New domestic violence study
When people talk of domestic violence the stereotypical image which comes to mind is of a woman who has been physically or mentally abused by a more domineering male partner or family member. Abusive behaviour can involve a range of actions, including physically hurting someone, pushing or shoving them, frightening them, or controlling or pressuring them into doing what you want or not doing what they want. These behaviours are known to have a significant health impact on women and children, and on men.
New researchers at the University of Bristol’s Centre for Academic Primary Care are looking for volunteers for a new study into this issue. They are specifically looking for men who are concerned that they are, or have been, abusive in their relationships with women. The study aims to develop a group programme for men to help them understand and change their behaviour. The programme will then be tested to see whether it works for the men and improves the safety and wellbeing of their partner or ex-partner. The study aims to recruit men who are (or have been):
- in a relationship with a female partner
- aged 21 or over
- worried that their behaviour towards female partners might be violent or abusive.
Professor Gene Feder, who is leading the study, said “We need to know how best to support men who want to stop abusive behaviour towards their partner or ex-partner. It takes courage to admit that you have a problem with abusive behaviour. I would encourage men to get involved in this study so that we can learn about what works and reduce the devastating impact that domestic violence has on people’s lives.”
For anyone in this type of situation it is important to seek support and take independent legal advice as soon as possible. At Barker Gotelee in most cases we are able to offer a free and confidential consultation in a safe environment to discuss all options available.
Amanda Erskine is a solicitor in the Family department at Barker Gotelee Solicitors.