DOMESTIC violence against men is abnormal, it is a topic that you do not hear being discussed among family, friends and the community, that is why when you hear or read about it, it is like a fiction and you are at a loss. And ask: does it really happen?

But apparently it does, judging by the cases presented by the Lagos State government on Tuesday where it said 89 men reported that they were battered by their wives in cases of domestic violence between 2020 and the first quarter of 2021.

The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA), Cecilia Bolaji Dada, said this at a ministerial briefing to mark the second year of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in office, held in Ikeja, Lagos.

According to her in 2020, a total of 46 men reported at the ministry that their wives violated them, while in the first quarter of 2021, a total of 43 men reported battering by their wives, making it a total of 89 in less than two years.

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She however said the figure captured only cases reported to the ministry and that some cases had been reported directly to the Ministry of Justice and police stations which the ministry might not be aware of.

Dada added that a total of 664 women were battered by their husbands in Lagos in the past year, according to cases reported at the ministry.

These battered men reported at the Ministry of Women Affairs (and Poverty Alleviation) to be rescued from women! May be men need their own ministry to take their grievances to, God help us, because we can’t afford to have men competing with women in ashebi at occasions.

Giving a breakdown, the commissioner said 378 women were violated by their husbands in 2020, while 286 women were battered by their husbands in the first quarter of 2021.

From the above, it means that it happens more than people care to admit, definitely to avoid stigma and disgrace.

What you hear from time to time is that a man is afraid of his wife because she is quarrelsome, but definitely not to beat him to the extent of being battered. Haba!

What generally happens in the case of domestic violence is that the husband is the abuser and the wife the victim. That is why advocates against domestic violence are aimed at protecting women, they may not take into account the opposite may be the case.

Men are brought up to be macho from when they are little. When they seem to slack, they are told sharply to behave ‘like a man’.  To be strong, enduring and above all not to cry.

They are being prepared for the role expected of them as leaders in their homes where they would take care of their family in both financial aspect and physical threat. So any form of weakness is not tolerated.

For instance, when a rat or a lizard or even a cockroach sent women screaming and running, it wouldn’t do for the men to also run a way, they are supposed to confront the danger and restore peace.

However, where marriage is meant to be for mutual love, respect and understanding, some men may be attracted to women with forceful character who may never respect them.

And you wonder why should a man stay with a wife that threatens his manly standing, demean him in front of his children, friends and relations?

In the case of battered women, some are said to endure the abuse for the sake of their children, but what excuse do men have?

Some believe that women are beaten by their husbands because they are rude and talk back to them instead of keeping quiet. Or they keep goading their husbands until the husbands get tired of being provoked and slap them or beat them.

So how do men provoke their wives that they are beaten?

Perhaps it is time to look into men in gender issues; after all, gender is not all about women as we are wont to believe.

These battered men reported at the Ministry of Women Affairs (and Poverty Alleviation) to be rescued from women! May be men need their own ministry to take their grievances to, God help us, because we can’t afford to have men competing with women in ashebi at occasions.

In this regard, Ministry of Family Affairs may be more like it to take care of all family problems, though some women would not like it; they are too used to their own exclusive ministry. Only that where does that leave abused men, who are also victims of domestic violence?

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