Shackled

A different look at men’s violence

You know what they say. There’s no reason to ever hit a woman. Shit. There’s a reason to hit everybody. Just don’t do it. Ain’t nobody above an ass whuppin’. ~ Chris Rock

In the MRM we talk a lot more about violent women than violent men.  And that is a good thing since it needs to be talked about and we are the only ones willing to do it. But in our efforts to bring female violence out of the shadows and into the light of day, we have had a tendency to overlook something else that is pretty important. That would be a more thorough examination of men’s violence in the home, sans the feminist spin.

But first the obligatory disclaimer.  See, disclaimers are necessary for MRA’s, especially when telling the truth about domestic violence. We should all keep one or two stashed away with the porn supply for handy use.  This time I’ll put mine in a green box for your viewing pleasure.

Disclaimer: This article deals with the truth. And feminists, you know what the truth is. On your websites and blogs you issue a trigger warning before getting close to it. So, you have been warned. If the truth is a trigger for you, please do not read below this green box. Thank you and vote libertarian.

OK, I have to acknowledge up front that violence in the home by men happens for a lot of reasons. I can’t possibly deal with all of them here so for the sake of brevity I am just going to address two of them.

One, you have the guy who is just fucked up. He comes home drunk and beats his wife because there was some dust on the venetian blinds in the second bedroom that she didn’t get to when she was cleaning.  This character is your fembot stereotype; the “go to” guy for fundraising, passing laws and “educating” the public on the problem of domestic violence. He’s an artifact of evil patriarchy and the extension of socially constructed and oppressive male dominance in the home; the only source of violence in the home that feminists recognize.

And that is as far as I will go into the feminist theory of alleged patriarchal underpinnings in domestic violence. It only loosely applies to a statistically insignificant number of men. Oh, and also, it’s all bullshit (see the green box).

It is much better that I address the circumstances that lead to much of the male initiated violence against women that actually does happen in the home. To understand it we are going to take a look at the progression of the interrelationship between a couple, I’ll call them Harry and Mary, who end up with one version of this experience.  Oh, and if you want stats on this, feel free to pull them out of thin air. Contact your nearest feminist for assistance.

Anyway, where was I? Harry beating up on Mary, which all started in the typical way.

Harry and Mary meet, fall in love and come to live with each other. Both are on their best behavior; mutual respect and consideration abound. They spend their time in a personal little otherworld, getting to know each other, drinking, making love, watching classic movies and laughing at stuff that isn’t even funny, just because they like to laugh together. They don’t know that the real “getting to know each other” part hasn’t started yet, but it doesn’t matter. All is right in the world.

And they are off and running to their first fight. It lasts for a few minutes before he caves and changes the shirt.  He doesn’t like it, but he loves Mary and fighting with her really sucks.
 As time passes though, Mary starts to notice stuff about Harry that she finds a little…annoying. Nothing too big, mind you, but annoying just the same.  He has this weird habit of eating popcorn by tossing it in the air and catching it in his mouth. It was cute at first, but come on, sometimes he misses and the popcorn falls onto the sofa cushion. He puts a lot of butter on it, too. It’ll stain the sofa; not to mention the fact that it isn’t healthy.

He also likes to put like gobs of sugar in his coffee.  No one needs that much sugar. There is something wrong with that for sure.  But that is about it. Other than those couple of relatively minor things she is just mad about him. Well, there is that old Chicago Bears jersey he wears like every other day.  It must be ten years old. She understands he’s a football fan, but come on, does he have to wear that thing everywhere?

Harry doesn’t notice any of this and just keeps on tossing popcorn up in the air and catching it in his mouth, trying not to get any on his jersey. He’s having the time of his life.

Finally one day, Mary decides it is time to help her man out.  She goes out to the department store and comes back with a couple of new shirts.  One of them is a nice cadmium green. It even has a little football embroidered above the shirt pocket. He will love it – and look so much better.

She gives him the shirt and he makes a great fuss over it and puts it on immediately, so lucky to have such a thoughtful girl.  She hangs the other one in his closet and things are right with the world again.  Well, there’s still the popcorn, but that will come with time.

They enjoy a fantastic evening together, nearly break the bed with their third round of lovemaking and fall off to a peaceful sleep in each other’s arms.

The next morning Mary comes out of the bedroom and Harry is there in the kitchen, loading sugar into his coffee mug like a steam shovel.  But Mary doesn’t even notice it this time.  He’s wearing the Bears jersey.

He’s. Wearing. That. Fucking. Jersey.

“Hey,” he says, “Good morning!”

She just stares at him with a trace of bewilderment on her face and says nothing.

“What’s wrong?” he asks.

“Are you really going to wear that?”

And they are off and running to their first fight. It lasts for a few minutes before he caves and changes the shirt.  He doesn’t like it, but he loves Mary and fighting with her really sucks.  What the hell, he thinks, other than that she is a really great girl and he knows relationships mean compromise. Done deal, The Bears will have to take a less active role in his wardrobe. He buries the fact that he has just been coerced into letting her dress him into his unconscious, and things seem to be back on track.

What he doesn’t know is that The Bears jersey is just the first thing on the list.  After that, it was his coffee, and then popcorn and then a growing number of other things which he learns he must change in order for her to be happy. And when he resists she seems to have a bottomless capacity for conflict at which she almost always prevails.

He does not want to lose her, and there is a part of him that is learning that the only way he is going to prevent that is by giving her what she wants.

It goes on like this for three years.  And during that time, almost everything of his former life goes the way of his favorite jersey. His friends drift off, or did he do the drifting? He doesn’t remember. All he knows for sure is that his life has become an unending stream of demands; all of them accompanied by the unspoken message that his compliance is the only form of caring that she recognizes. And when he fails or refuses she questions his love for her, and often his manhood.

Harry finds himself in one bastard of a catch-22. He loves Mary, even though it is starting to feel more like an anchor around his neck than love. He fantasizes about leaving her, but the reality of the idea seems unthinkable. He’s like a lot of men in that way, which may partly explain why they kill themselves at 10 times the rate of women during breakups and divorce.

