Male victims of domestic violence and their history of perpetrating violence
People who argue male victims of domestic violence are overlooked by police, the courts, and health services often quote a single, trusty statistic: one in three DV victims are male. The term has historically been synonymous with men's violence against their intimate female partners. In Queensland law, for example, domestic violence originally referred only to intimate partner violence. In Tasmanian legislation, family violence refers only to partner violence. But when the advocacy group 'One in Three' claims that one in three victims of domestic violence are male, it's referring to domestic and family violence, and not only intimate partner violence.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Men Suffer Domestic Violence Too
SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Helping Male Domestic Violence Victims – DadsDivorce LIVEContent:
Intimate Partner Abuse Against Men
Domestic violence against men deals with domestic violence experienced by men in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation. As with domestic violence against women , violence against men may constitute a crime , but laws vary between jurisdictions. Men who report domestic violence can face social stigma regarding their perceived lack of machismo and other denigrations of their masculinity.
The relative prevalence of IPV against men to that of women is highly disputed between different studies, with some countries having no data at all. Some researchers believe the actual number of male victims may be greater than law enforcement statistics suggest due to the number of men who do not report their abuse. IPV against men is a controversial area of research, with terms such as gender symmetry , battered husband syndrome and bidirectional IPV provoking a great deal of debate.
The lines of the debate tend to fall between two basic polemics. The first of these argues that scholars who focus on female-perpetrated IPV are part of an anti-feminist backlash, and are attempting to undermine the problem of male-perpetrated abuse by championing the cause of the man, over the much more serious cause of the abused woman.
Determining the rate of intimate partner violence IPV against males can be difficult, as men may be reluctant to report their abuse or seek help. On the other hand, many abusive men readily adopt a victim identity. For example, O. Simpson often referred to himself as a "battered husband". Researchers have demonstrated a degree of socio-cultural acceptance of aggression by women against men as opposed to a general condemnation of aggression by men against women.
Male-on-female IPV has been shown to cause significantly more fear and more severe injuries than female-on-male violence. Some research has shown that women who assault their male partners are more likely to avoid arrest than men who assault their female partners,  due to the fact that female perpetrators of IPV tend to be viewed by law enforcement agencies and the courts as victims. However, analyses of research indicates that frequently the legal system fails to view women who use IPV against controlling male partners as victims due to gendered high expectations on women to be the "perfect victim" and the culturally pervasive stereotype of the passive, "cowering" battered woman.
Statistics indicate that under-reporting is an inherent problem with IPV irrespective of gender. The difference in the two reports was that Study was a questionnaire of a random representative sample of people, while the Crime Survey attained its figures from crime records, i.
In England and Wales , the "Home Office Research Study " surveyed 10, people 5, women and 4, men between the ages of 16 and 59, finding that for the twelve-month period preceding the survey, 4. Over a lifetime, this figure increased to Of the 6.
These reports have consistently recorded significantly higher rates of both male and female victims of IPV than the standard crime surveys.
In the case of male victims, the figures range from a high of 4. In the United States , the National Violence Against Women Survey carried out by the Department of Justice in , surveyed 16, people 8, men and 8, women , and found that 7. Additionally, 0. Magazine study, has found a 1 in 7 sexual assault rate for men in U.
CDC Director Tom Frieden stated, "This report suggests that lesbians, gay men and bisexuals in this country suffer a heavy toll of sexual violence and stalking committed by an intimate partner. The International Dating Violence Study, which investigated IPV amongst 13, students across thirty-two-nations found that "about one-quarter of both male and female students had physically attacked a partner during that year".
It reported that The theory that women perpetrate IPV at roughly similar rates as men has been termed "gender symmetry". The earliest empirical evidence of gender symmetry was presented in the U. Straus and Richard J. Gelles on a nationally representative sample of 2, "intact families". The survey found Steinmetz to coin the controversial term "battered husband syndrome" in Since , numerous other empirical studies have found evidence of gender symmetry in IPV.
An especially controversial aspect of the gender symmetry debate is the notion of bidirectional or reciprocal IPV i. Findings regarding bidirectional violence are particularly controversial because, if accepted, they can serve to undermine one of the most commonly cited reasons for female perpetrated IPV; self-defense against a controlling male partner.
Despite this, many studies have found evidence of high levels of bidirectionality in cases where women have reported IPV. For example, social activist Erin Pizzey , who established the first women's shelter in the U. In order to counteract claims that the reporting data was skewed, female-only surveys were conducted, asking females to self-report, resulting in almost identical data.
Saltzman, of 11, heterosexual U. Of those relationships, However, men were more likely to inflict injury than women.
