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

Friday
Aug102012

Simon

I am a victim of domestic violence

I looked at your website tonight, wow, 4 years ago when I had her arrested, I thought I was alone.

It's been a couple of years now, and I check on this website from time to time to see if we are getting anywhere.

Turns out getting her arrested was a smart move.

We get on well, we went to mediation run by the Anglican Church but she was still agro so then I took her to a lawyer (mediator) and I don't know what happened but she left me alone.

There's still some residue, questions on how I live my life but I am free, free, free. Oh boy it's been 4 years and I can't tell you how horiffic it is to lose yourself but how wonderful it is to get me back!

Still a bit annoyed about giving her the AVO she put on me the night the cops arrested her. The cops said “It's tit for tat.”

I said “well if it's tit for tat let her have it then.”

The cops said “No, AVOs have teeth, treat it very seriously.”

So I let her have the AVO. I was thinking of the future - the future when the punching stops.

Discretion is the better part of valour, eventually we managed to keep our 3 year old out of it.

My daughter is a happy 7 year old now.

The mediator at the Anglican service said “gee, I've never seen two people try so hard to do this” or words to that effect.

We said, “Oh shucks you are just encouraging us.”

He said “No way, I am serious. 99 per cent of people come here and argue. You two are putting your child first.”

We worked out earlier that if you put your children first your arguments:

1. Don't seem that important

2. and if they are important you get them sorted quickly.

Put your kids first.

The second mediator said the same thing.

He reckoned me and my abuser were unique in our sorting out and protection of our child.

Here's a word of advice to anyone living in hell:

CONTACT THE POLICE

It doesn't matter what happens to her, you cannot live like this.

Community healthcare also offers Psychological Counselling for free - make use of it.

The female counsellor is usually booked out for yonks, while the male counsellor is usually available.

Remember, you are not alone!

Friday
Aug102012

David

I just read a study from the UK that said women are more likely to be violent than men. In almost every case the violence is started by the woman. However the man is always blamed. In cases where the man chooses not to defend himself he is still likely to be the one charged.

In my personal case every woman has been the same: constant abuse and intermittent violence then theft of all personal affects when you finally have to go.

My advice to all men is get out as quickly as possible. Remember anything you do not take on the day you go is lost.

Never call the police. I was referred to a female officer who told me 'you are not a real man if you cannnot defend yourself'. When I replied I was a black belt and former army officer who chose not to be violent, she still refused to charge the offender.

If you ever date a women again do not live with her. If you are eventually attacked, at least you can make her leave or go home to safety. Make sure you use contraception as women can abuse children to get at you after you are long gone.

It's a sad world we live in.

Tuesday
Oct042011

James

Well I met my ex-wife in 1995 while studying at TAFE. In the beginning, everything was lovely, however what became apparent is that we would argue like clockwork every three months about anything and everything. With J always winning the argument and demanding an apology with flowers.

Between 1995 to 2000, I was studying accounting at TAFE. Unfortunately my grades were not that great and I was being pressured by J to get a job. So I was offered a position at a tyre store to which J was watching the conversation and interrupted by saying that I'll take the job before I did. Now at this point it is important to note that J came from a well-off family and mine not so. What this meant for me was that J was used to the finer things and wanted it all now: a house, a flash car; go out to dinner every week, etc.

So I was pressured into doing better at work to get more money, so I climbed the ladder from tyre fitter, to wheel aligner, to sales, to assistant manager, manager and finally buying our own franchise. Obviously, that was not good enough for J so she went and had a talk with her parents about a house.

J and I married in 2000 we moved into the new house in 2001, during this time things started to happen...

I had to do all the cleaning chores i.e.: washing, mopping, dishes, dusting, plus all the outside chores, and anything else J wanted.

I was never asked to do these chores I was told to do them.

From the day we met until we divorced, J systematically removed me from my friends, they became her friends, and ended my friendships with these people.

Because I didn't socialise anymore I was expected to keep house, no dirty dishes on the sink, rubbish bin was only able to get 3/4 full before I had to empty it, beds made, and I was only allowed to watch her shows on television and DVD. In addition, later when our daughter was born I was the live-in baby sitter whenever J wanted to take off at the drop of a hat.

I cannot remember exactly how all the other stuff happened so I will just list them:

J would put my underwear in my lunch bag in an attempt to humiliate me to my co-workers who might see them whilst I was getting my lunch. When arriving home she would make a song and dance about how my workmates saw my undies and whether I was embarrassed. J did this three times before she gave up.

