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Rise in men experiencing domestic violence; Calls to Men’s Aid increased by 100% during some days of lockdown

New figures show that men are more likely to be victims of domestic violence than women in Ireland. Men’s Aid Ireland says that, one in seven men in Ireland experience domestic abuse.

The violence has been on the rise since the lockdown in March, and calls to men’s support group have increased since then. Some days it may go up to 100% increase in calls, the group said.

Andrea McDermott, the social care team leader at the charity said that men’s support calls have risen from an average of 12 calls a day to between 16 and 26 since mid-March. And since then the group have received 2018 contacts to its helpline and email support.

Men complain that hitting, punching, and kicking are common, and sometimes they even get hit with weapons.

“Men report being hit when they are vulnerable, when they have their back turned or asleep in bed. They are being abused emotionally, mentally, financially, sexually and being coercively controlled,” McDermott added.

Often men or children were escaping from these violence by going to work or college. Sometimes they were going to their friends or relatives homes, even in the midnight. But even that isn’t possible for them now because of the Covid-19 restrictions.

McDermott said the men reported being stuck and feeling insecure and worried for their children.

Most men have reported that their partners are highly addicted to increased alcohol consumption, and this creates more severe problems.

Ms. McDermott said that there have been many instances in which one parent encourage a child’s rejection of another parent. This will ultimately cause consequences in the children’s life.

“Studies have shown parental alienation directly conveys to the child negative attributions about their value and worth and creates feelings of worthlessness in the child, they feel flawed, unloved, and unwanted, only being needed to hurt the targeted parent,” Ms. McDermott added.

Latest figures from Men’s Aid Ireland reveal that 121 people reported experiencing parental alienation from mid-March to mid-August 2020. Last year it was approximately 70 reports for the same period.

Men’s Aid has outreach clinics in Dublin, Monaghan, Cavan, Louth and Meath but they want to expand their services to the whole country.

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