Harry is a man in that emotional trap. He seems to know it and questions himself. Why does he want to be with someone who so clearly views him like he is broken and needs to be fixed? He gets no answer, though; just the certainty that he wants to stay at almost any cost.

So he does, trying to figure out, like a junkie chasing the dragon, how to get back some of the old magic they shared before she became so petulant and demanding. He foolishly convinces himself on some level that if he can give her enough of what she wants that she will ease off and start enjoying him, loving him, like she used to.

The fights only worsen. He gets more rebellious. She gets more nagging and berating. Things escalate. It culminates one day into a loss of control.  At some point between Mary quietly and coldly telling Harry that he is a selfish little boy that never thinks about her wants and needs in life – and implying that she could do a lot better than him, and maybe she will – he hits her.  He plants an open hand across her face.

Mary runs off to the bedroom and shuts herself in (after screeching the obligatory, you bastard!), and Harry finds himself standing alone, accompanied only by the stunning hush in the room.  His shock at his actions gives way to a sense of remorse and shame that makes him reel.

He looks at his hand and then wipes a tear from his eye.  He starts to go to the bedroom but realizes there is nothing he can say. Harry takes a seat on the sofa and waits silently.

Hours later Mary emerges from the bedroom, eyes red and puffy, and takes a seat on the sofa a good distance from him.

“So,” she asks, “why didn’t you tell me you had an anger problem?”

Harry’s mouth tries to form something of an answer, but he ends up just looking like a fish out of water, pointlessly gasping for something liquid to pass through its gills.

They finally talk some, but it is a somber conversation. Resignation is lingering in the air. Mary finally, if reluctantly, agrees to forgive him. He feels a rush of relief and, still consumed by self loathing, swears he will never do such a thing again. He professes that he will change, become a new man.  But as it turns out, it is actually something else that changes, and changes drastically.  Whatever vestige that once remained of his personal autonomy within the relationship is now obliterated.

Now there is no demand that Mary can place on him that he can argue with; no treatment from her to which he can object. In offending the deepest of his held values, to not strike the woman he loves, he has become a prisoner of his own shame; a criminal seeking rehabilitation; a debtor trying to make restitution on an impossible scale.

Mary is now large and in charge. And by golly, she knows it.

The Bears jersey has just lost an owner. Coffee? Two Splendas, please. No, make that one.  Sure, butter substitute is fine on popcorn. Let me get an extra napkin so I don’t soil the sofa.

And so the cycle begins.  Harry will play step and fetch to his wounded mistress, and will continue to do so, with her reveling in it, till the pressure builds toward another explosion. Every once in a while he will hit her. Sometimes he will just let loose with his tongue. But the result will be the same every time.  He will get the catharsis he needs, at the cost of his shame. And she will get the control she so clearly expects and desires, at the cost of the occasional red mark or a bruise, and any connection she ever had to human decency.

The feminists were right about one thing. Violence in the home is frequently about power and control. Of course, it never took a rocket scientist to figure that one out (which is very good for feminists, indeed). But once you sidestep the dogma and delusion of squeezing everything in life through the simplistic filter of ideology, you find that things like power are not so easy to see, much less define in any credible way.

Clearly, both parties have committed wrongs in this story. And if we want to take the blue pill path and just measure who we imagine to be more wrong than the other, then there was never a need to address this to begin with.  Case closed, man bad, nothing else to discuss; increase VAWA funding now. Harry will likely agree with you if we ever let him out of jail.

But if, perchance, you want run a little deeper, you can help yourself quite a bit by asking the right questions. Take a closer look at Mary and Harry and ask yourself one thing. Who has the power?  If you think it is Harry, then you should have stopped reading at the green box.

About Paul Elam

Paul Elam is the founder and publisher of A Voice for Men, WhiteRibbon.org and the founder of A Voice for Men Radio, the AVfM YouTube Channel, and appears weekly on AVFM Intelligence Report, Going Mental with Dr. Tara Palmatier and weekly on MANstream Media with Warren Farrell and Tom Golden.

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  • http://thedamnedoldeman.com TDOM

    Fairly typical, but you leave out a very important piece of the relationship. Once that first slap has taken place, Mary gains the power and control, but she must continually reinforce it. any time she begins to lose it, she will goad Harry into another slap. She’ll pick a fight and this might even include using violence herself. It may be something she throws at him, hits him with, or perhaps a slap in the face. Maybe its just threats of leaving. whatever it is, it will induce another violent outburst which reinforces her power over him.

    Harry might also have another reaction, one not so violent. he may seek solace in the arms of another woman, someone who will make him feel the way Mary used to. Eventually, she’ll figure it out and use it to shame him into submitting even more.

    At some point one or the other will tire of the relationship and want to leave. Regardless of which one it is, she will pick another fight. This time, once he’s hit her, she will have him arrested. he’ll be hit with a restraining order and she will have access to all of his stuff. whatever she doesn’t want is what he’ll be left with, unless she is so pissed that she just destroys it all.

    All of their mutial friends will support her, as will all of her friends. Since most of his friends have drifted away, he’ll have no support system and will be left to deal with it by himself, wondering what happened and how he turned out to be such an evil monster.

    TDOM

    • Paul Elam

      You’re right, but I really didn’t leave it out as much as I chose to contain the information to the basics. I could have added a dozen more dimensions of the dynamics of this kind of relationship, but already at 2,000 + words and given the limitations of our blue pill readers I deemed the additions better for part II :)

      • http://thedamnedoldeman.com TDOM

        Didn’t realize there was going to be a part II. Hope I didn’t spoil anything.

        TDOM

  • keyster

    That’s the atypical scenerio alright.
    Feminists want to neutralize the man’s physical control (or threat thereof) through govt fiat, but mention nothing about the perpetual VERBAL violence or blatant provocation that leads up to it. A bruise to the skin heals, but bruised egos build up and linger for years.

