Frequently, in fact as little as 2 days ago, I am asked ‘so what about women’s abuse of men?’ It’s not wrong to ask the question.
Yes, there are some women who manipulate the Family Court process or belittle their partners with withering bitterness.
Violence occurs in all types of relationships; including female to male, child to parent or same-sex couplings. There is also a spectrum of abuse, from overtly physical and threatening to subversive control of finances, emotional manipulation or demeaning language.
But the data we have is clear on one thing — the overwhelming majority of victims are women.
This kind of discussion is not meant to ostracise men or exclude them from an important public debate.
Addressing the National Press Club last year, anti-domestic violence campaigner Rosie Batty said women were capable of violence ‘but I don’t know of how many men will be living in total fear of their lives.’
‘The degree of terror that a man exerts over his family is profoundly different,’ she said.
It is extremely rare for men to experience fear as a result of their partner’s alleged behaviour. It is far more likely for some men to perceive their partner’s behaviour as acts of defiance and disrespect, which usually leads to an escalation of violence by some men. As we continue this national discussion, it’s important to remain focused on why it began.
Women and children are dying because of some men’s violence.
Working to stop that from happening will benefit everyone.