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If recent reports on gender based violence are anything to go by, Kenyan men are now bearing the brunt of domestic violence just as women have for centuries. But it’s not news. As I was going through the domestic violence laws, I realized men have always been abused. They either did not know it or were too egocentric to speak about it.

While the whole world would run to rescue an abused woman, men have always been on their own. Can we blame our societal norms for painting a superman view of our men? That they cannot be abused, beaten or tortured by women? Well we cannot use that scapegoat anymore; any form of domestic violence is punishable by law. And ignorance will not hold up in court.

According to the Protection against Domestic Violence Bill signed into law this year, abuse includes damage to property, verbal, physical, psychological abuse, intimidation and harassment. Turns out men may appear strong physically, but emotionally they are just as vulnerable as women.

In this article I outline 5 ways you may be abusing your man without even knowing it;

You are verbally abusive

You are a bank of insults. The very sight of him makes your stomach churn. You are not afraid to tear him down, belittle and humiliate him in front of his friends and family. You even extend the insults online. Trolling him on social media letting the whole world know how little you think of him.

Careful with the verbal outrages there, you will be liable to prosecution if he files charges.

You are over-possessive

You are the jealous type. Too possessive and paranoid about him being unfaithful. You stalk him, physically and on social media. You try to control where he goes and who he sees. Some even hire private investigators to follow their spouses around. Some of this stuff is illegal.

Make false allegations

You have devoted your life to make him look bad. You tell lies to his family, friends, colleagues or police to get him into trouble. You use black mail and other manipulative ways to get him to do what you want.

You damage property

Setting his car on fire may make good laughs on social media, but it will land you in jail. Also, deliberately defaulting on joint financial obligations such as loans and other expenses is listed as economic abuse under the domestic violence bill.

Use the kids as leverage

You are always threatening to disappear with the kids. When you make good your threat, you deny him visitation rights and any sort of communication with his children. If he goes the legal way with evidence, you will be in big trouble.

So what is your answer now? Are you guilty of any of the above five?  Most of us are. How about we learn and change how we communicate with our men. Who knows, they may just turn to be the ‘Mr Right’ we all dream of or better yet stop the cycle of violence. We do not want to solve things in court now do we?

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