Monday, May 5, 2008

We're still ignoring abused straight men

From the National Post: What Canadians would know if the article was better researched is that men are almost equally likely to be assaulted by their female partners, and that children are statistically more likely to be abused or killed by their mothers than fathers. Homophobia is presented as a serious social problem: “[T]here is real concern that talking publicly about troubled relationships will only feed homophobia.” Well, talking publicly (non-stop in this country) about man-on-woman violence definitely feeds misandry, but apparently there is no “real concern” about that. In eerily familiar narratives in all but gender, Anderssen describes patterns of gay and lesbian couple violence. In one, extreme possessiveness periodically explodes into physically dangerous rage, but the victim can’t bring herself to leave. In another a physically powerful, but unprotesting lover accepts episodic batterings by his smaller lover — very much like strong but chivalrous men who stoically endure battering by women — while in both cases the victim keeps making excuses for the batterer (“He had a rough childhood”), just as women so often do with abusive men. These stories reinforce credible research proving that intimate-partner violence has no gender, but is rooted in individual pathology.

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