Calling Men to Stand Up for an End to Violence Against Women!

Men, here are ten questions to answer: (Come on now, I′m serious.) Men, here are ten questions to answer: (Come on now, I′m serious.)
  1. Have you beat on a wife or girlfriend lately?
  2. Have you followed and stalked your ex–wife or ex–girlfriend lately?
  3. Have you harassed a woman lately with abusive phone calls or emails?
  4. Have you called a woman a ″b**ch″ or used other verbal smack downs lately?
  5. Have you grabbed a woman by the arm or hair, yelled at her, pushed her up against a wall, and threatened her lately?
  6. Have you pressured or forced a woman lately to have sex with you against her will?
  7. Have you gotten a woman drunk or drugged lately to have sex with her?
  8. Have you lately tried to control a woman in your life by constantly checking up on her, keeping her away from family and friends, and limiting her access to money, a phone, or a car?
  9. Do any of the women in your life walk around on eggshells, being very careful not to say or do anything that might set off your temper?
  10. Now for the million dollar question: Are you upset that many women in our community are in relationships with men who could answer ″Yes″ to any of the questions above?
I am! I am a man, and I am bothered a great deal that many women in our community live daily with the very real fear of being hit and hurt, the very real shame of being belittled, blamed, and put down, and the very real terror of being assaulted and raped. Most of us men don7prime;t know what living with this kind of fear, shame, and terror is really like. Lots of women do!
The Centers for Disease Control just released the results of the 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey. It shows how women are disproportionately affected by intimate partner and sexual violence.
  • 1.3 million women in the U.S. were raped during the year preceding the survey.
  • Nearly 1 in 5 women have been raped in their lifetime while 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime.
  • 1 in 6 women have been stalked during their lifetime. 1 in 19 men have experienced stalking in their lifetime.
  • 1 in 4 women have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner, while 1 in 7 men experienced severe physical violence by an intimate partner.
  • 81% of women who experienced rape, stalking or physical violence by an intimate partner reported significant short or long term impacts related to the violence experienced in this relationship such as Post–Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms and injury while 35% of men report such impacts of their experiences.
  • Female victims experienced multiple forms of violence, including being beaten, raped, and stalked; male victims most often experienced physical violence only.
  • Approximately 80% of female victims experienced their first rape before the age of 25 and almost half experienced the first rape before age 18 (30% between 11-17 years old and 12% at or before the age of 10).
Statistics can seem so impersonal, but these ″female victims″ are the granddaughters, daughters, nieces, girlfriends, neighbors, friends, wives, mothers, and grandmothers of our communities. They have names and faces. And they have a future that calls for men to take a stand for their safety.
If you are a man and are concerned for the safety of women, you are invited to join me in forming a men′s group that will work to free our community from domestic violence. Together, we can promote respectful and healthy relationships. We can support each other and inspire other men with positive examples of what it means to be a man. Our focus will be on positive, healthy manhood and the prevention of intimate partner violence – for the benefit of the men, women, and children who love them. If you want to be on the ground floor of this men′s movement here in Hill County, please call, write or email me at the following:
Rich Jespersen – 406) 265-6206 (ext. 304); richj@bgchi-line.com; HELP Committee/Boys & Girls Club of the Hi-line; 500 1st Avenue; Havre, MT 59501
Havre Public Schools and the HELP Committee and Boys & Girls Club of the Hi–Line are committed to promoting safe and healthy lifestyles to become long–lived, responsible citizens. For more information on this or related topics, call 265-6206.