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

Monday
Nov242014

Justin

I was in an abusive marriage for years. She verbally abused me from the beginning, the physical abuse started about 11 months into the marriage. It started out with slaps on the head for saying or doing something she didn't approve of. Eventually, it escalated into slaps on the body and sometimes in the face. A couple years later, I would sometimes get kicks and punches, including to the face and groin.

Now that I have been out of the marriage a few years, it all seems like a blurry nightmare. Even after a year of counselling, I still don't like to talk about it (I do so here to hopefully help someone else). Anytime I think about it, my body tenses and my mind starts racing. If I don't get it out of my head quickly, a feeling of panic sets in.

I remember being told to "man up" and being laughed at by people, including some of my own family members, who witnessed or heard about her abuse of me. Also, my ex wife was VERY aware of the attitudes and practices of society in general and law enforcement and the courts in particular. She would tell me straight to my face that she would make up a story about me accusing her if I ever called the police. Her sisters told me, again, right to my face, that they would lie to the police and get me arrested. All the things I saw in the media about domestic violence, being portrayed as "men are perpetrators, women are victims" issue just reinforced in me that I would never get a fair treatment if authorities got involved. The final straw that made me give up hope of getting official help came when I called a domestic violence hotline. The counsellor on the phone treated me like I WAS THE PROBLEM. She actually referred me to a batterer's program.

I only got away, finally, from the abuse when I became so depressed and withdrawn that I was having trouble functioning at work. Once my earning utility to her was threatened, I was then useless to her and the marriage ended. I desperately hope that things change dramatically in society. There are A LOT of male victims that need help (and future male victims that are going to need help). There are A LOT of female perpetrators (and male perpetrators in the case of gay couples) that also need help and, where appropriate, punishment. Something has to break the cycle.

Monday
Nov102014

Tim

My wife belted me and the kids on several occasions during our marriage and even chased me out of the house with a knife threatening to kill me. I have never laid one finger on her or the kids ever.

She is an alcoholic and the kids were often exposed to her bad behaviour. We lived under the same room but in separate bedrooms for 3 years. I then found out that she had been on the adult sex website adultmatchmaker after she failed to log out of the family computer.

I discovered that for over a year, she had been going down to the local car park by the beach in Bayside, Melbourne at night (when she told me she was going out for her hour walk each night) and had been having unprotected sex with several dozen strangers in their cars - with men she had met online and going to swinger events and have orgies and unprotected sex with large groups of swingers in Bayside.

When I confronted her about it, she called the police, took the kids from me and got an intervention order against me, because she claimed she felt I 'might' become violent. And that's all the police care about. As a man, you might and could have the potential to be violent. Therefore, under this current legislation, EVERY man is guilty already as we all have 'potential' to become violent.

I told the police she has hit me and she even agreed she had and that I'd never hit her. The police said, the system isn't fair mate, but your in a lot of trouble because your wife says she fears "you might" become violent after finding out about her private life and that's the law and how I breached her privacy by looking at her online sex activities with other men. I'm now facing charges and a criminal record for reading her history on the family computer, that I bought and paid the internet access for!

I have spent every cent on legal fees and been in the court system for 10 months now. I even have a court appointed family report saying that the kids should live with the father and even in the short term, the kids should not remain with the mother.

The judge said: "well, I don't really like moving kids from where they are! We'll leave all children matters or the final trial in 6 months time."

They should never have been taken in the first place, but I had no choice, no say and the police did nothing when she took them from me. It seems as a dad I have no rights at all, I am completely shafted by the courts and legal system. Nobody cares about dads. Women can behave badly, and do whatever they like and the court or police do nothing.

I have already been told, despite the court reporter clearly recommending that the kids live with me and that this is the kids wishes too, that it is extremely unlikely any judge in Victoria will change the current living arrangements, and in fact because there is no agreement, there is even a high chance that the time I already get will be reduced further in final orders.

COMPLETE and UTTER madness, injustice and unfair.

