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There Is No Equality in Domestic Violence

June 16, 2009

It seems that men have successfully convinced society and even many women, including women who have been abused by men, and/or women who are looking from the outside of a situation in, that a woman’s possibly annoying non-violent actions are equal to a man’s violent actions.

This past Friday, my friend’s daughter, Asia was beaten up by her husband. Asia and her husband were just married last fall. There are no children involved. Two days after the beat down, I knew Asia was going back to him. Once she left the hospital with her shoulder and arm in a sling and stopped calling her mother, it was only a matter of time. My friend said after the second day, Asia was acting as if it was no big deal, as if nothing ever happened. She could not understand why Asia was acting indifferent. I told her she was acting indifferent because she would be too embarrassed if she did not check her outrage before returning to him. How does it look to rant and rave the whole weekend when you know come Monday you will be retuning to the loser?

Nevertheless, what is troubling is how it has all been explained away:

Asia went back to her husband. He agreed to go to counseling. I told her when I see her I will not go to her apartment. I will meet her somewhere else because I don’t want to see his face. I believe she nagged him and provoked him because he is a quiet guy. They were arguing before they got married. Asia does not know how to turn it off and walk away and cool off. She knows how to push his buttons. She said she would not press charges because it will hurt them in the future when he tries to get a job. It seems to me that she was in the wrong with her big mouth. He was in the wrong for fighting back with his hands.

Domestic abuse is never equal. Just because you know some guy, or heard of some guy, some quiet guy, you know that mysterious guy who does everything right, surrenders his uncashed paycheck to the woman, kisses her ass, sucks her toes, polishes her fingernails, makes dinner every night, does all the housework, never calls her a bitch, cunt, or contaminated, walks the dog, picks up the dog’s poop, washes her car every other day, makes her lunch for work, does not think about ejaculating his nasty toadstool soup into her not a contaminated tureen until he knows for 100% sure that she is completely and totally sexually satisfied, snuggles with her cat, writes poetry specifically for her, doodles his first name with her nee sir name inside little hearts on paper napkins, bakes bread for her mother and churns homemade butter for that bread, and never lays a hand on her, even when she hammers him with her fists for no reason what so ever other than he was standing there not askingly asking for it, does not mean women beat on men at the same rate that men beat on women. No. That one arcane man that is beaten by a woman is not an equal stand in for the millions and millions of women who have been beaten by men and who are being beaten by a man right now as I type this.

No. Stop acting like everything is equal between men and women. It is not. Even if the man and woman were the same height, weight, and possess the same strength and managed to get exactly the same amount of blows in hitting the exact same spot as one another, the two are not equal.

When the police show up, you know, the very profession that disproportionately have wife abusers in their ranks, they will do all they can to believe the woman is guilty of some wrongdoing. They will ask her accusatory questions. Their questions will insinuate that she provoked her abuser. Men no longer have that so-called masculine shame that supposedly prevents them from speaking up when a woman allegedly abuses them. Masculinity be damned. They have chucked that strategy a few years back. Men have learned that it is more beneficial for them to play the victim, even when it is a big fat lie, and most of the time it is just that.

If the police do manage to take the man downtown, instead of the woman, because let’s not pretend that men are automatically hauled off to the pokey when women claim abuse, he will not face the same obstacles had it been her making that same trip. He will not risk rape at the ratio she will. He will not risk having his children taken away from him at the ratio she will. He will not be disbelieved at the rate she will be doubted. And the biggest zinger of all, he will not be raked over the coals for returning to his alleged abuser as she will.

Now that preceding example was based on if the man and woman were the same height, weight, and possess the same strength and managed to get exactly the same amount of blows in hitting the exact same spot as one another. Thus, it is all inconsequential. Because the reality is, her big mouth equals him using his hands.

*I have used a heterosexual male/woman model, because it is what represents the case of my friend’s daughter and her abusive husband.

  1. atheistwoman permalink
    June 16, 2009 12:24 pm

    Yeah the whole bigmouth excuse is fucking bullshit. There is no goddamned equivalence at all. FFS if you’re that angry hit yourself, hit the pillow, don’t hurt someone else.

  2. June 16, 2009 12:41 pm

    But, you know, there are women who would accuse you of denying them their agency. They’d rather look at the situation(s) as being of their own provocation.

  3. June 16, 2009 5:35 pm

    Really, AW. People say nasty shit to me all the time and I don’t haul off and whack them upside the head. My dad didn’t beat on his boss; he came home and terrorized and slapped the shit out of me instead. Men know exactly who they can treat badly without getting into trouble for it.