    I personally countered verbal violence with my own verbal violence, and found they don’t like men they can’t control with it. In other words I’d compromise…TO A POINT. “No sweetie, I’m simply not going to do that for you, until you do this for me in return.” Politics all day at work, then he has to come home to even more!

    The whole time she’ll be shit testing, looking for the right buttons to push, and then she’ll start pushing them in her ascent to power in the relationship. Then once total control is attained she’ll become bored and disrespectful and file for divorce. After she’s finally reduced him to eunuch level status, she’ll need to find another and start all over. Some comply faster than others…depending on how good the sex is.

    Agree with everything, let her say whatever she wants, constant insults and condescending little digs, sometimes in front of others for affect. There’s nothing he can do but take it and she knows it. She has three little numbers at her disposal…nine, one and one.

    If feminists can’t illicit the govt to better control men, how can they expect women to eventually rule the world?

  • BobbyL

    Brilliant! This clarifies why some of the women I was with expressed DISAPPOINTMENT that I never hit them and believe me, they deserved it. By not hitting them I was depriving them of one of their greatest sources of power in the relationship. Goddamn evil trollops!

  • scatmaster

    Have you had a hidden camera in my house for the last 15 years? My life is one big shit test.

  • AntZ

    I think you missed something important. Mary is much more likely to play her dangerous game of chicken today than she was 30 years ago, because she KNOWS that she has tremendous legal power over Harry. She can call the police at any time, even if he never hits her, and accuse him of hitting her. In all 50 states, when Mary does this, Harry will go to jail under the “dominant aggressor” policy. You better believe that the millions of Mary’s of the world know this fact very well.

    If you want a real treat, refuse to hit a “Mary”. I did. It made her insane. She became so violent she wounded her fist on my body. I eventually tape-recorded her threats to falsely accuse me of various crimes, and used that to escape from her. Ultimately, this is why marriage is simply a mistake for all men, under all circumstances, in all Western nations. The courts enforce Mary’s power over Harry.

    • Paul Elam

      Lol! Well, I might have “missed” about a million things. There is enough material on this subject for a dozen books. And if I wrote all 12 of them, surely someone would be there after the fact to tell me what I “missed.” :)

      • http://operation-optout.blogspot.com/ operationoptout

        Brother, you summed this up perfectly. I believe I shared a story about a (EX) girl friend of mine who recently got beat up by her boyfriend. He is now sitting in jail and I have learned that the guy has never been in trouble with the law before, i.e. no criminal history. She took it upon herself to character assassinate him on Facebook for no other reason than to punish him for a simple argument. The argument started when he found out she ran his credit card up $10k to support a meth habit he was in the dark about, we all were. When she attacked him he defended himself, went to jail and it looks like she is gonna get a pussy pass. The personality disorder crowd will say “leaver her guy and go find that special someone who is different”. Bullshit, bitches like this are the norm these days. This guy is fucked for life anyway, she saw too it. Sad.

        • Promoman

          Yep. Not only do the majority of cases where women wind up with kicked asses begin with them passing the first lick they often start the conflict that leads up to the beating in the first place. Women get personal with their button-pushing and they have a tendency to perpetuate and escalate their fuckery. Fucking with money and property are two favorite and big plays in the Bullshit Playbook with them. A similar case happened to a friend of mine about 2 years ago. He barely avoided jail but he was raped financially and is only now recovering.

    • knuckledragger

      Absolutely spot-on. Hell I even once had to call the cops on the psycho I was married to and I STILL almost ended up getting arrested.
      Bottom line: If you’re a man and the cops show up, you’re at the mercy of the machine.

  • http://www.avoiceformen.com Dr. F

    How many Harry’s are out there paired with Mary’s ?
    I’ll bet you a terrific number indeed.

    I posted a reply to a an article by Dr. Tara on her wonderful site “Shrink4men.com .

    Her writeup there was of a different topic, and my response was one of a personal matter.
    If it helps just one man to get out of a “Harry and Mary” relationship then I will have a beer on him.
    (Slightly modified here for relevance)

    —————————————————————————-

    When it comes to bad behaviour I think there are three sources from which it comes.

    1/ The Ignorant.
    2/ The Mentally deficient.
    And
    3/ The Mentally disturbed.

    For the life of me I haven’t been able to think of a fourth one, and while there is simplicity and neatness in the idea of there only being these three sources, it should be noted that there are subsets with number three.

    The mentally disturbed by this measure means all those that primarily fit the description of personality disorders and resulting behaviour associated with them.
    This means the psychotic, depressed, the drug addled, sufferers of severe PTSD, sociopaths, narcissists etc. ( I might include international bankers and traveling side show medics but restraint and good manners hold me in check )

    We all have to deal with difficult people and their thwartive ways from time to time and there is no escaping this. Living in an imperfect world of imperfect people made by imperfect parents will make this always the case. It always has and will always be so.

    My heart goes out to the lousy stories I sometimes read here and I can’t really hold a candle to most of them. I know that I am just one of the mill having been in a buggered set up with a woman but I’ll tell you right off the bat, that there was one thing made it much easier for me to see that glowing exit sign.

    It was holding close to my chest the knowing of the truism of the those three sources.

    All I had to do when faced with extraordinary behaviour from this woman was to ask myself quite simply something like, “Now what number is this ?”

    Time and time again the answer was number three.

    That’s right – It dawned on me that she was a womb to tomb bow-tie spinning, lollipop eyed, quivering ball of nut cake and there was nothing I could do to make anything different. Nothing.

    Sometimes when she got drunk or stoned and she behaved poorly my answer would be that it was a combination of number one and a number three in two ways. Let me explain a bit more.

    If she was acting like a ratbag and I smelled dope on her then it would be number three in two parts.
    One part disturbed by way of “Misappropriated pharmaceutical self administration” and the other part disturbed by way of “Forever Nut”.
    Her unpredictable yelling at me was put down to number one as I believed that her background did not support an environment where she could have learned effective conflict resolution.

