Male violence harms us all.
We all know it’s NOT ALL MEN that commit violence, that commit sexual assaults and domestic violence.
We also know that violence happens to men.
All of the above instances are a result of male violence.
Many people will be unaware that between 2 and 3 women a week are killed by a man that they know in the UK – every week.
As long as we centre the discussions around what happens to women and girls in cases of violence, sexual harassment and assault and feminise, we can pretend that the reason these women die and are r*ped and or sexually assaulted is due to ‘others’ or ‘monsters’ or ‘lone wolves’. But the men that commit these crimes – anything from sending unsolicited intimate pictures to stalking and coercively controlling women and girls to perform sexual acts that are degrading or violent – aren’t monsters, they’re not psychopaths. Many are just regular men who believe they are entitled to women’s attention, bodies and intimacy and when tho=se things are denied them for any number of reasons, then the women or girl faces the consequences.
So what can we do as men to sort this?
For too long it’s been in the hands of women’s support services, social workers, NHS staff, teachers – professions largely populated by women on lower pay than men – but women can’t change the mind of men who are sexist and misogynistic, because men won’t listen to them.
We need – as men – to step up and challenge our friends, to say (as Matt Pinkney says) “come off it mate” and challenge sexist jokes, inappropriate behaviour, unsavoury images or film shared on our text or WhatsApp groups. It’s on us – we need to challenge tactically and role-model better behaviours and attitudes to women.
Women can’t wait until men have daughters before they get that Empathy Lightbulb that makes them realise their behaviour is wrong -0 we need to engender preemptive compassion in our men and boys and create men with the empathy and kindness we want to see in society.
Here’s a link to an article I wrote with Evie Breese at The Big Issue last week,
If you’d like to chat to me about how to upskill your staff to help discuss misogyny and sexism with your colleagues or students then get in touch OR to speak with your students as part of the new PSHE curriculum about coercive control and sexual harassment, as well as unhelpful masculinity, then we can help too.
Since 2014 we’ve worked with around 30,000 young people on domestic abue and coercive control – w/c 6th February 2023, we spoke to 2350 students about these difficult areas in one week.
Get in touch, we can help.