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Once when I was having a debate with my ex-wife she punched me in the nose and made it bleed. Another time, also during a debate she punched me with a closed fist and split my lip. Then on another occasion I was holding my 16 month old daughter on my hip and we were having a slightly tense discussion. She walked over and punched my baby daughter in the middle of the back, sending us both flying. It was a terrific blow. I fled the house with my daughter and looked for somewhere to stay, but all my friends were at work or on holidays. So I phoned an emergency refuge who literally laughed at my request for help, and proceded to tell me that the service was only for women. I tried another shelter without success. I had no money left and couldn’t afford accommodation, so I spent the night sleeping under a derelict building without blankets, and I held my daughter close to keep her warm. She cried for most of the night because she was afraid and hungry, and I could only give her water from a nearby tap. My daughter was traumatised and so was I (and we both still are). The next morning we returned home because we had no alternative. I later asked my wife why she punched our daughter and her answer was literally “because I knew that would upset you more than if I had hit you” and she apologised profusely.

At the moment she hit our daughter I knew instantly that the marriage must finish. I now have sole care of my two beautiful children after a court found her unfit to be a parent for a number of reasons.

Violence against men and their children is real.

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