    The thing is though and this is the kicker. whether or not she was just ignorant or just in a bad mood, had a lonely childhood or had been ripped off by the hawker down the street she was always the “Forever Nut”. This was the touchstone of her and like all stones they won’t change in your lifetime.

    It took me a month of adamant and cold introspection of the facts before me and a constant referring to this axiom that had me calculate with certainty my sonic speed exit.

    Life could so easily be worse knowing less of matters like this.

    • fainsleep

      “That’s right – It dawned on me that she was a womb to tomb bow-tie spinning, lollipop eyed, quivering ball of nut cake and there was nothing I could do to make anything different. Nothing.”

      Spilled beer laughing at this part. :D

    • scatmaster

      Any reason Dr T’s and The Spearheads links are gone?
      Just asking because I noticed the AVFM link was gone from The Spearhead

      • Paul Elam

        We are developing banners that will run at the top to the significant sites we will be linking to.

    • http://www.shrink4men.com/ Dr. Tara J. Palmatier

      Great comment no matter where you post it, Dr F. Good to see you over on S4M.

    • Quartermain

      Here is a fourth one:

      4. The evil

  • orry

    Harry was sentenced to prison the minute they began cohabitating. When he slapped her he would then be sentenced to solitary confinement for the remainder of the relationship. All women are manipulative little emotional terrorists.

  • Luek

    If a man is not married to a bitch like this then the first time she hits him get the hell out! No “manning up” BS, just get out.
    If she is living in you home don’t ever let her establish a residency by paying some of the utilities or part of the rent. The court will say she is a tenant and not a guest who you can make leave anytime. No woman is worth getting in serious legal trouble over. There is too many out there to put up with misandric horseshit from the state. Always have an escape plan before you move in with a woman. You take out accident insurance to protect yourself from a car wreak you hope never happens so why not guard you future interests if the relationship breaks bad?

    Just remember what Oprah says,”If he hit you once he will hit you again.” Just sub he with she in the above.

  • http://manamongoaks.com/index.html Ray

    It’s summertime. All the western hemisphere snowbirds are out sunning themselves, painting their houses, playing sports, etc. Consequently, Internet surfing is down. I’ve seen this pattern on the Internet every summer. I predict activity on AVfM will increase as we go into the fall and winter. :-)

  • http://manamongoaks.com/index.html Ray

    Have you ever been hit by her while sleeping?

    • Gruelien

      No just woken up in the middle of the night to start a fight. And don’t forget gaslighting OMG

  • Anti Idiocy

    As you said, Paul, you skipped a lot to give two types of examples. Another important one that occurred to me is when she’s got him cornered and repeatedly slaps him, and he finally clocks her in self-defense.

    • Gruelien

      Don’t forget when she starts to destroy his stuff and he can’t do anything about it.

  • mongo

    Something I read years ago that never really made any sense to me gets an answer. It was an account of someone in England interviewing “battered women”, who asked one particular woman what she enjoyed about the relationship so much that she was prepared to keep going back to such abuse – what one thing did she value above everything else? Her answer: “that split second between when he loses control of himself and when the fist lands in my face”.

    Now I finally understand it. She knew he was trying his hardest to restrain himself, and getting him to turn violent was her way of controlling him, of annihilating his will and destroying him from the inside. She was prepared to take a beating, so giddily exhilarating was it to her to do this.

    • Alphabeta Supe

      This is a stunning revelation – all the more as it came from a woman’s own mouth. It is the essence of all that is evil in women: the dragon itself – Satan’s hellhound. No wonder the man who slays the dragon is a woman’s knight in shining armour. He saves her from burning in the fiery maw of narcissism.

    • Ted

      It doesn’t sound sane – and it isn’t – but consider the possibility that women are instinctively driven to partner with someone who is capable of effective violence, in the right circumstances. On an instinctive level, she needs the protection for herself and her children. That “someone” is a man – we are built for it, physically, mentally, and hormonally. The woman needs to be reassured periodically that she has this protection, which the woman in mongo’s example gets in that split second. Except that she’s a bit pathological about it.

      • Luek

        Sorry Ted I have to take exception with the protector role.
        It is stereotyping men in the roles that society decides they should play. We have to start thinking outside the traditional male role box.

        BTW: A German Shepard would do just as good in protecting her.

      • Ted

        @Luek
        “We have to start thinking outside the traditional male role box.”

        Agree with that. The problem is, *if* it’s an instinctive drive of hers, it will pop up again in some fashion. Any new role would have to be designed to cope with that.

  • Robert Full Of Rage

    “The List” is a result of women believing they are superior to men. Women believe they are perfect in every way. I find it extremely insulting that women think they have the right to change men. More women need to be called out for their flaws instead of being put on the holy vagina pedestal. There are women on this planet that get into relationships with men because they “enjoy the challenge of fixing a man.” This type of mindset makes me want to vomit.

    WARNING TO ALL MEN:

    Women are on their best behavior when they meet men, and turn into intolerable nightmares when they feel they have wrapped men around their fingers. If a woman does any of the following, run:

    1. Uses sex as a weapon.

    2. Tries to change you in any way.

    3. Tries to manipulate you with her emotions.

    4. Treats you as an afterthought, but demands you put her first.

    5. Starts issuing ultimatums.

    There are many more, but you get the idea. Don’t be how I used to be and buy into the “put your woman first” garbage. If you do, then you will have to live with a lot of hurtful memories and walk around with scars that will never heal.

    Don’t. Be. Like. Me.

    • Atlas Reloaded

      I have always seen the mindset women have of wanting to, and thinking they have the right to “change a man” as a form of violence. I have overheard women say of their fiancees “Oh…he’ll stop that shit when we’re married..he fuckin better..”

    • Zarathos022

      Warning accepted, Mr. Rage. Thanks for helping me dodge a nasty bullet.

    • http://www.avoiceformen.com Dr. F

      Robert F.O.R.

      Have you thought about your own blog ?
      I find your comments to be consistently insightful.

