Recently, in England, a newlywed was murdered in a brutal domestic violence dispute by their spouse.

They were stabbed through the heart because they had lost their job.

Apparently, the victim had suffered tremendous abuse at the hands of their partner prior to the wedding.

The pair, apparently, according to several news sites and testimony from witnesses, had a “turbulent” relationship. The abuser was “domineering, possessive and very jealous”. The victim was “besotted” with their partner, despite the fact that they could be easily “knocked out with one punch” (Daily Mail, 2016).

It sounds like any typical domestic violence case, right?

Except, in all the newspapers I read – which was at least four – I couldn’t find any reporter who referred to this as a domestic violence case.

Not a single paper.

Why?

Probably because the abuser in question was a woman.

woman beat her husband. A woman ridiculed him and belittled him. It’s a textbook case of domestic violence – friends, family and work colleagues described, during the trial, how the victim, David Edwards, was frequently covered in bruises and scratches. The jurors heard of her extreme violence – and they were told, in one instance, how she “picked up a glass coffee table and hit him over the head with it” (Daily Mail, 2016).

David Edwards never fought back. He never tried to physically restrain her. Whether it was love and fear that caused this reaction from him (as is the case of so many domestic violence victims) or his own principles, he never raised a hand against her.

I can understand why a man wouldn’t hit a woman.

He may be afraid that, even though she’s the abuser, and he’s simply “fighting back”, he’ll be arrested (and that actually is a reasonable fear).

He may, like most domestic violence victims, be so psychologically scarred that he feels he can’t fight back.

He may be afraid of hitting a woman. It’s so commonly drummed into men that violence against women is unacceptable that he can’t raise his hands against her, even to protect himself.

Or it may be because he’s afraid that no one will believe him. Because society tells us that women are “weak” and men are “strong”. Because society tells us that men can’t be abused – despite the evidence to the contrary.

Unfortunately, this is often true. 

Men may be responsible for more violent crimes than women.

Women may be victims of domestic violence more than men.

Regardless, it does not matter. This man was a victim in a domestic violence relationship.

Men can be abused.

Men can be abused by women.

Men are sometimes the victim.

And they need to be recognised as such. Instead of dodging the words we don’t want to use, we need to say it. We need to make it clear.

This was and is a domestic violence case.

A man who had never hurt his wife was murdered by a woman who used violence, not for the first time, against him.

And it should be reported as such – and treated as such: a man died because his abuser killed him.

If we want to make a difference, if we truly care about equality, we need to speak for the men who are being silenced.

We need to change the stigma surrounding male domestic violence victims.

Because it shouldn’t only be referred to as “domestic violence” when a woman’s the victim.

Originally published on The Melodramatic Confessions of Carla Louise.

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Article Links

No mention of the words ‘abuse’ or ‘domestic violence’:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/sharon-edwards-newly-wed-bride-killed-her-lawyer-husband-after-he-lost-his-job-court-hears-a6889591.html

Domestic violence mentioned once:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3458529/Jealous-newlywed-accused-murder-quite-liked-idea-solicitor-s-wife-stabbed-husband-kitchen-knife-redundant.html

No mention of the words domestic violence or abuse:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3475123/Newlywed-stabbed-husband-death-redundant-claims-loving-protective-wife.html

And again, no mention of domestic violence or abuse:

http://www.news.com.au/world/europe/bride-heard-telling-husband-im-gonna-fking-kill-ya-before-he-was-found-stabbed-in-heart-court-told/news-story/1abf4019d2e26a6589efa629c6968376

Articles also includes multiple testimonies from several people who heard her threatening, belittling and abusing her husband, as well as accounts of him being physically abused.

Published by Carla Louise