I want to take a few minutes of your time, if I may, to discuss a very important issue. The issue of domestic violence has been covered and studied and looked at a lot; however, a significant number of people have been excluded from the research and from the solutions: Men.
My partner is a survivor of domestic violence, and he has faced numerous challenges in putting his life back together in the aftermath. He has set up a website where men like him can go to find support, information, and resources to help them cope and get back on their feet. I support him in this work, because I have seen for myself how domestic violence keeps hurting the victims, even long after their escape. Women and children have numerous resources for help in the community (and I'm very glad of this); however, men have a harder time being acknowledged as victims, let alone finding help in getting out and getting back on their feet. So many don't know there is support out there. ( And those are the ones who don't get mistaken for perpetrators and end up in jail!) I'm so proud of my partner for doing this!
This article brings some shocking information to light. For instance, I'll bet the average person did not know that the U.S. Department of Justice flat out refused to offer any funding for research of domestic violence perpetrated against men! Instead, the National Institutes of Mental Health has stepped in and is doing the research. I'm sure that the average person also does not know that roughly an equal number of men are victims. The media and the authorities choose to focus on women and children. While this is a good thing, more attention needs to be paid to male victims. One of my favorite performers (Phil Hartman) was killed by his wife, tragically. I am actually amazed that this incident did not bring more attention to the plight of male victims, actually. Instead, the media focused on the wife's drug and mental problems and pretty much glossed over the deeper issue. (Yes, all these years later, I still miss him!)
For a long, long time, the images of the browbeating wife, overbearing mother or stalking girlfriend, and "whipped" or "wimpy" husband have been images that society has viewed as "par for the course" or humorous. Once one has experienced abuse him or herself, however, those images stop being so funny. I have suffered my own share of abuse in various forms from partners, so these images are not funny to me most of the time. (It depends on how it's delivered in my case.)
I only know that we all deserve to live in a society free from violence. Violence of war, violence toward children and the elderly, violence between men and women, violence toward animals and the Earth. Until all victims are given acknowledgment, however, this cannot happen.
Thank you for reading. If you are a man in need of support, I recommend you check out my partner's website. I hope that you find what you need!
Photo credit: GeekPhilosopher.com