Domestic Violence happens in relationships without regard to age, gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation. Men may be victims of abuse, just as women are. In fact, the National Domestic Violence Hotline website reports that 1 in 7 men aged 18 and older have been the victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Ten (10) percent of men in the US have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a partner. In the UK, Mankind Initiative reports 38% of domestic abuse victims are men. The also report that male victims are twice as likely as women to not tell anyone about the partner abuse.
If you’re being abused, please seek help from a program that specializes in Domestic Violence recovery. In the US, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
If you are thinking about leaving an abusive relationship, consider seeking help from a support program. Find a safe place such as a public computer to review a safety plan for leaving. Contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline above to speak to an advocate about how to safely leave an abusive relationship.
Types of abuse seen within a relationship
There are several types of abuse that occur within a dating relationship and a partnership or marriage.
Let’s break down each of these types of abuse with examples of behaviors that fall under them.
Digital abuse is more common than expected, and fairly equal in perpetration between men and women, with approximately 1 in 8 reporting being on the receiving end of digital abuse.
Controlling the partner’s social media account(s), such as demanding passwords, determining who they can and cannot friend.
Cyberstalking (stalking you, and contacting you by messages, apps, websites, and/or social media.
Monitoring the partner’s behaviors and movements on and offline with technology.
Publishing your private information online.
Revenge porn/nonconsensual pornography.
Requiring 24/7 access by phone and text to the partner.
Sexting that isn’t agreed upon.
Sexually harassing the partner online.
Tagging pictures of you.
Using smart technology in the home to control the partner and
Emotional and verbal abuse is most likely the most common form of abuse in a relationship, and the one that is least likely to be reported as well as the least likely to prove. Many survivors have shared the devastation of the words and looks of their partners continuing on for an extended period even after the relationship is over.
Accusing you of cheating
Attempting to control what you wear (make up, clothing, etc.)
Blaming you for their abusive behaviors
Cheating and blaming you for it
Damaging your belongings
Isolating you from friends & family
Monitoring your activities/Demanding to know where you re going
Telling you you’ll never find anyone better than them
Threatening you, your children or your pets
Many survivors don’t even consider that they are being abused financially or consider how many ways a partner can abuse them with their finances. See the different ways financial abuse can be perpetrated.
Borrowing money or making charges without repaying it
Claiming to make payments or pay bills in your name but not following through
Confiscating your paycheck or other sources of income
Criticizing and minimizing your job or choice of career
Criticizing every financial decision you make
Feeling entitled to your money or assets
Demanding that you turn over your paycheck, passwords, and credit cards but refusing to share theirs
Expecting you to pay for their bills or their obligations
Forcing you to sign financial documents without explanation
Harassing you at work by calling, texting or stopping by
Hiding or taking funds and putting them in a private account
Intercepting or opening your bank statements and other financial records
Making large financial decisions without your input or consent
Pressuring you to quit your job – sometimes even using children as an excuse
Preventing you from working by hiding your keys, unhooking your car battery, taking your car without permission, or offering to babysit and then not showing up
Reducing your freedom to plan or budget
Refusing to collaborate on finances
Requiring that large, joint purchases be in their name only (such as car loans, mortgages, cell phones or apartment leases)
Requiring you to bail them out of difficult financial situations
Ruining your credit history by running up limits and then not paying the bills
Sabotaging your work responsibilities
Taking money or using credit cards without permission
Telling you where you can and cannot work
Threatening to lie to officials and claim you are “cheating or misusing benefits”
Trying to control your use of or access to money you have earned or saved
Using offers to help with your budget or financial decisions as a cover for gaining control over your finances
Using your assets for their personal benefit without asking
Withholding money from you or requiring you to ask for money
Hit, punch, kick, slap, pull your hair or other physical aggressive actions
Prevent you from contacting emergency services
Prevent you from sleeping or eating
Use weapons or objects that could hurt you, against you
Force feeding or denying you food
Physically restraining you