We Need to Acknowledge Male Abuse Victims

As an intersectional feminist I think it is important to understand that while domestic violence is usually targeted at women that this doesn’t mean that men aren’t immune to being victims as well. This is something that as I’ve witnessed over these past few years of my life and that I am passionate about because of the scary fact that many people are still unaware of male victims of abuse. Because of this, often times male victims are forced to suffer silently and are expected to be quiet about it because “men can’t be abused/raped.” For this topic, I have selected an assortment of responses to the r/AskReddit threads, “Men who have left abusive relationships: what's your story?” and, “Men who were sexually assaulted by women, what's your story?” Some have been edited for length and clarity.

 

Warning: Below are stories with mentions of triggering topics such as rape, abuse, and misandry. Read at your own risk.

 

1) “The owner of the company would sit on my lap and talk about how I couldn't handle her. HR grabbed my a** and said she could blow my mind in front of 2 other women. She had a huge crush on me. I was 23 and all the women were 40-45.”

2) “It was my first relationship this was almost a year ago. She was very needy and would get upset and cry if I didn't go to her house EVERY night after work. She would also hit and bite me because it was ‘funny’ I tried to tell her multiple times that it wasn't funny and that it hurt but she would just keep doing it. The worst thing she did was rape me. I yell at her to get off and she says just a little longer. I told her to get off of me and she did. At first I didn't think much about it but then it really dawned on me. After that I refused sex all together and broke up with her 2 months later.”

3) “The first time was by my babysitter around the age of 10. I didn’t know what I was doing was bad or wrong because I was ‘giving her special kisses.’ My mom didn’t believe me and she kept my babysitter employed for a year or so when my babysitter finally moved. Yeah, my trust in women is pretty f****** minimal even 20 years later.”

4) “Left her honestly after it was about the 6th time we were in a fight. She was more manipulative and controlling and just abusive to me when she didn't get her way. She called it ‘being blunt’ and she did it because she ‘loved’ me. Being blunt doesn't equal love.”

5) “I was walking on the sidewalk. A woman walking the other way grabbed my junk. I was probably 12 or 13. I didn't think much of it at the time. Now I know it was sexual assault.”

6) “I had a girlfriend that would punch the wall next to my head. Also, would push me down during arguments. She also would constantly accuse me of cheating on her.”

7) “I was fourteen, she was sixteen. She offered to give me a ride home after school one day and I accepted, because why not? I didn't want to take the bus and she had a car. We knew each other from concert band; it wasn't like I was accepting a ride from a stranger. She drove straight to her house and said she needed ‘a glass of water.’ I went in with her, and as soon as I closed the door she shoved her hand down my pants and started kissing me. I want to stress that I was a fourteen year old kid who had never so much as held hands with a girl before, and I barely knew this person, and certainly had no attraction to her. But I knew that guys were supposed to enjoy this sort of thing. So I just kind of let her do what she wanted. I ended up apologizing to her for not being able to reciprocate. She made fun of me for not being able to get it up. I thought there was something wrong with me. But all I wanted was a ride home.”

8) “I didn't realize how bad it was till well after it was over. She hit me with her car, twice, and I still stayed with her. I was convinced she was the only one who would ever love me.”

9) “An ex gf of mine was emotionally abusive and controlling. Demanded that I do what she wanted and when she wanted. Put so many double standards in our relationship. I had such low self-esteem that I went along with it, believing her that I was at fault and to blame. When I finally started to get my confidence up and push back against her rules and abuse she broke up with me. Clearly couldn't be with someone who wanted fairness and equality.”

10) “She was the love of my life. Perfect in every way until she got upset. She was terribly jealous for no real reason. Both verbally and physically abusive. I miss her dearly. I stayed with her for four years hoping that she would change. We went to one counseling session and she didn't feel like more sessions were needed. We broke up for the final time and attempted to remain as friends. She was furious after I introduced her to a co-worker as my friend. I knew at that point that I couldn't talk to her anymore.”

11) “She wasn't physically abusive, but she was pretty emotionally abusive and just overall too much for me to handle. We were in college at the time and she became heavily addicted to benzos and alcohol. She also cheated several time and would look through my phone constantly. I was kind of passive about it until she really started to hurt herself, so I convinced her mom that she needed to go into rehab. Once she was in a secure facility and became a little more level headed, I told her that this wasn't what either of us needed.”

12) It was just deception after deception. I was tired of getting gaslighted about everything, so one day I just packed my stuff and left.”

13) “I was with a girl that didn't understand boundaries, she had abandonment issues so I don't fully blame her for the way she would behave. But it didn't matter to her what I was doing, if I was hanging out with friends and for whatever reason I couldn't reply, whether I was at the movies, playing sports, or not being able to hear/feel my phone, she would text, call, and leave messages until I replied.”

14) I've only ever been with emotionally abusive people, and the temper tantrums, manipulation, lying for attention, and doting parents who spoil her rotten eventually started getting to my head. Once I moved out to college she started to become extremely jealous of the male (and especially female) friends I was making, so I dumped her.”

15) “She wanted sex that day, I didn't because I had a rough day and a rough workout and just wanted to go to bed. She said she'd tell people I raped her if I didn't.”