Came home from work on a 40c+ day to find a tray of meat on the counter and that J demanded a bbq. So I went outside to light the wood-fired Weber barbeque then to cook the food, I was told not to come back until the meat was cooked so one hour later in 40c+ heat and no shade dinner was cooked.

Then there was little things, hide my smokes or ration them, constant put downs, where has all the money gone, etc.

J was good at withholding sex to the point the longest time was two months, so I would pleasure myself. J being who she was would humiliate me because of her withholding sex, “Have a good tug did ya, Bet that wasn’t as good as me! Argh you’re no bloody good anyway I’ve never had an orgasm from you anyway!”

Then towards the end of the marriage J started to do the provoke thing while in an argument: “Come on buddy boy just try it, go on hit me! The cops will be here so fast you won’t know what hit you. Then my Dad will get the lawyers onto you, and then you’ll be sorry!” Later when my daughter was born, J would like to add, “You’ll never, ever see my daughter again just you wait and see!”

I would like it noted that during this time I was no saint, I was having an affair with the mother of my first son before I got married.

Then in 2006 October, I had immense back pain to find out that I needed a triple spinal fusion on my lower back. Well in December of that year, I had my back operation and then in my life everything went pear shaped.

We were told to sell our franchise by the said tyre company, I had my first breakdown (suicide attempt, deep depression, burnout) in March of 2007 hospitalisation was required for a few days.

Of which J told doctors “I don’t want him home.” To which the reply was "he is on medication and has an appointment with a psychiatrist in two weeks." Well because I was at home since my operation J started her usual routine of "get up, do something, go and get a job. Depression... get over that, it’s in your head.” At this time, I was still taking morphine styled drugs for my back and J wanted me to go out and get a job. Therefore, with a suit and tie I attempted to go to an interview. The interviewer took one look at me and said, “I can see you are going through some tough times right now and I can tell that you are in no position to be here. So why did you come?” I told the truth my wife made me, to which the interviewer said get some help and be with your family.

In July of 2007 doctors diagnosed me with bipolar two again J was not having a bar of that. “Don’t forget to take your stupid pills you need to get better.” With a sarcastic tone.

To her credit, J was trying to run a business, which she had no idea about, and look after our daughter.

Well August 2007 rolled around and all the stress of wife, business, child, running a house and my own health finally got to me and I had a second breakdown (suicide attempt, breakdown).

J very pissed off packed the car, child and me and took me to the ER of our nearest hospital. Once I was taken to a secure room J asked doctors if I was ok with them. "Yes," was the response. J promptly left me at the hospital alone. It wasn’t until some time later that I found out from my parents that on the next day J had rung my parents to tell them “Come and get all of James stuff or I’ll throw it all out in the street.”

I spent the next five weeks in hospital trying to get better. J had started a campaign of text messages saying how I had stuffed the business up and how her dad was going to get the lawyers on me. We were texting like mad one night fighting about the business, my health, our daughter, separating that J obviously had had enough and actually called the hospital to ask them to take my mobile phone off me. Then a few days’ later J just rocks up with our daughter so I could see her and then asks the nurse if she can go and leave our daughter while she goes to the shops for an hour. Thankfully, the nurse was clued in what was happening and quite clearly stated that I was a patient and does not have the legal right to look after anyone in my care whilst being a patient. That really upset J that she had to sit there for an hour and watch me play with our daughter.

Wrapping up...

The business was sold and so was the house to pay for the outstanding debts.

J and I separated after my last visit to hospital, which led me to organize divorce paperwork. Divorced in April of 2009.

I have moved in with the mother of my first child and we are very happy together to the point that we are getting married in 2012.

I see my daughter every second week for seven days.

If it weren’t for my insistence to complete my counseling course, I would not have realized my own life being a victim of family abuse and violence.

It is truly amazing what the brain blocks out and represses memories for you to continue your day-to-day life.

Through my course to become a counselor I now know what area I want to get into and would welcome any chance to get involved counseling male victims.

Alone we suffer in silence, no-one knowing of our pain and heartache.

Together we stand as a crowd to show that male victims exist and that we need help too.

