To end August, we've decided to do a three part series on: How Society's View of Masculinity Is Harmful to Male Victims: Explaining how our view of male masculinity is not only physically and emotionally harmful to boys and men, especially in the US, but has a great affect on male victims; sexuality, victims of rape, and domestic abuse.
What Happens when the Victim is Male? Does the statement "To Be A Man" change when the victim of abuse is male? Males are often the recipient of society's "be more aggressive" and violent stereotype; often told to repress their feelings because showing emotions makes you weak or worse, feminine and female. With that kind of rhetoric, men grow up withdrawn and show more of a tougher exterior. Violence makes you a man, being in control makes you a man. Not only is that harmful to males no matter their race, sexuality, or upbringing but it is extremely detrimental to male victims of rape and domestic violence who feel discouraged to report or even admit being a victim because they fear their masculinity will be questioned. In 2006-07 men made up 43.4% of all those who had suffered partner abuse in the previous year, which rose to 45.5% in 2007-08 but fell to 37.7% in 2008-09 it was reported that males make up more than 40% of domestic violence victim (victims of intimate partner violence). But because society portrays the female victim/male perpetrator view, males are often left out of the conversations. The fear of being labeled feminine and inadequate leads to the lack of reports and spaces that are often closed to male victims. But why? It's probably because we've all been taught: A Man Must Be The Controller, Not The Controlled.
We will highlight an organization that has made it's mission in helping male victims of sexual assault, introduce you to a documentary that explains how statements like, "suck it up and be a man" are detrimental to the growth of a man as well as, how one hashtag is changing how we view male victims of domestic violence.