      • Robert Full Of Rage

        Dr. F

        I am glad you enjoy my comments, but I have no idea how to start my own blog. My technological knowledge is limited to leaving comments on this website.

  • http://www.cyclotronmajesty.net CyclotronMajesty

    Paul, your a dam fine writer… I almost feel like sending this to my mother. And that is saying allot. (Maybe too much?) 

    Anyway this very aptly illustrates my power of weakness concept…

    • Bewildered

      Man’s weakness is his facade of strength woman’s strength is her facade of weakness !
      -WARREN FARELL

      There are enough manginas around to be taken in by her BS and make her even stronger !

  • Me

    Nice post Robert. One thing you HAVE to do as a man is one test. No matter how sweet, perfect or whatever you think a woman is you have to see what she’s like in a situation when she doesn’t get what she really wants. That’s when you know what a woman is really like.

    As far as what Paul wrote, it was great at showing the real power struggles and things that women really do under the guise of being “innocent”. However, there is one important point both men and women need to learn in situations like this. They have to learn to have enough self esteem and courage to walk away. When someone is continually manipulative, emotionally abusive or physically abusive you can’t tolerate it. It’s hard but if you stay and take continual abuse, you’re part of the problem.

  • Ben

    That was profound! I am sending a copy of this to the Dean of Social Sciences at Mississippi State! Weapons grade stuff, Paul!

  • phatPhuk

    Nice work Paul. This article is reflective of the lives of so many men.

  • Gruelien

    We don’t talk about guys hitting grrls on Dr T’s site. Mostly we talk about being berated into oblivion. My ex raged to the point I was on the couch in a fetal position more then once. I would not hit her I did not want to go to jail. It took me years to get out. But as Paul related he kept it simple. My ex knew she could push me as far as she wanted and did.

    • http://www.shrink4men.com/ Dr. Tara J. Palmatier

      Hi Gru,

      There are instances where it’s discussed on Shrink4Men, but it comes up infrequently. Perhaps it’s naivety, but I believe it’s because violence against women in the west has been on the decline for the last 30 years. Not saying violence against women doesn’t still happen, but not at the epidemic rate women’s DV organizations would like everyone to believe.

      Several peer reviewed studies show that while violence against women has been on the the decline at a steady rate since the 1970s; domestic violence against men has been on the rise (Straus, 1995; Hampton, et al., 1989; Mallory, et al., 2003).

      I’ve worked with versions of Harry, although only a handful of the men I’ve worked with have actually hit or pushed their partners. For those who have, the slap or push was their much needed wake-up call.

      These men aren’t batterers like the neanderthal Paul describes in his first example. They’re men who have systematically been broken down into bits by their beloved partners until the only thing they have left is anger and shame.

      They know hitting their partner is wrong and getting to that point is a game changer for them. They don’t want to be “that guy.” They are not “that guy.”

      For the small percentage of men I’ve worked with who actually hit or pushed their partners, sinking to that point was like having an icy cold bucket of water thrown on them while in the midst of a deep sleep. For another percentage of my cases, just the overwhelming urge to push or hit their partners served as that blast of cold water in the face.

      Let me repeat, these are not violent men. They’re actually very gentle men who have been pushed to the brink of desperation by the very covert, controlling, abusive and shaming behaviors that Paul describes above. Also, the majority of the men I work with have never nor would they ever hit a woman.

      When a man reaches the point of hitting or the point of wanting to hit his partner, he basically has 2 choices:

      1. Go back to sleep and either end up in jail or pray for an early death.
      2. Wake the eff up and stay up.

      If he chooses # 2, he then gets 3 more options:

      a. Exit the relationship stage right, get some help and choose a partner who wants an equal and not a chihuahua they can dress up and boss around next time. (It may take some personal work to be able to sort the grain from the chaff).
      b. Stay in the relationship and stop being a doormat, which very well may cause his partner to exit the relationship stage right.
      c. Acknowledge the reality of your partner and make your peace with being a doormat.

      What Harry may not understand is that if Mary leaves him because he doesn’t want to be her obedient Ken doll, HE IS BETTER OFF WITHOUT HER. This kind of woman doesn’t want an equal partner and isn’t capable of equal partnership.

      This goes for all the other Harry’s out there.

      [*As an aside, if you're a woman reading this and you think that Mary's behavior is healthy relationship behavior, well, don't be surprised if you discover that your husband is Googling terms like "controlling abusive wife" or something a little more colorful.]

      References:
      Hampton, R. L., Gelles, R. J., & Harrop, J. W. (1989). Is violence in families increasing? A comparison of 1975 and 1985 National Survey rates. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 51, 969-980.

      Mallory, K. A., McCloskey, K. A., Griggsby, N., & Gardner, D. (2003). Women’s use of violence within intimate relationships. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, Vol. 6 No. 2, pp. 37-59.

      Straus, M. A. (1995). Trends in cultural norms and rates of partner violence: An update to 1992. In S. M. Stich & M. A. Straus (Eds.) Understanding partner violence: Prevalence, causes, consequences, and solutions (pp. 30-33). Minneapolis, MN: National Council on Family Relations.

  • http://www.manwomanmyth.com Perseus

    Paul, this is a masterpiece. This is the elephant, and the 800 lb gorilla and the T-rex all in the middle of the room that NO ONE IS GIVING A FUCK ABOUT AND LYING TO COVER UP.

    FEMALE EMOTIONAL MANIPULATION OF MEN IS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE BY THEIR VERY DEFINITION. AND AS SUCH IT IS BY FAR THE MOST OVERWHELMINGLY PERVASIVE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE.

    How do we tolerate the filth?

    Btw, feminism itself can be seen as an extension and collective manifestation of this female control and manipulation tact.

    Shame on me? Fuck you and your ‘shame’. Shame on you.

  • Rocco

    Three things to add,

    One is that I think that women are getting men to slap them on purpose to gain the kind of advantage you describe Paul.

    The second is that if slapping or minor scuffles were dangerous all Brazillian females should be in prison.