Wednesday
Aug102011

Steve

I was in a relationship for 6 years and we have one little daughter who is now nearly 11. I was 41 when she was born, as was my partner. When I met my partner she had told me she had been "victimised" by the NSW police for exposing corruption. Please understand that this was in 1997 when police corruption was a real hot issue, Wood Royal Commission etc. Anyway it was not until years later I learned she had been dismissed from the police for being psychologically unsuitable.

She assaulted me several times, used to threaten to kill herself in front of me and the child on a daily basis. I reported her to the police but quite honestly someone there is protecting her because even when someone she knew (who I only got to know a little later) reported her to the local police for conspiring to have me murdered (by this time I had moved out) still the police did nothing. At one stage I was living in a granny flat owned by a serving officer and he was amazed at the amount of times the police would seek me out because of all the false allegations she had made, but when I was actually assaulted (when holding my daughter) still the police did nothing.

She has systematically wrecked my career, I have no wish to ever have any other relationship. I am 52 and quite prepared to live like a monk if it means that no one will try to destroy me like she has. What does hurt is that I am totally alone, my little daughter is all the family I have and I am prevented from seeing her. The family court is so biased it is enough to make you sick and the child support agency have accepted totally false claims from her, no evidence and keep threatening to take what possessions I have left. I have now been fighting this woman, who is obviously in need of mental help, for over 7 years, just to clear my name and see my daughter.

Wednesday
Aug032011

Lee

I was in a 13 year relationship that ended a few years ago in a divorce. Like most relationships, we had our ups and downs, but things were relatively fine for the most part for the first few years. The trouble began within weeks of our marriage. My then wife had always been a very strong-willed person who demanded things be her way all of the time. For the most part, I was happy to play along, because in most cases I didn't see that I would lose or gain anything by arguing the point too strenuously over issues that I felt were quite trivial to say the least.

The abuse began verbally at first. I'd be called lazy if I didn't jump to it when my ex wanted me to do something, regardless of how busy I was. Everything I did was scrutinised and criticised without a word of encouragement. In general, I tried to avoid arguments and see that my ex's needs were being met, but as the frustration in me grew, and as my needs were continually being pushed further aside, it came to a point where I felt it was important to assert myself a little, just to create a little breathing space. From that point on, the verbal abuse started to get worse, and very personal.

Unknown to me at the time, my ex was going to my family members leaving hints that I was being abusive towards her. This was happening even though I had never been critical of her, and had always tried to find some middle ground. I never hit my ex-wife, and never even threatened her. In public, she presented herself as vulnerable and if I wasn't there, she'd present herself as a victim. In private, I'd attempt to walk away from arguments, only to be pursued, threatened and taunted.

After nearly 8 years of this I'd had enough, and our arguments grew louder, and the language worse. Again, I never abused my ex wife, but I'll admit that I had reached the stage where I felt I needed to shout to make myself heard. I am not proud of this, and I regret that this allowed the children to be witnesses to the troubles my ex and I were having. I attempted to seek relationship counselling and was told by the counsellor that I would need to give into everything my ex-wife wanted if I was committed to keeping her around. I would have done anything to save my marriage, sad though it was, and to protect the children we had from the inevitable pain that was to follow. I gave in, swallowed my pride and did everything she asked.

In the end, I had to draw a line when my ex-wife insisted that I needed to physically punish our children. The eldest in particular was reacting to the stress in his life, and my ex would insist that I either hit him, or leave him outside without adequate clothing in the winter. In the summer if I wasn't around, I learned that she would lock the children outside without access to food or drink on 40 degree days, without adequate clothing to shade themselves. Naturally I tried to put a stop to this, and that's when the arguing began again.

In the last two years of the marriage, I had noticed myself waking with bruises, and had woken a few times after feeling something hitting me in the head and face. I started to sleep lightly. At first I'd started to believe that I had hit my head on the side table as I slept, or I would wake up on the floor thinking I'd fallen out of bed. It turns out that my ex had been attacking me during the night, hitting me in the face with her elbow, and pushing me out of the bed so that I would effectively hurt "myself." During one particular night, I remember finding it very difficult to go to sleep, and a couple of hours later, as I lay on my back, I saw my ex-wife swinging her elbow at me. I'd known she was awake because her breathing had been quite too fast and loud to have been real sleep. I moved a little late and her elbow connected just below my ear. She pretended that the move had "woken her up", but I knew differently. My sleep had been quite bad for several years, but during the last couple of years of our marriage, I slept seldom, and woke up extremely nervous. Needless to say the lack of sleep was detrimental to my health, my nerves, and left me fatigued and short tempered.