In , Philip W. When data provided by men only was analyzed, When data provided by women only was analyzed, The overall data showed The survey found for "any physical violence", a rate of For severe assault, a rate of He found that "women were slightly more likely than men to use one or more acts of physical aggression and to use such acts more frequently.
As both Fiebert and Archer point out, although the numerical tally of physical acts in these studies has found similar rates of IPV amongst men and women, and high rates of bidirectionality, there is general agreement amongst researchers that male violence is a more serious phenomenon, primarily, but not exclusively, because male violence tends to inflict more psychological and physical damage than female violence.
Straus has written "although women may assault their partners at approximately the same rate as men, because of the greater physical, financial, and emotional injury suffered by women, they are the predominant victims. Consequently, the first priority in services for victims and in prevention and control must continue to be directed toward assaults by husbands. From to , scholars of domestic violence from the U. Among its findings: .
A review examined studies from five continents and the correlation between a country's level of gender inequality and rates of domestic violence.
The authors found that when partner abuse is defined broadly to include emotional abuse, any kind of hitting, and who hits first, partner abuse is relatively even. They also stated if one examines who is physically harmed and how seriously, expresses more fear, and experiences subsequent psychological problems, domestic violence is significantly gendered toward women as victims. He was especially critical of the fact that the majority of the empirical studies reviewed by Fiebert and Archer used the conflict tactics scale CTS as the sole measure of domestic violence, and that many of the studies used samples composed entirely of single people under the age of thirty, as opposed to older married couples.
Kimmel argues that the CTS is particularly vulnerable to reporting bias because it depends on asking people to accurately remember and honestly report incidents which have occurred up to a year previously.
Even Straus admitted that the data indicates men tend to underestimate their use of violence, and women tend to overestimate their use of violence. Violence by men is expected, so it is not reported; violence by women is not expected, so it is notable and reported. Morse and Malcolm J. George have presented data suggesting that male underestimation of their partner's violence is more common in CTS based studies than overestimation. Emerson Dobash and Russell P. They question the methodology behind the CTS, the data which stems from it and the theoretical framework used by investigators who champion it, arguing that male aggression is much more severe than female aggression and the two should not be measured by the same tool on the same scale.
She argues that, as sociologists committed to ending domestic violence, they should have foreseen the controversy such statistics would cause and the damage it could potentially do to battered women. Straus argues that it is more harmful to women to attempt to tackle the problem of domestic abuse without proper strategy based on facts: "The research shows that this so-called harmless violence by women because a meta-analysis by Stith and colleagues found that a woman's perpetration of violence was the strongest predictor of her being a victim of partner violence.
Straus responded to criticism of the CTS by arguing that it is driven by radical-feminists who are uncomfortable with any evidence that women can be as violent as men because it undermines their belief that IPV is an extension of men's desire to subjugate women; "one of the explanations for denying the evidence on gender symmetry is to defend feminism in general.
This is because a key step in the effort to achieve an equalitarian society is to bring about recognition of the harm that a patriarchal system causes. The removal of patriarchy as the main cause of IPV weakens a dramatic example of the harmful effects of patriarchy. The most controversial aspect of female perpetrated IPV is the theory of "battered husband syndrome". In reaction to the findings of the U. Steinmetz wrote an article in in which she coined the term as a correlative to "battered wife syndrome".
These findings led Steinmetz to conclude that IPV was roughly reciprocal between husbands and wives, with a similar level of intentionality between men and women; "women are as likely to select physical conflict to resolve marital conflict as are men George, Steinmetz' article "represented a point of departure and antithetical challenge to the otherwise pervasive view of the seemingly universality of female vulnerability in the face of male hegemony exposed by the cases of battered wives".
Steinmetz' colleague, Richard J. Gelles , publicly addressed confusion caused by the research and father's rights groups "significant distortion" of the data in his public response Domestic Violence: Not An Even Playing Field , "Indeed, men are hit by their wives, they are injured, and some are killed. But, are all men hit by women battered?
Men who beat their wives, who use emotional abuse and blackmail to control their wives, and are then hit or even harmed, cannot be considered battered men. A battered man is one who is physically injured by a wife or partner and has not physically struck or psychologically provoked her. Steinmetz' claims in her article, and her use of the phrase "battered husband syndrome" in particular, aroused a great deal of controversy, with many scholars criticizing research flaws in her work.
In particular, she was criticized for not differentiating between verbal and physical aggression or between intentionality and action wanting to hit was considered the same as actually hitting. For example, David Finkelhor argues that Steinmetz' methodology was unacceptably unscientific. He argues that her work looks at all violence as fundamentally similar; there is no differentiation between male and female violence, or violence against a child and violence against a wife, such as a mother spanking a child and a father breaking a mother's ribs.
