TELL YOUR STORY

If you are a male victim of family violence - domestic violence, violence from other family members, child abuse, elder abuse, sexual assault, or other forms of family violence and abuse - this page is available for you to tell your anonymous story. Please click here to tell your own story. If you feel like you need support, please click here. Stories are moderated to prevent the posting of spam, so it might take a little while for your story to appear on this page.

PERSONAL STORIES FROM MALE VICTIMS OF FAMILY VIOLENCE AND ABUSE

Sunday
Mar172019

Jane's personal story

Growing up my mother was very emotionally/verbally abusive toward my father. I've never really talked about this before, but after reading so many of these stories in which men stay with abusive women for the sake of the kids, I'm going to go ahead and do so.

My mother is one of those people who isn't happy unless she has someone to hate. That person was usually my dad, but he worked out of town a lot and when he wasn't there that person was me, the oldest child. She was often cruel to me, telling me she wished I'd never been born because I ruined her life and such, but the pain of that sort of thing was nothing compared to hearing her say terrible things about my dad, or, when he was there, to him.

He was a wonderful dad and I loved him fiercely. At the same time, though, I dreaded him coming home, because that meant non-stop screaming and yelling between him and my mom. Sometimes I'd catch myself wishing he wouldn't come home... then I'd be terrified that my wish would cause him to die (so he wouldn't come home) and I'd spend all night crying, looking out the window for his headlights and taking back my wish with all my might.

Sometimes my mom would rip into him with such cruelty that he'd start crying. When that happened sometimes I'd think about sneaking into their bedroom and killing my mom in her sleep. Those thoughts also terrified me, ripped me to pieces, because she is, after all, my mom; she wasn't pure evil, sometimes she was very kind and fun, and I couldn't help loving her despite her cruelty.

The conflict of loving both one's parents while simultaneously wishing one of them would be gone for the sake of the other is a special kind of hell that children aren't equipped to deal with.

If my parents were in general proximity to each other they were guaranteed to be screaming at each other. My sisters and I spent countless nights under beds or in closets, covering our ears with pillows, trying not to hear the words that hurt as much as any physical blow. I still can't explain why our parents yelling at each other was so scary - there was never any physical violence and us kids were generally ignored when they had each other to yell at - but it was very frightening all the same.

We lived in a small town and the whole neighbourhood could easily hear their fights. Most of my friends weren't allowed to come to my house because of the fighting. Us kids got a lot of sympathy from the neighbours, always offering a place to stay and such if things got bad at home; while that was kind of them, it was also humiliating. I'm 40 years old now and still too ashamed to contact anyone I knew as a kid, be it my peers or their parents.

When I was 16 my parents finally got divorced. We were all so, so much happier. My dad only got to see my sisters a couple times a year (due to distance), which was sad for him and them, but it was worth the trade-off overall. I know that sounds terrible and in some ways it is, but it was much less terrible than the almost daily torture sessions of before.

The pain of abuse is often worse when it is targeted at someone you deeply care for. Wouldn't you gladly take a blow or an insult for your child, to spare them that pain? Your child would do the same for you, for the same reasons.

My point here is, leaving, even if it means you don't get to see your kids very often, is not necessarily the worst decision for them. Us kids were aware that our mom was kind of nuts and we never held any resentment toward our dad, nor did we believe for a moment the lies she tried to tell us about him. I remember being conscious of her lies as young as 5; small children may not be able to articulate this sort of thing, but, I believe, they often know exactly what's going on.

I wish you all the best and am truly sorry you have such hurtful people in your lives.

Friday
Mar152019

Ted's personal story

Firstly I will admit to my wrongdoing in the matter. I said some nasty comments about my ex-partner's mother to a friend. The reason was that her mother refused all assistance from nursing staff while in hospital and made my ex feed her, bath her and clean her every night for months. My ex would often come home in tears saying she had to do things a daughter should never have to do to their mother. My comments were aimed in the defence of my ex but when she found out what I had said she took it purely as nasty comments about her Mum.

What I said was “the old bitch is so demanding on her daughter it will be better when she f..... dies” so I can understand her anger. I had no idea the friend was telling her what I had said. Her anger increased to the point where she said she couldn't forgive me and we began talking about separating. We had the home valued and she offered me less than half to leave. When I rejected the offer she said she would take out an AVO if I didn't take the money and f... off. On a number of occasions she told me this and came very close to hitting me when telling me to f... off and giving me "the finger" right in my face.

