More than 2,000 men suffer domestic abuse, says Amen

Charity says men living in abusive relationships are staying to protect their children

Battered men: many suffer in silence and are reluctant to tell anybody about the violence inflicted on them. Photograph: David De Lossy/Getty

Battered men: many suffer in silence and are reluctant to tell anybody about the violence inflicted on them. Photograph: David De Lossy/Getty

 

Almost 8,000 incidents of domestic abuse were reported from more than 2,000 men last year, the support service for male

sufferers of domestic violence Amen, has said.

According to Amen’s 2013 report, the number of domestic attacks on men is roughly the same as 2012.

But the charity said it is seeing a large increase in the number of men coming for face-to-face counselling.

The number of face-to-face meetings with men complaining of abuse has risen by about 64 per cent on 2011, says Amen service manager Niamh Farrell.

Ms Farrell also said the majority of calls received in 2013 were from men aged between 40 and 50 and many of the calls were from men who were afraid to leave an abusive relationship, out of fear for their children.

 

No refuge

Ms Farrell said men had a particular problem in bringing children with them when they planned to leave, as there is no refuge for battered men and their families.

 

Many men were reluctant to tell family and friends they were abused, and so seeking a place of safety for them and the children was difficult.

She said there was “a whole other issue” in relation to men who were not the father of their partner’s children.

Ms Farrell said the service received just one case of a man in a same-sex relationship.

She said from anecdotal evidence members of the LGBT community tended to seek help within their own community but she wanted them to know the service was available to all men.

According to the report:

  • Complaints were received from 2,263 individuals accounting for 7,758 disclosures of domestic abuse;
  • A total of 1,694 new people contacted the service;
  • 2,048 disclosures of physical abuse were made;
  • 2,859 disclosures of verbal abuse were made; and
  • 2,846 disclosures of psychological abuse were made.

A total of 325 one-to-one sessions with 169 individuals took place in the office in Navan and an outreach clinic in Dolphin House, Dublin.

Amen’s confidential helpline operates from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday. The service can be accessed by calling 046-9023718.