For a long time there has been a general belief that there were no male victims in family violence and that incase there were, it was in self-defense. The term domestic violence connotatively conjured in people’s mind a male-to-female violence but not the reverse or the entirety of its meaning. Female-to-male violence is rampant only that it is overlooked and ignored. Men have always been portrayed as the perpetrators while women are the victims and this misconception has called for protection of women and punishment for men.
In deciding most domestic violence, women tend to be defended while men are seen as the likely offenders. Research findings, however, show that there is same rate of violence toward men as there is toward women in domestic violence. Reporting of male-to-female violence entails noting horrible incidences like emotional and physical brutality whereas reporting female-to-male violence may not capture such incidences even though they occur. This coupled with individuals’ and institutions’ failure to give much attention to male victims is misconstrued to mean that violence to male victims is not serious.
There is an array of factors that work together to undermine men’s effort to get justice in domestic violence. In their attempt to get help, male victims face a number of obstacles, which may include lack of shelter and established agencies to protect them. On top of these, men face extra obstacles, which include fear of being doubted, ignored and the risk of reputation damage. The society is skeptical whether men can be justifiable victims in family violence and this entangles men in their quest for help incase of domestic violence against them.
In deciding domestic violence, there has been a bias on men while women enjoy favoritism. For instance, idea of whether man was first provoked in the violence hardly counts. In addition, there is a general assumption that because majority of the perpetrators in most assaults out there are men, the case is the same even in domestic violence. Such an opinion is fallacious and needs to be corrected. In conclusion, female-to-male violence is a reality and mechanisms such as those protecting women need to be established to mitigate this nature of violence.
2. Domestic violence against men is exaggerated. Summary The violence against men is not as serious as it is made to appear. One would hardly disagree that men are physically stronger than women and therefore able to defend themselves. And by virtue of men being stronger, they are able to injure women more and hence the conclusion that women suffer more in domestic violence. May be another reason is the belief that women are less willing to hurt. In any case, most men are not physically abused but rather financially, emotionally and legally.
This then further confirms that women suffer more physical injury in family violence. Women abusers in most cases use emotional tools like shame and guilt to control men rather than physical force or coercion. It is also argued that women only react to men’s violence and therefore whenever they act violently it is for self-defense or because they are out to revenge, which then implies that they are hardly the first offenders. The above argument is supported by a 1994 study of emergency room admissions sponsored by the U.
S department of justice which revealed that 37 percent of women being injured by their domestic partners compared to 4. 5 percent of men (C. Wicker, 2005) This study mirrors the disparity between men and women who are victims in domestic violence. “if you don’t take into account the injury, if you don’t take into account who feels dominated by who, it’s easy to believe that women are as menacing as men”. Argued Dr. Straus. The extent of injury and degree of dominance, factors in which most cases a man has an upper hand, better define who is a victim and who is a perpetrator in most domestic violence.
In any case, the more vulnerable a person is the more likely they are victims because violence is about power and control. (www. homernews/stories/10182007) The violence against men is gross exaggeration and has never been as serious as it is depicted. Commentary Article one is a “brave” article in that it not only handles a topic that most writers shy from but also boldly and out rightly tackles the topic of female-to-male violence in a more objective way. It seems like the authors of these two articles are on the extreme opposites.
While the first article attempts to bring out what the author deems as the reality about female-male violence and tries to plead the men’s case, article two attempts to counter or may be water down what article one tries to achieve. For instance, when the writer of this article argues that men are not likely to suffer physical injury in domestic violence, she tends to suggest, though implicitly, that one only qualifies labeled a victim of domestic violence if they suffer physical injury a view that not many would subscribe to. This is naive.
Of course, we know that emotional, legal abuse or any other form f abuse can be more or as humiliating as the physical one. May be people need to grasp the correct definition of what constitutes domestic violence or incase the definition that is available currently leans toward one form of injury then I guess it is time to discard it and adopt a fair one. May be this will help clarify whether violence against men is serious or a mere exaggeration. This debate still goes on but at this juncture, it is evident that family violence is a two-way traffic and portraying it as a one- sided thing is erroneous, narrow thinking and crude misconception.
Addressing a topic that is as gender sensitive as this demands that, however hard it is, one uses an approach that is objective and not subjective. While one may succeed in pinning down, stereotyping, defending or justifying either gender for domestic violence, the truth on the ground is that domestic violence is two-sided and its severity on the victim varies from one instance to another. So we should embark on a journey that will help us discover the root causes and the best way to comprehensively address the issue.
Employing chauvinistic and prejudiced approaches in deciding and solving domestic violence will not bring a long lasting solution. A fair and level playing ground ought to be established, this may not be the ultimate solution but may be an all-important stride toward realizing the solution that we so much need. References: Gelles, R. J (2004) Current controversies: Violence against women. San Diego: Greenhaven Press Wicker, C (2005) Opposing Viewpoint: Crime and criminals. San Diego: Greenhaven Press http://www/csmonitor. com/2007/1018/p14502-legn. html http://www. homernews. com/stories/10182007/news-1-003shtml