLS ONE DAY THROUGH THE NEXT DAY TO FIND THAT THEY GONE TO MY FATHER’S FALSE CALL (made by my brother in my father’s behalf) INSTEAD OF COMING TO THE RESCUE OF AN 83 YEAR OLD AILING WOMAN (made at the same time).
    AGAIN IN 1997, THE DV COURT IGNORED MY MOTHER’s REQUEST FOR A RESTRAINING ORDER WHEN MY DAD HAD A HISTORY OF PTSD AND OF PHYSICAL ABUSE AGAINST HER. THEN, IN 2010, THIS SCENERIO WAS REPEATED AGAIN WHEN THE VISTA POLICE IGNORED MY MOTHER’S CALL AND MY SISTER’S CALL FOR HELP BECAUSE MY BROTHER HAD KID-NAPPED MY MOTHER BY FORCE FROM A 24 HOUR CARE FACILITY IN VISTA.
    Your article and our corrupt Family Courts excuses men for wrongful control that should never have been exerted against any party who is weaker financially, educationally, emotionally or physically. Rather the court should be offsetting the finances in favor of the weaker party every time – And, it’s still the women and children 87% of the time. STOP IT !

    • January 24th, 2012 at 20:38 | #3

      Jordan,

      Police often harm the victim in domestic disputes. It is often very hard to figure out who the abuser and who the victim really are. In many cases, the police can’t tell and operate based upon biased stereotypes. This is part of why I don’t think DV should be treated as a criminal matter in most cases, at least not until there is serious physical damage done and there is solid evidence of what happened.

      I believe that in most abusive relationships, therapy and counseling would be a lot more effective in terms of both results and costs than arresting people and blindly issuing temporary restraining orders. DVTROs often trigger more violence if the restrained person truly is violent and if that person is not violent then it is persecution by the abuser and government working in collusion to harm the actual victim.

      Furthermore, often the victim is an abuser and the abuser is a victim. This means there is co-abuse in the relationship, often with both parties committing physical abuse but one party being overall more abusive than the other. For instance, one or both partners were abused as kids (therefore are victims of abuse) and learned to become abusers to try to avoid being abused in the future. As a result, there is no realistic chance to stop the abuse cycle without getting both parties into counseling and working on their own behaviors for probably years to get them to avoid further violence.

      Simply terminating the relationship without therapy will leave both of them with the whatever victim and/or abuser behavior patterns they had. So the odds are the problems will be repeated again in the future, especially if they do not have the realization that they need to learn to identify people who show signs of personality disorders and other abusive thought and behavior patterns and avoid relationships with such people. Usually this realization only comes as the result of some deep thinking about family history, stress triggers, and behaviors that are the result of feeling insecure, mistreated, or abused.

      For example, let’s consider the case of a woman who defames and lies about her husband to her friends to get people to hate him. There are a lot of women like this, you probably know more than one who endlessly complains about the horrible things her partner does but never ends the relationship. She claims he has affairs, but she is actually the one having affairs. She claims he beats her, but in reality she is the one who is physically violent. She claims he is not supportive of her, but fails to reveal that she spends irresponsibly, undercuts him at every opportunity, verbally abuses him, and even trains their kids to mistreat him. After years of this escalating abuse against him, one time the man looses it and hits the woman just like she often does to him. Now he gets arrested because she calls the cops on him. But who is the abuser in this relationship? It is the woman much more than the man. But there is also an element of co-abuse.

      Abuse is about control. People do not like to be controlled and manipulated in a way that harms them. Virtually anybody who is targeted with this kind of abuse will eventually do something to try to stop the abuse. Often this shows up as counter-abuse. The victim needs help to understand what is going on and to get out of the abusive relationship.

      When the man is the primary victim of abuse in a relationship, he seldom gets this kind of help. DV programs are almost universally built on the inaccurate assumption that women can only be victims. But in fact in abusive relationships, women are frequently abusive towards men and often their egregiously abusive behaviors lead their partner and children to become abusers, too.

      Your assertion that the victim is female or the child (e.g., “87% of the time”) is misguided. The DV research in the past two to three decades does not back up this stereotypical assertion that men are the predominant abusers.

      The idea that men are stronger and therefore are abusers is also way off the mark. Women compensate for less strength via other means such as using weapons (women use weapons in DV incidents more than men) and also by using their social networks to harass and defame their male target.