I realised after a couple of times that she was trying to provoke me into a violent response to get an AVO. At no time did I use any violence or threaten her. One night she tried the same tactic and I told her that I had the same rights to the home that she did and said we should sort this out civilly as we are nearly 60 years old. She called the police and took out the AVO. Her statement said there was never any violence or threatened violence and that I was so calm it was frightening and she was scared about my response to her taking out an AVO. This is an example of the discrimination against men. There would be no chance for a male to have an AVO taken out by police with a statement like that.

Eventually I accepted a mandatory clause AVO for 6 months on the advice of my lawyer to save costs and court time even though the complaint was frivolous. This allowed me to go home and to our business and as per the magistrates wording "it was a sensible decision and would allow us to settle our property affairs promptly". Since this hearing I have been locked out of my home and business and police will not enforce the court ruling on her. She has financially disadvantaged me by overdrawing on my credit card and transferring all business income into her private account. She separated our telephone bills and left me with the NBN and foxtel bundle from the home which I am locked out of.

Under the domestic violence law financial abuse includes:

  1. Not allowing the victim to work
  2. Preventing access to bank accounts.

I cannot go to work or access any income but have been told there's not a case for me. All I can do is spend more money on our property settlement to try and recover some of this lost finance. Transferring money from a business into a private account without the consent of the business partner is fraud by misappropriation of funds but I have been advised that I should let this be sorted out in the property settlement even though it comes under criminal law.

I am certain a woman would be granted an AVO on the financial abuse and would be able to prosecute a male for misappropriation fraud. Police are under a lot of pressure with all the domestic violence stories in the media but there is a definite discrimination against males. It would be interesting to survey police prosecutors to get a comparison in the number of frivolous or unreasonable domestic complaints made by women vs men. I sent a suggestion to the law reform society that an AVO application without actual violence should be passed on to a mediator before being filed. The 2 parties would be told to live separately until the mediation took place. This would take a lot of pressure off the police and curb the unnecessary stress on the male who is kicked out of his home for a month or more while waiting for the court hearing.

My health is deteriorating to a very worrying level. I have contacted Men's Helpline, Beyond Blue and 1800 Respect and they give good counselling advice but I am still suffering financially and healthwise due to the stress and cost of living away from home and having ongoing legal costs for the settlement due to my ex hiding money and not responding to demands to openly show all assets. The media and public services have increased the awareness and penalties for the increasing number of men committing actual violence on women but the increasing number of women who abuse the legal system for revenge and personal gain are wasting public money and court time and this should also be exposed on the media and dealt with by the law harshly.

Monday
Mar112019

Michael's personal story

I agree that it is very difficult to seek support as a male victim of domestic violence. What's even harder is admitting to yourself and those around you that it exists within the four walls of your home. Although our kids seen and experienced most of the abuse I received, it rarely got spoken about and was just swept under the carpet. For me, the constant fear of when the next violent episode would rear it's ugly head was the hardest to deal with. We were together for 22 years. Married for 17 years. Within those 17 years there'd be at least 20 occasions where I'd get kicked out of home for no justified reasons. Sleeping in my car or at work if possible. Then she'd conn me into apologising for whatever she says I've done so i can come home to my kids and family.

She was always angry. Blaming me for everything. She'd throw things at me, scream at the top of her lungs etc. However add alcohol and thats where the problems really start. Sometimes she'd get very angry and would snap into a rage over nothing. On at least 40 occasions the verbal abuse would just pour out until she'd finally get to bed and fall asleep. I'd count my lucky stars it didn't get worse. Kids crying etc etc. Lucky for her she'd be in complete denial the next day and not remember a thing, so you just sweep it under the carpet cause it just couldn't be spoken about. However, on at least 10 occasions it got physical. The drunken rage of terror would range from one or two punches to full blown attacks. I'd defend myself as best I could without ever striking back. As per usual, in the morning it's as if nothing happened. She'd avoid me so she'd not see my scars.

Both kids have also witnessed some of these full on attacks on me. The last time was late last year. One night, after drinking a bottle and a half of red wine she went into a full blown psychotic rage on me for no reason when we left a school fund raising event. I always see it coming. Her eyes start rolling and then she get angry with me over anything. To avoid trouble at the function, I excused myself from the group and took some time to myself outside. When the event finished I went inside to get her and our son. Everyone was staring at me so who knows what she was dribbling on about in my absence.

While I was driving home she back hand punched me in the face. Another couple punches followed. Our son tried restraining her by reaching over the front seat. She then crouched down and repeatedly kicked the crap out of me whilst driving. My instinct was to get her home and into bed. I nearly had 4 accidents on the way home. When we got home the rage of terror continued. Our 16 year old son began to ring the police for assistance. I tried taking the phone off him but he refused. She chased me around the house and threw 2 glasses at me. One missing, and one hitting me “luckily” in the back. Police came, arrested her and put an intervention order on her.

