Everyone deserves a healthy relationship!
Men experience domestic violence at much higher rates than most people realize.
Domestic violence doesn’t just mean intimate partner violence but encompasses all family violence. Boys and men who are abused by family members are experiencing domestic violence. The abusive person could be a parent, a sibling, an adult child (especially in elder abuse cases), or another family or household member. If you are experiencing abuse in your home, help is available. Call our 24-hour hotline to be connected with a certified domestic violence advocate, at 860.763.4542.
Men can identify domestic violence by the same hallmarks of abuse as other victims. Abuse doesn’t always look the same but some things to consider are listed below. If you read over this list and recognize some of the behaviors, please consider calling our hotline to speak with an advocate.
This can include shouting, name-calling or making belittling remarks. It can also include jealousy, gaslighting, or even giving the silent treatment.
This can include things such as hitting, shoving, slapping, throwing of objects at the survivor, use of weapons or threats of self-harm.
Isolation is commonplace in abusive relationships. If your partner says you can’t leave the house or prevents you from seeing or speaking with family or friends, this is a way to isolate you from others. If they steal your keys to keep you from leaving or tries to convince you to quit school or work, they are actively working to cut you off from others, potentially shrinking your support system. You should be allowed to have friends, visit family, and do things that you enjoy, without fear of how your partner will react.
Threats may be toward children or other family members. The abusive person may threaten your friends, or even your pets. They may also make threats that are harder for others to understand. For example, maybe the abusive person doesn’t threaten to harm your children, but threatens to take them away from you.
Sexual coercion – This can include unwanted sexual advances or forced sexual acts. If someone isn’t in the mood to have sex, that should be respected, regardless of their gender. Sexual coercion can also include withholding sex to control your partner. Again, if someone isn’t in the mood, it’s important to respect that, but if your partner refuses to have sex unless you do things that you’re uncomfortable with, that’s not okay. A couple of examples are: refusing to have protected sex/removing or forcing you to remove a condom, or withholding sex unless you agree to cancel plans with friends. Sex should never be used as a means to control someone.
Stalking isn’t just following someone around. Stalking includes (but isn’t limited to): unwanted contact like phone calls, texts, and contact via social media, unwanted gifts, showing up/approaching an individual or their family/friends, monitoring, surveillance, property damage, and threats
This could be demanding money or credit cards. It could be restricting how you’re allowed to spend money. It could be mismanaging money and lying about it or ruining your credit. Financial abuse is real and can have devastating consequences.
Legal abuse can look different depending on the circumstances. Legal abuse can be the abusive person filing excessive motions in court, to force the victim/survivor to miss work/school and/or pay excessive attorney’s fees. Legal abuse can be the theft, withholding of or destruction of legal documents or papers like passports, resident cards, health insurance, or driver’s license.
What Can I Do For Myself?
Men are often reluctant to report abuse because they feel embarrassment or shame. Many male victims report fear that they won’t be believed. There is also fear of what the abusive person will do. Commonly reported IPV-related impacts among male victims are fear, concern for safety, and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, among others.
Abuse happens in all types of relationships. If you are being abused, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. There are some steps you can take to increase your safety and/or make leaving the abusive situation easier. If you need to talk to someone about it, help is available. Our 24-hour hotline number is 860.763.4542.