Just saw a discussion about domestic violence over at Snooze Button Dreams (HT: Dean Esmay) and I'd like to thow in my $0.01 by pointing back to a post I wrote last October about Domestic Violence Month.

I just discovered that October is Domestic Violence Month, so I want to take this opportunity to mention a problem that isn't very widely recognized: in 40%-50% of domestic violence cases, men are the victims of violence committed by women. A great deal of attention is given (justifiably) to violence that men perpetrate against women, but the fact of the matter is that men are almost as likely to to be victims of domestic violence as women are.

I have some sources here to back up this claim, and they have interesting statistics (that mostly agree with each other). The most comprehensive data appears to come from a study performed by Straus & Gelles, which concludes that some degree of violence occurs at a rate of 113 man-against-woman incidents per 1000 couples per year, and 121 woman-against-man incidents per 1000 couples per year. As well, men and women are both about equally likely to strike the first blow. Overall, men and women were victims of violence at about the same rates, but the violence against men was 50% more likely to be "severe" -- a level that includes being attacked with an object (as opposed to fists), being "beat up", being threatened with a gun or knife, and being attacked with a gun or knife.

Some other interesting facts from the earlier post:
1. Women are three times more likely than men to use weapons in spousal violence.
2. Women initiate most incidents of spousal violence.
3. Women commit most child abuse and most elder abuse.
4. Women hit their male children more frequently and more severely than they hit their female children.
5. Women commit most child murders and 64% of their victims are male children.
6. When women murder adults the majority of their victims are men .
7. Women commit 52% of spousal killings and are convicted of 41% of spousal murders.
8. Eighty two percent of the general population had their first experience of violence at the hands of women.
I generally agree with Mrs. Du Toit's comment:
Where is the woman's voice in any of this? NO WHERE. "Yes" means "yes" and "NO" means "no." If she stays, she is saying "yes" to all that the relationship includes--and that means "yes" to continued abuse. We may be offended by it, it may repulse us, but it is NONE OF OUR BUSINESS. It is HER business.

Females who abuse their mates are a different matter. Men don't want to admit it for all sorts of reasons. Women are more likely to use weapons of some sort (stereotypical rolling pin comes to mind) to alter the size and strength dymanics. But the reaction of society should be the same. BUTT OUT unless the person chooses to press charges. If the guy stays in the relationship, doesn't press charges, then he has CHOSEN to remain abused. His choice.



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