From putting up with abuse and violence all those years it took my 16 year old son to stand up and put a stop to it. I'm now glad I didn't take that phone off him, and I thank him almost daily for doing the right thing and calling the police. She will never get to do that crap to me ever again and it is a fantastic feeling. No more living in fear. No more terror.

My point to anyone reading is, NO ONE DESERVES TO BE TREATED THAT WAY. Don't put up with it, or be embarrassed to admit the truth.

And, for the record... although it may seem tough to find support as a male victim of DV, I have nothing but gratitude and total respect for both the police who attended and the Criminal Investigation Branch. They have been fantastic towards me and have shown the upmost respect and care. I know everyone's case is different but beneath the surface, the support is there. Times are changing and you just need to seek it.

Don't let them get away with it cause if the shoe was on the other foot they would show no mercy. #oneinthree

Friday
Feb222019

Brian's personal story

In 2010 as I slept my wife took my charge card and bought heroin. Hours later I had awakened and she arrived home. I attempted to take my card and her drug paraphernalia from her purse. At this time she sliced my leg with a knife. She then left the house. This time she used my card to buy crack cocaine. She arrived home after day break. Again I attempted to take back my card from her purse. She hit me with a baseball bat, I had a pot of hot coffee thrown at me, was bitten on both arms leaving permanent scars, maced, had my face raked by her finger nails leaving permanent scars. And pinned against the refrigerator with a knife to my chest.

I called her parents for help. After which she threw my phone in the toilet. Her parents convinced her to leave the home. My wife who was intoxicated attempted to take the car keys. She is a habitual intoxicated driver. I tried to grab the keys and she again scratched my face with her fingernails. I instinctively headbutted her. Her father then punched me in my face. As they left in the parents' car and our vehicle I called the police from a neighbor's home.

When the police arrived I showed them my injuries and told them the details of the assaults on me. She and her parents, along with a family friend also called the police from a nearby area. They all made up stories and I was arrested for domestic assault. She was treated as a victim and brought to hospital. I was denied medical care and placed in a police holding cell. I was subsequently beaten by the police. I was forced by the court to plead guilty to a crime I didn't commit. My options were to plead guilty and get probation or fight the case and risk getting 4 years in prison.

The police lied in their reports and so I had no chance in a potential court case. The domestic violence advocate at court would not allow me into my home until I pled guilty. I spent 4 months living with my mother. It was basically, "plead guilty if you want to return to your residence." I am a former police officer so my picture was on the front page of the local newspapers. Because of my domestic violence conviction I am no longer able to have a firearm after carrying one for 23 years and risking my life for the community.

I am a prime example of the inequality of how men are treated in domestic violence incidents. The police claim that all my injuries were from her trying to protect herself from me. I am reluctant to call the police when she assaults me now. She tells me she will tell the police that I assaulted her. The system needs to be fixed and more people and the police and courts have to understand that men can be victims of domestic violence. I was not just victimised by her but by the police, the courts and her family relations at the courthouse. I would have never believed this story if it didn't happen to me. The system needs to be fixed my friends.

[1IN3 editor's note: this case would have added to the collected statistics of 'men's violence against women', even though the reverse is true].

Thursday
Jan032019

Scott's personal story

I was a house Dad for 2 years with my four boys, and had a family court order with no backing behind it. Their mother uses parental alienation and there is evidence of her abusing the children.

Now a new family order has been made. This is a joke! How can I spend equal time with my children?

THE COURT ORDERS BY CONSENT UNTIL FURTHER ORDER:

  1. That the Final Parenting Orders made by consent on [redacted] are hereby suspended
  2. That the mother have sole parental responsibility for the children
  3. That the children live with the mother
  4. That the father spend no time with or communicate with the children
  5. That pursuant to s.688 of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) the father be and is hereby restrained from attending at the children's school and/or daycare centres
  6. That pursuant to s.688 of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) the father be and is hereby restrained from causing NSW Police to conduct a welfare check on the children at any time.

The mother and NSW FACS must think I am crazy because I have made so many reports of child abuse to police and FACS over the past two-and-a-half years. My 9 year-old son has reported that bullying and abuse go on in his mother's house and has made a statement to police and FACS but nothing is done - it falls on deaf ears. Plus her new boyfriend has a criminal record and is supposedly not allowed near children.

I need some help please.