      Justice should be blind to gender. People shouldn’t have a preconceived notion that the abuser is a man. There are far too many cases in which the abuser is a woman to justify this stereotype. Erin Pizzey (a women’s DV activist known for starting the first women’s DV shelters in the UK) found that in her work with women who claimed to be abused that many of them were much more abusive than the men. You should read her writings about the “Family Terrorist” that discuss how woman who claim to be abused often turn out to be very serious abusers themselves.

      Likewise, people should not have a preconceived notion that the woman is a lying abuser, either. There are far too many cases where the courts treated a woman like that and it turned out that she was right.

      You should consider that your personal experience cannot be generalized to others, at least not based upon gender. Both genders are being abused by the courts and law enforcement.

      Rob

  3. One of thousands
    January 24th, 2012 at 14:07 | #4

    @ Jordan Bauman
    That must have been Hell Jordan. I’m so sorry for your experience.

    If you’d be so kind, I invite your participation in the Ccfconline group at http://www.googlegroups.com. There are many parents who have similar experiences and we are blessed to have an excellent support network.

    Blessings and love.

  4. christina
    May 24th, 2012 at 15:58 | #5

    i was startled by ur comments on lesbian dv being more violent than hetero violence. i am a gay woman who looks boyish in appearance and hav been the victim of domestic violence by my ex wife who is very feminine in appearance i am on disability with a closed head injury because of a beating i endured that nearly killed me form this 100 lb femine woman. i was bleeding and bruised i had to get staples in my head and i had a broken arm.when i went to er i had to get 27 c-scans of injuries all over my body. she did not hav a mark on her. guess who the cops arrested? me. i was put through a 4 day criminal trial in which the prosecuter would not drop the charges and charge her even though she admitted to being drunk and initiating the violence and throwing me down a flight of stairs.would they hav charged her if she had killed me? probably not. that trial was just another form of emotional and psychological abuse. luckily for me the jury saw what really happened and i got a not guilty verdict in five minutes. when my attorney and the prosecutor met with the jures to discuss what made them decide i was not guilty- they stated it was clear she was the abuser and i was falsly accused. the jures asked the prosecutor why he did not drop the charges against me and do the right thing andcharge her, the prosecutor stated he didnt blieve me. so in response to this scenerio i hav started the only organization in the us to support individuals who hav been falsely accused of domestic assault and i am currently in the very beginning stages. i am working with full support of my local battered womwns shelter who agree false accusations and gender bias play a large roll in the perpetuation in dv. i will not rest until i hav met with every director of every shelter in michigan( my state) and gain their support. if u know of anyone that needs support contact me at [email protected]. i loved ur article it was poignant and accurate.who knows maybe we will start a national movement to end dv and false accusations once and for all.

  5. May 25th, 2012 at 04:35 | #6

    @christina

    You’re experiencing the same VAWA-mandated crime that so many others have. Nobody deserves to be physically abused. Nobody deserves to be falsely accused and experience abuse that is often far worse than physical abuse at the hands of a liar and the government.

    VAWA needs a total overhaul. The necessary changes that are long overdue include equal protection for all victims regardless of age, gender, or sexual orientation including protection for victims of false abuse allegations. False abuse allegations are frequently far more damaging than being physically assaulted. VAWA consistently encourages, rewards, aids, and abets false abuse allegations as a means of abuse.

    Ask victims of false DV or child abuse allegations if they’d prefer to be hit with a baseball bat and suffer a broken arm versus the harm they have experienced from the false allegation. Most would probably prefer the assault via baseball bat yielding a broken arm. Broken arms can heal in several weeks or a few months, but a false abuse allegation can cost a person his or her home, children, health, career, life savings, and freedom.

    Today’s version of VAWA ensures the government will help abuse the victims of false allegations on behalf of the abusers. That’s wrong and it is causing a huge amount of damage not only to them, but to all the real victims of physical violence whose allegations are ignored because of the widespread VAWA-encouraged lying going on in family court and other venues. So many people know about the widespread lying without penalty that it has now become common to doubt people accurately making such an allegation.

    In your case, I think you should go public against the prosecutor / DA in your area by any means you can including media exposure, filing a bar complaint, grand jury complaint, and civil suit against the government for its crimes. They engaged in false and malicious prosecution against you. At a minimum, somebody in your local government should be out of a job for that misconduct.

    An organization that I suggest you should contact with your story is SAVE (Stop Abusive and Violent Environments). Their Facebook page regarding false allegations is at http://www.facebook.com/SaveForFalselyAccused .

    Chris

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