Finkelhor sees this as especially important insofar as it does not allow a differentiation between ongoing systemic abuse and once-off violence, or between disciplining a child and beating a partner. Linda Kelly writes that "in conceding that women do engage in acts of domestic violence, female use of violence is justified as self-defense—a lifesaving reaction of women who are being physically attacked by their male partners.
The development of the battered woman syndrome as a defense for crimes committed against abusive male partners, including homicide, evidences the wide acceptance of a woman's use of violence as self-defense.
Thus, women will be perceived as disproportionately aggressive even if merely defending themselves. Multiple studies indicate that the majority of women's IPV against male partners is in the context of being victimized.
Fiebert and Denise M. Within this group, perpetrators were asked to select reasons as to why they assaulted their partner, with the option to choose multiple reasons. Looking beyond self-defense, studies have found a range of causes for female-perpetrated IPV.
Writing of the feminist theory which regards reinforcement of patriarchy as a primary cause of IPV, Murray A. Straus writes "Patriarchy and male dominance in the family are clearly among the causes [of IPV], but there are many others. However, with rare exceptions, current offender treatment programs are based on the assumption that the primary cause is male dominance. Thus, they proceed under an erroneous assumption. Illustrative of this fallacious single-cause approach are the state-mandated offender treatment programs that forbid treating other causes, such as inadequate anger management skills.
Violence against men
In this introductory chapter we present the ambitions, objectives and structure of this book. We define what violence in intimate relationships is and offer some insight into the contemporary theoretical debates on violence in intimate relationships, as set out by sociologist Michael P. It is a common assumption that men are only exposed to violence in the public space, while women are exposed to violence in intimate relationships.
Domestic violence against men deals with domestic violence experienced by men in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation. As with domestic violence against women , violence against men may constitute a crime , but laws vary between jurisdictions. Men who report domestic violence can face social stigma regarding their perceived lack of machismo and other denigrations of their masculinity. The relative prevalence of IPV against men to that of women is highly disputed between different studies, with some countries having no data at all. Some researchers believe the actual number of male victims may be greater than law enforcement statistics suggest due to the number of men who do not report their abuse.
The invisible domestic violence – against men
Every case of domestic abuse should be taken seriously and each individual given access to the support they need. All victims should be able to access appropriate support. Whilst both men and women may experience incidents of inter-personal violence and abuse, women are considerably more likely to experience repeated and severe forms of abuse, including sexual violence. They are also more likely to have experienced sustained physical, psychological or emotional abuse, or violence which results in injury or death. There are important differences between male violence against women and female violence against men, namely the amount, severity and impact. It includes acts that inflict physical, mental or sexual harm or suffering, threats of such acts, coercion and other deprivations of liberty. Dobash, R. Hester, M. Myhill, A. Published online : ONS.
Male victims of domestic violence and their history of perpetrating violence.
Either way, this site won't work without it. Male victims of family violence and abuse - like women - often face many barriers to disclosing their abuse:. Abuse of men takes many of the same forms as it does against women - physical violence, intimidation and threats; sexual, emotional, psychological, verbal and financial abuse; property damage and social isolation. Many men experience multiple forms of abuse.
Domestic violence has traditionally been understood as a crime perpetrated by domineering men against defenceless women. Research spanning over 40 years has, however, consistently found that men and women self-report perpetrating domestic violence at similar rates. Professor John Archer from the University of Central Lancashire has conducted a number of meta-analytic reviews of these studies and found that women are as likely to use domestic violence as men, but women are twice as likely as men to be injured or killed during a domestic assault.
Domestic abuse is a gendered crime
Violence against men VAM [ citation needed ] consists of violent acts that are disproportionately or exclusively committed against men. Men are overrepresented as both victims   and perpetrators of violence. Studies of social attitudes show violence is perceived as more or less serious depending on the gender of victim and perpetrator. Richard Felson challenges the assumption that violence against women is different from violence against men.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Apparently men can't be VICTIMS of DOMESTIC VIOLENCE...
Domestic abuse of women has been in the public eye for many years. Many studies have examined its nature and extent, shelters for abused women have been set up, and legislation and police charging policies have evolved in response to the growing appreciation of the extent of the problem. The extent of the comparable issue of domestic abuse of men is not as well known and understood by the general public. However, recent findings have become available that contribute to a better understanding of domestic or intimate partner abuse of men. These findings were consistent with several earlier studies which reported equal rates of abuse by women and men in intimate relationships.
What about men?: Challenging the MRA claim of a domestic violence conspiracy