If this is the case then please try to get away from this relationship. It will be like having someone on your life raft who’s trying to push you in the river. No-one deserves to be abused either as a child or an adult. Men are not usually seen as being on the receiving end of abusive relationships. There are rarely safe refuges provided for them. Society expects men to just, ‘grin and bear it’. But if these things are happening to you then it’s not safe and you’ll find it difficult to recover. Leaving relationships, even ‘bad’ ones, is not easy. Here are some ideas that might help :
- Start from the position that you deserve to have healthy, supportive people around you.
- Get some space between yourself and your partner. Go away for a while. Stay with a friend. Use the time to talk through your problem with a member of your Support Team. Try to come up with a plan that will get you to safety.
- If you’re in danger of being physically harmed, (assaulted or sexually abused again), get out of the situation.
If you don’t live together :
- Get a friend over to stay
- Go and stay with a friend
- Consult the Police, tell them what danger you’re in, ask them what they can do about it.
- Consult a solicitor about your legal rights and how to take out an injunction. This is a complex area as the law is chiefly concerned with the violence of men against women.
If you do live together consider all the above and in addition :
- Consult a solicitor about any legal issues regarding the property.
- If you haven’t got somewhere to stay consider seeking priority re-housing from the local authority. This may seem drastic, but it’s sometimes needed in order to find a way to safety. You need to consult a solicitor and your local Housing Aid centre for more advice.
Remember that you can never rely on the hope that your partner will change if he/she is abusive. They may promise to change, but your safety can only be assured by actions you take yourself. You can take advice and consult with those you trust. Being safe is necessary if you’re to get through the crisis and move towards recovery. Abuse has no place on the life raft for recovery.
If you’re in an abusive relationship, but it just feels impossible to get out then :
- Try not to constantly criticise yourself, or think of yourself as ‘less than a man’, or to blame for what’s happening.
- Stay in touch with members of your Support Team.
- Take whatever steps you feel you can towards building your life raft. Spend more time with trustworthy people. Consider making a plan to get out of the situation. Be gentle with yourself and take good care of yourself physically.
- Every step you can make takes you further towards getting safe, building an effective life raft and towards recovery.
- Remember that you are not to blame for your abuse. As a boy, your abuser was to blame – now it is the person who is assaulting or abusing you. The only difference is that, as an adult you now have more resources and power and you can begin to take steps, however small, towards safety and recovery.