I began to make plans to leave her. I started looking into hiring a lawyer and trying to find help for myself and the kids. I think that my ex must have become aware of this because she started to make sure I was not alone when I used my computer. I became angry with her for not giving me a little space, and I took steps to ensure I could be alone by removing the power from her computer's monitor. She confronted me about this, and then refused to leave the room when I told her I was busy, having expected her to do her evening workout as she would usually do. She refused to comply and started needling me, taunting and goading until I eventually asked her if I would need to destroy her computer simply so that I could be alone.

In hindsight, that was probably a silly thing to say, and was later used as "evidence" that I was abusive and threatening her. One week later, she predictably started a fight in front of the children, and during the course of the fighting I attempted to remove the children from the room. She grabbed them and at one point her arm was around one of the boys necks. She was so focussed on thwarting me that she didn't even realise that she was choking her own child. After telling her to let go and that she was hurting our sons, I did the only thing I could, and this is the only time I ever laid a hand on her in either anger or fear. I grabbed her wrists, applied a little pressure, and lifted her arms off the boys. I had overpowered her, and at that point she looked at me with what I can only describe as "murderous hatred". She then put on the biggest performance I had ever seen, and made out like I was hurting her. My boys reacted to this and clung to her more tightly, and as I tried to move the boys away from her, she literally threw herself on the floor and pretended that I had done it to her!

She had been abusing me for nearly 10 years, and I had in only a matter of moments ended up in the middle of a situation where suddenly it looked like I was the bad guy. She made a call to some sort of women's crisis line, and the next day she left, draining our bank accounts, and taking the kids away from my parents who were looking after them that day. Two days later, I had a police officer deliver a document telling me that a restraining order was being taken out against me and that I had only a few days if I wanted to contest it. The account on the order was entirely fabricated, but to make things worse, my entire family had up until that day believed that I had been an abusive husband and father. It was only a combination of circumstances that allowed me to prove to them that I had done nothing wrong.

For 10 years my ex had worked hard to destroy my reputation with friends, in the workplace, and with my own family. I had no-one to turn to, and at every turn I had to battle with police, courts, psychologists, lawyers, the kids' school, work, and everyone else who bought into her lies. I was alone, and had a battle to try and protect my kids from further harm. I reached some very dark places within myself before I was finally able to convince others that I was not the person I had been painted to be. It was lucky for me that it was my ex herself that went a few steps too far and created the opportunities that I needed to defend myself.

I'm 41 years old, and have spent about a 3rd of my life the victim of abuse. It's been a long and hard journey over the last 4 years to reach a point of acceptance within myself. I consider myself lucky, and in some ways my situation probably sounds tame compared to some of the other accounts that I have read. Like others though, I have had to battle with anxiety and depression. The net result is that I am financially crippled, and on more medications than anyone should be taking. My health has suffered dramatically. Even so, I consider myself lucky, and I feel stronger because I have found it within myself to battle on and find a way out of the mess of pain I have existed in for nearly 14 years. I feel that my honour is intact, and I have worked tirelessly on my kids to ensure that they can grow up as normally as possible even though their mother is not a very nice person (something I would NEVER suggest to them). I'm lucky because I was able to make a strong enough case so that I can in the end enjoy a significant amount of time regularly with my kids, and that I have my extended family back again.

I no longer feel embarrassed about what happened to me. If anything, I feel I have grown to be more of a man as a result not only of surviving the experience, but also in the way I have conducted myself throughout. If I have any advice for any of you other 'survivors' out there, it is that you should be able to look back at how you conducted yourself, and if you honestly did everything you could to behave with honour and integrity, then there is no shame to be felt. Hold your head high and believe in yourself, and don't feel that you are less of a man for allowing yourself to be a victim of abuse. Feel that you are more of a man for staying true to yourself.

And I hope that instead of painting future relationships badly, that you can see that not all women are crazy, and that you do not need to fear what your future may bring to you. Seek help, talk to your GP, get medication and counselling if you need it, and learn to grow stronger from your experiences, rather than being weakened by them. Don't listen to those insensitive people who tell you to suck it up, because they themselves can never truly understand what you have been through. Remember too, that it is up to you to be willing to help yourself to grow stronger from the experience, but you also need to be willing to ignore the potential for shame and pride to get in the way of receiving the help that you deserve.

You are not alone, and I wish you all the best.