Men have little or no rights in Australia in the family court.

The sad part about the whole thing, the kids are not better off with her and should be with me (as even the court reporter noted). The court is not acting in the best interests of the children.

Women want equal pay, equality in the workplace etc but family law is far more unjust towards men than any of these issues.

Sunday
Nov022014

Ellie

My story may not be appropriate given the context of this site and I'm sorry if this offends or upsets anybody.

My name is Ellie and I used to hit my husband. A lot.

The best quote I ever heard about anger was: "anger is an emotion for those who want to control others while simultaneously failing to control themselves", it's so true. I would get SO ANGRY every time something didn't go my way and I would lash out. I would shove, slap, punch, scream and bite. I would lose all control and become an unstable, frothing at the mouth, crazy woman and I would unleash my rage on my poor husband. Usually for some 'horrible' crime as forgetting something at the supermarket or not responding to a question in a way that pleased me.

I always found a way to justify it, "well if he would just LISTEN to me then I wouldn't get angry", I managed to convince myself that I was really the victim... he 'ignored' me and I was really the hurt party, why didn't he pay enough attention to the things I said? Why did he have to make me angry?

Every so often he would fight back, but mostly it was just me wailing on him until he escaped or I calmed down.

There were a few times I threatened him with a knife... I didn't mean it, I was just being a bully, but he did not know that and the look of genuine fear in his eyes will haunt me forever.

It's a horrible double standard... the few times he ever struck me at all were completely out of self defence and were not intended to cause harm, merely to put distance between us so that he could protect himself. Yet I know, had I called the police, he would have been charged.

Owning up to this kind of thing is not… easy. It was very difficult for me to realise this in and of myself and in all honesty I think I realised how wrong it was before he did, because more than just physically harming him... I had managed to convince him it was all his fault.

If he ever tried to leave I would threaten to harm myself and he would be too afraid, he cares about me and would not want to see me hurt.

I am prone to introspection and self reflection and yet it took me years to realise that I had become a monster, because I didn't want to admit it to myself, I didn't want to admit it to anyone.

I did admit it to myself and then I admitted it to him, out loud. I apologised and although the words felt... pathetic to me, how can you say 'sorry' for years of abuse... my husband genuinely appreciated them.

We are still together and I have not hit him since. We still argue sometimes, as people do. But I almost never yell, I never hurl insults and I never throw punches. Once I admitted it and apologised for it and genuinely realised what I had become… I knew I had to change and never go back.

I am a strong believer in equality for men and women of all races and sexual preferences and the stories I have read on this site just break my heart and I am not afraid to admit that they bring me to tears, because their stories are so raw and also because I contributed to the abuse.

As I said, maybe my story isn't appropriate but I felt compelled to admit it in a possibly public way because most women I meet seem to think slapping a man is somehow… empowering, as though the women who fought for us would be proud of them getting sassy and slapping a man. I have met women who outright and out-loud believe that a woman hitting a man is OK and a man hitting a woman is wrong.

I believe that all violence is wrong and should my story of shame give a violent woman hesitation or a beaten man a shred of realisation then that is one step further for me and for them.

Saturday
Jan112014

Anonymous

My wife and I have been married for seven years now and we have a four year old son from this marriage. Over the last seven years we have had our share of disagreements and conflicts. We have been able to either come to a resolution over a period of time to suit both parties or one of us agrees to accommodate the others decision.

Something has changed in the last two conflicts where I have been physically assaulted ( slapped once and more recently punched several times and slapped). I am afraid to report this to any authority for the fear of ridicule and becoming a social outcast. I don't want to lose my son and want to give him a happy family to grow up in. The thought of not being able to see him everyday is depressing.

After seeing this site and reading through most of the stories, my fears are only confirmed, that no one is going to believe me and/or I will be ridiculed by my family friends and even the authorities.