    Thirdly, don’t forget that these laws are relatively new. I am concerned about the fallout to children.

    What happens when little Johnny realizes he can but dear old dad, that one wanting him to do chores, that won’t let him have that x box and that won’t let him smoke pot or sleep with his girl friend at home…in prison by just saying….he hit me…I’m scared?

    It’s your word against a “child” “victim”….go directly to jail.

  • The Orange One

    That self-made bitch of a husband made the biggest mistake of them all, marrying her…. Without even knowing her….

    It’s articles like these that show just how far our entire social structure has degraded. It’s like telling a story after the prologue of a hyperactive 13 year old boy choosing to drive on the freeway, for the first time ever, without a driver’s license. LOL WHAT THE FUCK DO EXPECT WILL HAPPEN FOOL??!!!

    This story is as much his failure as it is hers. They both based their knowledge of what “should” happen in society and in marriage, without reviewing the facts first in statistics and research, or even reviewing the fucking person their putting in a position of power over each other for the rest of their damn lives. And she used that same “should happen” knowledge to gain the upper legal hand of holding him responsible for everything. But the true failure is him letting her do that in the damn first place…..

    Some part of me feels that he deserves what he doesn’t deserve in unfair punishment, simple because he, in the end, really is the person responsible for letting it all happen when putting that cursed ring on her finger, regardless of how indoctrinating an environment he were raised in. Guys like him simply failed themselves so hard that they’re now going to be raped up the ass for the next 20 years, literally, legally, financially, and socially.

    But of course, that’s just cold-blooded. Hopefully guys that fit his description will find solace here (MRA sites) and else where, like with friends and family, and maybe even God. Hell maybe even the Marys’ could be taught a lesson in humility, respect, and love so that the cycle doesn’t continue with the next victim of a husband (and their children). Now the children are the true victims here. They had no hand of responsibility in the situation they are in thanks to their parents.

    • faroefaxi

      it makes my blood boil with rage, that you came with such a statement. so you mean ooo well to bad it was his folt that the women started hitting him and it is his responsibility for getting into this mess. this has pussy pass written all over it. no the only way we can get this to stop is by punishing this women hard just like men are today. and I promise this (dv/da can’t remmber with one it is right now) will drop like a stone in water over night

  • conservativation

    This is amazing. There can never be enough versions of this written. The template is this as stated….indeed….The idea that some guy just beats is true….but irrelevant in the big picture.

    (the ideas that shoot off this too are that “verbal abuse is worse than physical” and blah blah, as if someone being physically violent is utterly silent while doing it, and ask the women w/ the broken collar bone would she trade w/ the one who was insulted a lot)

    I have a license to say this, watching a mother beaten bloody and broken bones and horrible horrible abuse, while cowering in a bunk bed at 11 years old, and now at 48, I can see that sure there is no way to excuse that drunken brutality that that man (step dad one of many for me) exhibited, I hated him and when he died in a terrible motorcycle crash decades later i went to his family to say I felt less than zero grief at that monsters death….BUT BUT BUT…..the dynamic here was still there. My mother did all these things, add alcoholism in them both and mix, you get a melange of blood and bone shard. Never the less, the mans behavior can vary be wild degrees, a slap to a punctured lung. But one thing that I cannot say is always there, I am guessing though its the vast vast majority, is a controlling either overt or passive aggressive woman.

    There were a couple of lines that stuck out, one about how he never wins any disagreement (bring on the “don’t argue to win if you wanna be happy crap) and the others about him losing self by degrees, until, he is gone, and he is a mere reflection of a made thing, manufactured in pieces to her specifications, and on occasion straining against the mold used.

    There are marriages where this dynamic doesn’t exist…..really? yea, really, I even know one or two…but man alive they are rare. This part of the female nature is toxic beyond measure, its an add on to the nesting urge, where women change and redo their environments incessantly, paint, new furniture, rungs whatever…..well, gotta redo the dude too right, after all he is just part of the environment.

    When women had to rely on men (well they still do but its a nebulous high level view thing that they are clueless about where men allow this crap by affording them the leeway) “back in the day” there was real gratitude for men because men GIVE naturally, and want women to be happy, we really really do.

    When the giving became literally giving up self….because a state would step in and handle the rest if need be, the STILL gave.

    Look where that gets us

  • Whitney

    The closest I ever came to hitting a woman was when she said “I’ll take your daughter away somewhere you’ll never see her again. Mother’s Allowance (Canadian for Baby Momma welfare) will give me more money than you could EVER earn!”

    An interesting thesis to look up is one by my Sociology professor at UWO. His take was that people who are murdered likely played a part in their own demise. People who are murdered tend to have irritating and/or provocative personalities. This ranges from DV to suicide by Cop.

    I wonder what (dead person) could have said or done to have the perp shoot them in the face 15 times, reload and fire another 15 shots into their face?

    I wonder???

    [Edit] Sorry, the link is broken. Can anyone find a copy of this: [/Edit]

    http://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=2&sqi=2&ved=0CBwQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.lawcom.gov.uk%2Fdocs%2Fcp173.pdf&ei=xQcgTa6XGsWAlAe78v3dDA&usg=AFQjCNFeAtAyDlRHVf-upbIYwrMwl5HxHw

    Associate Professor Dale E Ives, University of Western Ontario, Canada ….. there had to have been provocative conduct by the deceased

    I think this is the study. I cannot be 100% sure as it has been many years since my University tour.

    One of his studies(as I remember) involve a man many years married whose wife was knowingly unfaithful. He stayed in the marriage for some time due to his devotion to his daughter. One day he came home, hugged/kissed his daughter to be met with his vehement wife who hissed “Why do you even bother, she’s not your daughter anyway” (or something like that). The next thing he remembered was being in a police car and his wife was dead by his hand.

    I do not agree that she should have died by his hand, but the paternity of his daughter (whom he lived for) should have been phoned in … really! You can be dead and right or you can be alive and right … which do you think you should be?

