Domestic violence is an issue that plagues men and women in Nebraska, but there is a negative stigma for men who report domestic violence from a female partner.

According to the National Coalition against Domestic Violence, one out of three women and one out of four men in Nebraska experience some form of physical violence by an intimate partner. Even though men make up a smaller population of domestic abuse victims, there is likely more male victims who will not report the abuse.

Women who abuse their partners often resort to the same physical violence as male abusers. They might kick, punch or hit. Sometimes they will use weapons to threaten their male partners such as a knife or gun.

There is a false notion that men who are abused by women are smaller or weaker. It might be true in some cases, but usually, abused men will not use their greater size or strength to hurt their abusive partners – even during acts of violence.

Reporting physical abuse

Male victims do not report for a variety of reasons. One reason is the stereotype of the women being the victims. Most domestic violence stories cover a heterosexual relationship where the female is abused by her male partner. While this violence does happen, it should not minimize abusive relationships amongst males in relationships. Male victims need to the support to report the abuse and seek help as well.

There is also the misconception that abuse of men isn’t as serious. When a man is abused, people may joke about the man being “whipped” or “dominated” in his relationship. They may even justify the violent behavior because the perpetrator is female, so “it doesn’t hurt as much.” Abused men should be taken seriously and have a safe environment to discuss the abuse.

It could also be that he is embarrassed to admit that he is in an abusive relationship. It’s one of the many reasons men and women do not confront the abuse and feel the need to stay in toxic relationships.

Finding resources

Anyone who is a victim of domestic violence can reach out to Nebraska’s Network of Domestic Violence Programs or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. Abuse covers physical, sexual, economic, emotional or psychological actions, so do not wait to be attacked by your partner to report.