I have been a providing partner in every way for the last seven years. I am the only bread winner in the family, my wife is not working and sometime the feeling of sympathy makes it very blurry to make a decision that feels right. I don't want to be the person who breaks this family up. The guilt will be very hard to live with.

Saturday
Jan042014

John

I was in a relationship with my ex for 2 years. My ex was verbally and physically abusive towards me, to which my 14 month old daughter witnessed. She would constantly yell and scream at me for reasons I cannot understand. She would become abusive for no reason at all. I always thought that it was me. I believed that I wasn’t a good partner and a useless father to my daughter. I would feel like the size of a peanut. When she was violent she would shove me around the house, and yell abuse telling me I’m no good. My daughter started to cry, and I couldn’t get to her to protect her as I was getting punched and slapped by my ex. I spoke to some friends about what was going on, and they just laughed telling me to grow up, and be a man.

After the abuse my ex demanded sex, to which I said no. Whilst I was resting on the bed and so sad and licking my wounds she would rip my clothes off, and stroke my penis in an attempt to get an erection. I kept saying no, but she didn’t hear my constant word 'no'. She stated she wanted sex, and said 'if you love me and our daughter you will make love to me'. I kept saying no, and when I couldn’t perform, she’d hop off and slap my penis hard with her hand and say I was useless in bed, and 'I don’t know why you're here'. I was so sad. I just get the crap kicked out of me and she still wanted service which I was in no in frame of mind to do.

As a desperate cry for help, I spoke to police, who passed it off suggesting that I just leave. But I couldn’t. My daughter needed me to protect her, and I was in a financial hold by my ex. She used money to keep me at home. I couldn’t go out and visit friends for just half an hour. Instead I had to ask them to come over to visit me and to make a bbq event instead which I explained to police who ignored my plea. In the first episode I rang the police 10 times, and I even rang PAL (police assistance line) and explained the situation crying for help. The person at PAL took notice and sent a job to the duty officer who had to act. The police arrived and took my ex to hospital for assessment (she was pregnant at the time). I arrived soon after and my ex yelled at me telling me to get out of her house, and to pay her back money. I spoke to the Drs and pleaded to get it sorted. The only thing they could do was to commit her for 3 days for assessment. At my plea the Drs still released her to go back home. When she returned I copped it again and was blamed for calling the police. I tried to leave several times, but I couldn’t. I had nowhere to go and no support groups that could arrange emergency accommodation. It was stated that I wasn’t a woman and I didn’t have a child in my care. Time passed and my daughter was born, the abuse never stopped, and it continued with vengeance. It got to a point where I was emotionally and physically drained, and feeling so ashamed for myself.

Six weeks ago I decided to leave. So I ran leaving my 14mth old daughter behind. The police became involved again and took my ex to hospital. DOCS got involved and took my daughter into protective care. All through this I constantly spoke to Drs, but all I got was we don’t have enough resources to deal with this. What sort of excuse is that I replied. I’m getting the crap kicked out of me and that’s what you’ve come up with? Surely you can do better than that? But that’s all I got with the reminder that I can just leave my ex.

Since then I have been in the fight of my life. I have a lawyer and we are fighting for my daughter to have her in my sole care and to get her away from her abusive mother, and to somehow stop my ex from getting sole custody of my daughter. I have no money because I’m not working because I don’t have the ability to concentrate because of the emotional and physical abuse I’ve endured for 2 yrs, and somehow I need to return back home for court.

But during all this where was all the support? There is nothing out there for men, and nobody believes you as a man that you get beaten at home. We see it in the media that no means no to women and any form of violence is not acceptable. Do men deserve less because they are men?? I know that it will be tough for me at court to get my daughter back, because I’m a guy. For years the court has always favored the women when it comes to custody for their kids. The courts will not even think about it all because I’m a man. Today it’s hard for me. I feel that I’m to blame, and at times I feel that to save my daughter and I should return home and cop the abuse in silence, and never speak of this again to anyone! I never spoke to police about the constant sexual assault, because I knew they would only laugh harder and make jokes at my expense!