  • Holdstheheel

    Amazing

  • knuckledragger

    Really a phenomenal article, it’s like you were looking over my shoulder for 17 of the last 20 years. Just like this guy, I was going around thinking I had “an anger problem” and was getting bullied into counseling and believing I “owed” something to a high-heeled tyrant.
    In retrospect, I can see I never had an “anger problem”, I had a “parasite problem”.

  • Alfred E

    Damn Paul, this is brilliant. Men all too often get stripped of their old selves like an ice cube slowly melting. You never see it happening but after time you can tell what happened.

    This is why the most important thing for men to learn is to say what they want and not back down. This is the only way a relationship will ever work. Sadly, we men have been taught and socialized to think that the woman is correct in issues relating to relationships. We need to start taking charge more often and saying exactly what WE want and then hold her to the fire.

    It can be done though it takes some balls.

  • http://bcdads.com bcdad666

    I spent years sublimating myself to a control escalator, trying harder and harder to do whatever I could to make her happy – a pointless exercise, I knew from the start, but I wanted to be there for my kids. I never did resort to hitting her, but I can sure as hell understand why some do.

  • TheGreatJman

    Paul,

    Well written and though provoking article. You’ve created a plausible scenario that shows the degradation and breakdown of a relationship over time.

    I have seen firsthand friends who became shells of their former selves due to years of verbal abuse and bickering unhealthy marriages. Girlfriends who used to be sweet and caring became tyrannical money hungry, petty vindictive prison guards at the home. I see friends suffering through domestic violence because the sex is good and they think they can change their relationship for the better. Even with my own parents, I see a relationship dynamic that has become a power struggle between constant nagging and bitching to control the daily actions of my father (and yes I love my mother). I see a once respectful relationship has started to become more about one party pleasing the other. Even now, I see women who self confessed master plan is to ‘find a man to take care of them, then make babies so they don’t have to work”.

    What’s the point? It seems to me I can only count on one hand people I know who are actually in a ‘happy’ relationship.

  • JinnBottle

    My god, Paul. (How can I say this without sounding fawning?…Oh fuck it:) *This * should be in “Best American Essays of 2011″. Or better, “Most Necessary Essays of 2011″. Since 1971 (the year I was married to my first wife) I’ve felt that the most enormous handicap to married men to self-realization – to holding their own vis a vis their wives – to even a modicum of self-respect in the feminist West – is *the fact that they are not *perfect* in the eyes of women – hence in the eyes of Society. Hell, I could go on about it all being based on the ever-moving target of Women’s Approval (and now, the ever-moving womb – aka feminist hysteria); about how it’s an open question if women are even conscious of what *they’re* doing…

    Etcetera, etcetera. But I’m not in The Zone right now. *You* on the other hand, seem to live there. This is the best – the only – articulation on this “subject that dare not speak its name” I have read.

  • Xnomolos

    Something personally Ive learned from reading Ayn Rands work was that in situations like this, the only tool Marry has and has ever had…was guilt. its powerful it is. An aspect of it is the power to make one think sacrifice for another is righteous.
    I started seeing this a lot during my senior year of high-school. Many of friends would tell me that their girlfriend broke up with them. When i asked they always said “she kept asking me to change for her for every little thing”.

    I hope to see Part 2.

  • Auntie Pheminizm

    The Orange One wrote:

    “That self-made bitch of a husband made the biggest mistake of them all, marrying her…. Without even knowing her….”

    True. But then who showed him “the way”?

    Women had 5 decades of help (government programs, feminist books, pro-female laws, affirmative action, VAWA, etc.). So the wife had tons of cultural reinforcements that told her (1) she was special and protected and empowered; and (2) her husband belonged to an inferior group she could ream guiltlessly and with impunity at any time.

    > “Some part of me feels that he…really is the person responsible for letting it all happen…”

    Really? That sounds both shaming and feminist.

    She had 99% of the power/options. He had, at best, 1% (especially in terms of knowing the score). There was no MRM on Harry’s radar because, for 5 decades, men’s rights groups were “led” by ball-less wonders.

    > “Guys like him simply failed themselves so hard…”

    Why, though? Who was there to guide and help him?

    It’s like blaming him for not winning a firefight where he has a pea-shooter and the enemy 100 nukes.

    > “…the children are the true victims here.”

    I bet Harry was one of those child victims…a boy raised by a man-hating, privileged, single mother in feminist times. I imagine that made seem Mary quite familiar and attractive to him, too, when he grew up.

  • Auntie Pheminizm

    Oops. I get, belatedly, that Orange was referring (I think) to the guy who killed his wife.

    Still, I think my questions pertain. Who was there for the husband? Were DNA tests available to check his paternity? Did he have equal access to the social-medical-etc. services his wife did?

    Men do NOT have “all the power.” In fact, most have little or no power. Instead, most have burdens and obligations. Plus they are carefully taught that their dreams, feelings, hopes, and love don’t matter. They are treated like beasts-of-burden, no sensitive and sentient human beings.

    Now, imagine a Family Court judge telling a 30-something MOTHER she can only see her daughter every other weekend, but must pay support for 23 years working a job she hates. Imagine further that no one gives a shit if her heart is broken or that she feels like killing herself. The judge, after all, feels no guilt because women, er, “hold all the cards.”

  • erzengle

    Hi, loved the article; it describes so many relationships I have had to duck out of over the years. Now, I have an infallible test recommended by a friend of mine who maintains that you only find out what a woman is really like after you say “no” to her. Manipulative and controlling women would rather you hit them than stop them dead with a simple “no.” It is the proverbial red rag. If she starts to simmer, get the hell out of there and do not look back or in a weeks time, perhaps less, she will have reorganised all your belongings so that only she knows where everything is, which is always the first step in their infantilization program. “Where are my socks, honey?” Sound familiar?