    And lately I keep hearing this bullshit about how “domestic violence” happens just as much in same-sex relationships!!!!!eleven!!!! I can haz statistics plz k thx????

    • June 16, 2009 6:29 pm

      Yeah I thought about that and at first in my footnote, I had something along the lines “yes, I understand that in women only relationships there can be abuse” and then I was like, you know what, fuck that noise? If there is one, two, three, or how many women battering other women it does not change the fact that men beat the hell out of women. To bring up the few women who beat on women is to attempt a diversion, a false analogy, to plant the seed that women are just as bad as men. And saying so, does not diminish the experience women who have been abused by women experience. It is simply stating a fact. Men beat the hell out of women. And society has managed to make it the woman’s fault, and has made her non-violence actions equivalent to his violence actions. It is really a big ol WTF!

  4. June 16, 2009 6:46 pm

    To bring up the few women who beat on women is to attempt a diversion, a false analogy, to plant the seed that women are just as bad as men.

    Yep. Same thing as what you’re pointing out — talking about how some woman was mouthy or “she hit me first” is just as much a diversion. I dunno about everyone else, but I learned in kindergarten that no matter what someone said to me, it wasn’t okay to hit them. (I was a kicker actually.) And oh yeah, your 130 pound girlfriend slapped your ugly mug and you turn around and give her left hook to the jaw and she needs facial surgery? Yeah, that’s really the same thing you violent self-serving prick.

  5. June 17, 2009 6:03 pm

    Good post. Great actually.

    Note that I *have* seen a lot of woman to woman abuse. Just because people are women and/or lesbians does not mean they are automatically enlightened or have not learned that women are abusable.

  6. redmegaera permalink
    June 20, 2009 12:01 am

    Fantastic post. The fact that the police and armed forces have a disproportionate amount of batterers and rapists within their ranks is a point which cannot be emphasized enough. The fact that perpetrators of domestic violence are almost always men and victims are almost always women and children also needs to be hammered home. Statistical anomalies deserve our compassion but that does not and should not detract from the larger point that this sort of violence is GENDERED.

    Women drink alcohol, take illicit substances, suffer from severe forms of mental illness and intellectual disability, are the victims of domestic violence, incest, state care, poverty, racism, are subject to verbal abuse and provocation (the list goes on)….but they don’t molest or batter or rape….it’s overwhelmingly men who do that. We need to return to the feminist first cause: patriarchy. But too many women today are unwilling to do that. As Margaret said, that would mean denying women’s agency or even (shock horror!) describing them as victims. Thanks for posting this. I’ll be thinking of your friend’s daughter.

  7. June 20, 2009 4:32 pm

    Thanks for the post, particularly the link to cops as batterers. I was asked a while back if I could find a source for the twice-as-likely stat and couldn’t remember where I found it. That link unfortunately does not give all the sources. It is quite difficult to find such stats because it is a huge cover-up.

    But it goes a long long way to explaining why, if any reasonable person walked into a situation like that, that they would be unlikely to believe the abuser, and yet the cops do.

    • June 20, 2009 7:41 pm

      In San Diego, a national model in domestic violence prosecution, the City Attorney typically prosecutes 92% of referred domestic violence cases, but only 42% of cases where the batterer is a cop.

      The above is from the link.

      And in a bizarre twist, recently, out here in California, a female police officer killed her male police officer ex-husband/boyfriend, who she had a restraining order against. His violence led to their divorce/break up.

      Just recently she has been clear of killing her husband, although everything, EVERTHING pointed to self defense. The reasoning behind wanting to charge her was, he was a cop, she was a cop, therefore, they were on equal footing and no way could he had ever been able to beat on her.

      WTF? Honestly.

    • June 21, 2009 5:57 am

      As I always say, menz have absolutely no trouble in recognising that humans (male humans) of different sizes are catagorised by weight (eg for boxing). But in DV, all that goes out the window, and a 6 foot bloke against a 5’2″ female is “equal” because they are both adults. FFS.

      Even if a male and female are both about the same height and weight, it is still usually not equal. Males generally have more muscle mass than females, plus HE will usually have had far more fighting experience. Throw in a size difference, and it’s a joke to say it’s equal.

      Females who kill their abusive partners or ex-partners don’t easily get to use the self-defence defence, because they usually have to out-weapon the abuser, or wait for the opportunity to fight back – both of these things negate using the SD defence. From what I have read, in court most of these females are treated like they are the ones who are abusive. Menz laws, menz courts – women have little chance of coming out with any justice.

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