Honor at Home: The Reality of Abuse Against Men
In my previous article, I made an appeal to bring awareness about the abuse on women. Then a few men approached me and asked me to write on the topic of abuse affecting men. Undoubtedly, some men also suffer abuse by their female partners. In our society, abuse against men is well hidden. Not many men dare to confess their suffering, fearing ridicule, but it does happen. In the effort to compensate women from past historical failures against them, a shifting has taken place against men leaving some of them in a vulnerable position and unfairly disadvantaged in the current judicial system.
When it comes to family law issues, courts in the free world usually side with women. Legal abuse on men is prevalent in our justice system. For instance, in divorce cases, custody of children is granted mainly to women. After a Legal separation, financial distress affects mostly men. Recently, I followed a case where a man have been paying child support for over thirteen years, without visitation rights, for a child who unknown to him was not his biological daughter. The mother of the child finally reported the truth to the court, yet the State court insisted that he must continue to pay child support.
Another abuse reported when counseling couples has to do with intimidation through intimacy issues. Unfortunately, some wives wrongly use intimacy as the reward or punishing system on their husbands. It was never meant to be so. Yet it happens more frequently than realized. Some men are threatened that if they don’t fulfill every expectation, their need for intimacy goes ignored. Consequently, the root of many men’s affairs and addictions are the results of this type of chastising behavior by the wife. An affair is never justified, but it certainly can be explained.
Physical abuse against men goes largely unreported. Men who suffered this type of abuse deal with shame. They prefer to keep it a secret. Women who abuse men physically use objects like tools or other weapons to inflict harm. For example, one morning after church as I was dismissing the crowd, one of the men tried to skip-out on me, but I caught up with him. He was a very strong and muscular guy who was married to a very fragile and petite woman. Instantly, I spotted a black eye on his face, so I had no choice but to ask the obvious question. He finally told me with a very sad face that this little woman hit him with an object. He then begged me not to ask her about it.
The verbal abuse is another common behavior in unhealthy relationships. Men are threatened to comply with manipulations by their abusers. Threats go from possible abandonment to taking the children away. This usually happens where women make more money than their husbands. Children who grow up in this type of atmosphere lose respect for their fathers. When children see men as the weak authority figure, they usually go to the strong mom figure for any type of approval.
To restore the proper manhood figure, we need to educate this generation about the respect men deserve beginning at home. This is where masculine leadership starts, so we must teach our boys to be responsible. They must be trained in decision-making skills. This can only happen when we apply biblical principles to raising little boys who one day will grow up to become exceptional men.
“However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” – Ephesians 5:33