  • samdman

    Hello, I am new. I am on DV probation and am required to take 44 two houre classes in a domestic violence offeder treatment program because I reported my ex ubpdgf for drinking on the job violating an oop she had against me. The whole thing is a huge ass pain and every monday I want to shoot myself in the face, not literaly, because the class is total bullshit. I was the AVfM for some clarity as to the real reason these classes are for. The classes are facilitated by a DV shelter organization and others are facilitated by counciling campanies that are not DV and do court stuff like drug and DUI people. I have been poking around here for the last year or so and love it so much. All you guys totaly rock and if I had some posters I would put them up in the mens room at dv class. Thank You

  • samdman

    I found the posters. You people are smart.

  • MGTOW-man

    Mr. Elam. Bravo!

    I have wanted to write something similar for ages. I have thought about this subject for a long time. You have successfully put into words what I only wished I could, and you did it with clarity and truth.

    You are so right about how (those) women can’t begin to see themselves and how they ARE abusive to people they are supposed to be loving. Many women’s intention (whether they know it or not) is to mother men, to punish and control them, because their happiness is overly-tied up with how they feel. And they feel better when things go their way all the time—about most everything, even mundane things such as popcorn, jerseys…and may I add, haircuts, housecleaning chores, in laws, and just about everything she and he are to experience together. (she either gets her way, or else you are immature, mean, and “hate” her!—you, the man, needs “fixing”.)

    Women already control most all of the money, make all the decisions about home decor, which car to buy, how to raise kids, which neighborhood they will live in, which investments to make, to let unborn babies live or not, and so on. However, such is not enough for them: they must mother their way around in life intimidating all who oppose. They go their entire lives completely oblivious to themselves and how they bring so much grief onto themselves. Hence, the coined term “emotional terrorists”. They can sometimes go their entire lives not even knowing they are like this!!!

    Having said that, let me say that “Harry” was wrong for hitting her. But sometimes men are driven to do things that if the irritant would stop, might just go away. Men aren’t perfect. Men, repeatedly in the face of such pushiness as what Mary dealt out, sometimes snap. How can anyone JUST blame the men and never take a good scrutinizing look at the women behind the men? It is senseless!

    But what gets me is that when women like “Mary” hit the men in their lives, all because she is not getting her way, or had to endure hearing something she didn’t want to hear or have the maturity to hear, they think the men “deserved it.” Can’t women like Mary and others see that it is not kosher for her to hit men if indeed she believes it is wrong for men to hit women?

    Feminist/women want to lead. What happened to lead by example? All these type of women need to do is walk away, cool down and leave their partner if need be. But HITTING, (except in cases of actual, true self defense…which necessarily has to work both ways regardless of strengths, gender, or whatever), is wrong.

    In order for equality to prevail, women must be included in the same rules they expect out of men and must show the same maturity, the same self-control, the same lack of impulsiveness, and the same capacity to check their privileges.

    The truth you shed light upon is exactly why the feminists have trouble with this site. They hate the truth. They hate true fairness. They despise anything that hints about women have EQUAL sacrifices, duties, roles, responsibilities, and accountability. That is not their idea of “equality.”

    They will get away with this as long as men let them. …and it looks like average men will continue competing for women so much in fact that it is likened unto customer/prostitution similarities.

    When I say, and I often do on this site, that (those) women are “selfish” and “want their way all the time”…even without themselves realizing it, the article you wrote here is a perfect example to explain what I am talking about. Thank you for saying it much better than I ever could.

    It is because, in my life, I have multiple experiences with women like Mary, (although I hit only when I was hit first, and even then, I mostly just “took it like a man”—which those words now make me sick to my stomach) that I have had to make those women move on…to some other sucker who will put up with her/their tactics, antics, and abuses.

    I do not need another mother. I will not obey women like Mary. I will not tolerate control freaks trying to “tame” me. I am not a bad man. I do not need fixing or changing. I am a good one, but I am no fool! Too, that is what women like Mary and feminists in general are afraid of.

    You didn’t touch on this, but let me ask, why, if the feminists REALLY have the best interests of women in mind, their safety, etc, why then do they not teach women to refrain from hitting men in times of heated debate and strife? Teaching women this important safety measure wouldn’t stop all DV but it would be a great start towards reducing it because, surely many men would NEVER hit a woman for any reason until the men themselves get hit, in which their natural, animal, defense mechanism kicks in (and rightly so) in order to defend themselves.

    Feminists are telling on themselves here!

    Humans are the only species that have different rules for hitting relative to male-female. Try that on any other animal. Other animals, regardless of who is the aggressor, will respond defensively in kind if the other, (regardless of gender) attacks, assaults or “abuses” them. For example a male will not let a female rough him up without him letting her know she will not get away with it.

    So… we humans are trying to be civilized? Great! But do women not have to prove their civility; is that only reserved for men? Why/how is it that this concept completely escapes feminists and indeed many women in general? If equality is a “concept for the mature” where are the women when this concept is spoken?

    Thus, the feminist movement, if need be, can be summed up in this one sentence: Feminism is punishment and control of men so that women can be superior and have their way all the time.

    Women have always wanted to control everything and feminism has lent itself as a vehicle in which they can now accomplish it.

    Thank you for pointing that out. At least that is what I derived from your insightful writing. I look forward to more from you. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • Bewildered

    ” His shock at his actions gives way to a sense of remorse and shame that makes him reel.

    He looks at his hand and then wipes a tear from his eye. He starts to go to the bedroom but realizes there is nothing he can say ”

    I bet in a large number of cases that’s the way it is,but this dramatic narrative of woman-good, man-bad successfully erases this truth from the public’s consciousness. You are right, these psychos expect to be hit,because that would be the beginning of a rapid ‘power transfer process’,assuming that you are a decent chap you just can’t avoid being emotionally blackmailed into surrendering your autonomy altogether and end up as a lonely emotional wreck.

  • https://www.facebook.com/resumesdownunder Jacleen HereNow Allen

    You say you want gender-free discussion and yet you publish an article that clearly makes the woman the provoker of violence. I could take every “she and her” and insert “he and him”. Come on, you know it goes both ways. Get real here.