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Can men be victims of mental abuse?

Men can be victims of mental abuse, even though women are more commonly the victims. The abuse can occur in a heterosexual and homosexual relationship. Mental abuse includes degrading, threatening, humiliating, or intimidating language. Abuse also manifests itself in controlling behavior that isolates the victim from family and friends, financial assets, and personal behavior. Men may be reluctant to discuss abuse for fear that it would make him appear weak.

Charles J. Sophy, MD
Adolescent Medicine
Though the numbers may be lower for men compared to woman, men are often the victims of mental abuse

Yes, they can. Traditionally, men in North America, at least, have been raised to see themselves as providers, protectors, leaders and pillars of the community. Since WWII and women's entry into the labor force that perspective has slowly been eroded. The economic environment has also been cycling through periods of distress that make it close to impossible for any one person to be 'the provider' for a family. Within that context, we can understand that men may feel less confident in their social and family roles, whether they express that dissonance outwardly or not. That may help to create susceptibility to mental abuse.

If added to the above context, a boy may have been raised in a family where there was emotional abuse as a normal way of functioning within the family. Without role models that demonstrate more kindness and equality between family members, the boy's susceptibility for being a victim of mental abuse will increase even more.

As a society, we also systemically mentally abuse minorities; by color, creed, disability, gender, etc. In my opinion, this too adds to the susceptibility of individuals to be abused by others. It sets up an expectation of inferiority/superiority in all relationships rather than equality and mutual respect.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.